Cosmopolitan buzz meets Gallic charm on St Barthélemy, more commonly known as St Barts or St Barths. A jewel in the French West Indies, it’s the destination of choice for the stars…
Many people have heard of it, but aren’t sure exactly where it is. They know it’s an island,
someplace in the Antilles archipelago. Do they imagine it to be hip and sophisticated, or more authentic, discreet, and laidback?
This tiny rock, smaller and less populated than many villages in the French countryside, has few resources other than its charm, its perpetual sunshine, the underwater wealth of its Marine Park, and its protected landscapes.
St Barts island is an excellent tourist destination: one of the most varied and upscale, with villas, hotels, spas, some of the best restaurants in the Caribbean, a wide choice of leisure activities and nautical sports, prestigious sailing regattas, a full calendar of cultural events, and the irresistible allure of great shopping… and of course the St Barts beaches with cristal water.
Saint Barthélemy, known more commonly as St.Barts, is located just east of Puerto Rico, and lies near the islands of Saint Martin, Saba and Anguilla. St Barts is renowned for it’s beautiful white-sand beaches, crystal clear waters, green hilly terroir, high-end shopping and fine dining. Expect everything from French Cordon Bleu to Creole and Caribbean island cooking served at sublime restaurants or by Private Chef St Barth (!!!) whose locations showcase the breathtaking scenery.
St. Barts capital Gustavia is a picturesque town full of red-roofed buildings, chic boutiques and a yacht-filled harbour, offering a very relaxed holiday lifestyle. This spirit continues in the island’s internationally known holiday resorts – many of which feature just 15 accommodations or fewer – where tranquil, intimate atmospheres are the order of the day. It’s no wonder St Barts has become a playground for the rich and famous.
Sunbathing – Sounds obvious, but forgive us for reminding you of the pleasures of such a humble activity on an island with such a diverse choice of beaches. 14 in total, all invite sun worshippers with their powder-soft, bright white sands.
Scuba – PADI certified, guided tours and lessons for beginners. Stay shallow with mask and snorkel or strap on the tank and hit the depths to witness some of the most spectacular marine habitats in the Caribbean.
Sports – Just a few of the other fun-filled land and water activities available on St Barts – tennis, volleyball, deep-sea fishing, water-skiing, surfing, windsurfing and kite-surf.
Submarine excursions – As adventurous as scuba diving, and just as visually stimulating, plumbing the depths in the comfort of a submarine keeps you dry while you enjoy the kaleidoscopic underwater world.
Jet Skiing and Motor Yachts – Rent a motorised marine machine and join the high-octane fun upon the waves.
Sailing and Yacht Club – After taking your vessel on the open seas, or enjoying a chartered trip, quiet anchorages in bays like Colombier offer respite from the vibrant gatherings in other harbours. Also, try catamaran and Hobie-cat trips and look out for regattas.
Shopping and nightlife – If you can tear yourself away from the shore and all its treasures, St Barts also provides sufficient destinations for shopaholics and dancefloor divas alike. As a duty-free port, your spending money goes far in the designer outlets in Gustavia and St Jean. Casa Nikki, Le Feeling and Yacht Club, meanwhile, are the discos du jour to strut your stuff.
St Barts enjoys tropical temperatures and long summers, usually lasting from May until November. Sunshine is prominent year-round, despite the rainy season, while humidity is often low thanks to ocean winds. 25 °C is the average daily temperature with highs of 32 °C. Surrounding waters average at a rather pleasant 27 °C.
Perfect arcs of white sand bordering warm turquoise waters, with a richness of underwater fauna sheltered by plant beds and coral, the St Barts beaches are all different, each with its own seductive charms and decided personality.
Shell beach at first view is a stretch of shells that all look the same. But there is the occasional surprise of finding a rare shell, sending you off on a treasure hunt for more! This unusual, one-of-a-kind beach is perfect for those tired of the cliché “white sand beach.” It is also one of the best spots to to watch the sunset and the closest to the center of Gustavia (5 minutes) and one can have lunch or dinner almost at the water’s edge.
Public Beach close to the Port of Gustavia, the neighborhood of Public has its own beach, which houses the island’s yacht club (sailing school). The water is calm and pleasant for swimming.
Corossol Beach and its slightly brownish sand gives this beach a certain charm. The bay of Corossol is home to many traditional fishing boats or dories.
Colombier Beach is accessible only by boat or a foot-path from la Petite Anse or Colombier, the beach of Colombier boasts one of the most beautiful panoramic views on the island. The clear, turquoise water is ideal for snorkeling.
La Petite Anse Beach or Little Cove Creek is an ideal beach for the family, the water is shallow and in addition to its white sand, rocks, on either side of the beach conceal a fascinating underwater life.
Flamands Beach is the largest on the island with fine white sand and rolling waves. The beach gets busier in the summer when students home from school get together to play soccer or volley-ball in the sand.
Anse des Cayes Beach is like its name suggests, a “cayes” which refers to coral reef. It is also one of the more popular beaches for surfers with its big waves rolling in.
Saint-Jean Beach is second only to Gustavia, as the most active area on the island. Its beach is split into two sections, divided by the Eden Rock Hotel. The first part is near the airport and one can see the planes taking off and landing: One must be prudent and stay out of their way! And make sure to respect the signs. There is also easy access to nautical activities here. The second part, on the far side of the hotel, is calmer and better suited to swimming or snorkeling.
Lorient Beach or as the locals call it the “little pools” is on one side calm enough to swim safely (the little pools) and is frequented by families since the area is protected by a coral reef that offers extra security for children. The other end of the beach is popular with surfers as there are large waves that come in over the rocks and coral.
Marigot Beach, is so tranquil time seems to have stopped. In spite of numerous hurricanes, there is still a healthy coconut grove near the beach.
Grand Cul-de-Sac Beach is protected by a large natural barrier reef a few hundreds of yards off-shore, which offers calm water great for water activities such as kayaking, paddle boarding, kite and wind-surfing.
Petit Cul-de-Sac Beach is the spot where friends and families often gather for picnics.
Toiny Beach is idea for those who love surfing and challenging waves (especially with the winter currents). Although swimming is discouraged here due to strong cur-rents, surfing is the principal activity on this beach. The coastline also offers some good hiking and pristine viewpoints.
Grand Fond Beach remains the most mysterious, and swim-ming is not encouraged due to the rocky coast and stones in the water, but the shoreline is the perfect place to take a long walk on the rocks with the wind blowing in your hair.
Gouverneur Beach off the beaten path and undeveloped, the beach in Gouverneur looks like a picture postcard with its white sand, vegetation, and turquoise water. It is said that the pirate Monbars hid his treasure nearby.
Saint Barts has developed its own lifestyle that seamlessly blends luxury and nonchalance. The goal of everyone on the island is to satisfy the dreams and desires of their guests, so that each trip to Saint Barthélemy is a moment of peacefulness far from anxi-ety and stress. Saint Barthélemy is the ideal island to go shopping with total serenity in Gustavia, the most prestigious luxury brands rub shoulders with young designers whose collections are inspired by life on the island, with informal receptions, memorable parties, and elegant relaxation. Interior design boutiques are filled objects often found on expeditions to the four corners of the world. Most of the boutiques are located in Gustavia or Saint Jean, and offer duty-free prices.
The whole island of St Barts oozes luxury. Its every aspect, from the mega yachts bobbing in the harbour to the impeccable standards maintained by its world-class hoteliers, points to why these heavenly shores are so popular with the celebrity jetset. With Kenwood Travel as your trusty travel agent, you can expect the best hand-selected luxury hotels in the region at the most competitive prices. The exclusive celeb’ lifestyle could soon be yours.