Top 50 Things to Do and to See in Guadeloupe


Guadeloupe is a part of Caribbean Islands and located in the Leeward Islands, in the Lesser Antilles. It has an area of 1,628 Sq Km (629 sq. mi) inhabited with a population of 400,000. Guadeloupe Island is an overseas region of France. Guadeloupe is popular for Creole cuisine, awesome beaches and host of aquatic adventures. There are two major islands in Guadeloupe proper: Grand-Terre and Basse-Terre. The interior regions of Guadeloupe are lush as well as mountainous and home to hot springs, waterfalls, and an active volcano. Apart from aquatic adventures hiking and mountaineering are the non-aquatic adventures that a tourist can enjoy in Guadeloupe. Fifty things that you can enjoy in Guadeloupe along with your family are as follows:

1. Basse-Terre

Basse-Terre is one of the interesting tourist destinations of Guadeloupe and you can witness some of the oldest French settlements in the Caribbean lying in the shadow of the Soufrière volcano. The most famous attractions of this place include Fort St-Charles, the town square, the Cathedral and the botanical gardens. It was discovered during the year 1640 and has been at the center of the colonial history of the archipelago. Basse-Terre was twice occupied by British forces and torn by the French Revolution, Napoléonic suppressions and anti-slavery conflicts, Hurricanes and volcanic eruptions have helped restrict the size of the town.

2. La Soufrière

La Saufriere is indeed considered as the proud symbol of Guadeloupe, it is actually an active volcano that is to be found towards the southern part of the island. It is the biggest tourist attraction of this island with the highest point in the Lesser Antilles (1 487m). A surge in activity in 2005 (following serious quakes in 1976-1977) means that the “old lady” is now watched with heightened concern. You can also climb the mountain on the Chemin des Dames from St-Claude. The beauty of this place is very impressive and the nature here is at its powerful and best.

3. Etang As de Pique

Etang as de Pique is one of the spectacular tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. Tourist who ascends the trail to this 748m/2,454ft height will witness one of the biggest of the mountainside lakes formed in craters on the volcanic massif of la Soufrière. It is completely occupied by beautiful and lushly covered hillsides Etang As de Pique is isolated and quiet and considered best for family excursions.

4. Les Saintes

Les Saintes is surely among the top tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. One here you can witness some of the exceptional beauties of nature such as the impressive beaches, unspoiled nature and of course some of Guadeloupe’s most remarkable underwater scenery. Terre-de-Haut is one of the busied islands of nation and was actually settled by Breton fishermen; to the west is the quieter Terre-de-Bas, a fishing community since its earliest settlement. It is worth spending a night or two on each island to get a real flavour of them both. This place is considered as a slice of paradise, surely worth a visit.

5. Terre-de-Haut

The Terre –de-Haut is one the incredibly famous tourist attractions of the nation. It is actually part of the Les Saintes archipelago. The island offers many reasonable reasons to visit here like you can find some of the finest beaches all around its coast, stunning dive sites, especially around Pain du Sucre; a town that has comprehensively bounced back since the 2004 quake; and a rugged landscape of jagged coastline endowing it with lots of character. The island is worth a visit.

6. Fort St-Charles

For St-Charles is one of the top famous tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. It originally started during the year 1640 and named in honor of the founder of Basse-Terre, Charles Houël. It is a huge colonial fortress that was also the first building of the town to be erected. The structure is well preserved, standing on a prominent hill in the town’s southern end. Inside the fort you will find an amazing historical museum and the graves of two famous French officers, General Richpance and Admiral Gourbeyre.

7. Trace des Crêtes

Another interesting tourist attraction of Guadeloupe is the Trace des Cretes and starts at the eastern end of Pompierre beach. Once here you can witness the superb view of the jagged coastline should not distract from exercising great care. The walk ends at Grande-Anse beach, a fine strip of empty sand which is extremely dangerous for swimming. If you are visiting this place with children then special care is recommended.

8. Grand-Terre

Grand-Terre is one of the most visited tourist destinations of the nations. It is one of the most flattered and lower among the two main Guadeloupe islands, being mostly between 40m/131ft and 135m/443ft high, and is notable by its eroded limestone composition and many spectacular beached. Once here you will notice that a large part of the land is covered in silver and green sugar cane fields.

9. Fort Napoléon

The Fort Napoleon is one of the most impressive places to visit in Guadeloupe. The fort was constructed during the mid-19 century. The main reason for constructing this fort was to protect the nation, the fort wound up as a jail for political prisoners in the Second World War. It dominates the north of the town, and draws tourists who come to stroll in its botanical garden, to fully explore this fort you can also visit the museum of arts and popular traditions and can also enjoy the beautiful view of the island.

10. Zoological and Botanical Park

This Zoological and Botanical Park is one of the most visited tourist attractions of the nation. People who climb to this 457m/1500ft hilltop garden on the banks of the Rivière aux Hérbes can witness a reserve of plants and animals of Guadeloupe at the Basse-Terre Zoological and Botanical Park. Numerous small animals, such as land turtles, raccoons and iguana live among the trees and bushes. This place is considered as one of the ideal place for family excursions.

11. Le Chameau

La Cahmeau is one of the most popular tourist attractions of the nation. It is said that to enjoy a truly exceptional panoramic view of the Les Saintes archipelago, walk up the tarmac path that heads steeply off the Pain-de-Sucre road and climbs Le Chameau, the highest point in Les Saintes (309m).

12. Pointe des Châteaux

Pointe des Châteaux is to be found at the eastern end of Grande-Terre, juts into the Atlantic with La Désirade and the islands of Petite-Terre and Marie-Galante in the background, it is considered one of the wonderful panorama in which this impressive rocky outcrop seems to stand towards the ends of the earth. It can be well accessed along a marked path, and also has a gentle coastline and excellent beaches around Pointe du Souffleur.

13. Colonial Buildings

One of the most impressive things to witness in Guadeloupe is the Colonial period architecture that can be witness throughout the town of Basse-Terre. Préfecture buildings, the Cours Nolivos townhouse, and the church of Notre-Dame du Mont-Carmel are some of the prominent examples of the colonial structures.

14. Archaeological Gardens

The Archaeological Gardens are some of the finest places to visit in Guadeloupe. At this garden people can witness a botanical garden built around a series of petroglyphs carved into boulders by the Arawaks in the 4th C. Guadeloupe is well known among archaeologists as home to the largest concentration of ancient inscribed stones in the world.

15. Carbet Waterfalls

The Carbet Waterfalls are some of the spectacular tourist attractions of the nation. These amazing falls were well described during the year 1493 by Christopher Colombus as “a major water source, drawing water from all sides of the mountain”. It is considered one of the ideal places for family picnicking in Guadeloupe. Their beauty remains untarnished against a stunning backdrop of wooded mountainside on the southeast slopes of La Soufrière. The three falls are not all equally accessible.

16. Pointe-a-Pitre

Pointe-a-Pitre is considered one of the top tourist destinations of the nations. Tourist here can find some of the beautiful attractions and a busy market town founded in 1654 which is still small enough to cross on foot in 15 minutes. Sightseers and photographers will surely like the nineteenth century structures, which line the older streets such as Rue Achille René-Boisneuf. There are many shopping opportunities and colorfully clad inhabitants.

17. Le Moule

Le Moule is Guadeloupe’s one of the oldest French settlements that dates back to the year 1696. Prior to this, it was the community of Amerindian community. You can also find some of the most interesting old buildings around the town square, including the 18th C neoclassic church. The port features the eighteenth century remains of a fort and customs house, destroyed by British invaders in 1809.

18. Ste Anne

At Ste Anne you can get a chance to witness a settlement dating to the seventeenth century. Until the year 1759, it was the capital of Grande-Terre. Today it is surrounded by ruins of sugar mills, which mark its past as an important sugar exporter. You will also find there a seaside promenade and a beach of fine white sand. A collection of shops sells handicrafts by local artists.

19. Cousteau Reserve

Cousteau Reserve is one of the famous places of Guadeloupe. It will be one of your delightful experiences. The sites are numerous: beginners will head for the Aquarium, Swimming Pool, Japanese Garden or Coral Garden; more experienced divers will venture to Pointe Carangue, Pointe Barracuda or the hot water outlets, all are simply amazing like the multicolored fish, teeming coral reefs, turtles, sponges.

20. Pain de Sucre

Pain de Sucre is to be found towards the west of Terre-de-Haut, plunging into the crystal waters of the Caribbean. This rounded mountain hides the pretty inlet of Petite Ans. It is considered a perfect location for swimming, chilling out and snorkeling.

21. Petite-Terre Islands

Petite-Terre islands are some of the most spectacular tourist destinations of the nation. It encompasses of the two uninhabited islands of Terre-de-Haut and Terre-de-Bas, they are popular as a nature reserve under the protection of the French forestry commission. These islands offer some of the finest attractions to the tourist and if they are lucky then they can also witness dolphins here, on a trip that goes as far as the lighthouse. Among the plentiful vegetation of the coastline is a thriving iguana population.

22. Plage du Souffleur

Plage du Souffleur is a wide-open beach backed with colorful flowering flamboyants, is on of the most magnificent tourist attractions of the nation. It is also among the most visited beaches in Guadeloupe by tourist as well as the locals. Nearby this beach you will find a Pointe d’Antigues, a scenic vantage point.

23. Zevallos

Zevallos is one of the interesting places to visit in Guadeloupe to be found in St François. It is a famous huge colonial mansion once part of one of the biggest sugar estates on Guadeloupe. It’s iron and brick exterior has been well restored and painted. Nearby is the cliff-top scenic point called Porte d’Enfer.

24. La Grivelière Plantation

La Griveliere Plantation is one of the famous places of the nation. It is said that along with sugar cane and bananas, coffee was the center product of this eighteenth century colonial society that was constructed on slave labor. In an excellent setting, La Grivelière is a quintessential coffee plantation complete with processing buildings, slaves’ quarters and the master’s residence, the latter remarkably well restored.

25. Deshaies Botanical Garden

Deshaies Botanical Garden is another famous tourist attraction of the nation. You will find here ferns, palms and cacti and each of them have their own avenue in this polychrome floral variety which is said to also has bougainvillea plus other species, their lively colors embellishing the deep green of the tropical plants. The park is among the beautiful and well maintained parks of Guadeloupe and considered an ideal place for family excursions.

26. La Grande Vigie

La Grande Vigie is the among the top tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. You will find here that the deep blue waters of the ocean are forced into by an 84m-high limestone cliff at Pointe de la Grande Vigie, marking Guadeloupe’s northernmost point. Once here you can witness the spectacular views of the region, taking in the islands of Montserrat (to the west), La Désirade (to the east), and even Antigua (to the north) on a clear day.

27. Porte d’Enfer

Porte d’Enfer is one of the finest natural spectacles of Grande-Terre, encompasses of 2 cliffs between which the emerald and azure waters of the sea roll in. it is one of the beautiful places to visit in Guadeloupe. The waves are calmed by the rocks at its entrance, making the waters of this sandy cove ideal for swimming. It is considered just a perfect location for a picnic or alternatively grilled dishes prepared in its straw huts.

28. Gosier Island

Goiser Island is one of the favorite tourist destinations of the nation. You will find it only at 5 min boat trip away from Datcha beach. This small island is a wonderful place to visit and also the perfect spot for divers. Here beginners can safely admire the coral reef’s fauna, while for more experienced divers there are sites further east towards Sainte-Anne (Le Cirque).

29. St-Antoine Market

St-Antoine Market is one of the Guadeloupe’s famous markets. The city of Pointe-à-Pitre is well known for its various markets, but it is the St-Antoine market that eclipses all others. It is the perfect example of all the island markets. You will find wide range of thins inside this huge market. The colourful fabrics worn by the locals add to the spectacle.

30. Saint-John Perse Museum

This museum is one of the famous places to visit in Guadeloupe. It presents to you some of the best artifacts of nineteenth century creole interior. It also offers an insight into the life of diplomat and poet Alexis Léger who was born on the island, Guadeloupe inspired him to write his Éloges, before publishing Anabase and many other works which in 1960 earned him the Nobel Prize for Literature. It occupies a remarkable house, once home to the Souque-Pagès family, with a metal structure by Gustave Eiffel and ornate Louisiana-style balconies.

31. Climbing La Soufrière

It is said that the very famous and well known path for ascending La Soufrière is the Chemin des Dames, starting from the old parking area at La Savane-à-Mulets. This stony way leads after 35min to the Faujas landslip, then to the Grande Faille, heading right to La Soufrière’s crater. It is indeed one of the most sought after tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. Descend along the same path; a 3hr round-trip (fit walkers only).

32. Terre-de-Bas Island

You will find the Terre-de-Bas Island towards the western part of Les Saintes and features little beautiful fishing villages swimming beaches and hiking trails. This amazing island is quite popular with the tourist. You need to spend only two hours to cross the island, which is considered one of the most natural and wild in the Guadeloupe archipelago.

33. Beauport – le Pays de la Canne

The Beauport sugar refinery that was closed during the year 1990, it was in operation since the year 1863. A huge cultural centre has replaced this sugar industry that brought prosperity to Port-Louis and characterized the whole island. The visit will provide you with all sort of enjoyable activities by means of interactive displays, audio-visual material, technical explanations, and a train trip on the old sugar cane railway.

34. St Claude

St Claude is one of the considerably attractive tourist attractions of Guadeloupe. Tourist will find here some of the best and huge colonial mansions, former homes of the fugitive French aristocratic families who founded sugar plantations during the eighteenth century. Hiking trails ascend the volcanic massif from here, and there are picturesque views to sea from the town’s 570m/1870ft height.

35. Jardin d’Eau

Youi will find Jardin d’Eau towards the eastern Basse-Terre. It is a large huge wooded park that is home some of the exotic species, colorful flowers, fragrant spices that are amazingly refreshed by lakes, pools and rivers. This region of Guadeloupe is one of the famous attractions to visit in Guadeloupe. It is just perfect for picnics in the open air after the fashion of the locals, canoe trips, walking its paths, or lunch in the restaurant serving ouassous. A visit to this park will be a delightful experience.

36. Anse de la Barque

Anse de la Barque is one of the fairly attractive tourist destinations of the nations. Here visitors can witness a beautiful bay completely occupied by coconut palms. Hikers can follow the Trace deCrétes from here, and sightseers can visit the quaint seaside hamlet of Marigot.

37. Rock Carvings Archaeological Park

Another famous place to visit in Guadeloupe is the Rock Carvings Archaeological Park. It actually recalls the first settlers of Guadeloupe, the Caribs and Arawak who were said to have arrived here long before the Europeans. Amidst luxuriant vegetation, the 1ha park is the site of rocks bearing carvings depicting human and animal forms. Dated to the 4C, they are the work of Arawak Indians. This park holds historical significance to the nation.

38. Basse-Terre Heritage Centre

Basse-Terre has been classified as an art and history town by France’s ministry of culture since 1995. It is situated in an amazing early 19 century bourgeois residence, the Maison du patrimoine (heritage centre) offers facilities ranging from conferences to the cultural – temporary exhibitions. It also organises three interesting tours of Basse-Terre, under the aegis of two inspiring guides. The entry to this heritage center is free of cost.

39. Route de la Traversée

The Route de la Traversée is one of the interesting places to visit in Guadeloupe. Tourist can indulge themselves in this fascinating world of huge trees (chestnuts, mahogany, figs…), sheltering luxuriant vegetation comprising thick ferns, ficus and other philodendron species. It is one of the most visited tourist attractions of the nation.

40. Parc des Mamelles

Parc des Mamelles is one of the fairly attractive tourist attractions of the nation. The park is an ideal spot for picnicking with the entire family and it offers the visitors a chance to learn more about the tropical forest’s diversity of plant species, and to see the island’s indigenous animal life in its natural environment. It is considered as the heart of the Guadeloupe natural park where visitors can also walk through the tree canopy on 20m-high rope bridges. The tour of this amazing park will be one of your memorable experiences.

41. Gardel Refinery

It is said that a last survivor from Grande-Terre’s golden age of sugar production from the late nineteenth century to the 1950s, the refinery allows visitors to better understand the sugar manufacturing process, from its raw cane state to the completed product. It will be your delightful experience that is guided by a professional who helps you in exploring the place better.

42. Les Grands Fonds

The Grands Fonds area to be found right at the centre of Grande-Terre lies inland from Sainte-Anne, Morne-à-l’Eau and Le Moule. It is considered a perfect example of agricultural Guadeloupe with fruit farms and other food producing plantations. Les Grands Fonds is an interesting place to visit. Deep valleys border the expanses of greenery and the roads wind constantly.

43. Bézard Windmill

The Becard Windmill is in operational from 1814 to 194 is one of the famous attractions of Guadeloupe. Its pointed roof, grinding mechanism and tiller allowing the sails to be in the wind, has been restored wholly. The most impressive visit to this old-style mill, recalling some 100-odd other such structures known as “sucrotes”, historically constructed on hurricane-resistant foundations, is overseen by a competent guide.

44. Murat Plantation

Château Murat is a Classical-style building standing on high ground that is housing a little archive on the history of Marie-Galante, it is considered a best-guess reconstruction of the original sugar estate residence, was constructed during the year 1960s as a luxury hotel, but the project was never seen through to completion. Sugar growing ceased in the late nineteenth century. Must visit the old livestock-powered mill, warehouses, sugar refinery chimney, windmill and you will surely like this little garden of aromatic and medicinal plants

45. Marie-Galante

Marie-Galante is located towards the east of Basse-Terre and it is named after one of the ships of Christopher Columbus, who discovered the island in 1493. It is a one of the prettiest places of Guadeloupe where the people still work mainly in the sugar cane industry; one of the popular tourist interests here are its superb beaches that are considered ideal for diving, especially around Saint-Louis and Grand-Bourg.

46. Pompierre Beach

The Pompierre Beach to be found towards northeast part of Terre-Haute is the best on the island and certainly one of the most visited tourist attractions of the country. You will find many rudimentary buildings stand in the shade of the coconut trees. The place that is so cool and calm sea is ideal for diving.

47. Casa An Tan Lontan

It is said that to know the real Guadeloupe you need to know its traditions and a chance to this lies under the aegis of a Guadeloupean who is passionate about his island and knows how to convey his enthusiasm. Meet Frantz Montella at Casa An Tan Lontan, see his carefully presented exhibition of artifacts. The visit to this place will surely be your richly informative experience.

48. Jardin Créole

The Jardin Creole is one of the prettiest and impressive gardens of Guadeloupe. It offers its visitors of Guadeloupe’s botanical treasures and their traditional applications. It is in effect an exhaustive inventory of creole medicinal plants, including the commonplace spices grown around every family home. The garden is delightfully beautiful to visit with the entire family.

49. Grand Cul-de-Sac Marin

You will find Grand Cul-de-Sac Marin located between Basse-Terre and Grande-Terre. It is a well maintained nature reserve comprises of both land and sea. Its boundary lays a rich marine environment from the coastal mangroves to the coral reef where visitors may get a chance to spot a turtle. Discover the mangrove swamps, visit the offshore islands and go snorkeling, courtesy of the boat trips that operate from Sainte-Rose.

50. Place du Champ d’Arbaud

Here visitor can witness Basse-Terre’s main square Place du Champ d’Arbaud and the adjoining park, Jardin Pichon towards itsthe south. Colonial buildings line the streets around, and a war memorial marks the center of the square.

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