If you’re gearing up for a French Caribbean getaway, it can be challenging to choose between St. Martin and St. Barts. For certain, both are charming islands with plenty of allure. To help you decide, consider the amount of travelers, your budget, and the type of accommodations you prefer.

The following may be useful in helping you determine which of these islands is best for you.

St. Martin

Photo Credit: Ramon Kagie

This island is split into two: the French side spelled “St Martin,” and the Dutch side spelled “St. Maarten.”

St. Martin has many beaches, such as Orient Bay, Baie Rouge, Anse Marcel and Grand Case. There are some beautiful villas here, too. For honeymooners, Lune de Miel is lovely. If you desire uninterrupted sea views, Amandara is the perfect stay, and it can sleep up to 10 guests.

The larger villas go for thousands per night, especially during the festive period. If you’re looking for a top resort, La Samanna is the best choice. While in Marigot, the capital, support the local eateries, explore the market and hop on the ferry to Anguilla.

On the Dutch side, Simpson Bay, Cupecoy Beach and Maho Beach have a steady following. Maho allows you to view planes going in and out of Princess Juliana Airport. Keep a safe distance to avoid the jet blasts.

St. Maarten doesn’t disappoint with accommodations. Casa Sunshine and Bella Vita offer sprawling communal spaces for larger groups.

St. Barts

Photo Credit: Simone Mascellari

St. Barts is the perfect getaway for those willing to spend. Because of its exclusive nature, the beaches are rarely packed, and you’ll see quite a few super-yachts in Gustavia Harbor.

The designer boutiques and open-air cafes recall the French Riviera. Nikki Beach Restaurant and Sand Bar, both on St. Jean Beach, are beachy-chic options for lunch and dinner. The private villas are top of the line, not to mention high-end resorts like Eden Rock and Cheval Blanc.

In the absence of a mass transit system, the best way to explore St. Barts is by taxi, bicycle, or watercraft. There aren’t any direct commercial flights from North America, so you’ll have to take a ferry or plane from other islands.

Whichever island you choose, enjoy!