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Introducing Fort-de-France

Fort-de-France is the mercantile and political capital of Martinique, and the largest city in the French West Indies. While it’s a busy commercial center and has some decent shopping and an attractive historic fort, most people simply pass through.

The narrow, busy streets are lined with a mixture of ordinary offices, bargain-basement shops and crumbling early 20th-century buildings with wrought-iron balconies that wouldn’t look out of place in New Orleans.

If you do pass through, it is worth dedicating a few hours to wandering around the handful of historic sites, markets and museums the city has to offer. La Savane, the city park, lines the eastern end of the harbor. From here, look northwest to spot the distinctive spire of Cathédrale St-Louis.