Philipsburg, St Maarten Cruises

Philipsburg harbour in St Maarten
Philipsburg harbour in St Maarten
Bridge across the river in St Maarten

Philipsburg is the capital of the Dutch half of St. Maarten, a Caribbean island amicably shared between Holland and France for centuries. The town is known as a shopper’s paradise, while its charming sandy beach, studded with colourful clapboard restaurants and outdoor cafés, is accessible via water taxi.

Front Street, Philipsburg’s long main street, is festooned with shops, but the alleys and courtyards down to Back Street are also worth exploring.[ReadMoreMob] There are some stylish restaurants, but the Lo-Lo huts, which sell grilled chicken, fish and cakes from home-made barbecues, are great for a cheap snack of authentic Caribbean food.

This tiny island was divided between the Dutch and French in the 1600s, as a bastion against the Spanish. This melting pot of rich cultures and old-world charm was supposedly divided up by someone from each country walking round the coastline in opposite directions until they met up again.

Two historic forts reflect the island’s colonial past: Fort Amsterdam, built in 1631 and soon after captured by the Spanish, offers fine views over Philipsburg from the original walls, and Fort Willem, built by the British during the Napoleonic War.

 

Cruises to Philipsburg

View of English Harbour, St. John's, Antigua View of English Harbour, St. John's, Antigua View of English Harbour, St. John's, Antigua

Christmas in the Caribbean • M223334

 Southampton
Braemar
Tue 06 Dec 2022
30 nights
  • Spend Christmas Day relaxing in the Caribbean
  • Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the Bahamas
  • Explore culture-rich Havana in Cuba
Guests ashore in St Johns, Antigua Guests ashore in St Johns, Antigua Guests ashore in St Johns, Antigua

Christmas in the Caribbean • M2234

 Bridgetown
Braemar
Thu 22 Dec 2022
14 nights
  • Spend Christmas Day relaxing in the Caribbean
  • Celebrate New Year’s Eve in the Bahamas
  • Explore culture-rich Havana in Cuba
Guests walking on the beach, St Johns' Antigua Guests walking on the beach, St Johns' Antigua Guests walking on the beach, St Johns' Antigua

Islands of the Caribbean • M2302

 Havana
Braemar
Thu 19 Jan 2023
14 nights
  • Relax on one of Antigua’s 365 beaches
  • Spend an evening at the Tropicana in Havana
  • Sample locally produced rum in Tortola