Favorite thing: At many places, especially on Basse Terre with it's dramatic scenery, there are special lookout spots. Take a break from driving and sit down to take in some great views over mountains and jungle, or beaches or whatever else they have to throw at you. Because you're on vacation and what's the rush...?Related to:
- Road Trip
Take a map with you when driving!
Favorite thing: Gwada has a pretty decent road network, but the information along the roads can be really bad. There are few signs, and many of the signs that do exist are poorly placed (like behind a tree or bus stop!) and sometimes dirty or damaged. So finding your way along these winding roads will be a real challange without some in car help.
Luckily maps are easily avalible and will save you loads of time. That's not to say that you'll get it right the first time though. We were to find a beach by a specific name. So we went to the southeast side of Grande Terre where I spotted the name. Troube was that is was a common name that popped up a few other places on the map as well. Turns out the beach we wanted, and where friends waited, were on the northwest side of the island...
But without the map I am sure we would still be driving around looking, so don't forget it!Related to:
- Road Trip
Just getting into tourism
Favorite thing: Guadeloupe is very much into art. Most of the walls have murals on them.
It has some nice features but it is not tourist friendly. They are just beginning to make more accomodations for those in the tourists. For example many of the facilities that tourists visit do not have adequate restroom facilities. It is best to walk with toilet tissue. The downtown area needs a major overhaul. The wear and tear of the buildings are evident. The port does not have a building like the other ports do either.
Favorite thing: A group of 8 small mountainous islands about fifteen minutes by boat from the island of Basse Terre.
The name comes from Christopher Columbus, who saw them on the All Saints Day. They were never inhabited by the indians, as they lack water, today two of the islands are inhabited and are on the agenda of most of the tourists coming to Guadeloupe.
But do not worry - the tourists will disperse very quickly from the pier and if you have the luck to stay there for the night, the islands becomes very calm once the ferry departs.
Fondest memory: Great views from the Fort Napoleon, lovely beaches (my preferred is the Pompierre beach), nice walks through the small mountains...
Karukera - Island of nice waters
Favorite thing: Guadeloupe was baptised Karukera by the indians, which means "Island of nice waters".
And there is a lot of water on the island, especially on mountainous Basse Terre, covered with tropical humid forest and with plenty of rivers and waterfalls. So while you will get wet sometimes, the rains (at least in the dry season in winter) never last, but enable the vegetation to grow really fast and for you to go canyoning or just hiking along the rivers or to the waterfalls.
The Carbet waterfalls are maybe the most spectacular (and most visited), but you will find a lot more of them...
Fondest memory: Lush green of the tropical forest and the smell of rain, with the sounds of the river and waterfall just above...Related to:
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- Hiking and Walking
- Water Sports
Hiking in tropical forest
Favorite thing: Basse Terre is essentially one high mountainous chain, filled by tropical forest and half of which is classified as a national reserve. You will have at your disposal 200km of trails, some easy, some harder, but well indicated and accessible.
Fondest memory: The rain, then the sun, the mist coming from mountain rivers, the waterfalls and greenery everywhere - there is something magic in the tropical forest.
Under the sea
Favorite thing: Be it only snorkelling or scuba-diving, you will find plenty of opportunities to go under water in Guadeloupe. Coral reefs are not very far, sometimes only meters from the beach and there are lots of spots for scubadiving, opportunities to learn or to pass a degree.
And there is also the "Reserve Cousteau" - actually not a real reserve, but a great place to see corrals, fish and sea life...
beaches, flowers, sents...........
Favorite thing: beautiful beaches, creeks, flowers, sents, tropical forest walks, exotic food, tropical weather, scuba dive.
Fondest memory: i really do miss the quality of life i had back there.almost everywhere you look, there is something beautiful to look at or smell or taste.
rum and fishsoup and french soka
Favorite thing: The white rum i tryed was a real surprise. it tastes definitly different to all rum i tasted before.
Fish soup is a typical meal in guadeloupe if one likes that...
Visiting a disco listening to french soka musique and watching the elegant beautiful locals you should not miss.
Like real french, women wearing beautiful femine cloth, real eyecatch. If you see people dancing soca (most locals are black) you realy wish you could move your body just little like they do...
Fondest memory: Not speaking french keeps you very away of all contacts to the people.
Favorite thing: Climate: tropical climate with temps between 26°-31°tempered by 'les vents alizés' (wind from the ocean) and mostly dry during the 'carême' season (January to May). More rainfall during 'l'hivernage' (September to November) with a chance of a hurricane.
Landscape: very varied with mountains, rain forest with abundant tropical vegetation, a volcano, rivers and waterfalls on Basse Terre (left wing of the daffodil) ; savannah, mangroves, cliffs, white beaches and blue lagoons on Grande Terre (right wing of the daffodil).
Music: music and dance are extremely important on the island. Mostly you will hear typical Antillian music like zouk or biguine. Very rhythmic and wonderfully exotic.
Folklore: every city (or even village) has its own patron saint which is always good for a celebration. Other specific events are carnival (of course), la fête des cuisinières (the cook's festival), Indian festivals, cock fights, ...
Cuisine: creole cuisine, very ethnic, varied and flavoured with lots of different spices. Influences of France of course (it is a French colony) and of India and Africa, brought here by the slaves. Lots of fish and seafood, chicken, pork. Often prepared in a stew (colombo) with vegetables, often coconut and always many different spices. And last but not least fruits, fruits and more fruits. Bananas are never far away! Both as a vegetable and as fruit.
People: originating from Africa and India the colour of their skin varies from almost black to light brown with oriental characteristics.
Language: French is the official language but Creole is mostly spoken. Knowledge of English is rather bad.
Souvenirs to take home: rhum, punch, cane sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa, coffee, spices (saffron, pepper, cumin, ginger, ...), flowers. If you want to take flowers home, they will be specially wrapped for air transport.
The island is divided in 2...
Favorite thing: The island is divided in 2 parts : Basse-Terre (west) and Haute-Terre (east). The western part is much more interesting, more green, with good snorkelling around the city of Bouillante...and a very pretty (but overcrowded by tourist) waterfall in central Basse-Terre part.
Fondest memory: Nothing very great....due to the fact it is a French colony....everything looks like France except maybe the beaches, the colour of skin of some locals...and the climate.
The advantage from Europe being that flights to Guadeloupe are among the cheapest ones to reach the area.
If you have never seen sharks...go to top south-eastern point of Haute-Terre (Pointe des Châteaux) and from a cliff...you may see them swimming.
When I decided to come here, I...
Favorite thing: When I decided to come here, I was looking for a leisure vacation. I wanted to burn on the beaches and drink coktails under a palm tree; but I also wanted to stay away from touritic resort or Club Med like organized activities as much as possible. The french ‘Art de vivre’ of the French West Indies archipelago attracted me. Any of you who visited France will rediscover it here in a caribbean version. Distinctive traits will give away the french link. But aside from my doing-nothing-thing, I was able to visit the island with the countless excursions offered. They were linked with the hotel or travel agency or they were private. I didn’t took a bus tour, which I found too crowded and impersonnal. But my tours in a mini-bus, with 2 to 4 other peoples and guided by a local driver, were very intersting. We were able to ask a lot of questions and learned a lot, not only on the regions we were visiting, but also on the life here. It was very friendly. We laugh, hike and eat with Eddie and Patrick. There are also boat cruise to visit the islands surrounding Guadeloupe, but in one week, there’s just not enough time!!!
Fondest memory: All day long, you’ll wonder what is that smell in the air; your nose will fill with a mix of cinnamon, rum, sugar cane, vanilla, salty alizee and hot sand and skin. Your ears will fill of sweet and suave music, from tonic zouk to lustfull beguine. Everywhere you look, an amazing view appears to you; beachs from paradise, rich rainforest, coral reef, colonial architecture, markets, cliffsides overlooking the ocean, deep dark mangrove, Soufrière volcano, waterfalls… Your mouth will discover creole cuisine, spicy and delicious, with fruits, veggies and fishes. And the sun on your skin feel so good! This is what I'll remember the most: the complete sensorial experience!
A few kilometers before...
Favorite thing: A few kilometers before Sainte-Rose, follow the panels towards the Museum of Rum. If you seek a distillery in Guadeloupe, you discovered it.
RUM DISTILLERY : The Distillery was created in 1916, by family REIMONENQ. And like the majority of other distilleries of the island, the principal production of the Distillery of the Museum, is Agricultural Rum, distilled from pure juice of sugar cane.
Fondest memory: Definitely YES for the Rum and Ti-Punch !!!
markymark's General Tip
Fondest memory: Spent one week at St. Anne. Met a guy in a cafe who offered me a small one room bungalow. Hung out at a small beach cafe with the Guadaloupean and Sedish owners. Drank beer and did the beach bum thing ;o)
you have to go to the carbet s...
Favorite thing: you have to go to the carbet s chute, even if its not so easy for driving, a long and nice walk, you can see the falls , take a bath in cold water or warm water, even you have a place where you can find the good temperature
I worked at this place for 6 months. It was a Club Med, and was later closed. Lbelieve it is still...more
We stayed here in 1999 and it was the best vacation we ever had. Grand Case Beach Club was clean,...more
Our stay: January 6 - 13 , 2007. It turned out to be miserable. 1. DIRTY: Not only did the room...more
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