Level: Free shore access This spot have a free shore access: you can go snorkeling there freely and without having to book a tour or pay an entrance fee.
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Located on the southwest side of the island, Anse Dufour is one of the most authentic beach in Martinique. Its shades of blue, its white sand and its colored fishermen’s houses all charm thousands of visitors each year. It is an ideal place to observe sea turtles, and green sea turtles in particular. There are many of them, and are the bay’s main attraction. You can combine an exploration of the area with Anse Noire, which lies just a few hundred meters away.
Anse Dufour is located in Anses d’Arlet, on the southwest coast of the island. From Fort-de-France, take the A1 to the airport, then the N5 south for a few miles. Turn right on D7, following the signs to Anses d’Arlet. Halfway between Trois Îlets and Anses d’Arlet, leave the main road and head for Anse Dufour, well signposted. There are many places to park near the beach, in the parking area or along the road. It takes about 40 minutes by car (20mi/35km) from Fort-de-France when the traffic is light.
You can enter the water anywhere along the sandy beach.
All the little bay is worth exploring, but underwater life is at its most abundant along the rocky outcrops on either side of the bay (↕3-10ft/1-3m). Although the seabed is rocky, it has been colonized by large numbers of colorful sponges, small corals and sea fans. Bluehead wrasse, foureye butterflyfish, and small groups of Caribbean sergeant major are easy to see.
The central part of the bay (↕10-20ft/3-6m), made up of sand and seagrass areas, is poor in fish. But, on the other hand, this is the area where you will have the best chance of spotting a green sea turtle. Many of them come to feed daily on the seagrass. By criss-crossing the area, you should not have to wait too long before seeing them.
As always with turtles, you should respect the elementary rules of observation: don’t chase after them, don’t hold on to their shells, don’t touch them, and leave them enough room when they come up to the surface to breathe.
Anse Dufour and Anse Noire are within a distance of a few hundred meters from each other, only separated by a rocky point. Combine the exploration of the two spots, walking for less than 10 minutes on the path connecting the two beaches. From the eastern tip of Anse Dufour beach, visitors in good physical shape can swim to Anse Noire, following the rocky point for about 400 to 500 meters).
Anse Dufour has a traditional fishing activity. You will have to share the little bay with boats, fishing nets… and a few friendly pelicans, attempting to steal fishermen’s catch of the day !
A few snacks and local restaurants are dotted along the beach and the road alongside it, so you can get something to eat and drink at low prices, but the choice is limited.
Green sea turtles are a familiar sight at Anse Noire and Anse Dufour. In order to be a responsible snorkeler, be sure to respect the following rules when observing them:
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.
Sheltered cove with seagrass meadows and sea turtles
Level: Free shore access
Small islet bordered with rocks and coral reefs
Vibrant coral reef and seagrass meadows with sea turtles
Shallow cove with rocks, coral, sponges and tropical fish
Monumental sculpture immersed in front of a black-sand beach
Fringing coral reef with a vibrant marine life
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