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Welcome to Grande-Terre, the smaller of the 2 butterfly wings that make up Guadeloupe. Although it’s flatter than its lowland twin, it’s no less colorful! Often nicknamed the little Brittany of the Antilles because of its abrupt cliffs that resemble those of the Breton peninsula, Grande-Terre is ideal for morning daydreaming. Start your morning with an underwater excursion on the islet of Le Gosier before spending a lazy afternoon on magnificent white-sand beaches dappled with shade. At the market, let yourself by amazed by the spectacle of the multi-colored stalls, then savor Creole know-how at a dinner on the Riviera.
Comprising one of the two wings that make up the Guadeloupe butterfly, Basse-Terre is dominated by the majestic silhouette of its Grande Dame, La Soufrière volcano, which rises 1467m from the tropical forest of Guadeloupe National Park.
Walk among the treetops on rope bridges, or travel through time by journeying across Basse-Terre, where four centuries of history await you. Beaches, lush greenery, waterfalls... Basse-Terre invites you on a natural adventure!
The first land discovered by Christopher Columbus during his second voyage on November 2, 1493, La Désirade is a tiny island shaped like the upside-down keel of a canoe, located east of Grande-Terre along the Pointe des Châteaux. Timeless La Désirade moves to the rhythm of the waves; nothing seems to disturb its peaceful atmosphere!
The island owes its name to the relief felt by the members of Columbus’s crew, who – upon glimpsing their first dry land since leaving the Canary Islands 21 days earlier – cried out, “Oh, island we so desire!”
Initially christened “Los Santos” by Christopher Columbus and known as Lésent in Creole, Les Saintes – the “Gibraltar of the Antilles” – didn’t become French until October 18, 1648. Located to the south of Guadeloupe, the archipelago of Les Saintes is famed for its beauty and the incredible clarity of its water!
It consists of nine tiny islands, but only two are inhabited, Terre-de-Haut and Terre-de-Bas. The other seven are uninhabited: Cabrit, Grand-Îlet, La Coche, Les Augustins, La Redonde, Le Pâté, Les Roches Percées. Once the site of bloody battles between the French and English fleets, Les Saintes now offers an idyllic setting for a tranquil holiday.
Lying 30 km off the southeastern coast of Guadeloupe, Marie-Galante is also known as “the big pancake” thanks to its round shape. It’s the third largest island by size in the French Antilles. It professes to be the birthplace of sugar cane.. and rum!
Famed for its rum since the 18thth century, Marie-Galante – then known as the “island of 100 mills” – still boasts vast fields of sugar cane that continue to occupy most of its land.