Nav Trigger

Sail St Martin – Getting to Oyster Pond

Sail St Marting with MooringsAll four couples that were going to sail St Martin with me were able to come in the day before our Moorings charter began. I prefer coming in a day early whenever possible. It lowers the stress of the first day by allowing me to ease into the sailing trip.

Three of the couples were coming from Atlanta and were on the same flight. The final couple was coming from Washington and arrived about an hour after the Atlanta group. Moorings offered to help arrange a taxi pickup at the airport to take us to Oyster Pond. The cost for this was $10 per person for the group from Atlanta, and $17.50 per person for the couple from Washington.

However, since we were in a day early I decided to plan a side excursion to the Sunset Bar & Grill. This beach bar is located on Maho Beach in Sint Maarten (the Dutch side of St Martin). It is best known for being right at the end of the runway for Princess Juliana International Airport. Its main attraction is allowing you to stand literally 30 yards from the end of the runway while planes take off and land.

When you sail St Martin plan a stop at Sunset Bar & Grill

Since this excursion called for more than a standard taxi trip I contacted Joyce Hanley-Prince. Joyce is a local that runs a small tour company that specializes in helping tourists plan their own excursions. She was very quick to respond to emails and phone calls and overall delightful to deal with. We settled on $25 per person for her to pick us up at the airport, take us to Maho Beach, and then drop us at Oyster Pond. She even included a pitcher of her rum punch made from fresh ingredients grown in her own garden. The punch was amazing, and a perfect way to kick off our time in St Martin.

After some lunch at Sunset Bar & Grill, and experiencing standing behind a large airplane when it takes off, we headed to Oyster Pond. The trip took about 45 minutes. Joyce dropped us at Captain Oliver’s Hotel where we were all staying the first night. (This hotel is part of Captain Oliver’s Resort and Marina where Moorings is based.)

After dropping our luggage in the room, the Atlanta group met up at the hotel’s pool for happy hour while the Washington couple took a quick nap. They had taken the red eye and crossed 3 time zones to get to St Martin so needed a little R&R. Once happy hour was over, everyone was ready for dinner. We ate at a little French restaurant about a 15-minute walk from the hotel.

After dinner, everyone settled in for the night to be ready for our Moorings chart briefing early the next day. Before long we would be casting off to sail St Martin.

Read Part 3 of the Sail St Martin Story >>



Comments (8)

  1. Pingback: Sail St Martin - The Preparation - Shane KennyShane Kenny

  2. Chris Morrow |

    I enjoyed reading your blog notes on St Maartin and you have some good tips for people new to the trip. Although it was funny to get an email today from the Moorings about it and then see it was 12 months old. Still good either way. We have made the same trip you made, plus Nevis & St Kitts. We just got back from 2 weeks sailing in Anguilla & Guadeloupe and then a week sailing (actually motor sailing) in the Chesapeake.

    You mentioned Thailand, you must do this trip. We sailed there a few years ago and it was magical, our favorite trip ever. It’s easy sailing, no customs, and the people and villages you will encounter are the real gem of the trip. I would also highly recommend taking the time to fly up to Chiang Mai. It’s also a very special place in the Golden Triangle. Cheers for your future adventures!

    • Shane Kenny |

      Thanks for the info about Thailand. The photos from the sailing over there look amazing. My wife’s parents actually lived in the Chiang Mai area for several years. We may have to wait a few years in order to be able to take the time for a trip like this. I am figuring we need at least 10 days with the travel on each end of the sailing trip. How long was your trip? Would you willing to share your itinerary?

    • roberto |

      Hi Chris

      I’d like to konow more about your Thailand sailing. Can you share your experience ?
      Thanks a lot

  3. Tracey |

    So happy to have found your blog! We have sailed catamarans in the BVI’s twice, Bahamas, and just recently Grenada. Looking for other destinations, and had not considered St. Martin till now

    • Shane Kenny |

      It was a great trip, but I will warn that it is more of sailing trip than BVI. BVI felt more like a party with some sailing to get to the next party. St Martin feels more like sailing with some party after you sail. Not very crowded either, but I actually like that more. We sailed Belize a few years back as well but that was before I was blogging about my trips like this. If you are into hiking check out my latest blog series on our Inca Trail hike in Peru.

  4. roberto |

    we are going to sail St Martin, so your information is very useful for us.
    For the next time, do you recommend Belize ? how many days ?

    • Shane Kenny |


      Enjoy St Martin. After the initial shock of leaving Oyster Pond I really enjoyed the trip. Make sure you hit Tintamarre. I’d try to overnight there if I could. As for Belize, I usually make my Caribbean sailing trips at least 7 nights. With all the prep that goes into it, having a good 6 nights out with the boat is nice. When I venture out of the Caribbean I suspect I will move to 10 or more nights. It takes 2 days to get to and from Bora Bora so that trip will be 14 days with 10 nights on the boat I suspect.

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *