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Travel

The Ultimate St. Barth Travel Guide

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St. Barth isn’t your typical Caribbean island. It’s chic, a bit hedonistic, and full of much love, sexy French language, and beautiful people (with great tans). My husband and I have been coming here for 23 years. The majestic island offers a variety of restaurants and something to do for almost everyone, whether you’re a foodie, an adventurer, or just looking to lounge in luxury.

St. Barth is across from the island of St. Maarten. To reach this little special island, no aircraft can fly directly here. Instead, one can travel to St. Maarten and then book a private flight on Windward Express, a small aircraft which has no longer than a 10 minute flight time.

Others rent a boat that can take you from St. Maarten to St. Barth. Or, some opt to greet their own yacht or private charter yacht in St. Maarten and work their way over. Either way, it is about a hour and a half boat ride.

While I appreciate the luxury of vacationing on a yacht, I am a land kind of gypsy girl. I always need to immerse myself in the culture and feel the spirit of the island. I’d prefer to take it all in by foot.

In terms of getting around on the island, taxis are a relatively easy option for daily travel — but if you’re on St. Barths during the December rush, there could be quite a bit of a wait. (December is the busiest time of year, and also the most expensive. Spring break is also a heavy time, and the Bucket Regatta goes on here too then.) Car rentals are also available at the airport, as long as you have a valid driver’s license and passport with you.

Book now, and be prepared to have fun. Let me help you.

Where To Stay

Cheval Blanc: This hotel is very family friendly. (From $1100 – $1300 per night)

Serrano Hotel: This spot is great for families and couples. It’s on the beach and it has its own (delicious) restaurants. (From  $885 – $2,256)

Le Barthelemy Hotel & Spa: This new hotel on the Grand Cul-de-Sac white sand beach has a Michelin-starred restaurant and wellness spa, too. (From $764 – $2,656)

WIMCO Villas: If you’re craving a little more seclusion, try renting. You can also request housekeeping services, a butler, a private chef, and concierge services.

Where To Eat

All the places I have listed here are careful with food allergies and dietary restrictions from my experience.

L’Isoletta Bistro: This Italian restaurant has delicious food and a happening atmosphere. It’s the place to see and be seen. The pizza is a must.

La Guérite: A beautiful new Mediterranean restaurant — with beautiful people and a great atmosphere.

La Petite Colombe: Go here for the croissants and pastries.

Shellona: Located right on Shell Beach, Shellona also has covered seating inside.

Le Creperie: This is a must-visit no matter the time of year or the time of day for me.

Santa Fe Restaurant: This is a literally hidden gem — slow down while driving by so you don’t miss it

Where To Shop

There’s no shortage of luxurious shops on St. Barths — these are a few of my favorites. Even though some, like Louis Vuitton and Cartier, are available stateside, it’s always more fun to shop and treat yourself on vacation, no? For local wares, try:

Poupette: Shop here for beachwear and easygoing, no fuss items.

Cour Vendôme Center: Located in Gustavia, this center has many shopping options too.

The Best Beaches

Grand Cul-de-Sac: This beach has the calmest waters on the island.

Saline Beach: It is not the easiest to get to, but that doesn’t usually stop anyone — once you’ve made it, it does not disappoint.

Colombier: This may be the most secluded beach on the island.

St. Jean: You can see the planes take off and land while sunbathing.

 

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