To see each "wing" of the butterfly, you'll need to budget at least one day. They are connected by a bridge, and Grande-Terre has pretty villages along its south coast and the spectacular Pointe des Châteaux. You can see the main sights in Pointe-à-Pitre in a half day. Touring the rugged, mountainous Basse-Terre is a challenge. If time is a problem, head straight to the west coast; you could easily spend a day traveling its length, stopping for sightseeing, lunch, and a swim. You can make day trips to the islands, but an overnight or more works best. Leave your heavy luggage in the baggage room of your "mainland" hotel and take a small bag on the ferry.

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  • 1. Aquarium de la Guadeloupe


    Unique in the Antilles, this aquarium in the marina near Pointe-à-Pitre is a good place to spend an hour. Its motto is "Visit the sea." The...Read More

  • 2. Cathédrale de St-Pierre et St-Paul

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    If you like churches, then make a pilgrimage to the imposing Cathédrale de St-Pierre et St-Paul, built in 1807. Although it has been battered...Read More

  • 3. Ft. Fleur d'Épée


    The main attraction in Bas-du-Fort is this fortress, built between 1759 and 1763. It hunkers down on a hillside behind a deep moat. The fort...Read More

  • 4. Gosier


    Gosier was still a tiny village in the 1950s, a simple stopping place between Pointe-à-Pitre and Ste-Anne. However, it grew rapidly in the 1960s...Read More

  • 5. L'Autre Bord


    The waves on this Atlantic beach give the long expanse of sand a wild look. The beach is protected by an extensive coral reef, which makes it...Read More

  • 6. Le Moule


    On the Atlantic coast, and once the capital city of Guadeloupe, this port city of 24,000 has had more than its share of troubles: it was bombarded...Read More

  • 7. Morne-à-l'Eau


    This agricultural town of about 16,000 people has an amphitheater-shape cemetery, with black-and-white-checkerboard tombs, elaborate epitaphs...Read More

  • 8. Musée Camélia Costumes et Traditions


    This museum is a labor of love by its creators, and seeing the dress of black, white, and métisseé (mixed-race, or "maroon") societies is...Read More

  • 9. Musée Schoelcher


    Established in a Colonial-style building, Musée Schoelcher celebrates Victor Schoelcher, an abolitionist from Alsace who fought against slavery...Read More

  • 10. Musée St-John Perse


    Those with a strong interest in French literature and culture (not your average sightseer) will want to see the Musée St-John Perse, which is...Read More

  • 11. Plage Caravelle


    Just southwest of Ste-Anne is one of Grande-Terre's longest and prettiest stretches of sand, the occasional dilapidated shack notwithstanding...Read More

  • 12. Plage de la Chapelle à Anse-Bertrand


    If you want a delightful day-trip to the northern tip of Grande-Terre, aim for this spot, one of the loveliest white-sand beaches, whose gentle...Read More

  • 13. Plage du Helleux


    Except on Sunday, this long stretch of wild beach—framed by dramatic cliffs—is often completely deserted in the morning or early afternoon....Read More

  • 14. Pointe des Châteaux


    A National Grand Site, the island's easternmost point offers a breathtaking view of the Atlantic crashing against huge rocks, carving them into...Read More

  • 15. Pointe Tarare


    This secluded strip just before the tip of Pointe des Châteaux is the island's only nude beach. (Technically, this is not allowed by French...Read More

  • 16. Port Louis


    This fishing village of about 7,000 people is best known for Le Soufleur Plage. It was once one of the island's prettiest beaches, but it has...Read More

  • 17. St-François


    This was once a simple little village, primarily involved with fishing and harvesting tomatoes. The fish and tomatoes are still here, as are...Read More

  • 18. Ste-Anne


    In the 18th century this town, 8 miles (13 km) east of Gosier, was a sugar-exporting center. Sand has replaced sugar as the town's most valuable...Read More

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