Philipsburg Port of Call
In Dutch St Maarten, the port city of Philipsburg has become one of the most popular cruise destinations in the world. Grown from a Dutch colonial past the picturesque bay city has been rebuilt as a tourist haven.
The most loved activities in Philipsburg are shopping and enjoying the pretty beaches, and both shops and beaches are in good supply.
The Dr A. C. Wathey Cruise & Cargo Facility is a small city in itself. The cruise passenger service section, named Harbour Village and John Craane Cruise Terminal, consists of restaurants, shops and an entertainment centre so entertaining that some passengers don't ever leave the cruise terminals. About four cruise liners can dock at once, with additional cruise ships anchoring in the bay and tendering passengers to the Tender Jetty.
Tourist information is available from A.C. Wathey Pier
Water taxis from the cruise terminal will take passengers to the centre of Philipsburg. Waiting government-regulated taxies are readily available from just outside the cruise terminal and can take passengers around the island including the French side, St Martin, as the border is not regulated. Philipsburg itself is small enough to be explored on foot.
Philipsburg is basically one large market, making shopping a favourite endeavour for dedicated deal finders. The island's other love is for beaches, with an expansive sandy stretch at Simpson Bay, more secluded options at Cay Bay and Cupecoy, and a popular beach at Mullet Bay. Rounding out the sightseeing options are the two historic Dutch forts, a small zoo and a botanical garden.
Mark's Place - Caribbean cuisine in a convenient central location
Daniel's By the Sea - good seafood and western favourites right on the beach
Greenhouse - Lively haunt with local and international dishes
Shopping in Philipsburg is rewarding for bargain-hunters looking to take advantage of the island's duty-free status. Shoppers are first introduced to Harbour Village shopping centre at the cruise docks but the best shops and markets are found in the city centre. Front and Old Streets are great for window shopping and higher-end boutiques and many of the connecting alleys offer lovely crafts and souvenirs.
Party on nearby St Barths Island
Charter a boat to Anguilla
Deep-sea fish the day away
Visit the island's French side
Golf in Mullet Bay