Photo by Christine Warner Hawks/Flickr
Kayaking from St. Maarten to Pinel IslandA short five-minute ferry ride from St. Maarten, Pinel Island is a beautiful destination littered with laid-back restaurants, beach bars, hiking trails, and a great beach. It's part of St. Maarten's Marine Reserve, and is a popular spot for water sports enthusiasts with excellent conditions for snorkeling, kayaking, and stand up paddle boarding. In fact, Pine Island is so close to St. Maarten it's possible to kayak as a mode of transportation between the two destinations. Once on Pinel Island, kayak to Little Key, a deserted island with no development. On St. Maarten, you can rent your kayak or stand up paddle board from Caribbean Paddling.
If you're interested in snorkeling, visit Ecosnorkeling to try their underwater audio snorkel system that gives you a narrative tour while you're snorkeling and checking out the island's abundant corals and tropical fish. When you're hungry, head to Karibuni for fresh seafood, followed by Yellow Beach Restaurant for a fruity cocktail. Photographers will love the unique vantage point Pinel Island gives of St. Maarten and nearby Anguilla.
Ferry service to and from Pinel Island runs daily from 10am to 5pm, with boats departing every 30 minutes.