Maho Beach
About
This spot is a unique beach in St. Maarten, where travelers flock to experience the thrilling rush of airplanes flying extremely close overhead. The best time to go is in the early afternoon when the larger jumbo jets land. Travelers recommend Sunset Beach Bar for the best views. The beach also has a lively coral reef perfect for snorkeling and waves that are great for snorkeling. Visit the beach on a tour of St Maarten, which often includes other spots like Cole Bay Hill and Orient Beach. The beach gets busy, so visit during the off-season if you want fewer crowds. – Tripadvisor
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • DarrenChaker_CA
    Calabasas, California141 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    St Maarten Carribean Wonderland by Darren Chaker
    St. Maarten aka Sint Maarten has been the place to come the last few years for me. The Caribbean is a long time favorite for me, but Maho Beach and The Morgan Resort seen to be the common denominator a few times a year. All of the room we have stayed in are clean, comfortable mattresses, and a staff who is always happy to make sure you are happier than they are. The food is wonderful, and drinks are stunning. Of course beach access is a few steps from your room depending where your room is and watching commercial jets fly in directly over your head. Other times, you need to clinch onto the fence when they take off or you will fly through the air. I wish everyone here a great end to 2023 and remember, if you are not living life, then what are you doing?
    Visited March 2023
    Written 12 August 2023
  • Diana F
    Los Angeles, California7 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    OMG!
    I have seen pictures of Maho Beach. We did a cruise on Wonder of the sea. I had no idea Maho was in St. Marteen or even knew the name of the beach. Well, beyond my surprise it was an excursion. I never thought I would ever be there in my life. We cancelled our city tour for Saint Juliana Airport/Maho Beach plane spotting. I hope you will have the experience I had. My sister Gloria got the shot if the day. A large plane flew over her head. OMG! I wish I could post the video. Yeah I can post a picture s.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 8 October 2023
  • Pandabuddie
    United Kingdom1,522 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    A must…
    You have got to do this if in the area this is a bucket list item to be ticked off. This was our second visit and did not want to miss it again. We took the local bus to the beach. $2 dollars each way. No issues at all. Had a good few hours at the beach watching the flight arrive and depart.
    Visited November 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 27 November 2023
  • Stephen S
    Leeds, United Kingdom69 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Mayhem!
    I’ve been to Maho for many years and this time the beach was absolutely rammed this time, unlike pre Covid years. It’s definitely a place to visit, especially for the fun of seeing the aircraft up close but there is little room to move, especially without your things getting wet. The bar adjacent, Sunset is much the same. Mid afternoon it calms down, this was on a day with 3x cruise ships in. It seemed that everyone now goes there but there’s a real stretch on capacity. Would recommend a visit BUT be aware that it’s extremely busy!
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 16 December 2023
  • Trace
    Charlotte, North Carolina125 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great place for a swim and watch landing for up close!
    Best advice if you love airplanes from up close. Install Flight Radar 24 App (free) and then filter to show only flights taking off or Landing from SXM airport. You will know real time exactly what plane is coming and when one is taking off, and never miss the big ones.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 22 December 2023
  • ItchyFeet
    Camarillo, California10,906 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Best site on island
    We took a tour around the island, and then we stopped to see several planes land at the airport. There is a board inside the restaurant right at the beach that lists the airline and the time they are due. However, the Air France and KLM flights were neither one on the board, so don’t rely on that entirely. The Air France and KLM flights are always late in the day. We were there from 2 pm until about 4:30pm.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 22 December 2023
  • Charles T
    Columbus, Ohio63 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Awesome St Marteen Experience
    Awesome experience. Once in a lifetime for me. The planes coming in and leaving…..amazing. Only problem was the people who don’t listen to the warnings and put their children in danger Of the turbo blasts…. It’s plainly explained Not to put them in danger but they still do…. I don’t know how they aren’t arrested for child endangerment…. Obey the rules. Otherwise absolutely amazing and cool experience.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 23 December 2023
  • Andre Z
    Curitiba, PR325 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Unbelievable
    Maho Beach has become one of the island's leading attractions: this is where the runway almost meets the beach, separated only by a narrow road and a flimsy fence. The location is also a great place to watch the sunset, and home to St. Maarten's largest and most successful hotel complex, The Sonesta Maho Reef Resort and its neighbor, The Royal Islander Hotel. The beach itself is framed by two beach bars: Sunset Bar & Grill and on the other end the Driftwood Boat Bar.
    Visited December 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 26 December 2023
  • Clay L
    Tatum, Texas10 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Family vacay on the island.
    Beautiful place with very nice people all around. Maho is like its own little town and you feel like a local real quick once you get out and start to experience the town. The city bus is a great way to get around and very affordable. Ask your hotel how to use it.
    Visited January 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 4 January 2024
  • Jamie
    Ontario, Canada53 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Beautiful Day at Maho Beach
    While Maho Beach is not a massive beach it is very clean and obviously people come to see the planes land and take off. The waves when we visited were quite strong but we still enjoyed the water. Planes were arriving constantly and it was fun to watch. There are signs but be warned that you may want to select an area closer to the outsides of the beach and not the middle. If you do go right in the middle then make sure to hold your belongings when the big planes take off of they’ll go straight into the water.
    Visited January 2024
    Travelled with friends
    Written 19 January 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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Steph
Saint-Martin, St Martin / St Maarten152 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Nicely placed. You'll find a snack, pizzas, 2 bars, a shop and music all the time. In fact, a all-in-one place. That's the nice part.
Besides that, very poor service, high prices, poor food, dirty area with permanent bad smell. Staff is not to blame. They are obviously not trained to look after customers at the bar, follow their tables and ... SMILE!
Food fair to low standard both for snack and pizzas. Shop is expensive but you'll find all the souvenirs you want.
Another strange comment. This bar used to be THE place to enjoy a beer while watching and commenting takeoffs, jet blast, landings with a 180° view. But very strangly, the "first class" seats have been removed and replaced with a stage empty most of the time, a stupid ice cream kiosk hiding the entire runway. The first rows where pushed back 20 feet and we lost a large part of the view. In addition, the place is devided in areas. Areas the closest to the beach and spectacle are the ones that close first!
Last point: very dirty place. Floors are almost always dirty with bad smell in the entire place. Customer going on the beach drop their trash and the Sunset barly cleans-up the beach and surroundings (I've seen cleaners in action only twice). I'm a diver and I can confirm that the underwater floor is alike: plastic cups and bags, beer bottles, tissues...
But can we blame the Sunset's boss? Whatever he does, his snackbar is a cash flow place. So bothering about customer satistaction and environment..
Written 1 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SheilaW34
Corralejo, Spain9,086 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
We're 64 and 70 so really should be mature and sensible by now, but we just had to go and sit on the beach directly under the flight path and behind the jets taking off, didn't we? I'm certainly glad we did! It would have been sad to have missed such an experience. Some of the planes really do come as low as they look on the videos and on TV, and they were able to use the runway in both directions while we were there, presumably due to any wind being across it. So we got jets and small planes landing over our heads, enormous jets revving up just a few feet away, and planes taking off towards us. The last was perhaps the most "moving" -- would they get airborne in time?

Note that there is quite a blast from the biggest jets preparing to take off so you should cover your eyes. You should take care of inflatables and kids too, and if at all frail (like us) you can sit on the sand or the kerb and be perfectly safe. TBH, the people that were being swept down to the sea and falling over were having fun encouraging exactly that to happen :) .

I have to say that I wouldn't personally spend a second there if it weren't for the planes. It's a measly wedge of beach with big waves due to the shape of the bay. There was a very "mass tourism" feel to the place and a very American rather than Sint Maarten atmosphere.
Written 10 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

dagodess99
Atlanta, GA26 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2022 • Couples
Overcrowded beach with awesome views of the planes landing as the beach is literally feet from the runway. You want to check out this beach for your cool shots of the planes flying over the beach. Note this is not a beach to go if you want a peaceful relaxing vibe. The water is beautiful and the beach is swimmable but it's not a large stretch of sand to lay on and 100s of people were packed in there like sardines. There are two resturants/beach bars Driftwood and Sunset. We ate at Driftwood because it was less crowded but it is very small with limited seating. You can rent beach chairs for 10.00 per person. All in all I'd say stop by for lunch or dinner. Most people would probably opt not to spend the entire day here as it's very noisey and crowded. There are tons of beaches on the island this one is further down the list but still worth a drive by.
Written 25 February 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SoSam63
Manchester, UK3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2023 • Couples
Our TUI Marella Cruise ship docked in St Maarten and No1 on our to do list was a trip to Maho Beach to witness the planes first hand, it didn’t disappoint.

We enquired on the ship as to the best way to get there and they advised a taxi at approx $40 which seemed a bit expensive to me. After a quick bit of Googling we decided to get the bus and experience a bit of local culture.

Firstly the term bus is a loose one. The transport is actually a minivan with a sign in the window saying where we were going. We decided to give it a go and had a great relatively short journey to Maho Beach with some really friendly and nice locals, all for $2 each!!!

Maho Beach was a fantastic experience with plane coming in so low it felt like you could touch them. The big jets taking off were an interesting experience as well with the incredible jet blast nearly blowing you off your feet.

Maho Beach itself was beautiful with lovely clean sand and crystal clear blue water. At either end of the beach there are a few restaurants, bars and shops and WC’s.

I’d highly recommend giving it a go and experiencing the thrill of the planes and the warmth of the water.

Have an adventure and get the bus, you’ll love it. Definitely a great experience.
Written 13 April 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MSAA4
Saint Peters, MO83 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
Took a taxi from the cruise port to Maho Beach. Taxi was between $8 and $10 one way, depending on how many people were in the cab. The beach isn’t the best, as it’s a fairly steep drop off into the water. If the tide is high, there is very little if any beach, as it was evident that the water has been over the roadway. But the experience of seeing the planes coming In was worth the trip. Lots of small island hoppers, but after noon, you will start to see the bigger planes. We saw a 737, 757 and a 767 land while we were there. Only two 737’s took off before we left. However, the larger planes that land, leave later in the afternoon or early evening. Missed the Air France A340, cause the traffic back to the cruise port can be very heavy, and didn’t want to be left behind. Overall, a great afternoon at Maho beach.
Written 12 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kristi W
Point Edward, Canada339 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
While it is really cool to see a 737 coming straight at you and landing literally behind you, the beach itself is very small and extremely crowded. The cost of 2 chairs and an umbrella is $25. and you probably won't be able to put anything on the ground as the surf comes right up under your chair. The restaurant has great hamburgers but again very costly. For 2 cheeseburgers with fries and 2 bottles of water it was $42. The big jets don't land until after 1:30 PM.
Written 5 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tommi61
Kaiserslautern, Germany45 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Friends
It’s great to see the planes fly in so low and almost so close you think you‘re able to touch them- that is great.

But if you are brave or (perhaps dumm) enough to go to the fence and hang in there like a monkey (they would not do that by the way because of there Intelligence) and it’s forbidden anyhow- it could be that you will be blown away, get hit by a small rock, loose your purses, backpacks or like some years ago - your live.

You can watch them take of f from the beach bar with a drink in you hand.

Pictures will follow
Written 11 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

The D
Maryland10 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021 • Couples
Maho is a cool, small beach with 2 cool bars at either end, that I’d recommend if it’s your first time in SXM or you love people watching. It’s an experience that I’ve repeated BUT it’s not a beach I ever plan on visiting while I’m there. It gets crowded and often I peak at it and drive right past cause it’s a mad house. That being said it’s an experience and the planes are really RIGHT there. If you can catch it on a day that’s not to crowded, grab a frozen drink from the boat bar and walk the beach and watch the planes.
Written 29 December 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Pompeyken
Inverness, UK35 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Friends
One of those 'Got to do's' when in St Martin's.
Fun to watch and the bigger plane that comes in the better. Hellish for parking. We had a hire car and one car park charges a dollar for every 4 minutes. Good craic and part of the fun.
Written 15 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeanette Engelbrecht
West Plains, MO81 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2021 • Couples
This is a must on your visit to St Marteen. The beach is beautiful. White sandy beach with turquoise waters. This is a unique beach because of the great bars on each side...The Driftwood and The Sunset along with the international flights landing within feet of you. The airport (landing strip) is separated by a narrow roadway and fence to the Moho Beach. The Jets come in incredibly low due to the short runway, thus, you have jets just feet above you while standing on the beach. It's really neat to watch planes just appear out ot the clouds, heading straight toward you as if they are landing on the beach. Princess Juliette is one in the top ten scariest international airports in the world due to the short runway and strategic landings and takeoffs the pilots must perform. Many lineup at the fence to experience the jet blasts but it's incredibly dangerous. I was planning to partake but after googling it, I read several news articles of deaths so decided against it. I have grand babies that I prefer to spend much more time with. This is a must do! Probably one of the neatest things I have done in life.
Written 13 October 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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