Clothing and Attire in St. Martin

Learn what to pack when visiting the small island

Photo credit: © Ramunas Bruzas |

Clothing in St. Martin

The attire in St. Martin is generally informal, and ranges from none at all, to relaxed evening wear with a jacket. Still, a knowledge of the weather on the island can save vacationers from being uncomfortable in the climate, while a knowledge of customs can save a vacationer from wondering glances.

When traveling to any Caribbean island, travelers will need to pack a wide assortment of clothing, from the essential beach and active wear, to nice evening wear, to something warm to slip on in the cooler evening hours. Travelers to St. Martin will want to be sure that they pack swimwear and active wear for beaches or trails. For social and evening situations, vacationers should always be presentable, but should attempt to choose clothes that are made with light fabrics, such as linen and cotton.

At the Beach


Attitude toward topless and nude bathing is more relaxed on St. Martin. Topless bathing is not uncommon in many areas throughout the island, while nude bathing is confined to Orient Beach and a few other locations. Visitors should always attempt to take a cue from the locals when deciding whether to go topless, as there may be areas where it is generally not done.  For those that will be frequenting the beaches that don't allow nudity, it is recommended that you bring more than one suit not only for varieties sake, but also so you won't have to wake up each morning and put on a wet suit.  Instead, you can wear one and leave the other in your hotel room to dry.  If you'll be going from the beach to a restaurant or will need to run into a shop to pick up a few things, keep a cover up on hand.  This could be a sarong, a t-shirt and shorts, or a sundress.  If your plans involve watersports such as snorkeling or diving, bringing along a rash guard is highly recommended.  

Out on the Town

As with many of the Caribbean islands, beach and active wear should be reserved for those situations and should not be worn in the cities or to dinner. Ties and jackets are not generally required, but if your itinerary has something that may merit more formal dress, you may want to check to be sure. There are a full range of boutiques and shops on the island selling both beach and more formal wear.  In most cases, packing a suitcase of resort wear will be sufficient to get you through the entirety of your trip.

Resort Wear

Also known as "resort casual" this term refers to the style of clothing you'd be likely to see at a country club.  Clean and pressed, but not necessarily stuffy and boring is the theme here.  Collared shirts such as polos and button downs, linen and khaki bottoms including shorts, pants, capris, and skirts, and dresses like sundresses all fit the bill.  Prints and bold colors are acceptable and are a great way to infuse your own style into every day resort wear. 

A suitcase destined for St. Martin should be full of clothes for both relaxation, fun, and casually elegant evenings.


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