> Destinations > Martinique > General Information
Climate: Tropical. The mean temperature averages 79°F. Two regular, alternating wind currents (east and northeast) cool the atmosphere. These are the tradewinds, called les alizés. There is only about a 5° F difference between summer and winter temperatures.
Yahoo weather forecast for Martinique.
Currency: The official currency is the Euro. Most banks and bank machines accept most international credit cards. Credit cards and traveller cheques are accepted almost everywhere.
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Economy: The economy is based on sugarcane, bananas, tourism, and light industry. Agriculture accounts for about 6% of GDP and the small industrial sector for 11%. Sugar production has declined, with most of the sugarcane now used for the production of rum. Banana exports are increasing, going mostly to France. The bulk of meat, vegetable, and grain requirements must be imported, contributing to a trade deficit that requires large annual transfers of aid from France. Tourism, which employs more than 11,000 people, has become more important than agricultural exports as a source of foreign exchange. The majority of the work force is employed in the service sector and in administration.
Electricity: Voltage is 220, 50 Hz, European standard wall plugs. Transformers and adaptors are necessary for American appliances.
Geographic Coordinates:14 40 N, 61 00 W.
Official Language: French. Most people speak creole.
Political Status: Overseas department of France.
Population: 422,277 (July 2002 est.)
French perfumes, crystal, 18-karat gold Creole jewelry, designer accessories, watches, liqueurs, spices, dolls, shell and straw work, patchwork tapestries, and island rums are all popular buys. Jewelry stores like Cadet Daniel and Venutolo and perfume specialist Roger Albert, which cater as much to visitors as to locals. The most frequented shopping streets are Rue Victor Hugo, Rue Moreau de Jones, Rue Antoine Siger and Rue Lamartine. The airport duty-free shops are open prior to plane departures.
Paintings and sculpture by native-born Martiniquais or artists who have moved to the island can be found at galleries in Fort-de-France and at some hotels. 5 minutes from the airport, outside of Fort-de-France, La Galleria, the largest shopping center in the West Indies.
Time: GMT - 4 year-round.