Fort Amsterdam Monument near Philipsburg St Maarten

Fort Amsterdam – A Fort Guarding the Salt Trade


The fort located on the peninsula between Great Bay and Little Bay was built in 1631 by the Dutch. It was their first Fort in the Caribbean named after the Chamber of Amsterdam. It overlooks both Philipsburg and the first Dutch settlement on island, Little Bay. The fort was besieged by amongst others Peter Stuyvesant, trying to retake the fort from the Spanish, and losing the leg in the process.


Later, the fort functioned as a radio station for long distance communications. Bulwarks, walls and some houses remain of the fort. Also, some parts of the old radio station can be found.


Fort Amsterdam is also well known as one of the best places to spot the national St Maarten bird, the Pelican. Large groups of these Brown Pelicans are active on the western part of the fort, aiming for the same fishes that make the sea below so good for snorkeling.


The fort offers a great view of both Great Bay and Little Bay, Philipsburg the Cruise Port and Divi Little Bay Resort.


Where To Find Fort Amsterdam?


Fort Amsterdam can be accessed via Divi Little Bay Resort. Mention at the resort entrance you are visiting for the fort. From Divi, it is a 5 minute walk. Signage is in place to guide you to the fortress. Entry is free.


Find Fort Amsterdam on the map below and other Monuments on St Maarten / St Martin on our Interactive Map!



How to get to Fort Amsterdam

How to get to Fort Amsterdam from the direction of Philipsburg/Oyster Bay/Orient Bay side of St Maarten / St Martin:

Proceed towards the Philipsburg Pondfill/WJ Nisbeth Road along the Great Salt Pond. Departing from Philipsburg, ensure the sea remains on your left-hand side and make a left turn at the traffic lights facing the sea. Continue along the coastal road, offering breathtaking views. After the road leads down steeply, turn left and then you will arrive at Divi where your car can be parked. After parking the car, you will have to make a small walk to access Fort Amsterdam.


How to get to Fort Amsterdam from Simpson Bay / Princess Juliana Airport SXM / Maho / Cupecoy / Marigot /Grand Case /SFG areas of St. Maarten / St. Martin:

When you pass Princess Juliana Airport from the Maho / Cupecoy direction, or pass the Causeway Bridge coming from Marigot / Grand Case, towards Simpson Bay. Keep the sea on your right-hand side and the Simpson Bay Lagoon on your left. Follow the main road to your left when it turns inland and you reach a roundabout. Take the road uphill to the right and follow it for half a mile until you reach a roundabout on top of the hill. Skip the first exit towards Indigo Bay, but take the second (downhill) towards Little Bay. At the next roundabout turn right and follow the main road towards / along the sea. After the road leads steeply downwards, turn right towards the Divi Little Bay Resort gates where you can park the car and after a small walk you will arrive at Fort Amsterdam St. Maarten.



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Fort Amsterdam, Sint Maarten