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Overview

Unlike visitors to most islands in the Caribbean, who seek out sand and sunbathing, those who find St. Eustatius (known locally as "Statia") come for the stellar offshore scuba diving. Thanks to the Sint Eustatius National Park Foundation, or Stenapa, many of the reefs and wrecks around the island are protected and remain relatively unspoiled by reef degradation and over-tourism. Stenapa also protects the island's national park, which offers a collection of marked trails around Statia's extinct volcano. Oranjestad, the main town, has some quality historic sites depicting the island's intense colonial history. Formerly part of the Netherlands ...

Unlike visitors to most islands in the Caribbean, who seek out sand and sunbathing, those who find St. Eustatius (known locally as "Statia") come for the stellar offshore scuba diving. Thanks to the Sint Eustatius National Park Foundation, or Stenapa, many of the reefs and wrecks around the island are protected and remain relatively unspoiled by reef degradation and over-tourism. Stenapa also protects the island's national park, which offers a collection of marked trails around Statia's extinct volcano. Oranjestad, the main town, has some quality historic sites depicting the island's intense colonial history. Formerly part of the Netherlands Antilles, Statia's main language is Dutch, but most residents also speak English. Because it lacks beaches and flashy resorts, tourists don't flock to St. Eustatius, which means hotel and diving rates stay steady and cheaper than most Caribbean islands.

Debra Landau
About the Expert

Debra Landau has written eight Lonely Planet guidebooks, including books on the USA, Caribbean, and the South.

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Debra Landau for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Northern, Leeward Islands portion of the West Indies
  • Language: Dutch, Papiamentu and English
  • Currency: Netherland Antilles Guilder
  • Research: Wikipedia | Sint Eustatius
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Visit during dry season from December through April.