Best Beaches on St Barts

Looking for the most comprehensive St Barts beach guide packed with insider information? We constantly get asked what the best beaches in St Barts are, so we decided to put together this guide. 

St Barts is one of the top islands in the Caribbean to visit for beach lovers. The nearly 10-square-mile island has 11 beaches that the public can easily acces, each with its own distinct personality. 

There are bustling beaches with restaurants, watersports purveyors, and nightlife. Other beaches  are ideal for snorkeling and surfing.  And, there are remote beaches where you can share a romantic picnic lunch and have the beach almost to yourself.

For an island of its size, St Barts has a wonderful and varied collection of beaches—12 of them are worthy of mention, and are all profiled below. No trip to St Barts would be complete without sampling at least a few of the island's many beaches. 

In this guide to the beaches of St Barts we'll try to give you a feel for the appeal and high points of each of these 12 beaches.3

Table of Contents

Map of Beaches on St Barts

1. St Jean Beach + The center of the action on St Barts

Description. A mile long crescent shaped beach in the heart of St Barts, and without a doubt, St Jean beach is the island's most popular beach as measured by daily visits.

Why it's unique. St Jean has an energetic vibe unlike any of the island's other beaches. There's something for everyone here, from families to honeymooners, from surfers to loungers

Best for...Watching the tiny planes take off and land at the nearby airport, people watching, feet in the sand dining 

Amenities. You'll find everything you need just steps away from the sand, including restaurants, bars, shopping and watersports centers. The top attractions are the beach restaurants including Nikki Beach, Gypsea, Lil Rock, Pearl Beach and Sand Bar at Eden Rock.

Accessibility. There is a public parking lot by the airport which has a footpath to the western end of St Jean beach. You can also find parking around the eastern end of the beach, near Eden Rock hotel and Nikki beach restaurant.  

Know before you go. Several hotels are located right at St Jean Beach, including the luxurious (and recently-remodeled) Eden Rock. Pearl Beach Hotel, and Les Ilets de la Plage hotel are also located on St Jean beach. Hôtel Emeraude Plage was sold to a group that is building a new luxury hotel on the stretch of beach next to Eden Rock.

WIMCO insider tip. St Jean Beach is divided into two parts by the Eden Rock peninsula. The eastern side has calmer waters and is better for families with small children, and for snorkeling. The western end has the longer stretch of beach, and the waters offshore are good for windsurfing.

2. Flamands + Long stretch of heavenly sand

Description. One of the longest stretches of beach on St Barts, Flamands Beach is home to two hotels Cheval Blanc Isle de France hotel on the eastern end, and Hotel Baie des Anges on the western end. The surf here can be somewhat rough. Because of this, Flamands Beach isn't recommended for families with small children.

Why it's unique. Nice wide stretch of sand with a choice of two beachfront restaurants.

Best for...those who like to walk on the beach, and for those who want a relaxed lunch one the beach La Cabane restaurant at Cheval Blanc is one of the favored spots for long lazy lunches with feet in the sand. 

Amenities. Both of the hotels have restaurants near the beach and restrooms.

Accessibility. You will find on-street parking on the main road that parallels Flamands Beach, and at the hotels.

Know before you go. Both the Cheval Blanc Isle de France and Hotel Baie des Anges hotels will rent chaise lounges and umbrellas to non-guests.

WIMCO insider tip. Flamands Beach is also known as “Billionaire beach” because several private villas on the beach are owned by people on the Forbes 500 list. If you rent a villa here not only will you be in good company, you’ll also be able to walk to two beach restaurants.

3. Shell Beach + Idyllic beach and snorkeling within walking distance of downtown Gustavia

Description. Located a short walk from Gustavia's shopping district, Shell Beach is the only "in town" beach on the island. The surface of the beach is made up of millions of tiny shells (hence the name) instead of sand.

Why it's unique. It's within walking distance to the restaurants and shops of downtown Gustavia.

Best for... everyone!

Amenities. There is a popular local restaurant, Shellona, located right on the beach. It often hosts acoustic guitar players at sunset on the weekends.

Accessibility. You will find on-street parking in the neighborhood behind Shell beach, and Shellona also has a valet parking service. 

Know before you go. Bring water shoes if your feet are tender, since the "sand" is made of shells.

WIMCO insider tip. Yachts often anchor just off of this beach, making Shell Beach ideal for watching the "yachtie" crowd.

4. Lorient Beach + Calm water relaxation

Description. Lorient Beach, located on the north shore of the island. The western end has good wave action and is popular with surfers. The eastern end has a more rocky shore, however the waters here are calmer and you will find good snorkeling. 

Why it's unique. There is a hill overlooking the western edge of the beach, and on its peak you can still see the ruins of the legendary Au Tour de Rocher Hotel and Nightclub. Jimmy Buffet was a part owner of this fabled nightspot, and it was a favorite of the jet-set crowd until it burned down in 1981.

Best for...families. There is a lot of room to spread out for picnics and sunning, many areas of the beach have calm waters, and there are two restaurants and a market just across the street from the beach.

Amenities. You choose from several restaurants across the street from Lorient Beach, including JoJo Burger and La Petite Colombe (The Little Dove), a patisserie shop that also serves carryout sandwiches. There's also a grocery store nearby for all your picnic supplies.

Accessibility. Lorient Beach is easy to get to, just a mile from St Jean. There's adequate parking across the street, near the Surf Club hut, just steps away from the beach.

Know before you go. You'll find a good mix of surfers (on the western end of the beach) and families at this beach. There are however no rest room facilities here, so plan ahead.

WIMCO insider tip. While you're in the area, visit the historic Lorient cemetery across the street from the beach. French musician Johnny Hallyday is buried there.

5. Colombier beach + Remote and untamed

Description. Colombier beach is so remote that many frequent visitors to the island have never set foot on it. The beautiful, crescent-shaped beach has no hotels or villas on its shores, no dive shops or restaurants...and, that's just how its fans like it. This is the best beach for that romantic afternoon picnic lunch (if you don't mind carrying your food in). 

Why it's unique. Colombier's remoteness makes it unusually private and peaceful. It can only be reached on foot, and the one way trip in from the parking area takes about 20 minutes

Best for...couples

Amenities. There are no restaurants or public restroom facilities, so plan ahead.

Accessibility. There are two footpaths that lead to Colombier beach, the preferred route starts at the end of Flamands beach. Park by the side of the road, and make sure to wear good solid shoes for the 20-minute hike to the beach. The second path starts by the lookout area at the end of Colombier. It is quite steep.

Know before you go. Make sure to pack everything you need; this beach is remote.

WIMCO insider tip. This land was once owned by billionaire David Rockefeller (of Rock Resorts fame). You can still see the ruins of his former residence on the peninsula that runs along the western side of the beach.

6. Saline Beach + Undeveloped elegance

Description. There's not a hotel or home in sight along this lovely beach on the south side of St Barts. You reach it by driving along a salt pond (hence the name). There's a coral formation just off the beach on the left side that's good for snorkeling.

Why it's unique.  You won’t see a villa, hotel or restaurant anywhere near its shores,  so all you’ll hear here are the soothing sounds of the waves and the birds.

Best for...adults. A section at the far end of the beach is clothing optional, tres francais

Amenities. There are no restaurants or public restroom facilities on this beach, so plan ahead. A short walk will get you to a restaurant called Le Grain de Sel. 

Accessibility. There is a small parking lot behind the dunes. It's about a five-minute walk from there through a tropical forest to the beach.

Know before you go. There is a restaurant named Le Grain de Sel just a short walk from the beach parking lot. This is an excellent place to stop in for lunch, or to cool down after a long day at the beach.

WIMCO insider tip. Head to the far right side of the beach if you prefer to enjoy the beach in the nude.

7. Gouverneur Beach + Well worth the wild ride

Description. Located on the south shore of the island, below the Village of Lurin, Gouverneur Beach is a lovely stretch of sand in a crescent-shaped cove. The rocks on the east side of the beach make for great snorkeling. This beach is usually uncrowded. If you go early enough, you might be the only people there.

Why it's unique. The setting is arguably, the most lovely outdoor setting on St Barts.

Best for...snorkeling and romantic afternoons

Amenities. There are no restaurants or public restroom facilities here, so plan ahead.

Accessibility. This beach has a public parking lot just a few yards from the beach. 

Know before you go. The more secluded, far right side of the beach is "clothing optional".

WIMCO insider tip. There are no restaurants on the beach, however, just a mile up the road lies Santa Fe restaurant. This shaded hilltop restaurant looks down over Gouverneur bay, and enjoys cooling breezes, making it an ideal place to relax after a day at the beach.

8. Grand cul de Sac beach – best for water sports

Description. Grand cul de Sac is a shallow protected bay with strong prevailing breezes. It is popular with kiteboarders and windsurfers, and has several hotels with waterfront restaurants.

Why it's unique. The waters in this bay are very shallow all the way across the bay, making it ideal for small children.

Best for...those who like to water sports and waterfront dining

Amenities. There are three hotels on Grand cul de Sac beach – Le Guanahani, Le Sereno and Le Barthelemy. All three offer waterfront dining options, and chaise lounge rentals for people who have lunch there. You will also find two water sports rental companies on the beach, good for jet ski rentals, kiteboards and windsurfers.

Accessibility. You will find parking at all three hotels, and on-street parking on the main road that parallels Grand cul de Sac Beach.

Know before you go. There are no public restrooms on this beach. If you have drinks or lunch at the hotel restaurants you can use their facilities.

WIMCO insider tip. The beach restaurant at Le Barthelemy has a large supply of chaise lounges for rent.

9. Marigot Beach + A favorite of the locals

Description. This narrow stretch of U-shaped beach doesn't appear in a lot of tourist guides. For that reason, you'll mostly see locals here. During the week, it is surprisingly uncrowded. Located on the northeast side of the island, it's convenient to hotels and villas in the Pointe Milou and Grand Cul de Sac areas.

Why it's unique. It's off the tourist path. The waters of Marigot Bay are part of a marine sanctuary, so you won’t see any motorboats or jet skis in here.

Best for...snorkeling and spotting sea turtles and Conchs

Amenities. There are no restaurants, bars or shops on Marigot beach.

Accessibility. There is a small parking area for this beach right on the main coastal road.

Know before you go. This beach is unusual on St Barts in that it offers quite a few shady spots. It is a little rockier than most of the other beaches.

WIMCO insider tip. The waters of Marigot Bay are part of a protected marine sanctuary. This makes for great snorkeling

10. Petit Cul de Sac beach + A hidden treasure

Description. This wild and unspoiled beach on the northeast corner of the island is a favorite with locals, but usually doesn't make the "top beaches" list for tourists. For that reason, you'll usually find it relatively uncrowded, even on the weekends. The beach's calm waters are part of a marine sanctuary, so you can expect to see sea turtles and conches.

Why it's unique. Less crowded than most other beaches. Calm waters. No homes or buildings on the beach – just wild plants and white sand.

Best for...families who are looking for a quiet place to picnic and swim

Amenities. There are no restaurants, shops or public restroom facilities here, so plan ahead.

Accessibility. You park alongside a dead-end road and take a short path to reach the beach.

Know before you go. Bring everything you need with you for your beach outing. There are no restaurants or stores near this beach.

WIMCO insider tip. This beach can be difficult to find as there are no street signs pointing the way to it. When driving out towards Toiny, take a left turn after the salt pond.

11. Toiny beach + walking on the Cote Sauvage

Description.  Toiny beach is mainly frequented by surfers. The area is known for having a strong undertow, so swimming is not recommended. In 2019 Le Toiny Hotel opened up the Toiny Beach Club, offering a tropical oasis for lunch and drinks. What was once a deserted stretch of wild coastline is now an ideal place to have a relaxing feet in the sand lunch.

Why it's unique.  Toiny bach faces the prevailing winds that give the coast there the name “Cote Sauvage”

Best for...quiet nature walk, and relaxing lunch on the beach

Amenities. The Toiny beach club has rest rooms and a swimming pool for cooling off.

Accessibility. You can park at the hotel and take a shuttle bus to the beach, or use the public parking along the road that parallels the beach.

Know before you go. While the waters here can be good for surfing, swimming is not recommended.

WIMCO insider tip.  Walk the beach first thing in the morning and you’ll have it all to yourself.

12. Corossol beach + like a Greek island

Description.  Corossol is a tiny coastal village, sounded by steep hills, with a small harbor and beach. You will see locals relaxing on the thin strip of sand along the sea wall, yet it’s unusual to find any tourists here. There is excellent snorkeling right off shore, and around the pier.

Why it's unique.  Reminds one of a Mediterranean beach on a Greek island, right at the base of a small village.

Best for...families who are looking for a quiet place to picnic, swim and snorkel

Amenities. There are no restaurants, shops or public restroom facilities here, so plan ahead.

Accessibility. You park alongside the sea wall.

Know before you go. Bring everything you need with you for your beach outing. There are no restaurants or stores near this beach.

WIMCO insider tip. This beach looks out at the outer harbor of Gustavia. It is an ideal place to watch the sunset, and to check out all of the yachts moored offshore.

Best of the Best Beaches on St Barts:

Looking for the best beach that suits your interests? We'll share our picks of the best St Barts beaches for families, kids, couples, water sports, dining, and more.

Best Beaches in St Barts for Families With Little Kids

The calm waters and easy accessibility of St Jean beach, Lorient beach, Marigot and Petit Cul de Sac make these stretches of white sand well-suited for families with small children.

Best Beach Restaurants in St Barts

Few things are more romantic than sharing a meal at the edge of the beach, listening to the water lap on shore. St Barts offers a number of beachfront eateries.

These include

  • Gyp Sea, at St Jean Bay
  • L'il Rock Beach Bar and Restaurant  at St Jean Beach
  • Pearl Beach Restaurant at St Jean Beach
  • Sand Bar restaurant at Eden Rock hotel also at St Jean Beach
  • Nikki Beach, a must-visit lunch spot and bar right on St Jean Beach
  • Le Toiny Beach Club, at Toiny Bay on the southeast side of the island
  • La Cabane, on Flamands Beach
  • Shellona on Shell beach

See all restaurants in St Barts

Best White Sand Beach in St Barts

Ask every visitor or resident in St Barts what is the best white sand beach, and you'll give at least a dozen different answers. However, we like the sand at Colombier Beach, Saline Beach and Gouverneur Beach.

Best Beach Hotel in St Barts

There are a number of hotels right on the beach in St Barts. Our favorites include the iconic Eden Rock Hotel, which is located on a peninsula in St Jean Bay; Cheval Blanc, located on Flamands Beach and three hotels on Grand Cul de Sac Beach – Le Guanahani, Le Sereno and Le Barthelemy.

See all hotels in St Barts

Best Villa on the Beach in St Barts

Many visitors prefer to stay in a villa rather than a hotel on St Barts. While the majority of villas on the island are located up on hills overlooking the water, there are a few beach villas in St Barts. 

Our favorites include Villa La Plage on Lorient and Villa Elaon Flamands.

See all villas on the beach in St Barts

Best Beach for Couples in St Barts

For the reasons mentioned above in our beach descriptions, we think Saline, Gouverner and Colombier beaches are the best for couples. These beaches are very private and non-commercialized. 

For those couples looking for a romantic lunch on the beach, we recommend restaurants on St Jean beach, The Toiny beach club in Toiny, and La Cabane on Flamands beach.

Best Beach for Groups in St Barts

St Jean Beach offers something for every taste. A good thing if you're traveling with a diverse group of people. For a fun afternoon groups might be interested in lunch at Nikki Beach or Pearl beach.

Most Romantic Beach in St Barts

Hands down, we pick Colombier Beach as the most romantic. Its secluded location means that you'll likely have the place to yourselves. Pack water and a picnic lunch. You can also charter a boat for a sunset cruise to Colombier, a favorite of couples.

Beach with the Best Views in St Barts

While all of the beaches on St Barts are lovely in their own way, we particularly like the views on Colombier Shell beach and Lorient.

Most Popular Beach in St Barts

St Jean Beach, with all of its restaurants, nightlife, boutiques and dive shops, is the most popular beach on the island.

Best Hidden Gem Beach in St Barts

Shell Beach in Gustavia is often overlooked in favor of St Jean Beach and its many activities. However, we think that Shell Beach is well worth a visit. 

Not only is it within walking distance to Gustavia, but the setting is dramatic with its views of the mountains and its waters are calm enough for the whole family to enjoy. The waterfront restaurant of Shellona is a long-time favorite.

Toiny beach is the other hidden gem. It’s notorious undertow can make it dangerous for swimming, however it is a wonderful beach to walk, and the Toiny Beach Club is a relaxing place to hang out for a few hours in the afternoon.

Best Beach for Spotting Wildlife in St Barts

Petit Cul de Sac Beach, which is part of a marine sanctuary is a great place to spot sea turtles and conches.

Best clothing optional beach

If you enjoy sunbathing "au naturel", then head to the far right end of Saline or Gouverneur Beach.

Frequently asked questions about the beaches on St Barts

Do I need a car to get to most beaches or are there taxis?

To fully explore the beaches of St Barts, you'll need to rent a car.

There is no public transit in St Barts, and although there are a few taxis on the island, cell reception isn't the best at some remote beaches and taxis can get expensive.

If you are staying at a villa or hotel in St Jean and want to limit yourself to that beach, you could probably get by without a car (but you'd be missing a lot of the island.)

Are there changing rooms or facilities on the beaches?

For the most part, there are no changing rooms on the beaches of St Barts. Exceptions to this rule are some restaurants on St Jean beach and, of course, your hotel room if you are staying at a beach hotel.

Do any of the beaches have chair and umbrella rentals?

Yes. St Jean beach has several restaurants and independent water sports companies that will rent umbrellas and chaise lounges. In addition, many hotels on the beaches rent chairs and umbrellas to non-guests if you have lunch at their restaurants first.

Do any of the beaches have food and drink availability?

Some beaches on St Barts have food and drink available. Others are more remote, and you'll want to bring your own lunch and snacks. Beaches that have restaurants nearby include St Jean beach and Shell beach.


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