Museums might be far from your mind when visiting the Caribbean island of St. Maarten, but don’t write them off your list just yet. The exhibits at these six museums will amuse, surprise and educate you.
If you are a movie buff, or have ever seen Star Wars, the Yoda Guy Movie Exhibit is a must-visit while in St. Maarten. The exhibits focus on the people and techniques that brought characters like Yoda, Chewbacca, Darth Vader and many others to life. Star Wars is not the only movie featured at this museum – other movies like Highlander, Superman and Alien are also featured. On your way out, be sure to stop at the gift shop for a chance to see Nick Maley, major contributor in the making of Yoda, and get photos and autographs.
Tropismes Gallery is a brilliant little art gallery showcasing contemporary Caribbean artists. If you’re an art lover, this gallery is a must-see. Open in the morning from 10-1, and then alter in the evening at 5pm, their schedule is flexible enough to bend around your beach time.
Conveniently located on Front Street next to a few restaurants and boutiques, the St. Maarten Heritage Museum has a friendly and informative exhibit on the background of St. Maarten. The museum features everything from artifacts found at the bottom of the sea, to old maps giving you a better sense of context beyond the shopping and restaurants.
The Minguet Art Gallery is unique to St. Martin, and displays a variety of pieces by Alexandre Miguet. There are many oil paintings, water colors, lithographs and pastels describing his life from Paris to St. Martin. Ran by his daughter Catherine, this gallery is full of culture, romance, and a history lesson on painting.
The Roland Richardson Gallery is located just off the main street of St. Maarten and is no other than the house Richardson was born in. Full of bright colorful rooms, stop here to experience a more cheerful side of the island as Richardson has some of his edgiest paintings, prints, and etches displayed here. There is also a courtyard garden on the backside of the house which is equally as pleasing to the eye.
Completely untraditional, the Gingerbread gallery attracts people from all over the world. The display here is made up of the work of dozens of artists ranging from icons to locals, with a strong Haitian twist. The atmosphere is peaceful and the art full of energy, imagination and hope.
Although exploring St. Maarten is an adventure in itself, museums and galleries are an innovative way to get off the beach for a few hours. The museums particular to St. Maarten are extraordinary for their abundance in culture and neat facts about sea-life.
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