Travel plays on my emotions when it’s a great trip. My adventure to St. Maarten was extraordinary not just because of the beautiful surrounding, rather all the people that I met. I have made life-long friends, not just people.
Experiential travel allows me to really interact with a destination, and learn what it is about. It’s more than passing through as a tourist. Instead, as I meet people, business owners, they share their vision, their lives and that is priceless.
Here’s my personal fave in St. Maarten. The owner, George is beyond kind, caring and compassionate. His bird sanctuary in St. Maarten is known by so many yet, unknown to more. IF you are on a cruise, and in port, or visiting anywhere between the French Side or the Dutch Side, go here. Your experience will be colorful, happy and captivating.
Fabulous Bird Sanctuary In St. Maarten
Parotte Ville – St. Maarten
I met George Parotte of Parotte Ville when we arrived. We went right into the holding area. Here you always make sure that one door is closed before the other is open, and then you move into the sanctuary. Sound of birds chirping and talking to each other fills the air.
Cup Of Life #CupOfLife
As you walk in, George will provide you with what I refer to as a #CupOfLife. It’s a simple cup of feed and the birds will come to you to eat. This feed is their lifeline and your visit makes it all possible.
Teens. Smiles. Can It Be So?
Smiles on a teenager? You gotta be kidding me, but it’s true and it happens here, as your adventure inside these sanctuary walls comes to life. It’s a chance to experience something you might not have before in a destination that is already so beautiful.
Now, he’s smiling but so were my other teens. That was just one part of how truly special it is here. After all, teens are the toughest to satisfy when you travel. Yet the only thing they used their phones here for was selfies with the birds and pictures of the birds.
Saunter. Watch. Experience.
It all unfolds before your eyes. Birds will land on your arm, on your head, and on branches and bird baths that are scattered around. Stay on the path, walk slowly, stop and enjoy.
Make sure to take pictures AND enjoy the moment with your eyes, not just behind the camera.
Stunning from start to finish and you are not pushed through or rushed. Take your time, and let the experience unfold. One of my favorite moments was watching the bird bath. Who was bossing who around.
Which bird made the most noise and who ended up enjoying it. You gotta go to find out how this tale plays out, but totally worth the watch.
This moment was just so easy and it happens a lot. They land, you photo. Watch them interact, eat, move on and then return. It’s crazy how something like bird watching up close can make you feel as though you know them.
Trust me, they are not camera shy and they are very happy to be around you. George’s love makes them trust in you. It’s great. Extend kindness and it returns. Thank you George.
The detail of color on these little marvels is spectacular and they are eternally grateful for the food you are providing. Their ‘thank you’ is a stop at your #CupofLife so that you can enjoy their interaction.
Chirp. Squeak. Squeal. Love
I have never run the gamut of so many emotions at once. When the first bird landed on me, I was freaked out, almost in tears, then laughing so hard I could not stop. Suddenly, I was stymied by their beauty and just basked in the moment.
Be sure to head up to the platform for a total view of the sanctuary and the birds will gather here as well. It’s a chance to really interact with the yellow species specifically.
I mentioned the platform and my reward for climbing a few stairs and waiting was this yellow brilliant bird. He or she, it does not matter, but it interacted with me, the camera and the boys for at least 5 minutes before flying away. #TreasuredMoments.
The Sugar Cup
George also has a cup of sugar, that different birds flock to. It’s a way to experience a different species. It’s also funny because when you have this in hand, the other birds don’t come around. Try a bit of each.
History Has A Place Here.
For those who love a little history, George will offer you a museum tour. It’s right in the same area. You leave the birds and walk out about 10 steps and there you can see antiquities George has kept from his ancestors.
Truly, it’s is amazing to see items from days gone by and to learn the ways we have advanced.
There is no price you can put on an experience like this. The attraction charges a modest fee, and I think it should be more. Come for the birds and stay for the experience. There are snacks and beverages available for purchase.
It’s a short ride from the port, so get off the cruise ship, and shop later. Come here first, then return. Catch a taxi ride, there are plenty in port. Then, after you see this, shop and return to the ship. A destination attraction must for every age group.
There’s a lot to see and do in St. Maarten, make this attraction a Must on your list.
My thanks to George for hosting my family! Can’t wait to see you again. ~ DANA XO