OK am reading varyious articles, but for those of you who have travelled to St. Maarten, which is your preferred beach? Not particularly interested in seeing many nudists walk by, would rather focus on quality of beach, amenities and food. Suggestions?
I prefer Dawn Beach. First it is less popular cruise passenger stop.
Pretty beach with an interesting offshore reef that can give a pipeline break to the waves. There is a beach bar and restaurant with "facilities and a beach tent concession that sells food (good) drinks (cheap) and rents chairs and umbrellas. Very friendly nonpushy vendors ply the beach and prices are as good as in town.
Dawn attracts families, locals and folks staying in nearby condos and villas and a few cruise passengers. There is a remote chance of seeing a european lady go topless (but you will find this on virtually any beach in this area).
All this talk about beaches and here I am in Colorado,,,this morning, with the wind chill its -23~~ I dont care if the lady next to me is totally nude as long as the weather is warm and the drinks are cold!!!!!
Mary. There are any number of good beaches on St Martin. I stated my preference as Dawn having been to many. It would be correct to state that in your opinion "Orient is best" and would be helpful to the origonal poster to tell them why you feel that way.
As to" who would select a beach based on what the person next to them was wearing",
(or not wearing), many folks are not comfortable with topless or nude beaches and that would be a factor in their decision. Even in posting your quote I toned it down. Again , in my opinion, there was no need to be so confrontational with your comment.
Breeze, you will find Orient to be a fabulous beach as well. It is very popular with cruise passengers and with several ships in port can get somewhat crowded. The entire beach is not nude, but you will find topless women along the entire beach as this is quite common in European influenced beaches. There are facilities, drinks, food and rentals readily available along this beach.
As I like a less crowded beach, I prefer Dawn. Either would be a good choice for a day at the beach.
Although Orient is a beautiful long strand of beach with many beach clubs, cabanas and food & drink options, I too prefer Dawn beach. As mentioned, Orient does get a large amount of the cruise ship passengers. Whereas, Dawn is more "locals" oriented and a few miles closer to the port. Upon return to port, ask the taxi driver to drop you downtown for your shopping pleasure. Oh Mary, my family and I would judge a beach by who was lying next to us, especially with children.
I loved your response!! I think anyone putting up with the freezing cold would be happy to be at any beach right now. I understood where you were coming from. It seemed like just a cute remark to me. But I guess breeze is seriously trying to make a decision. Must be nice. I have only been to Orient Beach and loved it. However, I also, would not bring children to a clothing optional beach. Have a great time and enjoy the beach. I do not thine all of Orient Beach is clothing optional, though.
How far is Dawn Beach from the cruise dock? We are taking a tour early in the morning (Golden Eagle Catamaran) and were wondering if we would have enough time to hit Dawn Beach for awhile.PS in port from 6a-6p
I went to Dawn Beach based on recommendations from this message board (including PapaBill's) and absolutely loved it. It wasn't crowded, it was a beautiful day, and they had everything I needed/wanted (including 75 cent beers!). It is slightly less expensive to go to Dawn than Orient. This was my first time at Maarten and I didn't go to Orient Beach so I can't compare, but I had a great time at Dawn. The vendors are polite and if you don't care for a variety of food options, the facilities are definitely sufficient.
We've only been to Orient Beach and have loved it. We have had our son there and he didn't even notice the topless women because he was having so much fun on the trampoline as well as the waverunners that are there.
I think this year we'll try Dawn Beach to see how it compares and I'm sure we'll love it. Hey it beats this 17 degree non-beach day we're having here.
I'm sure you'll love either one you choose...if only this were the only tough decisions that had to be made.