St. Barts lies 24km (15 miles) southeast of St. Martin and 225km (140 miles) north of Guadeloupe. The island's capital and only seaport is enchanting Gustavia, named for a Swedish king. This dollhouse-scale port rings a splendid harbor where little fishing boats bob alongside sleek yachts. Its narrow streets -- lined with 18th-century Swedish or French stone buildings housing gourmet eateries, galleries, chic boutiques, and an excellent Municipal Museum -- are easily explored on foot. Traveling northwest from Gustavia, you reach the typical villages of Corossol and Colombier, where a handful of women still weave lantana straw handicrafts from hats to handbags in cotton-candy-colored cazes (traditional wooden houses) garlanded with flowerpots and fishing nets.

Right by the airport, St-Jean is the closest thing to a resort town: a tropic St-Tropez, brimming with smart boutiques and beachfront bistros. A few minutes' drive east is serene Lorient, site of the first French settlement with a popular locals' beach; beautifully adorned graveyards; 19th-century Catholic church, convent, and bell tower; and reconstructed 17th-century Norman manor. Farther east, Grand Cul-de-Sac (Point Milou) is the island's second major resort center, its wide curve of sand surveyed by resorts and top-notch eateries.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.