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Cruises to St. Barts

St. Barts (Photo:Sean Pavone/Shutterstock)
St. Barts (Photo:Sean Pavone/Shutterstock)

About St. Barts

The island of St. Barts, known for its chic French ambience and cuisine and white-sand beaches, long has reigned as a favorite getaway spot among celebrity jetsetters.

That's quite a lofty status for a stony, volcanic, eight-square-mile island that claims no fresh water and little workable land. Named for Christopher Columbus' brother, Bartolomeo, St. Barthelemy is located near the northern end of the Lesser Antilles group in the West Indies, 15 miles east of St. Martin.

Many St. Bartians are descendants of 17th-century settlers from Brittany and Normandy. In the 18th century, France leased the island to Sweden in exchange for trading rights to the Baltic. Almost a century later, locals voted to restore rule to the French. Today, St. Barts, with its population of about 9,000, is a dependency of the French overseas department of Guadeloupe.

The island's beautiful beaches lend themselves to water sports, from windsurfing, scuba-diving and snorkeling to jet-skiing, sailing and deep-sea fishing. Whales pass by during migration periods, and dolphins are frequently spotted -- and might even frolic near the ship's bow.

The island also claims fame as a place where conspicuous consumption is on display in the form of mega-yachts, elegant designer boutiques, fancy resorts and fine dining. Considered among the best places to nosh in the Caribbean, lunch or dinner at one of the island's top restaurants can be a major splurge.

Taking in the island's topless beaches, vibrant nightlife and waterfront bistros -- not to mention hearing French spoken -- it's easy to imagine you've been transported to the south of France (Antibes or St. Tropez). St. Barts even features its own Riviera-like festival calendar, including winter music and film festivals and a spring food festival.

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21 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Rio de Janeiro
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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DAY 1: New York

11 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
New York
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Hamilton, Bermuda ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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DAY 1: Miami

24 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
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Tortola, Antigua ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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DAY 1: Miami

10 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
St. Barts, Martinique ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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6 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
San Juan
Visiting:
St. Barts, Little Bay ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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66 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Puerto Plata, San Juan ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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24 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Puerto Plata, San Juan ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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73 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
St. Barts, Martinique ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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10 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Puerto Plata, San Juan ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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14 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
St. Maarten
Visiting:
St. Kitts, St. Barts ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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25 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
St. Kitts, Guadeloupe ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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12 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Aruba, Curacao ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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24 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
St. Barts, Martinique ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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50 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
San Antonio
Visiting:
Puerto Montt, Puerto Chcabuco ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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20 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Key West, Cozumel ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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14 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Barbados
Visiting:
St. Lucia, Casablanca ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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12 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Fort Lauderdale
Visiting:
Spanish Town, Antigua ...
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Cruise Line:
Silversea Cruises
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12 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
San Juan, St. Barts ...
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Cruise Line:
Seabourn Cruise Line
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26 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Monaco
Visiting:
Toulon, Barcelona ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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21 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
New York
Visiting:
Hamilton, Bermuda ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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12 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
San Juan, Antigua ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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56 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
St. Maarten
Visiting:
Antigua, Sopers Hole ...
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Cruise Line:
Windstar Cruises
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10 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Great Stirrup Cay, Puerto Plata ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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14 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Barbados
Visiting:
St. Vincent, Martinique ...
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Cruise Line:
Seabourn Cruise Line
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14 Night
Cruise to St. Barts

Leaving:
Miami
Visiting:
Puerto Plata, San Juan ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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Why go to St. Barts?

Pros:

High-end French shops, gourmet restaurants, gorgeous beaches and lots of yachts and sailboats

Cons:

Be prepared to drop serious cash on shopping and meals, even taxis

Bottom Line:

It's like the South of France transported to a Caribbean island

St. Barts Cruise Port Facilities?

Gustavia is a pedestrian-friendly town. An Internet cafe, ATM, cafes, restaurants, elegant shops with imported French goods and a food market are located a short stroll away from the pier. The popular Shell Beach (officially called Grand Galet) sits south of Gustavia by the commercial pier, and it's just a short walk. Spend time admiring the huge yachts on the oceanfront walkway.

Good to Know?

With limited fresh water on the island, don't expect a free glass at restaurants. You'll have to pay for bottled water.

Getting Around?

On Foot: You can walk to attractions in Gustavia.

By Taxi: Taxis are available at the pier in Gustavia. Most cab drivers don't work at night, so if you need a ride back to the port, it's best to make arrangements in advance. There is a fixed price for fares, which are in euros.

By Car: St. Barts is steep and hilly with narrow roads, switchbacks and hairpin turns. You'll see stop signs but no traffic lights. At intersections, the car to the right has the right of way. Small rental cars that fit the narrow, two-lane roads are available from Budget Budget, Europcar, Island Car and Top Loc.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The euro is the official currency of St. Barts. For currency-conversion figures, visit www.oanda.com or www.xe.com. ATM's are located in Gustavia at the Banque Francaise Commercial (BFC) on rue du General-de-Gaulle and the Banque Nationale de Paris on rue du Bord-de-Mer.

Language?

French is the official language. English is widely spoken.

Where You're Docked?

Most cruise ships anchor outside sheltered Gustavia Harbour and tender passengers to Port de Pleasance in the heart of Gustavia, the island's charming capital city.


St. Barts Cruise Reviews

Knyght1
Sail Date: Mar 2019
Despite the many shops, bars and restaurants at St. Barts, we elected to rest on the ship since there were no sea days on the cruise. Our friends went into to town, shopped at the wine shop and bought Louis Vuitton... Read More
Azamara Journey
sheilsy65
Sail Date: Mar 2019
We hopped in a taxi right outside the port terminal and for $25 we went to Nikki Beach (10 min ride). We rented a sunbed at the Nikki restaurant ($120 for the day), swam in the beautiful water, had a delicious lunch... Read More
Pacific Princess
grandmaR
Sail Date: Dec 2018
We had been to St Barts before and rented a car, but the roads are so narrow and twisty that we had a hard time actually getting to the places we wanted to see. The excursions in St Barts were all cancelled because... Read More
Silver Shadow
JTor
Sail Date: Jan 2020
The perfect island to visit on a cruise ship - small and VERY expensive, fun to visit, you don't want to stay!! We walked across the island to St. Jean, interesting walk, great views, airport is fun to see; St.Jean... Read More
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