Things to do in Saint Martin, the Culinary Capital of the Caribbean

Saint Martin is reputed to be the culinary capital of the Caribbean, melding West Indian and European cuisines to create something truly memorable. One of the things that make this island so unique and different is that it’s half French and half Dutch, so you basically get a mix of European traditions and cuisines combining with Caribbean customs and people, resulting in something that will truly make your palate sing. Here are a few things to do in Saint Martin to get the true experience in the culinary capital of the Caribbean.

Culinary Things to do in Saint Martin

Experience Amazing Pastries and a Taste of France

Taste Factory Patisserie is a lovely bakery in Simpson Bay where you can find the most amazing eclairs you’ve ever tasted, though all the pastries they serve are definitely worth trying. Not only will your taste buds be dancing, but you’ll also be able to relax in the decidedly French atmosphere of the bakery, complete with people speaking French reading the morning paper and having their coffees.

Visit the Guavaberry Emporium

Almost everyone has a drink with every meal in the Caribbean and guava berry is the national liqueur of Saint Martin. It’s made from guava berries, as you can imagine, and is actually a rum that’s been steeped with the ripe fruit and cane sugar. The best place to taste this drink is at the Guavaberry Emporium, and don’t worry because no one will bat an eyelash if you start doing what the locals do and order it with every meal.

Guavaberry Emporium

Photo alljengi CCL

Bite into Succulent Spare Ribs from a Lolo

Saint Martin is full of island barbecue shacks that are a great option if you’re traveling on a budget. Even if you’re not, you have to try the amazing food, including the spare ribs. Ribs are a tradition on the island and everyone has their own recipe, so we recommend trying as many ribs from as many lolos as you can. You certainly won’t regret it.

Enjoy Comfort Food at Hilma’s Windsor Castle

This little gem of a place isn’t much to look at but everyone loves it, from the locals that have made it popular, to every single tourist that has tried Hilma’s food. Everyone recommends the salt fish patties that are apparently to die for, but you also must try the johnnycakes. In fact, you should try out the entire menu, just to make sure everything’s as good as everyone says. And it’s not just the food that keeps drawing everyone back. Hilma is an amazing person and a lot of fun. She’ll definitely make you feel welcome and so happy to be in the Caribbean.

These are just a few of the foods you should be trying and places you should be visiting when on Saint Martin. Remember, there’s a good reason it’s called the culinary capital of the Caribbean and it would be a shame not to experience as much of the local cuisine as possible. So, try out different restaurants and don’t forget that just because a place might not look gourmet, doesn’t mean it doesn’t serve amazing food.

Feature photo by Stefan Krasowski CCL

About Christa Thompson

view all posts

Christa Thompson is the Founder and Senior Editor of The Fairytale Traveler. Christa has been traveling the world since 2003 when she attended a summer abroad study at the University of Cambridge in England. Since then, her wanderlust has been fierce. Her three passions in life are her son, traveling, and being creative. The Fairytale Traveler brand gives Christa the opportunity to do all of these things and to live intentionally every day. "It's never too late to believe in what you love and to pursue your dreams." -Christa Thompson

2 Comments on this post

  1. Very Interesting Christa thanx for sharing ☺

    Michael D Thomas II / Reply
  2. Hi Christa, just a small thing but when referring to this island you should use both it’s Dutch side name of Sint Maarten and the French side name which you used especially since most of the places you mentioned are on the Dutch side. I lived there for 5 years and consider it my second home. 😉 It is a fantastic place to visit and enjoy the food. I miss the lolos so much.

    Travelbuds / Reply

We love hearing your thoughts, stories and adventures. Share them here: