Beautiful St. Maarten

Hey guys, I wanted to share some photos from our vacation to St. Maarten today.  It was our first time in the Carribean and it was beautiful.  All we did was relax and enjoy at least 12 of their 37 beaches!  It was super fun to have a rental and drive all over the tiny island to discover the next beach; each had it’s own distinct “flavor”!  Also, the food was some of the best-especially from the beach side grills, called Lolo’s.  We did some hiking as well to the very top of one of the peaks–I’ll have to do a whole post on that since the view was so amazing, it just deserves it’s own space.

The first few pics here are of the view from our condo. We arrived after dark so this is what we saw first, and I was like this is cool, but I’m not sure what to expect!  Then we woke and whoa, I realized I could just sit on our patio every day and take it all in.DSC_0307

DSC_0314//We had our one year anniversary here!DSC_0321IMG_7787

IMG_7786DSC_0337 We could see St. Barth’s from our patio too! (below) and the gorgeous hills on this side of our condo(above)..

DSC_0340//Philipsburg, the capital of the Dutch side of St. Maarten with lots of duty free shops (think cheap liquor and jewelry!)DSC_0365//Great Bay Beach in Philipsburg with it’s gorgeous clear turquoise waters..
IMG_7662 //Anse Marcel bay beach on the French side was a cool and almost totally private beach surrounded by hills.  We drank lots of rum here and took naps and read, mmmhmmmm. DSC_0424 //The rain was so cool there, you could watch it come over the hills like a mist but this one came fast so I just stayed under the umbrella for a few minutes.  That was also a great thing about going in low season (rainy season starts in July), everything is less expensive and when it rains it ends quickly and won’t ruin your day. IMG_7698 //Rouge Beach on the French side had awesome rocks to snorkel around; it was my first time and it felt like swimming in an aquarium!  Ryan was lucky enough to see some squid.  This beach also had the best ever fish sandwiches  from the lolo…I couldn’t stop thinking about them all week and told everyone we met about them!  And then there were those kids jumping off the rocks, yeah, not for me..DSC_0457 //Friar’s bay had a cool beachside bar and grill AND a hee-hawing donkey! Really. Ryan has a picture of it but I forgot to get one.  This beach also was  a great place to catch a sunset since it was on the more Western side of the island.DSC_0547 DSC_0563 //The vegetation on the island was so lush and pretty.  There were so many amazing homes built into the landscape that were just gorgeous.DSC_0757 //Oyster bay near our condo was absolutely pretty and every time we left the condo we had to drive by this view, darn.DSC_0738 //House of my island dreams..DSC_0726 DSC_0722//And our sunset got cut off by some clouds right as it was setting but it was still fun to watch and hang with the French folks next to us..DSC_0609DSC_0638Mullet beach, I miss thee! (above awesome umbrellas for rent for $5/day)//Cupecoy Beach, the only nude beach on the Dutch side..Very pretty here but we didn’t get in since it was pretty rocky and a bit choppy.IMG_7791 //A Lolo on Mullet beach which served the best dry rubbed ribs (on the island per at least 3 other couples we met)DSC_0637 //Mullet beach became our favorite beach for its calm and crystal clear waters as well as super friendly folk.DSC_0630 //And Maho beach, the one with all the you-tube videos of planes flying right overhead–we got some pretty amazing videos here too. In one a guy gets totally blown over by the jet about to take off and you can see the sand just whipping through the waters. Prittee crazee. But the best. IMG_7832

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