What comes to mind when you hear the word ‘Martinique’? Surely rum, cocktails by the beach and of course, Caribbean chill-out vibes. Well, you will find all that in this little paradise in the Lesser Antilles. The climate is tropical, the landscape is volcanic and the beaches are idyllic and sandy. But to discover Martinique in all of its Caribbean glory, you will have to dig a bit deeper.
A little paradise of many colours
Nature lovers will be enchanted by its lush rainforests, crystal-clear lagoons, waterfalls and rivers, and also the steep cliffs along the coast.
Hiking enthusiasts will love scaling Mount Pelee, a volcano in Martinique that last erupted in 1932. Want more adventure? Explore the Caravelle Peninsula’s nature reserve or additionally the island’s savannas and mangrove swamps. Dive into endless exploration in this Caribbean paradise!
The island’s original name is ‘Madinina’, meaning ‘flower island’ in the local Creole language. This name is fitting as Martinique boasts a vibrant array of exotic flowers in every colour imaginable. Additionally, when it comes to wildlife, the melodious hummingbirds’ songs will enchant you, and you might even spot rare bird species like Sucrier, Cinclorcenzia, and also the white-breasted Mimo!
Things to do in Martinique
Martinique Island beckons with a range of captivating attractions to choose from. Delve into history at the 17th-century Château Dubuc, a well-preserved castle offering a glimpse into the island’s past. Immerse yourself in the island’s French charm by visiting Sacré-Coeur De La Balata, a stunning church resembling the iconic Sacré-Coeur in Montmartre, Paris.
Explore the vibrant local markets in Fort-de-France to sample exotic fruits and spices, and don’t miss the chance to experience traditional Creole cooking at charming seaside restaurants. For a relaxing day, consider a leisurely sail along the scenic coastline to fully appreciate Martinique’s natural beauty.
A premium sailing destination
It’s no surprise that this island is a top-notch yachting destination, offering a stunning 350-kilometer coastline. Sailing along the west coast is a breeze, thanks to its sheltered coconut-covered bays and coves that provide protection from the winds. On the flip side, the east coast presents a bit more of a challenge with its shoals and white sandbanks, making navigation trickier.
When it comes to marinas, we highly recommend Le Marin, located near the southern tip of the island. It stands out as one of the Caribbean’s most modern and well-equipped marinas.
Diving and snorkelling enthusiasts will find themselves in paradise here, especially in Anses d’Arlet and Anse Couleuvre, where you might even have the chance to spot some sea turtles! However, for the ultimate scuba diving experience, Diamond Beach, another iconic spot on Martinique’s southern tip, takes the cake. The sight of the 175-meter diamond-shaped rock, whether from the water or the deck of your boat, will undoubtedly leave you breathless.
The small village of Les Anses-d’Arlet and St. Pierre’s Bay are two great mooring spots to discover by Martinique on a boat. Other options include Sainte Anne, a peaceful anchorage, Baie des Anglais, sheltered by a coral reef, and the small village of Tartane in the Caravelle peninsula.
Sandy beaches are aplenty in Martinique, but Grande Anse des Salines on the south of the island stands out for its length, palm trees and crystal clear waters. The beaches along the peninsula of Saint-Anne are a close second with their calm waters and water sports opportunities.
Blessed by the sun
As a Caribbean destination, Martinique is blessed with almost endless sunshine, with temperatures averaging around 30°C throughout the year. Nonetheless, it’s wise to plan your visit outside of the rainy season, which typically aligns with the summer and autumn months in the Northern Hemisphere.
Discover Martinique, a Caribbean gem with a French character
Culturally, Martinique offers a captivating fusion of French elegance, colonial legacy, and also the vibrant spirit that defines the Caribbean. This unique blend is beautifully reflected in the island’s architecture, where you’ll discover a charming tapestry of multi-coloured houses, colonial villas, and historic plantations standing side by side.
And did we mention its delicious cuisine? If you have a soft spot for spicy food, try the habanero pepper. This is one of the spiciest peppers in the world. However, it is certainly not for the faint-hearted!
Martinique’s culinary heritage beautifully intertwines French culinary techniques with a strong emphasis on locally sourced ingredients. This delightful combination gives rise to a diverse array of dishes, such as Accras (Caribbean Fritters). Be sure to try these and discover the island’s unique flavours. These culinary creations are further enhanced by an array of local spices such as colombo and curry.
As for drinks, the local rum is one of the best in world. Try Ti Punch, a traditional drink whose main ingredient is rhum agricole (cane juice rum).
Overall, Martinique is more than a typical Caribbean destination. It combines French elegance and the sweet allure of the West Indies. And if you ever tire of its enchanting mystique, you can sail to the nearby island of Saint Lucia, a British colony that couldn’t be more different to Martinique!
Ready to embark on your Martinique adventure? Set sail today with Click&Boat.