Rising from the center of St. Maarten/St. Martin, Pic Paradis (Peak Paradise) is the island’s highest point as well as its wettest, which ensures the vegetation is lush and green year-round. Climb to the 1,391-foot (424-meter) summit for sweeping views of Orient Bay, Philipsburg, Simpson Bay Lagoon, Marigot, and the neighboring islands.
Travelers can explore Pic Paradis as part of a half-day tour that may include an array of nature-based activities: a snorkeling adventure, a guided nature tour, or a sightseeing tour of the island’s most important manmade and natural landmarks including a saltwater pond where lizards, birds, and iguanas live. Adrenaline seekers will appreciate a trip to Loterie Farm, a former plantation where ziplines soar over the rain forest canopy.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Tours of Pic Paradis may include round-trip hotel transfers, food and drinks, use of snorkeling equipment, towels, and guides. Check tours for specific details.
- Remember sun protection, swimwear, and water for hydration.
- If you plan to hike to the summit, wear appropriate footwear.
- There is no wheelchair access to Pic Paradis.
How to Get There
The road to Pic Paradis is off the main island ring road near Friar’s Bay Beach on the west coast. Up mountain, the road can only be navigated by four-wheel drive. Alternatively, you can follow the road on foot, taking a different route down, choosing to descend on either the French or Dutch side.
When to Get There
The best times to visit St. Martin/St. Maarten are the shoulder seasons of spring and fall, when cheaper rates are offered and rains less likely. The weather is pleasant year-round, with summer months being the hottest. Humpback whales often can be observed from February to June.
On the mountain ascent, travelers pass Loterie Farm, a private nature reserve set on a former plantation dating back to 1721. Stop for a refreshing drink or meal, a dip in the swimming pool with a view, or, better yet, stay to enjoy the treetop obstacle courses and ziplines.