The exoticism of the Caribbean softened by the comfort of the language and by the infrastructures of an Overseas Department (DOM), this is what Martinique offers.
L Ile aux fleurs is first of all paradisiacal beaches with an infinite variety of white or black sand which can be enjoyed all year round thanks to the generous sunshine: Anse noire, Céron, Trabeau, Cap Macré or les Salines. It is also a great ground for green tourism to be discovered with its tourist guide of Martinique. Hiking on the volcano of Montagne Pelée, discovery of the aquatic fauna in the Anses d Arlet with mask and snorkel, kayaking in the mangrove of Trois-Ilets, canyoning in the massif of Piton du Carbet... It is finally and especially a rich cultural heritage that museums, distilleries, gardens, and other Creole dwellings tell you about between a zouk course, a plate of West Indian pudding and a ti-punch.
In Martinique, the beach and the sea are always within easy reach. There are no less than 200 varieties of sand on this island, which is an understatement. With Anse Noire, Céron, Trabeau, Cap Macré, the Saltworks, image hunters and lovers of water sports will not be outdone. And if adventure, the sea and its many assets would bore you, the lush vegetation of Martinique would reserve you superb walks for the pleasure of the senses.
The climate here is tropical, hot and humid. If we distinguish two seasons: Lent (hot and dry which lasts from December to May) and wintering (more humid which lasts from June to November), good weather prevails with temperatures averaging 27°C. Rain never sets in for very long, and the heat is not excessive. There is therefore no so-called "ideal" period to leave, except in September and October, you will have the island all to yourself. Attention: from the end of August to the end of October, tropical storms, depressions or cyclones often take the lead.
Martinique is a French overseas department. This has many advantages in everyday life: same currency, same language, same level of health (medical expenses reimbursed by the Sécu...). It should be noted that, in the context of decentralisation, the draft constitutional reform aimed at modifying articles 72 to 74 (Title XII) in order to ensure greater autonomy for the island was rejected by referendum.
You can manage perfectly well on your own, and therefore organize your stay by yourself. All you have to do is find a flight and accommodation that meet your expectations (live, via the Internet or through an agency). There is no organized public transport (except for the city of Fort-de-France). You must therefore have a vehicle and a road map to get around. You will find many excursionists and service providers, inter-island connections, as well as supermarkets and grocery stores.
With its 1,128 km2, Martinique has many facets. In the south, there are many coves with beautiful white sand beaches and the seaside appeal outweighs the rest. To the north, Mount Pelée stands proudly. The road from Schoelcher to Precheur overlooks steep cliffs. The coast reveals black sand beaches, remnants of the eruption of Mount Pelee. To the east, the rugged landscape is ideal for green tourism. Facing the immensity of the Atlantic Ocean, the North-East coast, known as the "windward coast", is the most stormy (except for some beaches in the South).
Green tourism is booming in Martinique. Discovery of the aquatic fauna with mask, palms and snorkel; of the mangrove in kayak, visit of the Emerald domain or the house of the volcano, botanical gardens, hiking, canyoning, horseback riding, sailing boats... ecotourism has beautiful days ahead of it on these splendid lands. With its eclectic coasts, its rich and varied seabed, its tropical forest, its steep paths, its rivers and waterfalls: nature is generous.
Martinique is located in the heart of the Caribbean arc. This interesting position allows you to discover the neighbouring English-speaking islands (different cultures and atmospheres): Saint Lucia, to the south, a quarter of an hour by plane or 1 hour 30 minutes by boat; the Grenadines, further south, with their paradisiacal beaches; Dominica, to the north, with its rivers and rastas; and, to the east of the Caribbean arc, Barbados, offering all the infrastructures of an island for tourist travel.
The island is not short of resources at this level. Numerous museums, distilleries, gardens, Creole houses tell you about its rich and complex history. It is also easy to leave the over-travelled paths to stop, have a drink and chat in the always welcoming communities. On the side of the roads, if you sometimes think you have lost your way, there is someone to say hello and someone else to give you information. Music is everywhere. The "ragga" and the "zouk love" take you along. During the carnival, a general jubilation seizes, during five days, of all the communes of the island. Dare to go through the "vidés", these splendid processions, carnival floats that the population follows with ardour by wiggling to the sound of wild rhythms. Another image of "Epinal-en-Caraïbe", the use of the ti-punch is a true rite of Caribbean life, to which one sacrifices willingly, preferably in a glass stamped with the effigy of the great distilleries that bear the names of the old Creole families.