Part of the French Antilles, the island of Martinique is an ideal destination for a sailing trip in the Caribbean. Enjoy the island’s many beaches and stunning scenery, including the Gorges de la Falaise canyon, and the nearby islands Saint Lucia and Dominica, when you charter a yacht in Martinique with Zizoo.
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Martinique is located in the Caribbean, between Saint Lucia and Dominica, and is famed for its unique cuisine, sandy beaches and tropical rainforests. Plan your sailing holiday in Martinique at the beginning of the year to take advantage of the best conditions for sailing, with the driest weather and calmest seas.
As part of France, the local currency is the Euro and you won’t need a visa if entering from another EU country, the USA or Canada. Travellers from the EU can enter with their national identity card, however many airlines require a passport for boarding. The main airport, Aimé Césaire International, is at the capital of Fort-de-France. A compact island, it’s easy to navigate and less than a 10-minute drive to Fort-de-France Bay after landing. There are a number of large marinas including Fort-de-France, Cul-de-Sac du Marin, Anse Mitan and the smaller St Pierre.
Fort-de-France is a striking historic city with rolling green hillsides. See a number of fascinating points of interest including Fort Saint-Louis. Take a hike to the nearby Cascade Didier to experience the alluring jungle, walking past magnificent waterfalls and stopping for a swim in a river basin. Other towns worth visiting include Le Carbet, with its famous rum distillery, and Le Diamant which faces the beautiful Diamond Rock across the sea.
Le Vieux Foyal and Restaurant Chez Louis are two excellent local restaurants. Garage Popular is a lively bar near the port with a great ambience, or head to Le Kwi Vert for a more relaxed drink and bite to eat. Le Diamant remains one of the island’s most popular scenic beaches.
In Sainte-Anne near the capital, you can discover more great coastlines, nature reserves and aquariums on your sailing holiday in Martinique. Around Sainte-Anne, you’ll also find diving agencies which allow you to explore the depths of Fort-de-France Bay. At the western coast, there are also many diving opportunities to be had near the town of Les Anses d’Arlet. Relaxing around the island’s many beaches is one of the most popular pastimes here.
Many of the other activities are also based around the water, such as windsurfing near the eastern Chevalier Islet.
Take a hike to the Cascade Didier to experience the alluring jungle, walking past magnificent waterfalls and stopping for a swim in a river basin.
Martinique is an excellent base for a sailing holiday in the Caribbean as it allows you to easily explore the other Windward Islands: St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Grenada. Whether sticking to a sailing trip around the island of Martinique or exploring more of the surrounding island, the area offers unrivalled sailing experiences that allow you to enjoy some open ocean sailing with ideal wind conditions.
You can start at Fort-de-France, then head to nearby Anse Mitan, a popular beach destination with a wide variety of restaurants. Then, head to Cul-de-Sac du Marin, a gorgeous bay at the south of the island. Further south is the island of Saint Lucia, passing the Gros Islet to the capital of Castries City.
To the north is Dominica, with Roseau facing towards Martinique and a stunning mountain backdrop to admire. When heading north, you can moor at Saint-Pierre at the tip of Martinique. Fort-de-France, Anse Mitan and Cul-de-Sac du Marin offer piers and moorings, plus anchorage at Du Marin. The secluded Îlet Chevalier just off Sainte-Anne also makes for secluded bathing.
Remember, if you plan to visit the nearby Windward Islands by boat, bring your passport and make sure to hoist the yellow flag when you arrive and go through the customs procedures.
The secluded Îlet Chevalier just off Sainte-Anne also makes for secluded bathing.
With a tropical climate dominated by north-east trade winds, and warm temperatures at the beginning of the year, Martinique is a unique sailing destination that is best enjoyed in the end of January through April. Expect air temperatures in the high 20s to 30s at this time, with sea temperatures that approach 30° with March and April on record as the driest months. Wave heights are usually well under a metre, but sometimes push just over a metre, with fairly consistent wind speeds of 8 to 12 knots.
Plan your sailing holiday in Martinique at the beginning of the year to take advantage of the best conditions for sailing, with the driest weather and calmest seas.
Generally, you’ll enjoy nice, smooth sailing during your Martinique sailing holiday. One area to sail cautiously at is the entrance to Cul-de-Sac du Marin which has shallow sand bars and reefs as you make your way into the port. That said, indications for approach are well marked, and you should find the approach easily navigable if you take some time. The rest of the main ports are generally less tricky as they offer wide approaches, and mooring buoys are common.
You can always book a skippered sailing holiday in Martinique with Zizoo. That way you can sit back and relax as you explore this incredible Caribbean island chain.