Trois-Ilets – The Most Absolutely Aptly-Named Town in Martinique
Many places in the Caribbean are named for odd or nefarious things, events, or personalities. Often, the names don’t seem to have any obvious connection to the places. The quiet hamlet of Trois-Ilets in Martinique is an exception.
The cozy hamlet covers an area of 11 square miles extending along the southern shore of The Bay of Fort-de-France. This includes the bustling marina, restaurants, bars, and hotels of Pointe-du-Bout. Trois-Ilets is also home to Martinique’s only golf course and several of the island’s most notable museums and historic attractions. La Savane des Esclaves, in particular, is not to be missed.
Another must: stopping on the road into Pointe-du-Bout to look back and enjoy this view.
Perched here above the Empress Josephine Golf Course, it’s easy to see the three tiny islets that give Trois-Ilets its name.
Ilet-Thébloux, Ilet-Charles, and Ilet-Sixtain sit just offshore the downtown Trois-Ilets waterfront. The islets are named in honor of their former owners, each of whom operated lime kilns in the bay during the French colonial period. Trois-Ilets wasn’t known for its lime kiln islets in those days, though.
The town’s original namesake: cows.
The town’s original name: “Cul-de-Sac-à-Vaches.” (Cul-de-Sac of Cows in English.)
It wasn’t until the city was founded as its own separate municipality on May 2, 1849 that Trois-Ilets adopted its tri-island identity.