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The beautiful downtown of Saint Maarten, full of color and life!

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St. Maarten and Saba Await

An ocean lover's paradise at the intersection of the Dutch and Caribbean Cultures

Article by Sean O'Keefe

Photography by Sean O'Keefe, as provided

Originally published in Roswell City Lifestyle

If you are looking for an irresistible blend of natural beauty, rich culture, and thrilling adventures this travel season, look no further than the Dutch Island of St. Maarten. Warm breezes and a gracious welcome set the stage for what will be an unforgettable Caribbean getaway. 

When visiting St. Maarten, Rainforest Adventure and The Flying Dutchman are not to be missed. After the 25-minute ascension to the top of Sentry Hill, guests are greeted with incredible 360-degree views of the neighboring islands. Luckily, a cocktail lounge offers a little liquid courage to those courageous guests taking the quick way down! An exhilarating 1,066-foot drop over 2,800 feet with speeds up to 56 miles per hour as you soar over the rainforest and rooftops. It’s the closest to fear and thrill you will ever know.

Philipsburg, the only beachside capital city in the world, is a beautiful, walkable city transporting visitors to the vibrant intersection of Dutch and Caribbean life. The Great Bay Beach scene rivals that of any city in the world. Bright pastel-colored, colonial-influenced historical buildings house the finest duty-free liquor, jewelry, perfumeries, and designer clothing shops. 

From bustling markets, bakeries, and roadside eateries, to dockside fine dining restaurants, St. Maarten is a rich, delicious, global culinary adventure. The food scene is as diverse as the inhabitants of this robust island. While Caribbean, Dutch, Creole, and French cuisines have left their indelible mark on the emerging culinary landscape, its gastronomic prowess is representative of the more than 120 nationalities that call this wonderfully inviting island home.

A short, 20-minute flight will land you on Saba Island, a veritable jewel amongst all the islands that make up the Caribbean. Saba captivates from the moment you land but please, mind the approach by air. It is always a miraculous landing. With its towering cliffs, lush rainforests, and colloquial atmosphere; it’s a haven for hikers and nature enthusiasts. Don't miss Mas Cahones Hill. It is exhilarating! With charming villages and a rich cultural heritage, Saba offers a serene escape from the ordinary. From sea level to the top of Mount Scenery, some 2,900 feet above, Saba truly is a fantasy island - the unspoiled queen of the Caribbean. 

Here are my picks for embracing Saba. Enjoy salt fish and Johnny Cakes. Fine French pastries are your friend. Eat them. Go to Fort Amsterdam. It is a step back in time. Whatever activities you choose to do while visiting Saint Maarten, your home away from home should be Oceans at Divi Little Bay. This luxury beachfront oasis is the ultimate traveler’s paradise.

Whether it's relaxation or adventure, the Dutch Islands of St. Maarten and Saba are undiscovered Caribbean destinations waiting just for you.

  • The view from Spyglass Villia on the Island of Saba.
  • Hiking is a must do adventure while visiting Saba
  • A perfect spot for a bath, overlooking the entire Caribbean.
  • The beautiful downtown of Saint Maarten, full of color and life!
  • Looking towards Fort Amsterdam.
  • Try to catch a jet plane at Maho Beach
  • Lolo's offers a delicious quick taste of the local favorites.
  • Visit Seaside Nature Park and go horseback riding in the ocean.
  • Captain's Rib Shack is a must dine while visiting Saint Maarten.
  • Chicken roti and a Ting.