What to do for 1 week in Martinique?
In order to make the most of your 6, 7 or 8 day tour in Martinique, I have prepared an itinerary for you to get a good overview of the must- see places of interest on this small French island in the Caribbean.
This program is the perfect mix between discovery of the capital Fort-de-France, a swimming break on the splendid beaches of Anses d’Arlet, a road trip on the mythical Route de la Trace and a hike in the Savane des Pétrifications.
Here is a very complete list for a stay of 6, 7 or 8 days in Martinique!
And, as usual, also find my selection of the best accommodations to sleep in Martinique, depending on your budget.
So, what to do and see during 1 week trip to Martinique?
Day 1: Fort-de-France
Martinique’s only airport, Martinique Aimé Césaire International Airport, is located in Le Lamentin, a commune on the outskirts of Fort-de-France, the island’s capital. I therefore advise you to start your one-week itinerary in Martinique by visiting Fort-de-France.
First of all, I recommend that you rent a car. Visiting Martinique by car is clearly the most practical if you want to be independent. And yes, even if the island is small, the “Mozaïk” public transport network is not the most efficient.
Once you arrive in Fort-de-France (10 minutes by car from the airport), you can start this first day of your week-long tour of Martinique by visiting the city.
After dropping off your luggage and freshening up, I advise you to go for a walk to the two markets in the city:
- First the Fish Market (if your accommodation allows you to cook, you can even buy your lunch there)
- Then the Grand Marché or spice market, a covered market set up in a large hall where you will find everything (spices of course, but also souvenirs for example).
Continue the day with a visit to Fort Saint-Louis, a military fort listed as a Historic Monument. Recently reopened to the public after more than 10 years of closure, it offers a brand new tourist route. The Fort allows you to admire a pretty view of the city and the bay.
It is open Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the visit costs €8. Remember to book your visit at the tourist office, because the military site requires, the visit is only guided.
At the end of the day, stroll through the streets and soak up the sweetness of Martinican life. During your walk, stop by to see the former Palais de Justice, the Saint-Louis Cathedral and enjoy some greenery in the central park of Fort-de-France.
Spend the night in Fort de France.
Accommodation in Fort-de-France
- Center International de Séjour Youth hostel : Located 10 minutes from Fort-de-France. Room with twin beds from €75, breakfast included. Most: free private parking, hearty breakfast.
- Residence Fort Savane: Located next to the park. Modern and well-equipped double room from €130. The pluses: the welcome, the cleanliness, the location if you want to stay in the city center.
- Karibea La Valmenière Hotel: Located in the business district. Spacious and well-equipped double room from €135 per night, breakfast included. Most: the swimming pool on the roof, the very pleasant staff, the location.
- Apolline: Guest house located on the heights of Fort-de-France and offering tastefully decorated rooms and suites, from €150, breakfast included. Most: the magnificent setting, the swimming pool, the breathtaking view
- HOTEL PELICAN: Located 4 km from the center of Fort-de-France, in one of the best areas of the city. Super spacious and bright double room with balcony and for some sea view, from 150€, breakfast at 18€. Most: the swimming pool, the sea view, the quality of the welcome, the location. It is our favorite for its price/performance ratio in Martinique!
- Simon Hotel: Located 6 minutes walk from the beach and 500 meters from the covered market. Modern and warm double room, tastefully decorated, from €190, breakfast €15. Most: the decoration of the rooms, the geographical location, the welcome at the top. This is our recommendation for a romantic stay in Martinique.
Day 2: Les Trois-Ilets
On the morning of your second day of this 1-week stay in Martinique, leave your car in the parking lot and reach Trois-Îlets by boat, the most touristic seaside resort on the island.
The Vedettes Tropicales connect Fort-de-France and Trois-Îlets every day from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., and the round trip costs €7.
In Trois-Îlets, start by visiting the town. I advise you first to go see the Savannah of the slaves, to discover the slavery past of the island.
The Slave Savannah is an eco -museum in a beautiful 3 hectare garden, where a village has been reconstructed comprising around 15 traditional huts. The way of life of slaves on the plantations is well explained.
It is open from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. from Monday to Saturday, and from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sunday. The visit is obligatorily guided, and it costs 12 €.
It is now surely time for lunch! Then head to one of the many seaside restaurants and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the seaside resort.
On the program for the afternoon, it will be idleness, snorkeling, or even nautical activities. I recommend for example:
- A jet ski ride to discover the most beautiful places in Martinique from the sea – Several durations to choose from: from 45 minutes to a full day.
- An introduction to driving a jet ski
- A kitesurf lesson with a state-certified instructor
- A windsurfing lesson
- A snorkeling excursion to explore the seabed and observe fish and corals.
At the end of the day, I recommend that you go for a walk to Anse Mitan, near Pointe du Bout. The place is always very lively.
It is then time to return to Fort-de-France by boat.
Day 3: La Route de la Trace / Saint Pierre
Today it’s off for the day in road trip mode for this 7-8 day itinerary in Martinique. I suggest you drive along one of the most beautiful roads on the island: the Route de la Trace.
The Route de la Trace is the local nickname for the RN3, which connects Fort-de-France to Morne-Rouge. Over 29 km, it crosses the tropical forest and is lined with many small waterfalls and viewpoints, each more beautiful than the next.
Depart early in the morning and take time to stop along the way. The Basilica of the Sacred Heart, in particular, is not to be missed, with its breathtaking view of Fort-de-France.
The other obligatory stop on the Route de la Trace is the Jardin de Balata. This artist’s botanical garden will allow you to discover the local fauna and flora. And if you arrive early, you might even see hummingbirds! Plan around 1h30 for the visit.
The Jardin de Balata is open every day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and the adult price is €14.
Continue on Route de la Trace to Le Bambou restaurant, where you can discover Creole specialties (I recommend the cod fritters with coconut milk, a real delight). After lunch, take the car back to Morne-Rouge to cross the village.
Then go down again towards the south, in the direction of Saint-Pierre. The city is the former capital of Martinique, which was completely destroyed by the eruption of Mount Pelée in 1902. You can see the ruins of an old theater and the dungeon of Cyparis, the only survivor of the disaster. .
Saint-Pierre is impressive for its atmosphere and its black sand beaches. On the way back, stop at one of the high viewpoints on the road from where you can admire the sunset over the sea.
After this day rich in discovery, return to spend the night in your hotel in Fort-de-France.
Day 4: Les Anses d’Arlet / Le Diamant
For the 4th day of your week -long trip to Martinique , head to the southwest of the island.
I suggest you start the day by the Anses d’Arlet. It will take you about 40 minutes by road bypassing the Bay of Fort-de-France to reach the village of Anses d’Arlet, an authentic village that has a lot of charm.
The beaches of Anses d’Arlet, Grande-Anse and Petite-Anse, are among the most famous on the island. You can stop there or choose to continue a little further, towards Anse Noire (so called because of the color of its sand). This is for me the best beach for snorkeling. The place is known to offer the possibility of seeing sea turtles.
After an invigorating swim, head to Le Diamant. Along the way, if you are a little hungry, you will find many street vendors. Don’t hesitate to stop by to buy their boucané chicken , a typical Caribbean dish that dates back to the time of the Amerindians.
At Le Diamant, start by going to see the AnseCaffard memorial, the “ Cap 110″. Built on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the abolition of slavery, this memorial represents 15 busts arranged in a triangle facing the sea, symbols of the victims of slavery in Martinique.
The place is full of significance for the people of Martinique since in 1830, an illegal boat full of slaves ran aground there, causing the death of hundreds of them.
For a happier end of the afternoon, admire the sunset over Diamond Rock from Grande Anse du Diamant.
It will then take you a 30-minute drive to reach your hotel in Fort-de-France.
Day 5: The Caravelle Peninsula
For the 5th day of your 1-week circuit in Martinique, I will take you to explore the east of the island and in particular the Caravelle peninsula.
It is one of the nicest places in Martinique. It will take you about 40 minutes by car to reach the peninsula from Fort-de-France. Take the A1 to Lamentin, then the N1 to La Trinité.
Start your day early, before it gets too hot, with the hike around the peninsula from La Trinité. This is one of the must-do hikes during your holidays in Martinique.
There are several trails but I suggest you opt for the full tour : plan about half a day, and above all a lot of water.
The path takes you through the most beautiful landscapes of the island: mangrove, tropical forest, prairie, viewpoints over the sea … You can also see the ruins of a castle, the Dubuc castle.
Day 6-7: The South of the island
For this last stage of your week-long stay in Martinique, I advise you to go south. You will be able to enjoy the most famous beaches of the island.
On the 6th day, first reach Sainte-Luce from Fort-de-France (about 30 minutes drive). Sainte-Luce is located right next to Le Diamant.
Take advantage of the calm of the morning to go see Anse Figuier, one of the most famous beaches on the island.
Then go visit the Trois-Rivières distillery, to taste one of Martinique’s most famous rums. The distillery is open for visits every day from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. in high season, and Monday to Saturday in low season. The visit costs 3 €.
At the end of the morning, direction Sainte-Anne. Start by visiting the town of Sainte-Anne, very charming, and spend the afternoon on the Salines beach, in the shade of the coconut trees.
In Les Salines, you can go to Grande Anse beach in particular : the area is often quite quiet, far from the bustle and tourists.
You can stay in Sainte-Anne or in one of the surrounding towns (Sainte-Luce, Le Vauclin, Le François). I give you some accommodation suggestions below.
Here you are on the last day of this recommended one-week itinerary in Martinique.
Start the day with a morning hike to the Savane des Pétrifications.
This hike is one of the most beautiful on the island: 4 km long (from Anse à Prunes to Anse Trabaud), it takes you through the undergrowth, marshes and desert plains of the south coast of the island. The total change of scenery is guaranteed!
You can end up spending the time you have left at Anse Trabaud, a pretty beach. Perfect for swimming before your return!
Then return to Fort-de-France if your plane takes off in the evening or you can also sleep in Sainte Anne if you do not take off until the next morning.
If your stay in Martinique only lasts 6 days, I advise you to spend only one day in the south of the island while staying in Fort-de-France. In this case, hike to La Savane in the morning and spend the afternoon at Salines beach, for example.
If you stay 8 days in Martinique, I suggest you devote the extra day to a boat trip. Here is my pick of the best:
- A day to meet dolphins.
- Mini snorkeling cruise and dolphin watching
- A racing trimaran excursion
- A sailboat cruise
Accommodation in the south of the island
If you wish, you can stay in the south of the island for this last stage. Here are my favorites:
(You can of course also stay at your hotel near Fort de France, distances are never very great on the island.)
- Village Pierre & Vacances – Sainte Luce: Located by the sea, in Sainte-Luce. Very spacious studio with kitchenette equipped with a microwave oven and hotplates and private terrace, from €60, breakfast at €16. The pluses: the large swimming pool, the beach nearby, the exteriors, the activities on offer. It is our favorite for its performance / price ratio in Martinique.
- Brise Marine: Located facing the sea, in Sainte-Luce. Bungalow with kitchen and private terrace with sea and garden view from 90€. Most: the personalized welcome, the magnificent setting, the superb view, the location.
- Hotel-Restaurant La Dunette: Located by the sea, in Sainte-Anne. Colorful and bright double room with sea view from €95, breakfast included. The pluses: the view, the pontoon fitted out for relaxing, the evenings with musical entertainment.
- Hôtel Douce Vague: Located on the edge of Sainte-Luce beach. Apartment with kitchenette and terrace from €130. Most: access to the beach, cleanliness, calm.
- Eden Paradise Spa Ecolodge: Located 10 minutes from the beach, in Sainte-Luce. Comfortable and quiet bungalow, some with a jacuzzi, from €230 per night, breakfast included. Most: the swimming pool, the jacuzzi, the silence, the setting, the zen atmosphere. This is our recommendation for a romantic stay in the South of Martinique.
The seaside resort of Trois-Ilets also offers a few options:
- Hotel La Pagerie: located 5 minutes walk from the beach of Anse-Mitan. Modern and spacious double room with balcony from €160, breakfast at €20. Most: the beautiful garden, the large swimming pool, the good breakfast.
- Hotel Bambou: located at Anse-Mitant. Room located in small Creole-type bungalows, from €230 with breakfast and dinner included. Most: the swimming pool, the private car park, on the seafront.
A week in Martinique: the map of your itinerary
To help you view your itinerary, I have made a map of all the places you will visit in a week in Martinique. The island’s airport is located in Fort-de-France. You can display the legend by clicking on the button with a small arrow located at the top left of the map.