Saint Barthelemy, or better known as St. Bart’s, is an overseas territory of France in the Caribbean region. The island has a total land area of 25 square kilometers with a population count of 9,035 (as of 2011). The capital city is Gustavia – it is also the largest city in St. Barthelemy. The island is famous as a tropical destination for celebrities and famous personalities. Read this travel guide to find out why travel to St. Bart’s is going to be a worthwhile experience.
For years, Saint Barthelemy was part of the Guadaloupe that is also an overseas territory of France. However, it was separated in 2003 and has become a separate overseas collectivity region of France. St. Bart’s was formed out of volcanic origin and it is encircled by shallow reefs. The main harbor is found on the capital city of Gustavia.
St. Bart’s is best known as a popular tourist destination, particularly for the rich and famous.
Official Language: French is the official language in Saint Barthelemy.
Wi-Fi Availability: Almost every hotel in St. Bart’s offer free WiFi to their guests. You can also find a lot of restaurants and cafes offering free Wi-Fi connectivity.
Airport/s: The Gustaf III Airport is the main international airport for travel to St. Bart’s.
Visa Required: All EU citizens only need a valid passport to travel to St. Bart’s. US and Canadian citizens need a return ticket on top of the passport. For other countries, the visa requirements for travel to St. Bart’s will vary according to the country of origin.
Driving: In St. Bart’s, driving is on the right side of the road.
International Driver’s License Accepted? You can use your foreign issued driver’s license in St. Bart’s. There is no need for an international driving license.
Crime: The crime rate in St. Bart’s is one of very low to rare. It is also considered as one of the safest islands within the Caribbean region.
Electrical Adapters: In St. Bart’s, they use an electrical voltage of 230 volts and 60 Hertz.
Trivia: DID YOU KNOW that even though Euro is the official currency in St. Bart’s, you can also use the Dollar everywhere.
Cuisine in St. Bart’s
French cuisine is one of the most prominent cuisines in St. Bart’s. Other types of cuisines that are also featured prominently in the island that includes Creole, West Indian, Asian and Italian cuisine.
There are more than 70 restaurants in the island of St. Bart’s and most are gourmet quality restaurants. Moreover, a lot of the fine dining restaurants are also located within hotels. If you are a foodie, you can also check out the gastronomic events held throughout the year. Some of the most popular restaurants in St. Bart’s are Eddy’s, La Mandala, Le Repaire, Zanzibarth, Maya’s and K’fe Massai.
Travel to St. Bart’s: Things to See and Do
Below are some of the most popular attractions to explore on your travel to St. Bart’s
Grand Saline Beach – This white sand stretch is a must-visit when in St. Bart’s. Even though you have to take a short hike along a rocky path to get here, it is worth a visit because the view is insatiable. The water can also be rough so make sure to check the temperature before you visit. There are also open-air restaurants worth checking out at Grand Saline Beach.
Baie de St Jean – This bay is the best place to be when in St. Bart’s. In fact, this is a popular attraction among celebrities. The shelf and protected waters is also flocked by families. The restaurants are plentiful in the area.
LÓrient – This is a great spot for snorkelers and turtle watching. The waves can be a bit high; make sure to explore the area if you have enough experience.
Food Trip – There are a lot of places to go out and eat when in St. Bart’s. If you are looking for fresh and the best lobsters in the island, go to La Langouste. If fusion food is what you like, don’t miss the gourmet cuisine at Le Case de L’Isle. But if you want to sample beach food and the best of South American flavors, check out Do Brazil.
Shopping – Shopping is also a popular activity in St. Bart’s. For the best beauty products, check out Ligne St Bart in Gustavia. Meanwhile, you can take fashion souvenirs while in the island, you should drop by Kokon (for the best beach bags and shirts), Human Steps (shoe store), and Stephanie & Bernard (women’s wear).