Are you in Guadeloupe for one day? I have the perfect itinerary for you. Even if I definitely recommend spending more than one day on the butterfly island, there are still many incredible things to do in Guadeloupe. Let’s see the 5 most unusual and adventurous activities.
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Become one with Nature at Cascade des Ecrevisses
The Cascade des Ecrevisses (Crayfishes Cascade), is an idyllic waterfall in the middle of Basse Terre. It’s an ideal pause in the lush vegetation of Guadeloupe’s National Park. To reach the Cascade des Ecrevisses you will have to walk about 400 meters on a paved trail. Access is very easy for families with strollers as well as people in wheelchairs.
Don’t forget to bring your swimsuit! The water is very fresh, and if you have enough time for a pause you can spend a few relaxing minutes there.
Explore the Morne-a-l’eau cemetery
I know. You are thinking what the h*ck, a cemetery?! And yet this is a cemetery like no other. Built on a hill, Morne-a-l’eau cemetery looks like a small town. In fact, the tombs are very similar to houses with their terraces and all. But the uniqueness of the place is the tile decoration. Looking like chessboards the walls are tiled in black and white.
Even if it may look surprising, these decorations are still common in the French West Indies (Guadeloupe and Martinique) as well as French Guiana too. Middle-class people started to use simple tiles for their tombs, as a compromise between a mound of dirt and the luxurious marble tombs. The more used colors were black and white tiles. But through the years more colors were gradually added. Always respecting the checkerboard pattern.
Enjoy the beaches at le Gosier
Of course, we are in the Carribean, what’s one of the best things to do? Enjoying incredible beaches! And le Gosier has indeed some of the best in its surroundings. Before heading to the next stop, enjoy some time in the turquoise waters. This is also your best chance to eat at one of the delicious restaurants in the area. The fish is straight out of the sea!
Search for this beach on your GPS: Plage de Petit Havre.
The Petit Havre (Small Harbor) Beach is a small secluded stretch of coastline well known for its beauty. The area is shadowed by palms and other trees, and you will see many iguanas and birds. Petite Havre waters are calm and not deep, just perfect to relax. To complete the scenery you will see the mountains of Basse Terre in the background.
Note: The parking is quite small. So don’t hesitate either to park your car on the side of the road if you can’t find a spot or to come early in the morning.
Dive into the crystalline waters of Saint Anne
Saint Anne is one of the most beautiful beaches in Guadeloupe. White sands, crystalline waters, and fish schools make it an unforgettable destination when visiting the butterfly island. Order a beer or cocktail from one of the many kiosks and relax while admiring the view of Basse Terre mountains on your left. The water of Saint Anne beach is surprisingly calm and warm. That’s because the sea level is very low for many meters. You can judge by yourself, the picture below was taken about 40 meters from the shore!
As it’s one of Guadeloupe’s most touristic spots you will find many people in the afternoon. If you prefer to avoid crowds, try to get there as soon as possible in the morning.
Discover Pointe-à-Pitre and the Memorial ACTe
Pointe-à-Pitre is a chaotic large city at the crossroad where Basse Terre and Grand Terre meet. The city itself isn’t particularly interesting, a concrete jungle clogged with traffic. Although, nearby the harbor area there is a monument that is absolutely worth seeing to understand the history of this island and the Caribbean in general. It’s the Memorial ACTe.
Founded in 2015, the Memorial is also known as the Caribbean Centre of Expressions and Memory of the Slave Trade and Slavery. As its name says, it narrates the story of slavery in the Caribbean from antiquity to modern days. The MACTe is also one of the most important museums about slavery in the world. It’s definitely interesting if you are passionate about history.
A final thought
From pristine beaches to lush nature, there are many incredible things to do in Guadeloupe. Don’t let the strict schedule discourage you. Prepare your planning in advance, and it will be perfect!
If you are exploring Guadeloupe on a cruise in the Caribbean, once you will get down from your boat there are many organized tours like this one. Their main goal is to show you the beauty of their island in one day. But you can feel free to negotiate the itinerary as you please. Normally these kinds of tours are tailored for groups of between 6 and 10 people (the cost is between 30 and 50€ per person). Unless you want to pay more for private tours. Are you looking for more information about the Caribbean? You will find more islands to explore on the dedicated page.
Check out more one-day excursions on Viator.
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