Guadeloupe by Sailboat
Why go on a sailing holiday to Guadeloupe? There are many reasons that make this island, the largest of the Lesser Antilles, the ideal destination for the sailing cruise traveler. Guadalupe is actually the geological union of two completely different islands, separated by a navigable channel 5 km long and no more than 200m wide. The western part (Basse Terre) is mountainous and ovoid, dominated by the volcanic massif La Soufrière, of about 1500m. The coasts are high, with the presence of some villages (and curiously the administrative capital is here in a small town of 10,000 inhabitants) and several sheltered inlets that offer the possibility of anchoring. The interior is almost uninhabited, characterized by beautiful forests and waterfalls. The eastern part (Grande Terre) is the most densely populated: near the canal is the largest city, Pointe-à-Pitre with the airport and several modern equipped marinas on the south coast, including Bas du Fort where the our charters. A succession of postcard golden beaches, pleasant bays to anchor, diving areas (including the Cousteau underwater park), coral reefs, islets with a lighthouse. When the island was discovered by Columbus, it was called by the indigenous Caribs, Karukera (Island of beautiful waters). In 1635 it became a French colony and was exploited, a common fate in the Caribbean islands, for local products (especially tobacco and sugar cane) and for the slave trade. Today it is a pearl of tourism and an ecologically protected territory (Guadalupe National Park in the hinterland and several marine parks). Visits to the villages and to Pointe-à-Pitre are a must. The narrow streets, the colorful houses, the open-air markets. You will find a rich Creole culture, crafts, cuisine (shellfish and tuna, fried bananas) and the warm welcome of the locals. The Guadalupe sailing cruise allows you to circumnavigate the island, to the west Deshaies and Pidgeon Island. Then the great bays and beaches of Grande Terre: Ilet a Gosier, the white beach of St. Anne, up to St. Francois and the rocky promontory, the extreme eastern point. If you choose Guadeloupe boat rental you can visit the nearby islands Desirade, Galante, and Îles des Saintes, always part of the archipelago, to enjoy an unspoiled seascape. You can also go south until you reach the wild Dominica (about 30 miles) and the famous Martinique (about 80), where you will find equipped and modern ports where you can stop in peace and then return to Guadeloupe.