Oranjestad is a small town of nearly 1,000 inhabitants, and is the capital of Sint Eustatius island in the Netherlands Antilles. Oranjestad is a pleasant, historical harbour town. It can be divided into two main sections, the Lower Town along the waterfront is the more historical side of the town (with colonial-era ruins, the island's best beach and the still-functioning harbour), and the Upper Town up away from the seafront is Oranjestad's main commercial and residential centre.
The main sight in Oranjestad is Fort Oranje, a well-kept 17th century fort site in the direct centre of the town, overlooking the waterfront. This cliffside fort has cannons, intact fortifications and a beautiful courtyard. Nearby is an excellent museum, a house containing collections of historical artifacts, the second oldest synagogue in the western hemisphere (abandoned), and a Jewish cemetery. The town's historical features also include an old Dutch reformed church built in 1755, which is partly ruined but still accessible (its tower can be climbed for outstanding views). The ruined buildings now submerged at the seafront can be explored by snorkelling, which is quite safe here.
Oranjestad itself contains all the essential features of island life, such as grocery stores, a school, a clinic and administrative offices of the government. Oranjestad is a major shopping destination for people from neighbouring Saint Kitts, as many goods there, especially imported foodstuffs are cheaper than at home. Sint Eustatius itself also boasts a fully functioning, highly reputable, medical university with more than 100 students.