Shared amicably between Holland and France, this island is the smallest in the world to be divided by two nations and offers you two cultures within easy reach of each other. Good international air links have encouraged the construction of large resort hotels with casinos and duty-free shopping in the Dutch part. The French part, although increasingly Americanized, is considered more ‘chic’ and packed with restaurants, dedicated to the serious business of eating well. There are no border formalities, only a modest monument erected in 1948, which commemorates the division of the island three centuries earlier. Both sides have good harbours and marinas and are popular with the sailing crowd. Heavily populated, there are not many places on the island where houses have not been built, this is not somewhere to come to get away from it all, but it is ideal for a fun beach holiday perhaps in combination with a quieter island nearby. Island hopping is easy.
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