Holiday in the Sun | St. Barth Travel Guide

We traded snow and slopes for surf and sea this holiday season on the tiny island of St. Barth. We found it to be the ideal destination for our extended family including grandparents and younger cousins. It was our first time visiting in December. The weather was perfect and the week prior to Christmas was quiet. I could easily make St. Barth’s a new holiday tradition. Everything in St Barth is sublime making it difficult to do a “best of” list. Following are some of our favorites.

Where to Stay

Le Barthelemy

The first place we ever stayed in St. Barth and it always feels like coming home. The hotel is located right on Anse des Grand Cul de Sac, where the shallow water means it’s a great place to swim, snorkel or kayak.         

Le Cheval Blanc

An LMVH hotel, Le Cheval Blanc, is one of the most luxurious hotels in the Caribbean. The location, setting, design and décor are close to perfection.            

Wimco St Barth Properties

A villa is a great option for large groups or families. Wimco will arrange everything for you prior to your visit including Christmas decorations and a personal chef. Your on-island concierge will meet you upon arrival.       

We didn't have time to visit the new Rosewood Le Guanahani but it's on our list!

Dining in St. Barth

There are so many good places to eat in St. Barth. You will want to make sure to visit these three.

  • Bonito | Located on a hill in Gustavia, Bonito serves up a gorgeous panoramic view over the harbor. One of the most popular restaurants in St. Barth.
  • L’Isola | Some of the best Italian food anywhere, including Italy! L’isoletta, their casual sister restaurant, has delicious pizza. They offer take-out too. Something we like to do the first night we arrive after a long travel day.
  • Eddy’s | Our first time at Eddy’s and we loved it! A tropical garden hidden in the middle of Gustavia, serving a mix of French and local cuisine. So different and fun.

Image: Bonito St. Barth

Image: Eddy's

Image: L'Isola

Beach Clubs

St. Barth is known for their beach clubs, and everyone has a favorite. As this was a family vacation, we sought out some of the quieter spots, booked the earlier seating and enjoyed delicious food, incredible scenery, and the lively buzz.

  • Shellona | Located just out of town on Shell Beach this Mediterranean lunch spot is one of our favorites! The food is amazing and if you didn’t know better, you’d swear you were in the Greek Isles.
  • Le Toiny | Worth the trip to the quiet, rugged side of the island, Le Toiny is one of St. Barth’s most spectacular hotels. From the reception area, the bellmen drive guests down to the beach in one of the hotel jeeps. The views are breathtaking. Reserve sunbeds under the palm trees, take a dip in the pool, sign up for a surf lesson or relax and watch the waves.
  • La Cabane | La Cabane is in the iconic Cheval Blanc hotel. Seeing the hotel is reason enough to go. For a complete day of relaxation reserve a beach chair at the hotel on the Anse des Flamands bay and make your way over to La Cabane for a leisurely lunch.

Things to Do

Hike & Explore | There are lots of areas to explore on this tiny island. Take your Mini Cooper, grab a croissant and coffee, and go for a ride.

  • Start at Grand Fond and hike 40-minutes to some of the island's most picturesque natural swimming pools
  • Hike over the hillside to Anse des Colombier
  • Hike to the lighthouse for amazing views

Surf & Swim | There are about 20 beaches to discover on the island, each with crystal clear water, white sand and their own personality. Plane de Saline, Gouverneur and Colombier are three of the best swimming beaches. They are pristine, raw, and beautiful.

The surf in December is very good. Anse des Toiny and Lorient are great surf breaks.

Take a Boat Out | Explore and discover the island by boat. It’s fun to weave through the yachts in the harbor and get a different perspective of the island. Your captain will take you to amazing beaches and you can do some cliff jumping if you like.

No matter what you do in St. Barth, it's sure to be memorable!

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