Home Up Martinique St Lucia Dominica Guadaloupe Antigua St Kitts & St Nevis St Maarten Bonaire San Blas Islands

Market in Le Savanna,  Fort-de-France

 

 

 

Anse Mitan

 

 

 

St Pierre

 

 

 

Point de Boute

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Martinique

The Atlantic crossing finished here, on the 18th December. The plan was to arrive before Christmas. Now we were in desperate need of a marina. After a day wait we secured a berth only until the 23rd December. The following four days revolved around cleaning, repairs, provisioning and emails. The last day we drove around the island in a rental with Bertus.

During the car trip we visited St Pierre, the old capital of the island. When Mount Pelee erupted in 1902 it killed all the inhabitants. The only survivor was a prison inmate, called Auguste Cyparis, the thickness of the walls saved him. After that the capital became Forte-de-France. We drove back through banana and sugar cane plantations. The locals are genuinely friendly and very welcoming. We also tried some Creole cuisine, very spicy!   

Christmas was celebrated in a nice secluded bay in Cul-de-Sac du Marin. At last we enjoyed a well-deserved rest from the crossing. Thanks to Graham's mum, Hilary, Tomas and Maria we had Christmas presents to open. Neither of us had time to buy presents. We were over the moon with one of the boxes full of mince pies, Christmas pudding and cake, along with an instant custard mix , even two crackers! Just when Graham thought it was time to buy a new pair of shorts, he got one from Tomas and Maria.  

  

06 January 2007

Today we visited Fort-de-France for some shopping, not for us but for the boat.  This is the only big town on route for a while and where it is possible to find charts and bits for the boat. There is a ferry from Point de Bout to the town, which is a short ride with dingy. The town is quite decadent in places, the buildings are colonial but in need of a lick of paint. There are not many historical monuments as Fort-de-France had a few catastrophes during its time.  At the local market we tried accras and colombo chicken, some of the island specialties.  Exhausted we headed back to  our mooring. In the evening we walked around Anse Mitan. Even full of nice restaurants the area was deserted; we wandered why as it is high season. At the local bar we met a nice Rasta man called Claude, a true "one world one love" man. Using the very  little French  that we know and his very little English we shared a few drinks and he told us about life in Martinique. The Martiniqueans class themselves as Europeans and they reject the fact that most of them are descendants of Africans.  The local language, Creole ,  a mix of African and French, was until 20 years ago forbidden  and  not taught at school.  The following day we anchored in Trois-Islets, another bay opposite Fort-de-France

 

 

 09 January 2007

Back to St-Pierre, but this time under sail. The plan was to stay only one night and then go to Dominica. But this is a nice little town so we stayed a bit longer. We visited the old prison where Cyparis was locked and saved by the devastation of the town by caused by the volcano in 1902.  In the local market we bought lots of local  vegetables, such as yam-yam and Christophines. Later on we witnessed a car accident. A little girl run out in the street and was run over by a car, but she didn't suffer injuries. Now we are nursing our hangover after a heavy rum drinking session on Isabella. Isabella is a Taiwanese built boat , the owners are a German couple, Juergen and Bibi. The boat stays in Le Marin and cruise the area on holidays.

  

In 1804 The Brits armed the Diamond rock with 4 cannons and  20 sailors.  Raised to status of HMS Diamond Rock, it was only taken when the French wrecked a boat laden with rum on the island. The Brits obviously got drunk and then surrendered ,loosing the rock