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“Joyful, romantic experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Seaside Nature Park

Seaside Nature Park
Cay bay road 64, St Maarten-St Martin
+599 5445255
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Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Palos Hills, Illinois
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Joyful, romantic experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2012

My husband and I went with the $200 2 hour Champagne/Sunset ride, bonfire, roasted marshmallows experience because it was our last night on the island and we wanted it to be special. And it was amazing! Jay, our tour guide, was genial, courteous, and obviously enjoyed his job very much. He took pleasure in making our experience fun and romantic. The woman running the office was kind and had our complimentary drinks waiting for us before we were done paying. She even answered my hundred or so questions about the other animals they keep. Our champagne was sweet and palatable for any drinker. Roasting marshmallows made my husband and I feel like kids again. The horses were gentle to ride and very responsive to nudges. At the end of the tour, the horses ride into the water and it is very nice! If you want to make your partner feel special, this is the package to opt for. It is well worth it! I couldn't stop smiling and I've told everyone back home what a great experience this was for us.

Visited May 2012
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93 reviews from our community

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English first
south florida
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Wonderful adventure”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2012

Great experience, professional staff, beautiful views, lovely horses ( my horse was Evita, she was such a great horse) could not ask for a better experience definitely would recommend Seaside nature park if your in st. Maartin. The only downside was trying to get a taxi from the port, so arrange a pickup with them.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Short, fun horseback ride in the ocean”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2012

We opted for just the short 30 minute swim instead of a longer horseback ride. It was short (the 30 min seemed to include mounting and walking to and from the ocean, so we had only ~15 min in the water, I think). Our guide, Jen, was wonderful and the horses were exceptionally sweet!

This is an interesting place -- there were horses roaming around freely all over the property. Apparently there are ~50 of them! Also numerous other animals. While some other reviewers seemed concerned about the welfare of the horses, they looked to be in excellent health to me. (I grew up on a farm with 6 horses). They aren't polished and bathed Kentucky thoroughbreds, but they looked happy cavorting on the beach.

A few more things: It's located behind a water desalination plant -- not quite where I'd imagined "seaside nature park" would be, but the plant didn't spoil the view. And it's a private stables -- not a government nature park. I was confused about that at first.

Visited January 2012
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Davenport, Florida
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2012

After all the research we did and from reading the reviews we were looking forward to this adventure but came away very disappointed. We were a little apprehensive when the taxi entered the park but as we came from a water ski tournment background we have seen similar entrances.

However, for a "park" facility the physical plant (outbuildings etc) could really use some monetary and physical help, particulaly the area where the horses were kept. Our guide actually stepped into a mud hole next to the watering area for the horses and went in up to his knee. The horses did not appear to have been groomed in a while.

My wifes horse was not having a good day and was quite uncontrollable - such that after she mounted him and the guide, Isaac, turned his attention to me, it actually went back into the containment area where the other horses were. On the trail he had to lead the horse by the reins. No explaination why the guide could not have exchanged horses. Certainly there were enough available as we were the only two riders that morning. The trail was rocky and steep and seemed to just circle around a small area. As we were on the one-hour tour it made us wonder just where they would go for a two-hour trip.

We recently rode in the Tetons National Park and the comparision in the facilities and condition of the horses was remarkably different.

Other than not exchanging horses, Isaac was very accommodating and knowledgeable about the area.

The facility did offer some very rough changing areas (toilets) and showers and there were lockers for our gear - nothing fancy. The "snack shack" was not open and there was no food or drink available.

Maybe it was an off day beacuse we rode the day after a holiday weekend (Jan 2nd), but our experience was very disappointing and we recommend using caution when considering this activity.

Visited January 2012
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Menlo Park, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Horseback riding on the beach and in the ocean. Great for experienced riders, too”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2011

Seaside Nature Park on St Maarten is a beautiful place to go horseback riding. As trail ride experiences go, it ranks as one of my all-time favorites.

They offer walk-only group rides (2 hours), but they also offer a private 1.5-hour ride for more experienced riders, which is a nice change from some places that only offer walking rides. It was a little more expensive than the regular group trail ride, but not a lot. And it made the ride so much for fun for me. Just like the group ride, I rode around the park, across the beach, and into the ocean. But I also got to trot and canter and really feel free on our ride. The experience of cantering a horse with the ocean breeze on your face is fantastic! We ended with a brief ride in the ocean, the waves washing all the way up over my thighs, something I've never done before and really enjoyed. It's also just a pleasure to ride around the park, past the horses wandering freely.

My guide was not an island native, but she was a pleasure to ride with and to talk to. My horse was great: willing to have a good time, but also obedient and easy to control, with a comfortable gait. And the owners were delightful to talk to -- and also determined to help protect St Maarten's natural environment.

Visited November 2011
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