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Martinique is an island located in the Caribbean between Dominica and Saint Lucia. Among the main reasons why Martinique should be on your bucket list, there is obviously the weather, the white sand but also black sand beaches, the hiking tracks, the chilled island atmosphere, the welcoming people, the music, the food and much more. However, if you have never been, you might want to know the most beautiful places to see before to start planning your trip.
I traveled to Martinique for the first time when I was 9 years old. In 2018, my mum moved to this beautiful island and I started to fly there regularly as a Cabin Crew. Last September, after seeing our trip to Japan canceled because of COVID19, we decided to travel to Martinique so Oliver could also explore this amazing place. That’s when I was showing him around that I truly realize the beauty of this island. Since then, a few people asked me what are the must-see and do’s. So let’s start with the most beautiful places to see in Martinique.
PS: if you want to know more about the Northern part of the island, we already wrote a guide for Terre Peu Connue here.
The most beautiful places to see in Martinique: Southern area
Plage du Diamant
Located on the southwest of the island, this is one of the best viewpoints of Martinique. From this beach, you have a beautiful view of the “Rocher du Diamant”. A 175 metres high basalt rock located in the bay and that also gave its name to this city.
You can enjoy the beach or simply have a walk on the pier. You will probably see some fishermen spending their free time catching various kinds of fish.
We went a few times there to enjoy breakfast on the go. Enjoying the moment and watching people fishing with the endless view of the Caribbean sea. The place invites you to chill and take a step back to enjoy the moment.
This is also a place where you can find a local market close to the beach. You will find stands with spices like cinnamon, coriander, curry, cumin, vanilla, etc. But also, tasty local fruits and vegetables as well as rhum and planteur (the local cocktail of the Caribbean).
Oliver has a huge passion for wildlife, so Anse Dufour was the first place we drove to. This bay is a bit higher on the map but still in the same area. You might have heard about it, this is a very famous spot to observe sea turtles in their natural habitat. And indeed, we didn’t have to look for them long. Three of them were eating on the rocks only 3 meters away from the beach, at knee level for us.
Anse Dufour is a really small bay where you can enjoy scuba diving. And as a matter of fact, you really don’t need to swim far to enjoy amazing sea life. If it is too crowded or if you don’t like to spend a full day at the same spot, you can have a look at Anse Noire. Also famous for sea turtles watching, those two bays are right next to each other.
Last but not least, there are only two restaurants there that can get full quite quickly. Maybe something you want to keep in mind or plan a nice picnic to eat on the beach.
La Pointe Marin
This beach feels a bit like a private beach. On top of the quietness of the place, it is perfect for a chilled day drinking a cocktail at Bao Beach. You can also rent a sunbathing chair and chill for the day.
The sea is so calm and turquoise clear, you could stay there endlessly enjoying the moment and relaxing.
Les anses d’Arlet
Two other beautiful bays with crystal clear water located between the city of Le Diamant and Les Trois Ilets. We chose to stop at Grande Anse d’Arlet, where the village is, for two reasons.
First, because there is a really nice spot where you can scuba dive. Spot a rock at the surface of the water and swim in its direction (there will probably be other scuba divers). Indeed, you will get the chance to discover beautiful marine life and if lucky, sea turtles.
Second,with its large pier and the hills (mornes in French) in the surroundings, the panorama of this place makes it one of the most beautiful places in Martinique. However, the city itself is a great reason to stop by. With its local colourful houses, the city of Anses d’Arlet got the reward of “most beautiful village of France” and second place for “favourite village for French people” in 2020.
Plage des Salines
This beach changed a lot over the last 20 years. Still considered as one of the most beautiful beaches in Martinique, it seems less touristy than before. I can’t say if it was because of the COVID-19 and that people were traveling less or if it’s always like this now. Nevertheless, the Salines beach is still a dream for white sand and turquoise blue water lovers.
Located in the south of the island, you can decide to spend the day there or combine it with another beautiful spot like Sainte Anne beach for example.
The most beautiful places to see in Martinique: Northern area
Pitons du Carbet
The North of Martinique is really different from the South. It is a lot more authentic and hilly. The “Pitons du Carbet” is the best representation of it. Those various luxurious green peaks can be seen the best from the “Route de la Trace” (N3).
And for hike lovers, there are a lot of trails that you can do in this area. Unfortunately, we haven’t done it yet so I can recommend any specific one. However, you will find that information on websites like here. Hiking is probably the best way to enjoy this abundance of Nature and beauty.
We didn’t hike but we stopped at the waterfall called “Saut du Gendarme”. This is located on the road leading you to Saint Pierre, our next recommendation. We didn’t dedicate a specific paragraph to it but this place is also a place you might want to see. Especially if you need to cool down a little (don’t forget you are in the tropics!)
Saint Pierre is a small city on the North West coast and Caribbean sea side. The atmosphere of Saint Pierre is unique and full of history. There are only 2 main streets crossing the city along the black sand beach. As we went there during COVID19 crisis, it was even quieter than usual. It felt like time stopped.
Saint Pierre is sadly known because of the eruption of the Montagne Pelée in 1902. Only three people survived. If you are interested in the History of this island, this is a must-go. You can also visit the Memorial of 1902.
This volcano called Montagne Pelée is still active even though the last eruption occurred in 1932. From the top of it you will enjoy a panoramic view on the whole island of Martinique.
You will find a car park at the beginning of the trail with a restaurant. Surprisingly in such a warm destination, we recommend you take a rain jacket with you. The higher you’ll get, the more windy, humid and, sometimes rainy it will be.
Also, it is not really a hike we would invite you to decide doing on the spot as it is often very cloudy at the top. Consequently, you’d better check the weather forecast and plan your trip according to Miss Pelée’s mood of the day.
This bay can be called a “hidden gem”. Located in the very north of the island, you will need good driving skills to reach this wild and beautiful place. As we mentioned before, it is very different from the bays you will encounter in the southern part of the island. Anse Couleuvre is preserved and remote. You won’t find any place to eat or drink there so keep this in mind if you think about spending the day in this little gem.
Presqu’île de la Caravelle et Tartane
Last but not least, the north east of Martinique. If I would have to describe this area in one word I would choose “wild” for multiple reasons. First, it is located on the Atlantic coast, as a matter of fact, the waves are bigger and more powerful than in the rest of the island. This is the reason why it is one of the most famous surf spots.
If you wish to surf there, you will find various surf shops and schools in Tartane. We rented Oliver’s board at Surf Up Martinique.
There is also a beautiful hike to do on the “Presqu’île de la Caravelle », a half island where Tartane is located. A wild place where you will feel in communion with nature, wildlife and the ocean. The panoramic views from the cliffs are grandiose. However, do plan to protect yourself from the sun and heat if you plan to hike there as it is a 9,2 km round.
This is the end of this first travel guide about the most beautiful places to see in Martinique. Those places are the places I would take my friends if they have never been there, but of course, there are so many more places to see in Martinique. Thus, there will probably be more articles about where to stay or eat or any topic you would like us to talk about. Leave a comment below to share it with us. If you have any questions about this beautiful island, please feel free to write to us.