Martinique is a tropical island located in the Carribean sea. It is an overseas region of France and a part of the European Union. Martinique invites you to an eternal summer and a year-round warm sea. It is volcanic in origin and offers a striking diversity of landscapes. Its atmosphere is urban, but the “Island of Flowers” offers so much more; hiking, surfing and first-class culinary experiences are just a few activities this stunning island provides.To fully enjoy island’s alluring scenery, we recommend you hire a car at the Martinique Aime Cesaire International Airport.
Basic info and car hire in Martinique
Location: Eastern Carribean Sea
Official language: French
Weather: The climate is tropical. Average summer temperatures range from 27-33°C/81-90°F. Winters are also warm, with air temperatures around 27°C/81°F. Water temperatures vary from 22-30°C/71-86°F all around the year.
Public holidays in Martinique: Click here for the full list.
Internet coverage: Here you can check free WiFi hotspots in Martinique
Road conditions: Most of the main roads are well-maintained.
Driving in Martinique
Best way to get around the island is to hire a car at the Martinique Aime Cesaire International Airport. This way you’ll be able to discover all the nature’s wonders of the island. Most of the roads are in great conditions. Traffic laws and the road signs are the same as in France, so if you’re used to driving in continental France, you won’t have any troubles here. In the Fort-de-France area, there are multilane freeways. The main things to watch out for when driving/hiring a car in Martinique are aggressive drivers and the speed cameras around the island.
- Age limits:22 (in order to hire a car some companies require that a driver must have a driver license for at least a year and be older than 21)
- International Driving Permit:yes
- Additional Papers: A valid ID (passport, a valid driver’s licence and a valid proof of insurance
- Additional Requirements: Warning triangle, reflective vests and hands-free equipment with a hearing aid (required if talking on the phone while driving)
- Children in the car: Children under the age of 12 years must travel on the back seat. Children under 15 kg must use the correct child seat. Children who weight from 15-16 kg have to use a booster seat with an adult seatbelt.
- Driving side of the road: Right
- Lights: Dipped headlights should be used not only at night but also in poor daytime visibility
- General Speed limits: Open roads: 90 km/h, In Town: 50 km/h, Highways: 110 km/h
- Parking suggestions: Most parking in Martinique is free of charge. There is usually plenty of unrestricted parking. In Fort-de-France, we advise you to check for parking suggestions.
What to see in Martinique
Martinique is a very diverse island. We suggest you hire a car in order to explore the island’s jungle. If you hired a car, it will take you only10 minutes from Fort-de-France to get to La Fontaine de Didier where you will be able to take a hike through the rainforested area of the island. With your hired car you can also head south when you decide to explore miles of untouched beaches. Fort-de-France is a particularly busy capital, while other places of this alluring wild island are not. Along the Carribean seaside, you will find some of the best beaches of your life. Now, let’s go for a drive with your hired car, shall we?
Our favourite spots
While the grandiose ruins of Chateau Dubuc tell the story of the island, the view from Chateau tells the story of the sea. There is also an excellent hiking trail along the coast for all of you in need of some exercise.
Unspoiled beaches of Sainte-Anne are best described as Heavenly! Crystal clear water, white sand, palm trees all included. Shops, markets and restaurants are here to remind you that you are still living in an urbane and inhabited world. Otherwise, you could think you landed in paradise.
The main port and the capital of Martinique Fort-de-France offers a vibrant street life and some really great restaurants. Bibliotheque Schoelcher, Fort Royal, Cathedrale Saint-Louis and Musee Departmental d’Archeologie are all worth a visit.
Parking suggestions for your hired car.
Jardin de Balata
For those of you who have hired a car, we recommend visiting Jardin de Balata, just 10 km outside of Fort-de-France. Not only for those who are interested in botany. Highly recommended for families with children who will be able to run around the rainforest freely.