There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in Saint Martin each year.
The main ones are listed below.
This festival celebrates the Day of the Three Kings, when the Magi came to worship Christ, and gives rises to a number of religious celebrations in Saint Martin.January & February: Carnival (on the French side of the island, local event)
Without a doubt the most important event of the year in Saint Martin. Highlights include costume parades, a carnival queen pageant, concerts of calypso, reggae and latin music.March to May: Carnival (on the Dutch side of the island, local event)
Several carnivals are held on the Dutch side of the island (queen pageants, brass bands, costume parades, concerts, dancing and general merry-making). The revelry starts on March to continue until early May.May 1: Labour Day (national holiday) May 8: Victory Day (national holiday)
Commemorates the Allied victory in Europe that ended World War II on this day in 1945. Various ceremonies are held around town.May 27: Emancipation Day (local holiday)
Official ceremonies are held on this public holiday each year to commemorate the abolition of slavery in Saint Martin on this day in 1848. Celebrations are extended during the week around the anniversary, with concerts, dancing, poetry readings, shows and parties.June 21: Fête de la Musique (celebrated nationwide)
Also celebrated internationally as World Music Day, for this festival many free concerts featuring all types of music are held in Saint Martin's main municipalities.July 14: Bastille Day (national holiday)
This holiday celebrates both the storming of the Bastille prison in 1789, the key event marking the beginning of the French Revolution, and the end of the privileges enjoyed by the clergy and the aristocracy. It is commemorated with a variety of events throughout Saint Martin, including parades, street parties, dances and fireworks, all in a festive atmosphere.August 15: Assumption Day (national holiday)
This celebration, still very popular in Saint Martin, is marked by the faithful with several religious ceremonies and processions through the streets.November 11: Saint Martin's Day (local event)
During his second voyage, Columbus spotted the island on this day in 1493 when passing through the Lesser Antilles and named it after Saint Martin of Tours, whose feast day is November 11. To commemorate its discovery by Europeans, many concerts and other types of events are organised to celebrate the island's rich cultural heritage, ranging from culinary delights to arts and crafts.December 25: Christmas (national holiday) December 31: New Year's Eve (national event)
On the night of December 31st, the atmosphere is particularly festive on the streets of Saint Martin, with families and friends celebrating the new year.
|Month||Min. Average Temperature (°C/F°)||Max. Average Temperature (°C/F°)||Average Rains (MM)||Best Time to Travel|
|January||23/73||29/84||73/2.9||Not the best period to go|
|February||22/72||29/84||60/2.4||Not the best period to go|
|March||23/73||29/84||49/1.9||Good period to go|
|April||24/75||30/86||82/3.2||Good period to go|
|May||25/77||31/88||80/3.1||Good period to go|
|June||25/77||31/88||73/2.9||Good period to go|
|July||26/79||32/90||100/3.9||Not the best period to go|
|August||26/79||32/90||105/4.1||Not the best period to go|
|September||26/79||32/90||139/5.5||Not the best period to go|
|October||26/79||32/90||153/6.0||Not the best period to go|
|November||24/75||30/86||158/6.2||Not the best period to go|
|December||23/73||30/86||94/3.7||Not the best period to go|
The airport is located on the Dutch side of the island Saint Martin on the west of Philipsburg and south-west of Marigot.
As distances on the island are quite short, getting around Saint Martin is relatively easy. Nevertheless, the number of vehicles on the roads and their state of repair sometimes make driving difficult. Saint Martin's road network mainly consists of a main road skirting the island's coastline and smaller, secondary roads linking towns and villages.
Taxis are plentiful on the island and the fares charged are not very high. Expect to pay about EUR 5 per trip, depending on your destination.
Shared minibus taxis serve most key destinations on the island. Although they do not operate on a set schedule or have official stops, you just need to wave as the minibus approaches your location along its route to be picked up. Fares run from EUR 1 to EUR 2, depending on your destination.
Cars are the main mode of transport in Saint Martin. Prices are fair (from EUR 17 per day). Note that the speed limit on all roads cannot exceed 50 kilometres (31 miles) per hour.
Upon your arrival in Saint Martin, you can get in touch with local tourism professionals for further information and to help organize your stay.Saint Martin Tourist Office
Offers practical information and many useful recommendations (accommodation, restaurants, public transport, festivals, cultural events, etc.).
See your doctor before you travel. It is also recommended to take out insurance covering medical expenses and repatriation before your trip. Saint Martin counts several hospitals and medical institutions, as well as quality medical practitioners and health specialists.Vaccinations
There are no vaccination requirements for visitors to Saint Martin. For more information, contact Air France's international vaccination centre:
There are no specific food safety risks. French government authorities promote good hygiene practices and put in place strengthened control procedures for sites especially frequented by tourists during the summer months.Water
Tap water is not always safe to drink in Saint Martin. It is advisable to drink only bottled water sold in sealed, tamper-proof containers.
Entry requirements for the French overseas departments (Réunion, Martinique, Guadeloupe, French Guiana and Mayotte) are different from those applicable in mainland France.
Citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) or the Swiss Confederation do not need to carry a visa.
To view the list of other countries whose citizens or nationals may travel to Saint Martin without a visa, or for information on the types of travel documents required, visit the website of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs:
To enjoy peace of mind during your stay in Saint Martin, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country.
Here are a few basic French phrases that will make your stay in Saint Martin a little easier:
Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: Bonjour (morning)
Good evening: Bonsoir
Goodbye: Au revoir
No, thank you: Non, merci
Thank you very much: Merci beaucoup
Please: S'il vous plaît
I don't understand: Je ne comprends pas
Could you repeat ?: Pouvez-vous répéter ?
What time is it ?: Quelle heure est-il ?
Excuse me: Excusez-moi
Train station: Gare
I'm (…): Je suis (…)
I'm looking for (…): Je recherche (…)
How much is (…)?: Quel est le prix de (…) ?
Do you have (…)?: Avez-vous (…) ?
Where can I find (…)?: Où puis-je trouver (…) ?
Where can I buy (…)?: Où puis-je acheter (…) ?
I'd like (…): Je voudrais (…)
In Saint Martin like elsewhere in France, a service charge is always included in the bill. If you are particularly pleased with the service, you may certainly leave a few extra euros on the table. But this additional tip is neither expected nor necessary.