One side of the island is ruled by the Kingdom of The Netherlands and is called Sint Maarten while the other is governed by France and is known as St. Martin. It is the only land border shared by those two nations anywhere in the world.
The Dutch side’s main city is Phillipsburg while the French side’s capital is Marigot. The island is served by one airport – the Princess Juliana International Airport.
The island of St. Martin/Sint Maarten is hilly and tends to by dry. Like most of the other islands in the Caribbean it has a dry season from December to April and a wet season from June to November.
The Dutch side of the island is quite festive. A cruise ship port sits in Great Bay near Phillipsburg and tourists can enjoy fine restaurants serving French, Chinese, and Indonesian cuisine.
There are also loads of little shops where interesting jewellery and clothing can be purchased. The € is the unit of currency on the French side while the guilder is used on the Dutch side.
The main languages spoken here are English, Dutch, and Papiamento. French is the main language spoken in the other half of the island. Here is like a little slice of France in the Caribbean with exotic boutiques, cafes and patisseries all around the narrow streets. Duty free shopping with high-end brands makes St. Martin very attractive to visitors.