Of all the French West Indies, Martinique is truly France in the Tropics, and we're talking Gauloise cigarettes and gendarmes directing traffic. Martinique is one of the Caribbean's most beautiful islands, with its white-sand beaches and lush rainforests. It is part of the Lesser Antilles and lies in the semitropical zone; the western shore faces the Caribbean, and its eastern shore fronts the more turbulent Atlantic.
Martinique has five bays, dozens of coves, and miles of sandy beaches riddled with sandy beaches. Scuba divers flock to the waters at Pointe Figuier to the east of Ste-Luce, while swimmers head to the inviting beaches of Trinité.
Things to Do
Wander the streets of Fort-de-France, with its iron-grille-work balconies overflowing with flowers, like New Orleans meets the French Riviera. Discover Martinique's pre-Columbian past at the Musée Departemental d'Archeologie et de Prehistoire de la Martinique. Catch a beguine dance performance by Les Grands Ballets Martiniquais.
Eating & Drinking
A mouthwatering Francofied Creole cuisine infuses the restaurants in Martinique. Throughout the island you can indulge in inventive takes on dozens of fish, freshwater crayfish, and jumbo prawns. Local produce is equally inviting, with breadfruit, sweet potatoes, and yucca enhancing many dishes.
Martinique is known for is rugged, mountainous terrain. mountains are covered with tropical forests, impenetrable in many places. The volcano Montagne Pelée rises through tropical flowers, baby ferns, plumed bamboo, and valleys so deeply green you'll think you're wearing cheap sunglasses. The island's lush rainforest is a haven for hummingbirds, blackbirds, and mongooses.