Like the rest of the Caribbean you’ll find miles and miles of sandy, white beaches, coconut trees and everything else you’d expect from a tropical paradise here. But there’s so much more to the islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique. The impact from French culture and cuisine has left these tropical gems with that certain “je ne sais quoi” – those extra little details that add to a truly special experience.
Located between Antigua and Dominica, this stunning French archipelago and premier island hopping destination is comprised of 5 unique islands; Grande Terre, Basse Terre, Marie Galante, Les Saintes and La Desirade, closely strung together by beautiful waters and efficient ferry services, flamboyant preserved nature, exquisite cuisine, a diverse cultural heritage, "Art de Vivre", and more than 250 sun-warmed beaches in shades of white, black, gold, ochre and pink sand.
A friendly rainforest and a paradise for green activities
The Guadeloupe National Park located in Basse-Terre is the largest rainforest of the Lesser Antilles and recognized for its biological diversity as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve since 1992.
The forest offers 256 miles of marked hiking trails and more than 20 waterfalls, including the spectacular three tumble "Carbet Falls". Active visitors can try rappelling, jeep safaris or even climbing to the summit of La Soufriere, Guadeloupe Islands’ mildly active volcano, affectionately referred as La Grande Dame by Guadeloupeans.
Island hop to Les Saintes
Island hopping is a must when you go to the Guadeloupe Islands. Located a short 20 minutes ferry ride away from Basse-Terre, a visit to Les Saintes is simply not to be missed.
Discover Terre de Haut with its bistro lined streets and a stunning bay which is included in the Most Beautiful Bays in the World Club. The culinary specialty of Les Saintes is a product of passion: do not leave without having savored the traditional “Tourment d’Amour”, the lover’s sweet cake treat - a perfect way to top off a romantic escape.
Jacques Cousteau Underwater Reserve
Go dive into the beautiful coral and rock pools of Jaques Cousteau Underwater Reserve, by many regarded as one of the world's top diving areas. You can snorkel along the shallow water reefs, scuba dive or view the coral from a glass-bottom boat.
There’s also a statue of Cousteau 15 feet down. Want some good luck, perhaps? Then all you have to do is swim down and touch his head.
Once at the beach, you will understand why the Arawak Indians called Guadeloupe "karukera", which means “island of beautiful waters”.
Crystal-clear waters and exciting water sports await along dazzling beaches of either black, golden, pinkish or white sand.
Premier dining experiences
There’s simply so much to pick from that it would be unfair to name just a few restaurants. With a rich culinary heritage and over 200 restaurants throughout the islands, Guadeloupe is a premier dining destination.
The local cuisine is French and Creole, but you’ll find restaurants and bars offering several international cuisines as well.
More travel tips and inspiration
The Guadeloupe Islands have so much more to offer. Get more inspiration, discover the beauty of the islands and plan your trip at guadeloupe-islands.com.
The island of Martinique is located in the heart of the Caribbean, with a varied picturesque landscape. From the rain forests and exotic black sand beaches in the north to the beautiful beaches in the south, Martinique offers something for both beach lovers and the adventurous kind.
Saint-Pierre and Mount Pelée
Saint-Pierre is known as the Pompeii of Martinique, and was rebuilt after an eruption of Mount Pelée in 1902.
When you visit this seaside town you’ll get a stunning view of the sea and the mountains, as well as the destructive – and scenic path of the volcano which still has some activity today.
Boasting a classic Caribbean scenery with calm waters, soft, white sand and arching coconut palms, no wonder this is one of the most popular beaches of Martinique.
This one kilometre-stretch of coast is found just south of the village Sainte-Anne at the southern tip of the island.
Martinique is renowned for producing some of the best rums in the world. These rums have even been awarded the “appellation d’origine controlee”, a quality mark previously reserved only for French wines and cheeses.
You’ll find rum distilleries throughout the island, and all of them welcome visitors.
Balata Botanical Gardens
The Balata Botanical Gardens near Fort-de-France feature more than 3,000 species of tropical plants and flowers as well as ponds punctuated with lilies and lotus blossoms.
Raised wooden rope bridges suspended amid the treetops give visitors an aerial view over the lush gardens while hummingbirds buzz in the fragrant air.
Martinique counts more than 400 restaurants that range from high-end gourmet to snack stands.
The abundance of both French and Creole restaurants makes Martinique not only a tropical paradise, but a paradise for foodies as well.
More travel tips and inspiration
Nice to know
- Both Guadeloupe and Martinique are overseas departments of France.
- EU immigration rules apply, meaning US visitors don't need a visa when travelling for tourist purposes and stay for less than 90 days.
- The offical language is French.
- The currency used is the Euro. US dollars are not accepted in shops, but some stores and many restaurants take credit cards.
- The voltage is 220 AC, so don't forget to bring your travel adapter!