St Barthélemy is a world-famous playground for the rich and famous, with a bustling harbour full of superyachts and hills dotted with mansions. The island is volcanic, with a mountainous landscape and the highest point reaching 281 metres. Despite receiving little rainfall, the island is relatively fertile with shallow reefs surrounding it. There are up to 22 public beaches on the island, though only 15 of them are safe for swimming.
This guide will introduce you the 5 beaches on the island you can’t miss !
1. Anse des Flamands
The Isle de France hotel is located on a beautiful stretch of sand, flanked by two mountains – one on each side of the bay. The sand is deep and lustrous. The water is a deep shade of blue, gradually transitioning to a beautiful turquoise the closer it gets to shore. Out on the horizon are some jagged rocks poking from the carpet of sea.
It’s worth noting that the ocean isn’t particularly smooth. Some of the waves can be quite large, so it’s likely that you will have a wonderful lunch with stunning views of the beach and ocean.
2. Colombier Beach
Colombier Beach is a beautiful beach located on the western island where the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean meet. There are no roads leading to this protected area of the island’s natural marine reserve, so visitors must walk 30 minutes through trails originating from the small village of Colombier or the nearby cove. Alternatively, visitors can access Colombier beach by boat and anchoring just a few metres from the shore.
Visitors can see lobsters, starfish, and leopard rays while snorkeling, and sea turtles can be seen feeding on the fields of luscious seagrass under the turquoise water.
3. Anse de Grand Cul-De-Sac
The largest beach on the entire island is Anse de Grand Cul-De-Sac. It was aptly named, as it literally translates to ‘Beach of Large Cul-de-Sac’. The beach is shaped like a new moon or cul-de-sac, with a headland at each end.
One side of the beach features a large headland with a sandbar attached. This is where Anse de Grand Cul-De-Sac and Anse Marechal meet, and it’s stunning! Anse Marechal is a much quieter beach, with lush palms and foliage behind it. In contrast, Anse de Grand Cul-De-Sac has deck-chairs and a restaurant, and the water is calmer here, making it ideal for swimming.
4. Anse de Grande Saline
Anse de Grande Saline is the first beach on the island’s southern coast. It gets its name from the large salt flats found there. The two coastlines of St Barthélemy’s, the leeward coast (north facing) and Atlantic windward coast (south facing) have different types of ocean water, the Atlantic windward being the rougher of the two.
The southern coastline of the island is more wild and underdeveloped, making it a peaceful and scenic getaway. The sand dunes suddenly opened up to a secluded beach with large waves crashing rhythmically against the shore, stretching out before me.
The cliffs and hills around the beach are covered in lush vegetation, making it a beautiful natural setting. However, there is no shade available, so visitors should bring their own parasols if they want to stay out of the sun.
5. Lorient Beach
Lorient Beach is a beautiful stretch of white sand and clear blue water, with lush green mountains in the background. It’s one of the largest beaches on the island, great for surfing at the west end and swimming, snorkeling, and paddleboarding at the east end. It’s also one of the best beaches for young children, with a series of small natural pools that even the littlest ones can enjoy.
Lorient is one of the best beaches in St Barts, with plenty of room for beach picnics, two local restaurants, and a vibrant food market. It’s also conveniently located near a beautiful selection of luxury villas to rent.
6. Saint-Jean Beach
The Saint-Jean Beach has some of the most iconic restaurants on the island, including the Eden Rock and Nikki Beach. The golden sand and cyan ocean make for a jaw-dropping sight, and the water here is far calmer than at any of the other beaches on the island, making it perfect for swimming.
Both Eden Rock and Nikki Beach are famous for their delicious food, but a trip to these beach doesn’t have to be costly because it is a public beach. You can sit down and land at the tiny runway, which is just past the other end of the beach.