The most brutal volcanic natural disaster in the 20th century took place in Martinique, when burning clouds of volcanic gases and ash blitzed down from Mount Pelee and completely destroyed the island's largest city, ending about 30,000 lives in minutes. Having recently been to see the active volcano on Montserrat, and with the current rumblings of Kick 'em Jenny near Grenada - learning about the volcano was our first interest. The town of Saint-Pierre is indeed fascinating, but it has never really recovered - it's essentially a village now.
Fort-de-France, the current capital, is a pretty nicely turned-out city in this corner of France. It was nice to take it easy with modern city-comforts like a shopping mall(!) and good food. The best bit is the amazing Jardins de Balata botanical gardens up in the centre of the island though. Beautiful!
Aug 6, 2015