St. Barths is more than sand and surf. It also has an impeccable food scene — you can thank the French for that — and the designer shopping is incredible. For those considering a first-time visit, here is a list of helpful tips.
Getting there: Unfortunately, there are no direct flights from the United States to St. Barths, so despite its proximity, it’s a little more time-consuming to reach than you might think. One can arrive on a flight through Sint Maarten/St. Martin, St. Thomas or Antigua or via ferry from St. Martin, but the latter option can be a rocky journey. For Americans, the most efficient route is to fly into San Juan, Puerto Rico, and take a 45-minute Tradewind Aviation flight to St. Barths. This pricier option has multiple advantages: The transfer through the airport is smoother, security is expedited, and Tradewind has a comfortable airport lounge and modern fleet.
When to go: St. Barths is warm and wonderful year-round, but it’s most festive — and pricey — from November to January. Keep in mind that hurricane season runs June to November, and some hotels close for part of the off-season.