Air Belgium announces expanded schedule for 2020 after major success of 2019 flights
Starting in winter 2020, Air Belgium is set to increase its volume of flights to Martinique, as part of an overall increase in links from Europe.
Martinique lies in the arch of the Lesser Antilles islands in the Caribbean. The island is approximately 70km long and 30km wide. The island territory invites visitors on an extraordinary journey to discover its unspoilt natural landscapes, grandiose scenery and cultural traditions. An idyllic island surrounded by the turquoise-blue waters of the Caribbean, it delights visitors with its contrasting colours, its warm and friendly inhabitants, and its rich historical and cultural heritage.
And Martinique has never been more accessible, with traditional operators (Air France, Air Caribbean, Corsair) already reinforced by American Airlines and Air Canada, improving their frequencies and continuing to modernise their fleets. Since December 2019, Air Belgium has been providing direct services to Martinique from Brussels Charleroi, facilitating access to the entire northern part Europe. These developments follow the arrival of Level in 2018 (with the opening of an agency in the terminal and the tripling of the frequency of weekly flights). The French long-haul specialist Corsair International – a subsidiary of TUI France, flies up to 9 weekly rotations to Fort de France.
MODERNISATION AND EXTENSION FOR MARTINIQUE’S INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
Renovation and extension works at Martinique’s Aimé Césaire of Lamentin airport are due for completion in 2020. The terminal will virtually double in size, with bigger baggage delivery areas and boarding lounges, along with a bigger check-in zone.
HIKING AND NATURE-BASED OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES
With more than 250km of footpaths linking beaches, tropical forests, mountains and pitons, walkers are in their element as they explore the island along the French Hiking Federation’s ten official hiking routes and the dozen or so other paths currently awaiting official status. The Presqu’île de la Caravelle offers three paths for gentle walking, while in the south, the Savane des Pétrifications, a former crater, will delight all those who visit it. Mount Pelée, the island’s highest peak (1,397m), is accessible via several footpaths from Le Prêcheur, Grand’ Rivière or directly from the hills of Le Morne-Rouge.
A DIVERS’ PARADISE
For qualified Scuba divers, or uninitiated snorkelers (even children), the waters around Martinique are home to hugely diverse marine flora and fauna which include many species of tropical fish, soft coral, sea turtles and mammals. These include the Lakay underwater trail at Les Anses d’Arlet, marked by four buoys, which boasts numerous species of fish, coral, shells, seagrass and turtles. For visitors wishing to observe marine mammals, excursions in the heart of the AGOA Sanctuary are run in carefully controlled conditions which protect and preserve the environment (Martinique boasts no fewer than 21 different species of cetaceans).
Martinique is also home to listed and protected underwater remains such as the shipwrecks in Saint-Pierre bay, which date back to the explosion of Mount Pelée in 1902.
The Hotel Plein Soleil – a well-deserved 4*: After three months of intense work, the Hotel Plein Soleil shines again at the François, in an even more idyllic setting and proudly displaying its 4th star.
The iconic Hotel Diamant les Bains 4* – a long-awaited reopening: Facing the famous Diamond Rock, the Diamond Les Bains hotel residence invites guests back after a major refurbishment.
NEW – The Pelican Hotel 3* – between sea and mountains: Halfway between the North and South of Martinique, Hotel Pelican opens its doors and offers stunning views of the Caribbean Sea.
The Bambou Hotel 3* – serving biodiversity: Awarded the Green Key label dedicated to sustainable tourism, Hotel Bambou welcomes guests in environmentally friendly surroundings.
Photo: © CMT – Haughton