Poised gracefully in the midst of the Leeward Islands, Guadeloupe’s two islands, Basse-Terre and Grande-Terre – are the gems of French West Indies. Both islands are uniquely stunning, offering different shades of natural goodness and many things to do in Guadeloupe. That is why every year, lots of visitors from different parts of the world vacation there. To have a good dose of France in the Caribbean.
For Basse in the west, there are peaks with waterfalls and stylish resorts all around. In the east is Grande with craggy setups and beautiful beaches, which are a haven for sunbathers. Guadeloupe is quite suited to different visitors, attracting everyone from audacious explorers to expert hikers and compulsive shoppers.
That is not all about this gorgeous place. There is exceptional seafood, strong rum, and more to eat, along with a rich history of French rule, colonialism, plantation ownership, and much more to discover.
Here are the Best Things to Do in Guadeloupe:
Absorb the Drama on the Pointe des Chateaux
Protruding its way dramatically from the far eastern edge of Guadeloupe, this rocky elevation and salt-washed stone are undisputedly one of the natural fascinations of the island. Compared by many visitors to a shipwreck, the petit, sculpted peninsula highlights many cliffs and geological juts.
Pointe des Chateaux is also famous for the imposing trade winds that rage all year long, which attracts crowds of kite fliers. It is also a common destination for surfers as they hit the white-capped juts of Grandes Salines. For walkers, the islet of La Desirade is perfect for them as they explore the area.
Check out the Wildlife at Guadeloupe National Park
Thick in the mountainous center of Basse-Terre, this park spans from mist-topped primeval rainforest to a vast swathe of mangrove that marks the coast. The Guadeloupe National Park is regarded as one of the most biodiverse areas in the whole Caribbean.
Visitors will see lots of interesting and unique creatures lying between its abundant forests of jatoba woods and seagrape. There are the mongoose and the agouti rodent that scamper through the brushwood. Sea turtles in the ocean are something to look forward to as well.
Hike the La Soufriere Volcano
Just as you do not need to be an expert in something to enjoy it, hiking in the Soufriere Volcano invites both first-timers and seasoned persons. For the dauntless who enjoy the outdoors, they cannot pass on the chance to take on this soaring volcano. It stands high above Guadeloupe National Park’s misty forests.
The pathway to the top is demanding but a stunning one, with strings of well-preserved walking routes leading into the woods, over the river trails, and up to the sulfur-spewing stratovolcano top. Hikes on the well-known Le-Pa du Roy path is about five hours from start to finish.
Visit the Beaches and Distilleries of Marie-Galante
The small speck of Marie-Galante attracts fewer visitors than the mainland. However, it boasts of many specialties worth unearthing. The island is rugged and full of headlands and cliffs. They rise vertically from the Caribbean waters to a height of about 150m.
Marie-Galante is also home to France’s most famous rum brewers like Distilleries Poisson. It is located close to Grand-Bourg with lots of sugarcane productions. Visitors will also find pleasure in the ruins of old plantations. Where chimney stacks tower over the beautiful and isolated beaches like Vieux-Fort and Petite Anse.
Visit the Markets of Ponte-a-Pitre
Pointe-a-Pointe has been the commercial center of Grand-Terre Island for more than 4 centuries. It is in the town that the old landowners sell articles like piles of spices, sugarcane, and rum hauls. In the present day, not much has changed with bazaars, and local stalls still limed along the docks.
Visit the bubbling strip of La Darse, where fish sellers deal in whitefish and snappers, nutmeg and cumin, and cinnamon spring up sweet fragrance into the hot airs, and natives meet to gabble on the weekend mornings. There are even more sterling sopping chances, too, with custom gems on offer in Frébault and Schoelcher Street.
Deep in the Carbet Falls
Carbet Falls is another fascinating natural gem of Guadeloupe that can be discovered deep in the midst of plush rainforests of the Guadeloupe National Park, the falls succeed down the volcanic mountains of the island in vertical steps.
Easily accessible from the winding hiking pathways that enter the La Grande Soufriere foothills, the second cataract has the lowest and highest section that are kept for only the most bodacious hikers.
Visitors would see breathtaking and stunning views of the falls. With abundant forests clenching massive cliffs and the drops of water beclouding the island’s jungles. It is a perfect place to meet nature!
Have Some Rum at the Rum Museum
It is all about rum in the Musee du Rhum of Sainte Rose! It is situated on Basse-Terre’s northern shore, a perfect go-to spot for visitors who desire to know all there is to learn about the West Indies’ popular alcoholic export.
The exhibitions at the museum deal with every aspect of rum making, outlining the cultivation of sugarcane over the years of the island’s history to the complex techniques of barrel making deployed in the brewing process.
Travelers will also have the chance to see historic copper distillation presses and tools and sample boozes at the end of every tour.
Sunbathe at Plage La Grande-Anse
Understanding why the La Grande-Anse beach is among the popular swath of pristine sand on Guadeloupe. Surrounded in the massive outlines of jungle-dressed hills, the beach appears concealed in its pocket of vegetation on Basse-Terre’s northwestern edge.
Tilting palm trees and sea vines touch the shoreline all around the curved bay, with heaps of shade on offer betwixt the coconut groves. Plage La Grande-Anse spans for a kilometer around the coast as well. Therefore, it is a common thing to see many small eateries like Karacoli and Kote Lagon offer relaxing ambiance and refreshments from the washing sea.
See Wild Animals at the Zoological and Botanical Park of Guadeloupe
Mixed with massive orchids growing in red and ochre, and filled with jaguars that sit in the big trunks of jatoba trees, this park is among the top destinations on the islands for nature admirers.
Placed under the canopies of a few early, old-growth rainforest, it offers a covered part of natural habitats for the region’s autochthonous wildlife. Guests are encouraged to discover into the plantation of trees and branches to explore the lands to see unique breeds of turtles and indigenous Guadeloupe raccoons.
Wear the Snorkels in Plage Caravelle
Among the stunning beaches in Grande-Terre’s coastal fixture is Plage Caravelle. It spans along the southern end of the island with its plenteous backing of coconut palms and closes by bars and long pools.
This place is a popular spot for family travelers, swimmers, and sunbathers. In addition, Caravelle is people’s favorite for snorkeling, which is incredible on the western side of the beach. It is where the coral reefs touch the sandbanks. This place is specially marked with colorful marine life in the beds. It is definitely a sight to behold!
Cruise Across to La Desirade
Once seen by the navigator, Christopher Columbus, who sailed close by in the 1490s. Later, it was occupied by hiding pirates and robbers. The incredibly pleasant island of La Desirade can be reached through the sunny haze about 8 kilometers across the Caribbean Sea from Grande-Terre ‘s coast.
The usual boat departures take around 45 minutes to take travelers on the breakwaters of Desirade’s biggest town, Beausejour. Leaving there, you can proceed to the craggy mountain roads on 4×4, ending at the wild sides of the Reserve Naturelle National de La Desirade, where big iguanas roam the dusty and dry terrain.
Attend the Carnival
Another reason why you should plan a trip to Guadeloupe is the colorful carnival held there. It is one of the most exciting things to do here, especially when you visit during the carnival period. Though it does not match the charm of the one held in Rio de Janeiro, the carnival in Guadeloupe is special regardless. It is organized from January to Marc. Then, you can be part of the fun in a different town every weekend.
Enjoy the Local Food at Paradise Kafe
In the case that you are in search of a typical Caribbean drinking dive about a few meters from the shore, Paradise Kafe in the little Deshaies is the place to go. Mapped like a surf-sprayed shelter on top of the craggy shoreline around the natural elevation from Plage La Grande-Anse. It also has a panoramic view of the island’s gastronomy.
This place centers on organic and healthy foods with an Asian theme, with pas Thai noodles presented with fresh spring vegetables. Burgers are also on the menu, for those who want to detox, while the drinks option has a combination of fresh fruit juices.
Have a Bite of Caribbean Seafood at La Touna
Towering higher than the rocky outcrops of Pigeon Island on Basse-Terre’s western edge, La Touna is a hearty restaurant that offers the best treats on the island. Deluxe and elegant decor, this spot exhibits a bright Caribbean-French vibe, with painted timber design and turquoise fixtures. The menu here is the charm, with a blend of Creole-influenced ceviche salads and tuna tartare, grilled fishes and fish burgers of the day. The lobster there is the best on the island.
Things To Do In Guadeloupe – Summary
Part of the best decisions you would make in your next vacation is to explore the Caribbean. Explore Guadeloupe, which provides a wide range of things to see and do. It is a paradise for vacationers where they can find much more than just panoramic pristine sandy beaches.