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Saturday 23rd October
Martinique Information - Page 1
Martinique, an Overseas Department of France, is an island in the Caribbean. Dominica is to the north of Martinique and St Lucia is to the south.

Fort-de-France is the capital city of Martinique.

The island is mountainous in the north. Mount Pelee, the highest point, is a volcano.

Martinique's climate is tropical with cooling trade winds. The rainy season is from June to October.

Martinique Regional Nature Park, established in 1975, consists of sixty percent of the island. It covers the mountainous volcanic area, as well as coastal cliffs, lagoons, beaches and reefs.

Wildlife on the island includes a variety of birds. The wetland reserve at Fort de France is an important point for migratory birds.

The green turtle and hawksbill turtle breed along the southern shores.

French Colonial architecture can still be found in Martinique. Examples include Colonial houses and a sugar plantation built in the seventeenth century.

A building of particular note is the Schoelcher Library, designed for the World Fair in Paris in 1889, then, dismantled, transported, and reassembled in Fort-de-France.

The population of Martinique was estimated at 408,000 in 2012.

French is the official language. Creole patois is also spoken.

The majority of the people in Martinique are Christian, mainly Roman Catholic.

The cuisine of Martinique is influenced by French and Creole food.

Chicken, goat, lamb and pork are eaten. Shellfish and fish are caught daily.

Vegetables include cassava, okra and sweet potatoes. Plantains and breadfruit are available.

Chicken Colombo, a favourite dish, is made with colombo powder (curry powder), herbs, lime juice and banana, cooked in coconut milk.

A variety of locally grown fruits include guavas, mangoes, melons, passion fruit and pineapples.

Fresh fruit juices are available and rum is brewed locally.

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