St. Barts Tours and Sightseeing

St. Barthelemy (St. Barts, St. Barth) Grand Cul-de-Sac, tours, sightseeing, excursions
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Gustavia, the picture-postcard capital of St. Barthélemy (St. Barts, St. Barth) is an enchanting harbor town and easy to explore on foot. A tour may take a few hours, but with a leisurely lunch, it could easily take most of a day.

"Downtown" includes chic boutiques, duty-free shops, galleries, an open-air market and the
Mairie or town hall. Visitors will also discover world-famous restaurants and bars housed in buildings that date back to the Swedes and the early French settlers.

Of special interest is the Musée de St. Barthélemy, near the Wall House on the harbor's far side which showcases the island's history. Lovely Shell Beach is near town and is a favorite spot from which to watch the sun set on the sea.

Northwest of Gustavia, in Corrossol, you may see the locals weaving elegant straw hats and baskets. One should also visit Ingenu Magras' Inter-Oceans Museum, a remarkable collection of more than 7,000 seashells. A trip to nearby Baie des Flamands will reward the traveler with a sensational beach and dramatic vistas. There is also the possibility of a scenic hike from the west end of Flamands over to secluded Colombier Beach.

Of course, everyone has to visit Baie St. Jean with its renowned beach, numerous restaurants and interesting shops. Just a few minutes to the east along the lovely north shore is Lorient, whose peaceful stretch of beach is popular with the locals. Lorient is a sweet little village with a church, picturesque cemeteries and a couple of stores.

Located east of Lorient is prestigious Pointe Milou with its panoramic vistas and elegant villas. Another mile or two brings the traveler to the tranquil Bay of Marigot, with its protected waters and great snorkeling, followed by Grand Cul-de-Sac, another playground of hotels, restaurants and water sports set on a gorgeous blue-green lagoon.

From here it's a ten-minute drive south to the rugged coast of to Anse Toiny. Turning back toward the west along the southern shore, the magnificent valley of Grand Fond appears with its stone-fenced farms and charming, tile-roofed homes.

Before heading back to Gustavia, a side trip to Anse de Grande Saline rewards travelers with one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. The gorgeous beach at Anse du Gouverneur, below Morne Lurin, is also definitely worth a visit.

Minibus tours of varying lengths can be arranged, especially good if you're just visiting for the day. Contact the island's Tourist Office for details.

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