Kayaking and Paddle boarding:
Renting a kayak or a paddle board from our shop does not only help you to reach Pinel Island from Sint Maarten. It gives you the opportunity to discover Cul de Sac Bay which offers many different spots that you would not even suspect they exist before. On the way to Pinel, you can stop and go around Little Key Island and its shallow water. Thanks to the hight of this small island, it is mostly covered from the wind which makes it a very quiet area that is actually still unknown from most of the tourists. For the most adventurous of you, the coral barrier located in between Sint Maarten and Little Key creates some small waves that you could ride on either with your kayak or your paddle board, which will lead you back to the Sand Bar at the center of the bay. Riskless & entertaining!
Still from our shop, you can choose to paddle along the coast of Sint Maarten located on the right side, when you are facing Pinel island. You will go through the sailing boats that belong to locals, from old fashioned catamaran to brand new ones, from house boat wreck to dingies… A paradise for boats lovers!
Once you are finally in Pinel island, after a 20 to 25 minutes ride, you can still paddle all around the island and it’s endless little creeks. Enjoyyy!
Thanks to its beautiful and clear water, in addition of being part of the natural reserve of Saint-Martin, Pinel is well known to be a great snorkelling spot. While kayaking/paddling over to Pinel, you can swing by Little Key island and beach your gear on its tiny & wild piece of sand. Enjoy this peaceful moment, away from the crowd, where the colours of the Sand Bar are changing each minute of the day. Put on your snorkelling equipment or take out your snorkelling Reef Board (both available for rent - 15 USD - at our shop!) and discover the beauty of mother nature, available all around Little Key.
Don’t be afraid of the pelicans over there, they are one of Sint Maarten’s mascot and are completely armless. Their charismatic attitude while watching you snorkelling around “their lands” is actually funny to observe! Once this step of the day is over, you can finally head to Pinel Island. You can snorkel pretty much everywhere around the island.
The main spots would be the following:
- The channel between Saint Martin and Pinel, while reaching the wild side of the island. You can snorkel along the cliff of Pinel and watch the corals, the fish and all the active sea life that is preserved by the natural reserve for a while now.
- Once you have passed the channel, you can keep going and you will end up on the wild beach at the back of Pinel Island. The coral barrier over there is outstanding! If the waves are not too big, do not hesitate to venture around it, the colours of the sea can only impress you!
- The last but not the least, you can go at the Southern point of Pinel Island and follow the snorkel trail that has been put together a few years ago.
Easy with the snorkelling reef & fun with the snorkelling gear, that is all you need.
Walking around Pinel island is absolutely worth it! The natural reserve has put some signs along the paths which describes each area, what type of animals - mostly birds - are living there, according to which season it is.
Plus, you will hike to the different beaches of Pinel, go to the different hillsides and get the best points of view to Tintamarre island (located behind Pinel), Saint-Barth and of course, our dear Sint Maarten with Orient Beach, Green Cay… And the last, but not the least Cul de Sac Bay with the famous Caribbean Paddling shop :)
As a conclusion, if you prefer to be active over laying on the beach all day, Pinel island offers that option as well. To give you an idea, without making any stops along the way, walking over Pinel will take you about 30 minutes. A short excursion, but a countless number of breathtaking landscapes. So put your shoes on!
… In the water, on the beach… For those who are looking for a relaxing day, Pinel Island is also the place to be. Either laying on your beach chair under your umbrella, or right on the beach under the sun, or even in the crystal blue water: you will feeI the stress of your body going “far far away” along the day.
Our recipe for a 100% relaxing chilling:
- a good Sum Bum Sunscreen (available at our shop)
- an ice cold beer or a homemade rum punch (available at the Yellow Beach or Karibuni restaurant)
- a good amount of sun and turquoise water (available all year long in Pinel island!)
Ladies, it’s a yes! Shopping is possible in Pinel Island! For years now, the gift shop located in between Karibuni and Yellow Beach restaurants has a lot to offer: handmade jewellery, towels, sarongs, swimming suits, decorative items, music equipments, hammocks… And so much more!
The owner of the shop comes every morning on his non motorised tiny boat and put the store back together in no time! Shopping with your feet right on the beach definitely provides a complete feeling of satisfaction, you can trust us! Pinel Island gift shop has nothing to envy from the 5th Avenue… ;)
Pinel island is a huge iguanas center! They love to take the sun all day long, on the coconut trees or straight from the beach. Their dinosaur’s look make us feel like we are a few centuries back, but with absolutely no danger!
Don’t be afraid to approach them, observe them and even feed them - be careful for your hands, they are sometimes very hungry ;) Not doing anything during the day seems to open their appetite at some point!!
On the main beach of Pinel Island, where both restaurants are located, clothing is mandatory.
However, on the wild beaches - and especially on the one at the back side of the island - don’t be surprised to meet people with no cloth on. Nudism is allowed and seems appreciated!
For some of you who do not want to have a full lunch in one of Pinel Island’s restaurants, you can definitely bring your own picnic for your excursion and create your own moment of pure gastronomy :)
And Caribbean Paddling also offers this service! For 15 dollars per person, we will have a full picnic basket ready for your at your check in at the shop. A healthy sandwich or a well elaborated pasta salad with a homemade sweet snack and an ice cold drink of your choosing, you will be good to go for a full day over there! Our suggestion would be to settle down on one of the wild beach of Pinel, to enjoy it on a peaceful and calm area. We thought of this package as a wild discovery of this little paradise… Another aspect of Pinel that is worth the try!