Boat resting in the waters around Anguilla


Visiting nearby islands is a great way to extend your vacation in St. Maarten/St. Martin.


By Debby Lind-Steyn and Jeffrey Laign


St. Maarten/St. Martin is more than a single destination. It’s a cultural hub. A Caribbean gem shared by two European nations — The Netherlands and France — it makes a great base for exploring nearby islands like Anguilla, Saba, St. Barthelemy, and St. Eustatius. They’re packed with cultural and natural attractions for an unforgettable day trip or island-hopping getaway, and you can easily reach them by plane, ferry, or private charter.



If you’re looking for more than sunny skies and fruity cocktails, devote a day or two to discovering the blissful tranquility of this British Overseas Territory. It’s just nine miles from St. Maarten/St. Martin, and it’s easy and affordable to experience the blissful tranquility of Anguilla on a day trip. Sail cats Lambada and Tango depart daily from Aqua Mania Adventures in Simpson Bay. You don’t need to pack much, as these charter boats have everything you need on board.


You can also reach Anguilla via ferry from Marigot (French St. Martin). The ferry departs approximately every 45 minutes, but be sure to confirm in case of scheduling changes.


Stretching 16 miles from east to west, eel-shaped Anguilla has much to offer visitors. Diving and snorkeling are spectacular at scenic Little Bay. Learn more about the island’s history and culture on a walking tour of The Valley, Anguilla’s capital. Sample local cuisine and music at Sandy Ground and soak up serenity at Shoal Bay, Anguilla’s most famous beach.


The Territory also includes several small uninhabited islands that are well worth a visit. At Prickly Pear Island, for example, you can snorkel through the outer reefs in crystal-clear water.


Once you open your senses and absorb the sights and sounds of this British jewel, you will feel a lot more relaxed. Let go of workaday worries as you stroll along pristine shores lined by fishing boats with richly painted wooden hulls. You’ll soon find yourself basking in the smiles of friendly locals on this island like no other.


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