VIDEO: Le Carbet, a Must-Visit Beach Hotspot in Martinique

By Alexander Britell

Martinique has no shortage of must-visit beach towns, from historic Saint Pierre to the up-and-coming destination of Le Diamant.

But if there’s one beach town that exemplifies French Caribbean cool on this island, it’s Le Carbet, the tiny hotspot a short ride away from Saint Pierre.

It’s most famous as the home of Le Petibonum, star chef Guy Ferdinand’s gourmet beach bar that’s as close to a Mecca as there is in Martinique.

The rum bar at Le Petibonum in Le Carbet.

But Le Carbet is so much more, with charming Creole shacks, toes-in-the-sand eateries and even some great little gourmet markets.

Perhaps more importantly, it’s also home to Rhum Neisson, a boutique rum distiller that’s among the best anywhere in the world. (They even make organic rum)

The Neisson distillery in Le Carbet.

And then there’s the beach, touched by the volcanic sand of the nearby Mont Pelee, a kind of obsidian-gold that’s utterly intoxicating.

This is Le Carbet, and it’s a must for any true Caribbean aficionado.

Le Petibonum.

See more in the video at the top of the page.

HOW TO GET HERE: Le Carbet is a little less than an hour’s drive to the northwest from Martinique’s capital of Fort-de-France, depending on traffic. (Fort de France is served by American Airlines and Air France, with seasonal service on Norwegian Air Shuttle.

WHERE TO STAY: If you’re planning an extended stay, there is a great-value boutique hotel a short drive away in Saint Pierre, the Villa Saint Pierre, while vacation rentals abound at options like Airbnb and Homeaway, among others.

The latter is a particularly good choice — Martinique is a destination that begs to be lived in and explored, with some of the best roadways in the Caribbean, high levels of safety and wonderful markets and restaurants, no matter where you are on the island.

— CJ