One could be forgiven for not venturing much beyond the shore when visiting Martinique. Just about every type of beach you could want can be found here, most of them home to an assortment of beach bars, shacks, restaurants, and resorts each as sociable and sultry as the next.
Great times and even better food are always assured at Petibonum, Ti’Sable, Le Senat, Lil’s, Nautilux, Le Kano, La Dunette, and countless other seaside stomping grounds, but you’ll be missing a big part of what makes Martinique so special if you don’t venture up into her mountains.
I got to
know feel this first hand a few weeks ago during my first visit to Martinique’s Volcanological and Seismological Observatory high atop the Mornes des Cadets.
As elsewhere in the northern region of the island, Mount Pelée towers above everything, inducing in its sheer grandeur an unmistakable sense of awe.
The other mornes, pitons, and plateaus visible from the Observatory, like those pictured above, stir emotions as well. A stiff mountain breeze, passing clouds casting dramatic shadows, and the setting sun at my back made for a beautifully moving view; one that spoke to the very volcanic origins of the island, all that has followed, and all that’s yet to come.
The experience was almost spiritual, certainly calming, and left me feeling more in tune with the soul of the island. I left with a new and deeper appreciation for Martinique, one that I hope to rekindle when next I scale her heights.