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Just back from Martinique!


cruzeluver
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Hello All,

 

As not a lot gets posted about Martinique I thought I would share our day. We just returned from our cruise and were docked in Martinique on June 3rd.

 

If you are just starting your research on this port, you will notice there are not a lot of ship-sponsored excursions available and only a handful of private tours can be booked as well. Unlike a lot of other ports in the Caribbean, tourism is not their main economy. You will not find a Diamonds International, a Margaritaville or other US-based chain tourist traps here (in my opinion, a very good thing). We had booked with a private guide for the day, however about a week prior to leaving she emailed to let me know she had to cancel. Ok, now what?

 

Once we got off of the ship we went to where the private tour operators and taxis wait. We were quickly approached by a cab driver named Felix who offered his services. He had an 8 passenger van. Within 5 minutes a group of six approached so we were off pretty quickly to see this beautiful island!

 

For $40.00 US or 30 Euro per person, Felix gave us a four hour tour. Not bad at all! We saw many of the highlights of Martinique. He took us to the Sacred Heart church which was just amazing! Truly beautiful. We stayed for probably 10-15 minutes. We drove through the rainforest which took up a good part of our tour. We made several stops for photos of the amazing scenery. We have toured rainforests elsewhere and this one ranks right near the top in terms of natural beauty. We stopped at the Depaz rum distillery with enough time to walk the grounds, hit the restrooms and gift shop, and sample a few different rums. We also drove through the former capitol of St. Pierre which was destroyed in 1909 by the Mount Pelee eruption. We also saw the black sand beaches. Felix spoke very good English and shared a lot of very interesting information about his island of which he is rightfully proud.

 

After arriving back at the port area in town, we still had several hours before we had to be back on our ship so we walked around Fort-de-France which we found quite charming. We bought a few small souvenirs and had lunch fairly close to the ship at a great little place called The Black Pearl.

 

We found the locals quite friendly and helpful, even more so if you include a "bonjour" and "merci" in your interactions. While most speak very little English, you should be able to get by. Most of the shops and restaurants near the port as well as major attractions like Depaz do take US currency, but prices are better if you have Euro.

 

Overall we had a great day and would happily return.

 

I am happy to answer any questions!

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Hello All,

 

As not a lot gets posted about Martinique I thought I would share our day. We just returned from our cruise and were docked in Martinique on June 3rd.

 

If you are just starting your research on this port, you will notice there are not a lot of ship-sponsored excursions available and only a handful of private tours can be booked as well. Unlike a lot of other ports in the Caribbean, tourism is not their main economy. You will not find a Diamonds International, a Margaritaville or other US-based chain tourist traps here (in my opinion, a very good thing). We had booked with a private guide for the day, however about a week prior to leaving she emailed to let me know she had to cancel. Ok, now what?

 

Once we got off of the ship we went to where the private tour operators and taxis wait. We were quickly approached by a cab driver named Felix who offered his services. He had an 8 passenger van. Within 5 minutes a group of six approached so we were off pretty quickly to see this beautiful island!

 

For $40.00 US or 30 Euro per person, Felix gave us a four hour tour. Not bad at all! We saw many of the highlights of Martinique. He took us to the Sacred Heart church which was just amazing! Truly beautiful. We stayed for probably 10-15 minutes. We drove through the rainforest which took up a good part of our tour. We made several stops for photos of the amazing scenery. We have toured rainforests elsewhere and this one ranks right near the top in terms of natural beauty. We stopped at the Depaz rum distillery with enough time to walk the grounds, hit the restrooms and gift shop, and sample a few different rums. We also drove through the former capitol of St. Pierre which was destroyed in 1909 by the Mount Pelee eruption. We also saw the black sand beaches. Felix spoke very good English and shared a lot of very interesting information about his island of which he is rightfully proud.

 

After arriving back at the port area in town, we still had several hours before we had to be back on our ship so we walked around Fort-de-France which we found quite charming. We bought a few small souvenirs and had lunch fairly close to the ship at a great little place called The Black Pearl.

 

We found the locals quite friendly and helpful, even more so if you include a "bonjour" and "merci" in your interactions. While most speak very little English, you should be able to get by. Most of the shops and restaurants near the port as well as major attractions like Depaz do take US currency, but prices are better if you have Euro.

 

Overall we had a great day and would happily return.

 

I am happy to answer any questions!

 

Sounds great...we'll possibly try that instead of an expensive ship excursion. Did you see any french pastry shops? What about areas with great shopping? Pharmacies? Not to miss attractions? Thanks so much...you are so right..haven't found much on this port but ..very intrigued!

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Thanks for your very positive report back.

We enjoyed our port stops there but have not had one for the past five or six years but will on an upcoming cruise. Happy to know things are basically as we remember them. Lovely island! :)

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Sounds great...we'll possibly try that instead of an expensive ship excursion. Did you see any french pastry shops? What about areas with great shopping? Pharmacies? Not to miss attractions? Thanks so much...you are so right..haven't found much on this port but ..very intrigued!

 

 

Hello! I do not specifically remember any pastry shops in town, but that does not mean they weren't there. There is a good amount of shopping in Fort-de-France within walking distance of the port. All local places, no chains! Right by where the ships dock they set up the usual tents selling crap made in China with "Martinique" stamped on it. ;)

 

Pharmacies are all over the place and doing very brisk business. I understand many go there to get French beauty creams and such for better prices than can be found in the US.

 

Have fun and enjoy. We absolutely fell in love with Martinique and hope to return one day.

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Thank you for posting! This will be our first trip there. Did you notice if there were beaches near by?

 

We are on your Anthem cruise. After reading previous posts, are you interested in hiring a taxi with our party of 4? We could look for another couple to fill the van.

Cardamon (Linda)

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We are on your Anthem cruise. After reading previous posts, are you interested in hiring a taxi with our party of 4? We could look for another couple to fill the van.

Cardamon (Linda)

We actually have our 8 year old with us for this cruise so probably not a good fit this time. Thanks though. It sounds awesome!

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Thank you for posting! This will be our first trip there. Did you notice if there were beaches near by?

 

We're also on Anthem in January with you and there are no beaches close to the port. We were in Martinique this past April, which was also on a Sunday. I took the ferry over to Pointe De Bout and spent the day at the beach which you can see pictures of the beach in the first link below. The second link is the Sunday ferry schedule, the ferry cost is $7 pp. round trip. I plan on going back to the same beach again in January.

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showp...05&postcount=8

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2347461

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2292691

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The first link isn't working. Is it a nice beach? What kind of amenities do they have?

We're also on Anthem in January with you and there are no beaches close to the port. We were in Martinique this past April, which was also on a Sunday. I took the ferry over to Pointe De Bout and spent the day at the beach which you can see pictures of the beach in the first link below. The second link is the Sunday ferry schedule, the ferry cost is $7 pp. round trip. I plan on going back to the same beach again in January.

 

 

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showp...05&postcount=8

 

 

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2347461

 

 

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2292691

 

 

 

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Forums mobile app

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We're also on Anthem in January with you and there are no beaches close to the port. We were in Martinique this past April, which was also on a Sunday. I took the ferry over to Pointe De Bout and spent the day at the beach which you can see pictures of the beach in the first link below. The second link is the Sunday ferry schedule, the ferry cost is $7 pp. round trip. I plan on going back to the same beach again in January.

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showp...05&postcount=8

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2347461

 

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=2292691

 

We too are taking the ferry to the beach. Also on the same cruise.

Edited by Arzeena
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