Monthly free guided public hikes are now available on Sint Maarten thanks to the tremendous effort of EPIC and our partners. Follow us on Facebook to learn about upcoming events or contact us at EPICsxm@epicislands.org.
Eight free public hiking trails on Sint Maarten are now cleared and mapped in an effort to promote healthy outdoor activities which connect people to nature. The initiative was part of a one-year project completed in 2019, which also included placing informational signs at trailheads, developing brochures, and providing free guided hikes. Hikers can get maps of trails for free through the Avenza app.
The hiking difficulty and approximate amount of time needed to complete the trail is also included in the application. In addition, trail maps can be downloaded onto a mobile device which allows the hiker to follow the trail in real time.
The project has been very successful and gained support from the community. The work was made possible through funding from Tourism Cares and the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association to support post-hurricane rebuilding as many of the trails had been covered with debris.
EPIC selected a mix of urban, coastal, grassland and secondary forest trails for improvement. The trails give hikers the opportunity to enjoy the biodiversity and natural beauty of Sint Maarten. For example, in a dry, shaded area, hikers might find a Bearded Anole, an endemic species found only on Sint Maarten.
The hikes are also of differing difficulties and rated by a three-tiered scale as easy, moderate, or challenging. Some trails are flat while others are undulating or steep ascents to high points on the island, giving spectacular panoramic views of Sint Maarten and neighboring islands. The diverse landscapes include beach walks or a trek to the Natural Pool of Guana Bay, allowing hikers to take a break and a dip in the sea to cool off.
The eight trails are: Cay Bay to Little Bay, Fleming Property, Guana Bay, Fort Willem, Naked Boy Hill, Point Blanche, Sentry Hill, and West Coast (Kim Sha).
Periodically, EPIC coordinates our “Hero Hikes,” often in partnership with TriSport, where hikers remove trash and debris then pack it out to the nearest trash can. Over the years these have been funded and supported by DOET, Tourism Cares, the Dutch Representative’s Office, various student and business groups, and the Dutch Marines.