The Caribbean island of St. Maarten
Sint Maarten (Dutch pronunciation: [sɪnt ˈmaːrtə(n)]) is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It encompasses the southern half of the Caribbean island of Saint Martin, while the northern half of the island constitutes the Frenchoverseas collectivity of Saint-Martin. Its capital is Philipsburg. Its population is 37,000 on 34km2.
Before 10 October 2010, Sint Maarten was known as the Island Territory of Sint Maarten (Dutch: Eilandgebied Sint Maarten), and was one of five island territories (eilandgebieden) that constituted the Netherlands Antilles.
In 1493, during Christopher Columbus' second voyage to the West Indies, upon first sighting the island he named it Isla de San Martín after Saint Martin of Tours because it was 11 November, St. Martin's Day. However, though he claimed it as aSpanish territory, Columbus never landed there, and Spain made the settlement of the island a low priority.