Palm trees on an beach next to the Caribbean Sea 

There can be few destinations as captivating as the island of St Maarten in the Caribbean. With an area of just 37 square miles, this lovely place with its dramatic mountain peaks and white-sand beaches is the perfect holiday destination. For those wishing to travel the length and breadth of St Maarten car hire means that you can drive to the highest points on the island and drink in the remarkable views.

The island is a blend of Caribbean life with influences from its colonial past. Sint Martin is the name given to the Dutch south side of the island, while St Martin is preferred for the French north. The island was an important place for colonists seeking their fortunes from gold, rum and the slave trade. Visiting St Maarten also provides the chance to go to Caribbean islands such as Anguilla that are only a ferry hop away. There are great facilities for water sports and hiking at Saba and Friar's Bay give those of an adventurous spirit ample opportunity to get out and be active.

Having arrived at the Princess Juliana Airport (SXM), with its infamous beach-end runway at Maho Bay, car hire in St Maarten could not be easier to arrange as the main rental depots are situated just outside the airport terminal. This is the best way to travel and to experience the pace of life on the different sides of the island.

After being sure to experience market days in Phillipsburg and Marigot, the island's two capitals, many will head down to the Grand Case Beach Club, which is rightly considered to be the gourmet capital of the Caribbean.

With everything so easily accessible by car, tourists can really get the most out of a holiday in St Maarten.