As an official port of entry, Simpson Bay is a great destination for international sailors, but the opportunity to charter local boats and even sign up for a sailing tour hosted by an islander are other great ways to explore the area from a different view point.
Sailing tours and excursions are a great way to see Simpson Bay and the island of St. Maarten. When you sign up for one, it will typically include drinks and snacks, plus a knowledgeable tour guide and captain who will take you along the coast for several hours. Some tours even include extras like stops for snorkeling and beach pit barbecues.
If you're just wanting to enjoy a few hours on the open water, without the stress and cost of sailing on your own you can take an excursion. Wanting to know more about day sailing options? See the chart that follows to get information on area day sailing companies.
|Aqua Mania Adventures||(721) 544-2640||Simpson Bay Resort and Marina - Pelican Key|
|Bluebeard Charters||(721) 587-5935||10 Billy Ford Road, next to the Buccaneer Bar - Pelican Key|
|(721) 526-2467||Simpson Bay|
|(721) 547-0210||Airport Road - Simpson Bay|
|Garfield Fun Charters||(721) 587-1503||Simpson Bay|
|(721) 527-1444||Airport Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 543-0068||Simpson Bay|
|Passaat Classic Schooner||(721) 580-3301||Simpson Bay|
|Random Wind||(721) 587-5742||Simpson Bay|
|Sugar Rush Charters||(721) 580-4404||Wellfare Road - Cole Bay|
With nearly a dozen charter companies located in and around the Simpson Bay area, you won't have to work very hard to find a boat to captain when you're visiting. If you've got the skills, this is a great opportunity to get out and explore Simpson Bay in a unique way.
Starting to research renting a boat? The following chart shows how to contact charter companies serving this area.
|(721) 520-7002||Palapa Center - Simpson Bay|
|Celine Charters||(721) 545-3961||19 Corner Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 544-2640||Billy Folly Road - Pelican Key|
|Tropical Yacht Service||(059) 029-5231||Anse Marcel|
Construction seems to be a constant in Simpson Bay, so sailors are warned to always use caution and say in the marked channel. There is a bridge that blocks main access to the Simpson Bay Lagoon from this side of the island. It can accommodate vessels up to a maximum beam of 56 feet and a maximum draft of 17 feet. When closed, there is 8.6 feet of clearance in the port channel and eight feet clearance in the starboard channel. All others will have to await the opening of the bridge to sail in and out. This occurs at 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., and 4:30 p.m. For outbound boats, and 9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 5:30 p.m. For inbound boats between the months of December and April. From May through November, these times are 9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., and 5:30 p.m. for both inbound and outbound boats. You can contact the bridge operator at VHF Channel 12. There is a speed limit of three miles per hour for all vessels.
To officially gain clearance to the island, you'll find the immigration department and clearance office located adjacent to the channel into Simpson Bay Lagoon. They are open from 8:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on the weekends.
Contemplating sailing to Simpson Bay using your own vessel, or a charter from a different location? This table provides a quick summary of places where you might be able to dock.
|(721) 545-2315||Rhine Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 545-2500||46 Airport Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 544-2309||Airport Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 544-2408||Simpson Bay|
|(721) 545-2735||28 Airport Road - Simpson Bay|
|(721) 544-2953||Princess Port de Plaisance - Cole Bay|
|(721) 544-2582||Simpson Bay|
|--||0.7 mi. (1.2 km) Southeast of Simpson Bay|
|Simpson Bay - Simpson Bay||18.0349846328||-63.1011128426|
|Simpson Bay Lagoon - Cole Bay||18.0355763306||-63.0878090858|
|Baie Nettle - Sandy Ground||18.0624250736||-63.1019496918|
|Baie de Marigot - Marigot||18.0664384876||-63.0902552605|
|Baie Longue - Las Terres Basses||18.055998886||-63.1410884857|
The bridge may make sailing into Simpson Bay Lagoon a bit more of a hassle, but the possibility of staying in such a picturesque location with otherwise excellent sailing conditions is worth it to many. And if you do not find this desirable, there are other options available that should in no way prevent some time spend sailing during your Simpson Bay getaway.
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