Originally known as Saint-Barthelemy, today St. Barts maintains its rich French heritage even as it has become a top Caribbean getaway for vacationers from around the world. St. Barts offers you a unique combination of old world charm and culture with modern amenities and entertainment, all in an unforgettable Caribbean paradise. Whether you are hoping to relax on a quiet beach, explore natural sights and biodiversity, or enjoy exciting nightlife and entertainment options, St. Barts is guaranteed to fulfill your vision of the dream Caribbean getaway.
St. Barts’s history is firmly rooted in European culture. In fact, a majority of St. Barts’s population can trace their history back to the original French settlers who made a home on the island in the 1600s. This French history continues to manifest itself in the island’s culture and politics, and St. Barts’s citizens today even vote in French elections.
Around the world, St. Barts is considered by many to be one of the Caribbean’s most beautiful getaways. Although St. Barts’s most important industry is its vibrant tourism sector, the island’s leaders are cautious to regulate the flow of tourism to the island. Because of this, the island’s pristine natural beauty remains unspoiled by over-population or over-development, and its historic charm remains faithfully constant, year after year.
While tourism certainly contributes significantly to St. Barts’s economy, many of the island’s local residents also engage in agricultural pursuits. St. Barts produces excellent tropical food crops such as cotton, pineapple, bananas, and a range of vegetable crops.
Whether you are looking to stay at a luxury resort, a beachside hotel, or a secluded private villa, St. Barts’s wide range of accommodation choices ensures that there is something on the island for everyone. Many of St. Barts’s accommodations beautifully reflect the island’s chic culture and upscale standards.
One of St. Barts’s features that continues to draw hundreds of visitors year after year is its 22 world-class beaches. The island of St. Barts is unique in that its beaches are either considered leeward—these have calm waters ideal for swimming or snorkeling—or windward—which are characterized by rougher waters perfectly suited to activities such as windsurfing. One of St. Barts’s most popular beaches is Grand-cul-de-sac, an expansive stretch of white sand that is well known for its water sports.
Perhaps one of St. Barts’s most popular attractions is its capital of Gustavia. Located on a U-shaped cove on the eastern side of the island, Gustavia is sure to captivate you with its historic charm and laidback lifestyle. Gustavia also offers excellent duty-free shopping, which for some calls to mind Paris’s famous Rue du Faubourg St. Honore.
Those who enjoy recreational activities will want to take advantage of the many aquatic activities offered on St. Barts, including scuba diving, snorkeling, boating, surfing, and water skiing. If you enjoy fishing, St. Barts is an excellent location for exotic fish such as mahi-mahi and barracuda, as well as deep sea fishing for tuna or marlin. Tennis, volleyball, and horseback riding are also popular activities on St. Barts.