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5 Important Suggestions for Planning a Martinique Trip

As quickly as we returned from our Martinique trip I knew there have been a number of suggestions that I wanted to share with everybody planning a visit to Martinique. However first, let me clarify why we ended up in Martinique for spring break.

I truly gained a free journey to Martinique at a journey occasion that I attended. The prize from Martinique Tourism included round-trip airfare for 2 and three nights on the five-star La Suite Villa Lodge in Trois-Ilets. Since we didn’t wish to fly to the Caribbean for such a brief journey, we determined to increase our stick with three nights on the Membership Med Buccaneer’s Creek.

Since we have been in a position to keep in two components of the island and use our rental automotive to discover different areas, we have been in a position to get a greater sense of what the island is like for a Martinique trip.

Martinique Trip Planning Suggestions

Martinique vacation Club Med Buccaneer's Creek

Observe: This publish incorporates affiliate hyperlinks. Should you click on a hyperlink and make a purchase order, I could earn a small fee. This doesn’t influence the recommendation I present as I stand behind my suggestions and all opinions are my very own.

In case you are planning a visit to Martinique, listed below are the issues that it’s a must to know.

1. Martinique will not be Your Typical resort island – However There are some Gems

If you consider the Caribbean, it’s straightforward to think about lengthy stretches of sandy seashores lined with sprawling resorts. Locations just like the Dominican Republic are recognized for his or her all-inclusive resorts, and others like Turks & Caicos are recognized for stunning seashores.

There are some islands, like Jamaica, the place you go and by no means actually go away the resort besides maybe for an tour to Dunn’s River Falls.

It actually isn’t like that in Martinique. Martinique is likely one of the eighteen areas of France (clearly considered one of its abroad areas.) It’s a residing and dealing island of almost 400,000 individuals, with its important industries being development, rum (from the sugar cane grown on the island), oil refinery, cement, sugar, and tourism. The island is neither posh nor impoverished.

As a mountainous island, the seashores are extra restricted and plenty of of them are comparatively small and rocky. The glittering lights of cities dot these hillsides and driving via the island you can see all of the issues wanted to maintain its inhabitants — shops, colleges, farms, neighborhoods, and so forth.

Small inns are clustered round these seashore areas and within the metropolis of Fort-de-France, the place the cruise ships dock and the place you can see the worldwide airport.

Club Med Martinique water ski dock
Dock at Membership Med Buccaneer’s Creek

The nicest seashore is down in St. Anne, and the Membership Med Buccaneer’s Creek, the place we stayed, is way more like a typical Caribbean resort than what we noticed in different components of the island. The south generally is lusher, with rolling hills and sugar cane plantations.

The island is understood for its culinary scene, with a mixture of French and Creole influences. Nevertheless, you gained’t discover any well-known American or high-end worldwide resort manufacturers.  I might additionally say that the resort rankings don’t examine to related rankings in america and main European cities.

Due to the smaller inns, additionally, you will discover many guests lease houses or residences and stroll to native seashores and eating places. It’s positively a vacation spot for the extra unbiased and intrepid traveler than somebody that likes to be pampered and have U.S.-level five-star service and facilities.

The place to Keep on Martinique

Whereas I used to be right here, we went to take a look at a number of different inns and one I actually preferred for households was the Lodge Bambou. Though solely rated two stars, they’ve very cute bungalows for households (and suites/rooms for adults solely too), in addition to full facilities — swimming pools, seashore entry, restaurant, bar, water sports activities, and so forth.

Lodge Bakoua can also be a full-service resort resort on a small seashore, providing connecting rooms and suites for households. The rooms right here have been a bit extra worn trying and didn’t have the identical attraction as Lodge Bambou however extra rooms are beachfront.

Should you don’t care a couple of beachfront location, La Suite Villa is actually pretty, particularly for {couples}. Whereas not on the seashore, La Suite Villa is only a 15-minute stroll into city and close by seashores, nestled on a hill overlooking the harbor. From city, you may catch a ferry over to the capital of Fort-de-France (saving you from the 45-minute drive.)

La Suite Villa infinity pool
Infinity pool at La Suite Villa

La Suite Villa provides the French-Caribbean attraction and character that you simply simply gained’t discover at a seashore resort. We actually loved our keep right here over and above our keep at Membership Med Buccaneer’s Creek from a resort high quality standpoint.

The resort has a cool, inventive vibe and the bedrooms have lots of character. Ours included a balcony with a sizzling tub, which we took full benefit of, along with the infinity pool. Eating at La Villa Lodge was a real delight and an opportunity to understand the French-Caribbean influences of Martinique.

2. You actually ought to lease a automotive

St Pierre Martinique

A few of you might have already learn on Fb or Instagram about my debacle upon arriving in Martinique. Hopefully, nobody else makes the errors that I made however even nonetheless, I extremely suggest renting a automotive, and right here is why:

  • Taxis are costly. From Fort-de-France to Trois Ilet is 60-80 euro. From Fort-de-France to St. Anne within the south is over 100 euros. Though I knew this, I believed it could be simpler to get a taxi than to lease a automotive, however I used to be incorrect.
  • Taxis don’t take bank cards. Sadly, they solely take money and solely euro, so until you come geared up with lots of euros (or neglect your ATM card like me), you’re out of luck.
  • Taxis are exhausting to seek out. Once we arrived on the airport at 9 pm there have been hardly any taxis out there. And those that have been there, have been fairly choosy about who they’d and wouldn’t take. So if you’ll an space they don’t wish to drive to, robust luck.
  • It’s worthwhile to transfer round. As I discussed above, this isn’t an island the place it’s all concerning the resorts and folks don’t go away the resorts. It’s worthwhile to transfer round. Except Membership Med, which is likely one of the few all-inclusive resorts, it would be best to go away your resort for some meals and probably to get to the seashore or discover different areas. There aren’t strains of taxis round so this may be difficult.
  • There is no such thing as a Uber. Want I say extra?

That stated, that you must make a reservation upfront. Once I arrived, lots of the automotive rental counters have been closed for the night and those that have been nonetheless open wouldn’t lease to me and not using a reservation.

Automobile leases aren’t low-cost, however on reflection, it’s value it as a result of it’s truly LESS problem than discovering a cab. The road for Funds / Enterprise was HUGE on the airport so to keep away from that mess, it’s possible you’ll wish to go along with one other model like Jumbo Automobiles (Sixt was closed additionally after we arrived.)

I usually use Auto Europe when evaluating automotive rental charges abroad.

I ended up renting in Trois Islet and returning to the airport from Europcar. I exploit Europcar typically, so I’ve a excessive stage of belief within the high quality of their automobiles. I often simply search with Auto Europe and guide the very best deal that comes up.

3. Deliver Loads of Euro money

St Pierre harbor

As a French area, the forex is the Euro. Maybe it’s totally different within the cruise port, however within the many outlets and eating places we visited, I noticed just one that had an indication exhibiting that they took US {dollars}. And, as I discussed earlier, cabs solely take euros (no bank cards.)

Most outlets and eating places will take bank cards however lots of eating places are small roadside institutions from somebody grilling up chickens to meals vans or produce stands.

If you find yourself having hassle discovering restaurant availability, this can be your solely choice (sure, we have been turned away from a restaurant and not using a lunch reservation — I feel as a result of they have been anticipating a tour group.)

In contrast to nations like Iceland the place just about everybody took bank cards, I didn’t discover fairly the identical in Martinique so I might be sure to have some money readily available.

4. Study Some French

Trois Ilet view

Martinique is a part of France. They communicate French. Lots of their guests are from France. Till lately with new airline routes opening up, there wasn’t an enormous want for locals to talk English exterior of the cruise port space.

This may be true in eating places, outlets, and even resort check-in. It actually helps to both brush up on some French phrases (I really like DuoLingo for language studying), obtain an offline French phrase guide (I like Fodor’s Journey Phrases app), or preserve your telephone linked to information to make use of Google Translate.

Even studying the menus is usually a problem if you’re not a French speaker. This bought us in some hassle in Paris a number of years again, so a menu translator app or Google Translate is essential.

5. Watch your Velocity When Driving

Club med sunset

After my suggestion to lease a automotive, I want so as to add that that you must watch your pace. I used to be a really cautious driver on this journey, many instances with locals flying previous me once they bought the prospect.

And nonetheless, I woke to an e-mail (in French after all) that notified me of a visitors violation. Apparently, sooner or later on our travels, I exceeded the pace restrict, though it’s exhausting to think about the place, and I used to be caught by a visitors digicam.

Not solely do I must pay a superb to France, however I additionally had a further price to pay with my rental automotive firm. This additionally occurred to us in Iceland, so I feel it’s a sensible however difficult option to generate extra income for the native authorities. Driver beware!

Bonus Tip: Keep away from the Seashore at Nightfall or Darkish

Yet another tip is to keep away from strolling barefoot on the seashore at sundown or after darkish. There are little sand fleas that prefer to chew round that point of day. In any other case, ensure to convey your sunscreen and bug spray, and have enjoyable!

These are my prime suggestions for planning a Martinique trip! I hope you don’t make the identical errors I did (simply don’t neglect your ATM card and ensure to guide a rental automotive upfront of arrival.)


5 Tips for planning a Martinique vacation #Martinique #Caribbean #ClubMed

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