2023 St. Barts Visitors Guide
St. Barthelemy is a mountainous island of about 9 square miles in the French West Indies. St. Barth is a nickname for St. Barthelemy. Some refer to it as St. Barts, however, the locals call it St. Barth. St. Barth is home to famous visitors (David Letterman & PDiddy) and fabulous beaches (Gouverneur & Saline). St. Barth was rated as one of the top ten beach destinations in the world by the Travel Channel. It is also home to some of the best restaurants in the Caribbean.
The island of Saint Barthélemy (St Barths or St Barts) is a volcanic island located in the French Caribbean close to St Martin and Anguilla. St Barths is only 8.1 sq miles, and with a population of approximately 10,000, is one of the smallest islands in the Caribbean. Ideally situated between the Atlantic and Caribbean, year-round temperatures are perfect for vacationers.
Barts Bucket Regatta
This unspoiled tropical island has many beautiful white sand beaches, some of the best restaurants in all of the Caribbean, and is a shopper’s haven featuring some of the most sophisticated brands.
St. Barts has over 20 white-sand beaches with crystal clear water, which seldom get crowded – even in high season. One of the most popular beaches is St-Jean Beach with the iconic Eden Rock Hotel and the St Barts airport, which has been coined as one of the most extreme airport landing strips due to its extremely steep arrival descent.
Beachgoers can watch the planes come and go from a short distance as they take in the sun and drink at Tom Beach Hotel. Other popular beaches include Gouverneur Beach and Saline Beach. There are many activities to do while visiting the island of St Barts. For those who are a little more adventurous, scuba diving is available for all levels, including those who wish to get their certification while vacationing.
Kitesurfing is a popular sport on the island with most of it taking place in the Grand Cul de Sac lagoon by the Le Sereno Hotel. Windsurfing is another popular sport often taking place right out front of St Jean Beach.
St Barts is one of the Caribbean’s most exclusive duty-free ports. The capital of Gustavia features some of the chicest shops in the world including Hermès, Dior, Cartier, Bulgari, and Louis Vuitton. There are also plenty of bargains to be found on the island and souvenir shops.
One can argue that the food alone in St Barts is one of its main attractions. It’s no coincidence that Caribbean Travel & Life magazine named St Barts the culinary capital of the Caribbean. Prominent chefs from around the world frequently visit the island and often times find themselves opening up their own restaurant on the island.
There are over 75 restaurants on the island serving up all sorts of flares – making it easy for vacationers to never get tired of their culinary experience while on the island.
St. Barts’ Beaches
It’s no wonder St. Barth was rated one of the top ten beach destinations in the world by the Travel Channel. It has 14 great beaches. All of St. Barth’s beaches are accessible on foot. Just drive as close as you can, park your jeep and walk!
Gouverneur and Saline are easy to get to, have ample parking, and are the two places you may bump into some famous star. Warning: they are full nude beaches. It’s a little distracting to see <large> people going full nude.
St. Jean is the main beach located along with the airport and main road.
Our favorite is Colombier. Drive as close as possible and then you have to hike down a steep bank. WORTH THE TROUBLE!
Like Colombier, all of St. Barth’s beaches are accessible by foot. Just drive as close as you can, park your jeep and walk!
St. Barts Restaurants
St. Barth is French and the French love their food. St. Barth has a tradition of French chefs relocating for the winter months. Don’t leave St. Barth without having dinner at Maya’s near Gustavia (which is owned by an American from Nantucket) or lunch at Le Tamarin near Saline.
Don’t leave St. Barth without having dinner at Maya’s near Gustavia (which is owned by an American from Nantucket). Mayas is a gorgeous outdoor eatery with French, Caribbean and American influences.
Likewise with Le Tamarin, located near Saline. It’s only open for lunch. It cannot be missed. Menu changes daily – all listed on a small chalkboard. Just have some vino and over-order.
Our suggestion? Get coffee and bread for breakfast at the bakery in Lorient. Then visit Saline for the morning, have lunch at Le Tamarin, spend the afternoon at Gouverneur, and end it all with dinner at Maya’s!
Another idea… your villa provider can arrange for a cook to make dinner for you at your villa.
Getting to St. Barts
Getting to St. Barts means going through St. Maarten. St. Maarten’s Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) is one of the largest airports in the Caribbean and is extremely easy to get to. US Airways, United, American, Continental, Delta, and Northwest all serve St. Maarten. To get from St. Maarten to St. Barts, you have a choice of boat or airplane.
Luckily, St. Barts performed a large reconstruction project on the island airfield (SBH) in September of 2005 because it’s an interesting place to land. You are landing on the side of a mountain. Overshoot… you’re in the water. WINAIR, Air Caraibes, and all serve St. Bart’s SBH airport. Warning… both St. Maarten in general and Winair in specific are pretty lax about times and reservations. Arrive early and if there is not an attendant manning their booths, search out a Winair representative. Don’t wait for them to find you!
Charter flights by airplane and helicopter are expensive but more convenient. St-Barth Commuter can be chartered. The landing at SBH is kind of scary… but it’s done with such regularity that there’s no need to have fear. However, the boat trip can be prettier and safer.
There’s a fast catamaran ferry from Chesterfield Marina called the HC Katia. The trip takes about 35 minutes to St Barth. The MV Voyager leaves from Marigot and makes two daily trips to St. Barths. My wife and I had the scariest ordeal of our lives aboard the Voyager during a storm with huge seas. The crew handled it impeccably, however, I feared for our lives. Our recommendation is to take Winair or the new high-speed ferry. Stay a day in St. Maarten if there’s any sign of a storm.
Airfare Prices to St. Barth
Typical, off-season round trip to St. Martin is approximately $500 from the States. We used a 2-stop, mid-March (high season) itinerary from Chicago (ORD) to St. Martin (SXM) and used Expedia. We found 610.90 as the cheapest.
5-Star St. Barts Hotels
Have you been dreaming of a secluded, 5-star hotel in St. Barts? Ultimate Jet Vacations has the perfect hand-picked properties! St. Barts is home to some of the most luxurious hotels in the Caribbean and is a popular travel spot for the world’s most discerned travelers. The island of St. Barts offers a peaceful retreat from your hectic daily life. With seemingly endless stretches of white-sand beaches, you can soak in the sun’s ray at any of our 5-star properties and lose your troubles in the sand. Let the St. Barts experts at Ultimate Jet Vacations plan the vacation of your dreams. Call us today – be prepared for the best travel experience of your life.
The Hotel Christopher sits at the water’s edge in Pointe Milou, St. Barthelemy GP, Guadeloupe, and is nestled amongst villas carved out of the island’s rocky coasts. The 41 guestrooms and are arranged in a semi-circle above the coastline. Sofitel Christopher features a large oceanfront infinity pool and a fitness center complete with fitness classes and massage services. Restaurant Taino, adjacent to the hotel’s pool, offers superb French fare for breakfast and dinner. Le Mango serves barbeque and salads at the poolside bar during the day.
Located in Pointe Milou in the French West Indies, Hotel Christopher, St. Barts has set itself apart from typical luxury hotels and resorts in the Caribbean by offering unparalleled levels of service and attention to detail. Recently renovated Hotel Christopher keeps getting better and better! With picturesque views of the ocean and astounding stretches of beaches, this hotel offers the perfect secluded hideaway. Click or call to learn more.
Hotel Carl Gustaf
A luxurious resort surrounded by lush tropical greenery, Hotel Carl Gustaf is a hot spot to escape into a romantic hideaway.
With brightly colored bungalows, Hotel Guanahani & Spa is a charming luxury resort in St. Barts offering guests a true Caribbean experience. Nestled in private peninsula, Hotel Guanahani is the perfect hotel to hideaway from the responsibilities of everyday life. It is the island’s only full-service resort; therefore, you can be certain that you are getting incomparable service at an amazing value. Want to learn more about this amazing property? Call us today!
Hotel Le Toiny
The tranquil Hotel Le Toiny is set in the colorful coastline of St. Barts. This luxury resort has 15 recently restored villas, with private verandas and pools. Known for offering its guests with exclusivity and privacy, this resort is the perfect place to escape on a rendezvous for two. Indulge in all that St.Barts has to offer while enjoying the secluded, tranquil ambiance. Are you ready to learn more? Call the experts at Ultimate Jet Vacations today.
Hotel St. Barth Isle de France
Located right on Baie des Flamand beach in St. Barts, Hotel St. Barth Isle de France cannot be beat in terms of location. Steps away from an endless stretch of beach, this luxury hotel is perfect for families and couples alike. Exuding with casual elegance, this hotel make Ultimate Jet Vacations’ best list. With gorgeous rooms, exquisite restaurants and an array of activities, this luxury resort is hot vacation spot. Call or click to find out more!
Indulge in the simplicity of Le Sereno. If you are looking for a serene beach setting in St. Barts, this is it! Overlooking the beach and nestled between a coconut grove and coral reef, Le Sereno offers pure untainted luxury. This is the perfect destination to immerse yourself in your surroundings and forget about all your worries. Your perfect escape waits at Le Sereno. What are you waiting for? Click here to learn more.
Located on the edge of world-renowned Flamands beach lays Hotel Taiwana. This small, luxurious hotel in St. Barts offers astonishing accommodations with gorgeous ocean views. Closely situated to Gustavia, Hotel Taiwana is also seen as the gateway of St. Barts. You can spoil yourself with all that that St. Barts has to offer, while enjoying the utmost is in luxury. Don’t take our word for it. Contact our luxury travel experts today!
The Taiwana is one of the newest hotels that have been added to our luxury Caribbean collection located at the edge of Flamands. It is ideally situated on the treasured island of St. Barths. The Taiwana is a small, charming luxury hotel featuring amazing accommodations with astonishing ocean views. With its close proximity to Gustavia, Taiwana Hotel is known as the gateway of St. Barths. Guests can effortlessly escape the stresses of the mainland and immerse themselves in all that Taiwan and the island have to offer.
The Eden Rock
Do you prefer a modernly chic atmosphere? Without a question the Eden Rock St. Barts is the hotel for you! All of the accommodations at the Eden Rock are superb; however, the villas are exquisite. Each of the villas offer guests with the utmost in 5-star luxury. Not to mention that the cuisine is to die for! Awaken all of your senses at the Eden Rock St. Barts. Call us today – be prepared for the best travel experience of your life.
Once you arrive, find your jeep and your villa… make sure you visit one of the small food stores to stock up on essential items. There are several locations by the airport (St. Jean) and a large grocery in Lorient.
Summer Hotel Deals
Almost every villa and hotel has a summer deal; The off-season offers an excellent opportunity for less-expensive St. Barts accommodations. For example, during the summer of 2023, Wimco has a half-price deal featuring a two-bedroom villa for $1,700 from May 1-Oct. 31 (the seasonal rate is $3,400).