Nightlife in Martinique: Best Beach Bars, Live Music, & More

palm trees and people on a beach at sunset in silhouette

 

Sylvain Sonnet / Getty Images

Martinique is often hailed as the rhum capital of the French Caribbean, and visitors to the island have the opportunity to taste the local flavor at beach bars, nightclubs, and late-night restaurants located throughout the island. Although the overall vibe of Martinique is laid-back, there's an array of opportunities for travelers to enjoy late nights out on the town. Whether you're interested in dancing the night away in the nation's capital or enjoying the sunset with a cocktail by the beach in Marin, here are the best places to enjoy the nightlife in Martinique.

Beach Bars

There are ample opportunities to enjoy a seaside cocktail while taking in the tropical sunset along the coast in Martinique, though the best spot for nightlife is widely considered to be the Grande Anse d’Arlet. The beach comes alive on weeknights and weekends with revelers looking to relax with a rhum punch (or two) along the shore. Additionally, there are multiple options for visitors to Carbet and Fort-de-France, as well. Read on for our favorite selections below:

  • Located on a private beach in La Carbet, the rhum bar and restaurant at Le Petibonum is widely considered one of the best beach bars in the Caribbean, and we recommend booking your table in advance, as it's known to book up quickly.
  • The Wahoo Cafe is a beachside beer garden also located in La Carbet that is perfect for watching the sun go down while sipping a libation of your choice.
  • Lili's is another famous beach bar to visit in Martinique. Expect live music, DJ sets, and daybeds luxurious enough to rival the Surf Lodge in Montauk.
  • Check out the seaside lounge bar at Le Kano, and recline in one of the deck-side lounge chairs with an excellent rhum cocktail in-hand. (The bartenders are renowned for recommending the best local rhum agricole to enjoy during your vacation).
  • Head to the lounge bar at Zanzibar for some seaside cocktails and spiny Caribbean lobster overlooking the bay of Marin.
  • Sidle up to the bar at Le Steel Pan in Fort-de-France for some absolutely marvelous cocktails and authentic Caribbean cuisine.
houses with colorfooves on a hill in martinique
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Cocktails

Martinique is known for its legendary rum, and we recommend visiting the Saint-James Distillery to sample the island's local flavors. Travelers journeying to Martinique in the wintertime should be sure to check out the Fête du Rhum, an annual festival that occurs every December. Additionally, there are several bars around the island that specialize in inventive cocktails. Read below for popular options in Fort-de-France:

  • Le Cloud: This rooftop bar in Fort-de-France serves up a delectably delicious cocktail menu. We recommend ordering The Purist (the perfect blend of Cointreau and Gin). The unmarked entrance is difficult to find on Google Maps but easy to spot once you're on foot on the Rue Ernest Hemingway.
  • Sidle up to the bar at Le Steel Pan in Fort-de-France for some absolutely marvelous cocktails and authentic Caribbean cuisine.

Live Music

Many bars and restaurants in Martinique feature live music, either on a nightly or a weekly basis. Whether you're in the mood for a DJ set or steel-drum band, the options in Martinique are (nearly) endless for such a tiny island.

  • Head to Le Baboaorum (also known as The Baba to locals) for some live music every Thursday from 7 to 9:30 p.m. and enjoy the colorful, tropical atmosphere of this island favorite.
  • Visit the beloved Garage Popular, a hole-in-the-wall pub on the back streets of Fort-de-France for some cheap drinks and live music.
  • Another Fort-de-France mainstay for live music and wonderful ambiance is Ti Balcon, an institution in the capital city that doubles as a romantic date spot.
  • Check out Kinky Mango in Le Lamentin for some delicious cocktails (we suggest ordering the Koko Voodoo), craft beers, and live music.

Clubs

Looking to dance the night away? Then look no further than Complexe Le Crazy (also known as Crazy Nights). This dance club in Fort-de-France can accommodate up to 1,000 revelers on a nightly basis. Other options for clubbing include Hotel Cap Macabou, Hotel Bakua at Les Trois-Îlets, and Infinity—a multi-level dance club space that was once a Mexican restaurant. If you're in the mood for a club atmosphere but with salsa dancing or Caribbean music, then check out Jet Set, which offers both in Fort-de-France (and has cheaper drinks, as well). Lastly, Club Med Buccaneer's Creek is a reliable favorite for partiers looking to visit a nightclub in the Caribbean.

Festivals & Events

Martinique's most popular festival of the year is Carnaval, which runs from lent through the end of Easter. Carnaval is a mainstay throughout the Caribbean, though the celebrations in Martinique are particularly unique. Check out Dimanche Gras on Fat Sunday, the Martinician burlesque on Fat Monday, and Red Devils Day (a costumed affair on Fat Tuesday). Other notable festivities are featured below:

  • Music Day is celebrated on June 21st as the Fête de la Musique, featuring concerts all over the island to celebrate the first day of summer.
  • Schoelcher Nautical Week features sailors from 11 countries, ranging in age from 8 to 80, and is hosted by Cercle Nautique de Schoelcher in Martinique. Expect day parties to occur throughout the island.
  • Another event for nautical-lovers is the Yole Boat Race, held in July and drums up the same excitement as the Schoelcher Nautical Week (which takes place earlier in the year).

Tips for Going Out in Martinique

  • Though there is public transport in Martinique in the form of buses, the service can be quite erratic and discontinue at night. Additionally, Uber is not available in Martinique, so travelers should plan on either renting a car, or calling a taxi. Given the frequency of stop-checks on the road, if you're planning on drinking, then opting for a cab is best. Taxis are plentiful in Fort-de-France near many of the popular nightlife areas, and can also be arranged by your hotel.
  • The drinking age in Martinique is 18, and the last call times for bars and clubs can be as late as 4 a.m., though it depends on the institution (certain pubs close earlier). Last call times for bars and clubs
  • There is no tipping required in bars in Martinique, as the service charge is already included. It is gracious, however, to round up your bill to the nearest Euro, and to provide additional tipping if there is exceptional service.
  • There is no policy against open-containers in Martinique, so you may enjoy your beverage in public. That being said, littering and disorderly conduct is heavily monitored by the local police authorities.
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