If you look at the back of our EURO bills, you will recognize there a. a map of Euroland. In the lower left corner, next to the bilingual EURO logo, you can see a tiny map section. This represents the overseas areas of application of the EURO. One of the areas is the overseas department of Martinique, which is almost 7.000 km from France. The island belongs to the Lesser Antilles and is 1.128 km² in size.
The island capital Fort-de-France separates the island into a northern and a southern half. In the rough, humid and lush north lie several high mountains. At almost 1.200 meters, the Pitons of Carbet up. It is a little further north Montagne Pel volcanoée, which in 1902 was the then island capital Saint Pierre buried under volcanic ash. When the volcano erupted, around 30.000 people are said to have lost their lives. In addition to the impressive mountain landscape, the north coast is perceived as wildly romantic.
Martinique - Pitons du Carbet
The flatter south of Martinique scores with miles of sandy beaches. In the very south, where the Canal de Sainte-Lucie runs, there is a salt lake and a "lava forest". The south of the island attracts tourists mainly because of the drier and more stable climate.
Columbus is named as the discoverer of Martinique. At that time the island was inhabited by the Caribs. The island was colonized by France as early as 1635. With the exception of three brief periods of occupation, Martinique remained in French hands. Within about 25 years, the French peasantry had managed to eliminate the native population. The cultivation of sugar cane flourished on the island and slavery went hand in hand with it. Only in 1848 was slavery officially ended. From then on, Indians and Chinese also worked on the plantations.
Martinique - memory of slavery
After the devastating volcanic eruption and the destruction of the city of Saint Pierre was Fort-de-France chosen as the new island capital. The city lies on a wide bay, the Flemish Bay. The ones from Fort St. Louis ruled city is one of the largest cities in the Antilles region. A good 400.000 percent of the island's approx. 40 inhabitants live in this city. The prefecture, the regional council and all important authorities can be found here.
Martinique - Baie des Flamands
Martinique-Fort de France
Bananas make up 40% of export earnings. Other agricultural products are cane sugar, rum and pineapple. Most people are employed in tourism, commerce and the service sector. We, the tourists, contribute 7 to 8 percent of GDP. It's not that much either.