Activities For Adults in St. Barts
There’s no doubt to why the French sent early settlers to the tiny Caribbean island of Saint Barthelemy and why this tropical spot continues to host the rich and the famous; it’s un paradis. Celebs, cuisine and a pristine coast with impossibly blue waters are just some of what you’ll find at St. Bart’s.
Beaches for Days
If St. Barts is shaped like an elbow, then imagine Baie de St-Jean located in the crook. Reviews note that it is the most visited beach on the island with its brilliant aquamarine water and sunbathing bodies that were made to wear bikinis all day. As a preferred spot for windsurfing and snorkeling, there’s always some type of action that cocktail-sipping couples can watch from nearby bistros along the beach.
Those in search for a more peaceful spot can look on the south side of Eden Rock or opt for Anse des Flamands on the northwest side of the island. A quieter and wider stretch of sand than the one found at Baie de St-Jean, this white-sand gem asks for long walks, long conversations and lazing about in the shade of palm-trees. Anse des Flamands also offer a range of eateries where you can enjoy the likes of fried foie gras, fresh tuna and lobsters at Le Tamarin or loosen your hair and kick back barefoot while grabbing a French crepe at Crêperie St Barth (Awarded Traveller’s Choice 2020).
Show off even more skin at the southern side of the island. Anse de Grande Saline is where sunbathers show off bronzed bodies minus the tan-lines, yes, in the nude. There aren’t any restaurants in the immediate area, so if you’re not there for the beach, be sure to wear a pair of sunglasses.
Perhaps you desire something even more remote – in this case head out to Anse de Colombier. Like a little Caribbean treasure this beach lies at the bottom of a steep hike at St. Barts northwest tip – but don’t fret if you’re not up for the hike, you can dock effortlessly on the natural gulf along the beach.
In the streets of Gustavia
If you’re in need of some retail therapy, spend some time in St. Barts capital town Gustavia and enjoy its French flair with colonial architecture and the smell of Jasmine in the streets. The harbor town is shaped like a horseshoe where you can visit art galleries, the Wall House Museum and various boutiques; Gaultier, Gucci, Dolce & Gabbana and other prominent names are found along Quai de la République.
Gustavia is all about world-class shopping and dining with Michelin-starred chefs on the island. There are over 70 restaurants to choose from with cuisine that mainly revolve around French, West Indian and Creole dishes with African, Italian, Indian and Asian fusions – notable restaurants include Ortega with its Franco-Japanese fusion concept and highlight; toro uzu topped with truffle, caviar and gold leaf. Choose Le Tamarin for a fine dining French experience or Santa Fe with a deck that overlooks Gustavia harbor. Check out Eddy’s Ghetto, Maya’s, La Mandala, Pipiri Palace, L’lsola, Bonito St Barth, Black Ginger and Le Repaire.
Saint Barthelemy also hosts incredible gastronomic events throughout the year with some of the finest seafood and well known dishes like a spring roll of shrimp and bacon, Chinese noodle salad with coconut milk and the infamous Accras; salt cod fritters served in a traditional spicy Creole sauce.
Let’s get Active
If you’re keen on water sports, head out to Anse de Grand Cul de Sac, which is a reef-protected area with warm, calm and shallow waters – perfect for kayaking, windsurfing, kite surfing and even fly-fishing. Learn how to dive at a diving center, snorkel with striped fish and sea turtles or rent a scooter and explore the road less travelled.
You can trek along the coastline by hiking one of the top trails – hike the mountainous footpath from the Lookout Point at Colombier Beach, soak in panoramic views at Le Toiny, explore tropical flora and shimmering natural pools at Grand Fond and Petit Cul de Sac or experience an intriguing mix of terrain from granite to sand, big rock blocks and smaller stones at Point Milou.
St. Barts also offer Yoga classes, workshops and retreats at various studios, spas and hotels so whether you’re up for a downward-facing dog at sunrise or crow-pose at dawn – you can get your sweat on where and when you want.
Nightlife and Bars
St. Barts has quite the reputation for sweeping vistas, creative cocktails and partying. Highlights include Gustavia’s Bagatelle St. Barth’s rosé sangria made with fresh peach puree or a “Patron Mexican Kiss” made with Patron Citronge tequila, mandarin liqueur, angostura bitters and orange peels which always go hand-in-hand with dancing.
More dancing at Le Ti St. Barth where pole dancing, costumes and cabernet shows are for adults only. This boudoir-themed club will keep things alive with dancers in colourful costumes that regularly come out over the course of dinner and drinks. Baie de St. Jean’s offering includes The Rock Bar, where cocktails are like watching theatre with impressive bartenders that go out their way to spice up the experience. Here the standout drink is the towering La Corne On the Rocks cocktail with rum, Chambord, fresh raspberries, mint and limejuice. Nikki Beach takes the beat up a notch and is renowned for their DJ-fueled parties.
Le Papillon Ivre is a wine bar with a full-on French wine list. Sit back and sip on a glass or bottle of Chinon, Châteuneuf Du Pape and Vouvray or go uber casual and play dominoes at Le Select where you can find anything from beer to a bottle of Moët. Across the street at Bar de L’Oubi they also make champagne cocktails and speciality martinis – and if it’s the local vibe that you’re after and you are up for a little Caribbean conversation or St. Barts banter, refill your glass here.