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Guadeloupe island

Ultimate guide (November 2019)
Guadeloupe is a French overseas territory in the Caribbean. It is common to believe, that there are no good beaches in Guadeloupe. This is not true! In fact, great beaches can be found on both main islands, as well as on the nearby small islands. Please, take a look on our beach project to see many interesting spots. On the other side, there is no any notable historical attractions in Guadeloupe. There is also no any kind of luxury - unlike some other Caribbean islands. Most tourists are French elderly couples with a limited travel budget. So, this is rather a low key resort destination. Shore and seabed: sand, stones. [edit]

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This island ranks #21 of the "Best islands in the Caribbean"
Rating: 8.5 - 36 votes [vote]
Coordinates: 16.197894, -61.464485
See also: Best beaches in Guadeloupe

Hotels [edit]

As for the hotels, Guadeloupe is quite a budget country. For US$50-60 per night, it is possible to find a good room almost everywhere.

There is also a wide choice of luxury accommodation options. But anyway, true upscale beachfront properties are not common in Guadeloupe.

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How to get there [edit]

Fly to Guadeloupe international airport (PTP). Please note, that return flight from Europe starts from as low as US$240. Read here for details.

There is almost no public transport on the main island. So you should either rent a car, - or choose carefully the location of your hotel to stay there all the time.

If you still want to try buses, it is possible to watch all possible routes here: http://thebusschedule.com/EN/gp/index.php. This is a good web site, though some functionality is slightly unclear. Move your mouse over the square icon in the upper right corner of the map, and you will see a list of routes with clickable checkboxes.

Public transportation in Guadeloupe is a pain, while taxi is expensive. For example, a journey from airport to the popular resort town of St. Anne is about 70 euros (taxi meter).

So most of tourists take a rental car. The parking is usually just a side of a narrow road. If you leave a car near some wild beach, you may find that all four wheels were stolen. However, this does not happen very often.

Public transportation system consists of private minibuses, as well as orange Karulis buses, white buses and yellow buses. They claim waiting time of about 20-30 minutes. However, in reality, you may wait an hour or even more. In addition, buses and minibuses don't operate after 6pm, on Saturday after noon and on Sunday. The bus driver may stop for a lunch right in the middle of the route, he may not reach the final destination or turn off the official route. This is quite typical for Guadeloupe.

Hitchhiking is possible and in most cases will be free. But like the bus, it's very unreliable. Sometimes you will be picked up by the first car, when you just walk along the road. But another time, you may vote for a long time, but nobody will stop.

Ferries to smaller islets (Marie-Galante, Petite Terre, Les Saintes, La Desirade) are frequent, but not cheap. A round trip is about US$50-70. Please note, that there are no regular direct connection between these small islands.

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When to go [edit]

High season in the Caribbean is usually from November to May. The rest of time, it is a hurricane season with most eastern beaches being covered by smelly seaweed. Fortunately, Guadeloupe has several good beaches on the west coast, so you will also find your personal paradise in the low season.

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Useful information [edit]

Grande Terre is the main (east) island of Guadeloupe. It has the best beaches in the country, as well as international airport. However, the backyards of the island are rather depressing. You feel more like in Africa, but not like France. This is the reason, why most of tourists don't like Guadeloupe. But unlike the popular belief, the beaches are great in Grande Terre! There are also some notable attractions inside the island (if you take a guided tour).

Basse Terre is another main (west) island of Guadeloupe. There are just a few beaches being located mostly in the north-west of the island. Strange, but it seems that locals live much better in comparison with those at Grande Terre. The backyards are quite upscale with villas, luxury cars and cozy streets along the beaches. By the way, some beaches are superb being of a World class level. In addition, Basse Terre island has infinity sized Carrefour Destreland hypermarket (not operating on Sunday afternoons). So this is a must destination!

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