Martinique

Close your eyes. Inhale the exotic aromas of rich dark coffee, fresh baked baguettes, and old-fashioned toasty Gauloises tobacco wafting across a small market square. You’re undoubtedly somewhere in the south, maybe close to the Riviera, where the summer heat verges on tropical, but the breezes are cool and rattle the awnings of the market stalls. Open your eyes. It’s a hilltop village on the Caribbean island of Martinique, and you’re enjoying one of those customary do-nothing, coffee and wine-sipping, people-watching interludes that the French seem to love so much.