Escape to St. Maarten for Less

Posted August 27, 2010 by Kate Hamman

St.Maarten You may not be sure how to spell this Caribbean island's name, but it's plain to see that St. Maarten is more than just a spelling-bee stumper. Its dual identities of Dutch (St. Maarten) and French (St. Martin) sides combine to create an ideal vacation getaway. Come spend the day in a tropical garden surrounded by butterflies before you head to an emporium that stocks the island's favorite liqueur.

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The Butterfly Farm: Come stand among hundreds of fluttering butterflies as you take an hourlong tour offering insight into their life cycle. You'll witness the metamorphosis from caterpillar to exotic butterfly, and have the opportunity to hold the frail insects. The morning between 9:00 and 9:30 is the best time to witness newborn butterflies taking flight.

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Guavaberry Emporium: Don't leave St. Maarten without stopping at the Guavaberry Emporium, where you'll find the island's legendary folk liqueur, guavaberry rum. Sip a guavaberry colada while you browse the different liqueurs, BBQ sauces, hot sauces, chutneys, and a slew of souvenirs. Other exotic libations

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(Photo: Sandra Calderbank)

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