St. Barthelemy (St. Barts)
Population: 7,367 citizens
Size: 8 square miles
St. Barthelemy, commonly known as St. Barts, is just 8 square miles but is home to at least 20 excellent beaches. What attracts most visitors to St. Barts is the sophisticated approach to relaxation. St. Bart's prides itself on the finest food and wine, high end shopping, and lack of commercial development. St. Barts can be known as an elite playground for the rich, the services and facilities are always first class. Luxurious resorts and villas are scattered around the beautiful island.
When To Go
The weather in St. Barts is generally good year round. Dry season lasts from December to May with heavier rains in June and November during hurricane season. The most popular time to visit is during the winter season from January to April; at this time there are also many sporting and cultural events to attend.
Sun, Sand, Sea and Shopping
Gustavia is the main harbor town in St. Barts. One of the prettiest harbor towns in the whole Caribbean, a boardwalk lines the coast with restaurants and bars that create a very pleasant ambience. Luxury yachts are found here hosting private celebrity parties often and at Christmas and New Year, Gustavia's harbor
The rugged landscape gives rise to beaches cut out of steep-sided bays. St. Barts has soft white sand and shockingly blue waters. Some of the beaches are hubs for watersports while others are remote and undeveloped, this offers a quiet escape. Going topless is the norm on the beaches and on the south coast. On the other hand, three of the best beaches in St. Barts have little for amenities making them remote and secluded.
St. Barts is the best place in the Caribbean for luxury tax-free shopping. There are plenty of shopping options that cater to the islands wealthy and elegant clientele. International designer labels on clothes and jewelry are common as well as other luxury items such as cigars and wine. The main shopping areas are Gustavia, Rue de la Republica, Rue du Bord de Mer, and St. Jean.
Dining and Nightlife
An outstanding number of restaurants dot the island of St. Barts. The restaurants are usually in lovely settings with cuisine to match. There is a seamless supply of the finest ingredients, top class chefs, and great service. A unique experience is available in made-to-order meals and gourmet take-out options prepared by private chefs.
For those looking for a glittering nightlife in St. Barts, the choices are few. Most nights are spent enjoying fine dining under the stars or watching the sun set. Recently, the live music and bar scene has blossomed a bit but is still more relaxing than other Caribbean spots.