When cruising to St. Martin (or Sint Maarten), some of the most beautiful land trips you could take would be the Orient Beach Shore Excursions. This fabulous clothing optional beach has much to offer cruises passengers.
Most cruise ships stopping at the island disembark on the Dutch side (Sint Maarten) at Phillipsburg on Great Bay. A brief (20 minute) scenic bus or taxi ride takes passengers across the island to the French side (St. Martin) where Orient Beach is situated. Passing the giant salt pond on your way to the beach, you tour guide (driver) gives a brief history of the area including the importance of the Salt Pond. No need for passports or customs checks as you cross the border from the Dutch side to the French side of the island.
You must be aware that Orient Beach is a clothing optional beach. Nude bathers are visible in the beach lounges, in the warm water, and walking the beach. Most of the "nudism" is kept to the nude section of Orient Beach. For those who find this offensive, perhaps this is not the beach excursion for you. But, if you can get past this, Orient Beach is a wonderful excursion to spend a morning or afternoon.
There is a restaurant right on the beach where you can grab a bite while still soaking wet from the Orient Beach water. Of course bar drinks are available for the beach as well. Everyone is friendly at Orient Beach and most speak English very well.
There are a great number of activities available on Orient Beach. All of the usual shore excursion beach activities are provided at various huts along the beach. Para-sailing is a popular activity, and you can usually see at least one parachute cruising across the waters in front of Orient Beach.
The scenery from the Orient Beach shore is incredible! Looking out to the water from the beach, the bay is protected by a rugged little island allowing accesses to the bay at each end of this island. From the water looking back toward the beach area, you will see the low land gradually rising up to the tops of the surrounding hills that protect Orient Beach. And of course, there is the fabulous scenery on Orient Beach that one expects on any Caribbean beach!
Whether your Sint Maarten shore excursion is to Orient Beach or one of the other fantastic beaches, be sure to save a little time to wander the shops in Phillipsburg. There's lots of fascinating vendors for your shore excursion shopping pleasure!
Brian A Schmidt is the author and web publisher of a1-discount- cruises. This site is your #1 source for cruise information, discounts and deals! Visit http://www.a1-discount-cruises.com to book your fantastic cruise to St. Martin! For more information on Orient Beach, Caribbean beach shore excursions and tours check out some of the other interesting cruise articles at our Article Map page.