Tete-a-tete meeting with La Montagne Pelée.

Tete-a-tete meeting with La Montagne Pelée.
Wednesday, April 26, 2023


Martinique is full of natural sites, each more breathtaking than the next. And if there is a place that is worth the detour, it is La Montagne Pelée.

Culminating at 1395 meters above sea level in the town of Saint-Pierre in the north of the island on the Caribbean coast, the "Grande dame du Nord" (the great lady of the north), as we like to call it in Martinique, occupies a wooded area of 120 km.
Appreciated by hikers and nature lovers, this dormant volcano has been talked about because of the saddest eruption in its history which took place 121 years ago, on May 8, 1902.

But did you know that La Montagne Pelée is not just an eruption and that it alone plays a crucial role in our environment?

This is the reason why in 2021 an application file for the UNESCO World Heritage of Volcanoes and Forests was officially submitted for Pelée and the Pitons du Carbet. And on this occasion, Martinique will host its very first ecological festival Pelée Mountain Festival on October 22 and 23, 2023.
While waiting to be able to celebrate this beautiful lady, let's discover together the benefits of this mountain as there are nowhere else.

An ecosystem essential to the planet.

Classified as an integral biological reserve, La Montagne Pelée is home to exceptional flora and fauna over 15,000 hectares.

Its geographical position by the sea, its tropical climate which is both dry and rainy, even cold at the top (10 degrees celcius) and its volcanic soil make it a rich ecosystem.
On one side you can see prairies dotted with tall grass, typically tropical forests and banana fields, then on the other side, which is much wilder and more humid, there are tall trees, ferns and high mountain plants. More than half of the plant areas endemic to the island are listed there.

A natural barrier against major rainfall.

It is not uncommon to hear Martinicans rejoicing at not being the victims of the many bad weather conditions experienced by the Caribbean region.
If La Montagne Pelée was a bulwark against violent weather events in the direction of Martinique?
Indeed, many researchers agree that Pelee would have something to do with it.
Because the presence of a volcano in the tropical zone can influence the intensity and frequency of extremes such as depressions, cyclones, even hurricanes.

Hiking trails to recharge.

The Grande dame du Nord (the great lady of the north) is traversed along 3 main trails to reach its summit called "Le Chinois" and this from several towns in the north of the island: the Aileron trail, the Prêcheur slope and the northern slope from Grand-Rivière or Macouba.

The fastest ascent of Mount Pelée of 4.7 km with 600 meters of vertical drop, takes 4 hours of walking there and back.
These hikes can be done with or without a guide.

Practicing a sporting activity such as mountain hiking is excellent for the production of red blood cells. This then allows for better oxygenation.
Moreover, many athletes train in the mountains and use these advantages as natural doping.


A crucial role in the water cycle

The mountain is the first link in the water cycle. Indeed, the precipitation falls on the mountains then trickles through the streams and rivers, before arriving in the sea.

It is also nearby, in the town of Morne Rouge, that the Chanflor spring water is harvested, which comes directly from the Grande Dame.
The drinking water that we consume from north to south of the island also emanates from the mountains in order to arrive at the main water distribution stations such as that of Séguineau in Lorrain.
We therefore do not always have an idea, but without the mountain the supply of drinking water would be less accessible.


Altitude as your best ally.

Take height. Does this expression speak to you? Well know that there is no better way to feel good than being at altitude where pollution and allergens are lower, and, or also, the oxygen content is lower.

And if there is an undeniable benefit to strolling or walking in the mountains, it is the pleasure of being able to inhale a good breath of invigorating air. Filling your lungs with fresh, healthy air has a more than positive impact on your health.


As you will have understood, La Montagne Pelée, in addition to being part of the global biodiversity hotspot, has the power to act positively on our internal and external organism.

To survey the Pelée is to agree to bend to the rhythm of nature, to respect the beautiful environment that surrounds us, to take full advantage of breathtaking landscapes.

And even without venturing into it, it offers undeniable benefits.
So now that you know more, all you have to do is give yourself this simple and healthy pleasure.

Be ready to discover this exceptional site in Martinique opposite the Hotel Bambou.

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