Wedged between two cliffs and shaded by lush vegetation, this exquisite black sand beach is one of Martinique’s most beautiful. This remote and untouched beach is located at the northernmost point of the island, at the foot of La Montagne Pelée volcano. Underwater, you will be likely to spot angelfish, moray eels and butterflyfish swimming between the sea fans bending gracefully in the current.
Anse Couleuvre (meaning “Grass Snake Cove”) is located on the Caribbean side of Martinique, some 40km north of Fort de France (1 hour by car). From Fort de France, take the N2 to Saint-Pierre, then the D10 to Le Prêcheur. Once in Le Prêcheur, follow the road north for a few kilometers. The small road becomes narrow and winding. At the very end of the road, you will find a small parking lot (quickly full during the weekends). Park here and walk to the beach, which can be reached via a 10-minutes’ walk through a tropical forest (well signposted).
Walk north up the beach and get into the water in front of the rocky area, which is the best for snorkeling. This spot is sometimes subject to waves or currents, do not enter the water if the sea is rough.
You can basically explore the whole bay, but we advise you to focus on the reef area bordering the north end of the beach (↕3-10ft/1-3m).
The seabed is mostly rocky, and large numbers of multi-colored sea fans and quite a few soft and hard coral species have colonized it. Sponges and sabella complete this underwater garden.
You might see dozens of fish species on the reef, particularly boxfish, needlefish, wrasse, butterflyfish and, with a little luck, the stunning French angelfish. Moray eels, some of them quite friendly, also inhabit the rocky seabed. In the deeper areas, you might spot a sea turtle, although there is much less likelihood of this here than in Anse Dufour and Anse Noire.
Anse Ceron, another beautiful black sand beach where snorkeling is possible when the sea is calm, is located 1.5 kilometer south of Anse Couleuvre.
A bar-restaurant set behind the beach sells beverages and snacks during holidays.
These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.
This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.
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Snorkeling spots are part of a wild environment and their aspect can be significantly altered by weather, seasons, sea conditions, human impact and climate events (storms, hurricanes, seawater-warming episodes…). The consequences can be an alteration of the seabed (coral bleaching, coral destruction, and invasive seagrass), a poor underwater visibility, or a decrease of the sea life present in the area. Snorkeling Report makes every effort to ensure that all the information displayed on this website is accurate and up-to-date, but no guarantee is given that the underwater visibility and seabed aspect will be exactly as described on this page the day you will snorkel the spot. If you recently snorkeled this area and noticed some changes compared to the information contained on this page, please contact us.
The data contained in this website is for general information purposes only, and is not legal advice. It is intended to provide snorkelers with the information that will enable them to engage in safe and enjoyable snorkeling, and it is not meant as a substitute for swim level, physical condition, experience, or local knowledge. Remember that all marine activities, including snorkeling, are potentially dangerous, and that you enter the water at your own risk. You must take an individual weather, sea conditions and hazards assessment before entering the water. If snorkeling conditions are degraded, postpone your snorkeling or select an alternate site. Know and obey local laws and regulations, including regulated areas, protected species, wildlife interaction and dive flag laws.