Martinique is anisland in the Lesser Antilles in the easternCaribbean Sea, with a land area of 1,128 km2.
As with the other overseas departments, Martinique is one of the twenty-seven regions of France (being an overseas region) and an integral part of the French Republic. The first European to encounter the island was Christopher Columbus in 1493.
Martinique owes its name to Colombus who landed on the island on 15 June 1502. The island was then called "Jouanacaëra-Matinino", which came from a mythical island described by the Tainos ofHispaniola