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Explore Guadeloupe This Winter: Our 7-Day Basse-Terre Itinerary

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Follow a Basse-Terre, Guadeloupe itinerary for a week-long adventure in Guadeloupe, brimming with breathtaking natural vistas, cultural enrichment, and abundant relaxation moments. From kayaking through crystal clear waters to hiking up volcanic peaks, this itinerary provides a diverse range of activities to immerse you in the island’s beauty and culture. It’s your chance to discover one of the lesser-known islands of the Caribbean in all its splendor!

What is Basse-Terre, Guadeloupe known for?

une semaine à Basse-Terre itinerary - Guadeloupe
Kayaking in Réserve Cousteau

Basse-Terre, the western wing of the butterly-shaped main island, offers a stark contrast to its easterly neighbor, Grande-Terre.

While Grande-Terre is known for its capital city Pointe-à-Pitre, vast sugarcane fields, resort-lined white sand beaches, and lively towns like Sainte-Anne and Saint-François, Basse-Terre tells a different tale—one of lush rainforests, soaring mountains, and rich biodiversity. Its rugged coastline shelters quieter, more secluded beaches compared to its busier counterpart. What makes Basse-Terre special is its appeal to those seeking adventure and tranquility within nature’s embrace within Guadeloupe National Park. It’s an invitation to step off the beaten path and immerse oneself in the verdant, volcanic beauty that defines the Caribbean’s wild side.

Especially if you’re planning on taking day trips to Marie Galante or Les Saintes, two of Guadeloupe’s most stunning islets!

Day 1-2-3: In and around Bouillante

Plage de Malendure en Guadeloupe Malendure Beach
Plage de Malendure

Paddle to Réserve Cousteau

It’s time to bring out Steve Zissou to life! Embark on a tranquil kayaking adventure through the pristine waters of Réserve Cousteau, a marine sanctuary celebrated for its crystal-clear seas and astonishing marine biodiversity named after the famed marine explorer. Paddle to the captivating Ilets Pigeon, where you can indulge in free, self-guided snorkeling adventures, marveling at the incredible marine life and stunning coral formations.

Affordable kayak and snorkeling gear rentals are readily available right on Malendure beach. We recommend heading out in the afternoon to catch the best lighting for your aquatic adventure, making it a perfect experience for nature enthusiasts and underwater explorers alike.

Bathe in Cascade aux Écrevisses

Situated in Guadeloupe’s tropical rainforest on Basse-Terre Island, is a captivating waterfall known for its emerald-green pools and lush surroundings. Literally the “crayfish waterfall”, the falls tumble from a rocky ledge, creating an idyllic setting for swimming and picnicking. Cool off in the pristine waters while surrounded by the vibrant flora and fauna of the rainforest.

It’s a right along the way if you’re driving to the west coast of Basse-Terre coming in from Grande-Terre. A convenient and picturesque stop on this Basse-Terre itinerary!

Relax in Bouillante natural hot springs

Indulge in the natural warmth of Bain Chaud de Bouillante, a truly unique geothermal experience where the island’s volcanic activity takes an intriguing turn. Here, as the river flows right into the sea, creating a soothing blend of warm and therapeutic waters with a distinct sulfur aroma. Nestled in a lush, natural setting, these thermal baths provide a tranquil oasis for unwinding and immersing yourself in the revitalizing properties of the mineral-rich waters.

Futhermore, what makes this experience even more remarkable is that it plays a crucial role in Guadeloupe’s sustainability efforts. The nearby geothermal plant harnesses the energy from this geothermal spring to produce some of the island’s greenest energy.

Swim with turtles at Plage du Petit Malendure

Embark on an adventure to Plage du Petit Malendure, a distinctive destination known for its black sand and vibrant marine ecosystem. It truly is one of the most strikingly beautiful beaches in Guadeoupe! It’s also a haven for snorkeling and offers a remarkable opportunity to witness a range of marine life, including delicate and endangered turtles.

It is essential to remember that turtles are fragile creatures. It’s imperative not to touch, pursue, or in any way disturb them whenever you are close. Respecting their habitat is crucial for their survival and the preservation of this unique environment.

Sample chocolate at Maison du Cacao

Treat yourself to a delicious experience at Maison du Cacao! Discover the process from cacao bean to finished product and taste various chocolates. All the while, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for this sweet treat and its importance in Guadeloupe’s culture and economy.

Day 4-5: In and around Deshaies

Ilet Caret - Plongée en Guadeloupe diving sites
Diving in Ilets Caret

Sunbathe at Plage de Grande Anse

Saunter along the golden expanse of Plage de Grande Anse, adorned with charming coconut palms. However, it’s imperative to exercise prudence due to the beach’s powerful waves, which should not be underestimated. Nevertheless, this idyllic setting offers a serene haven for leisurely strolls, delightful picnics, or unwinding while the ocean’s cadence provides a soothing backdrop. Notably, it’s also one of the finest spots in Guadeloupe to witness breathtaking sunsets.

Explore Deshaies Botanical Garden

Roam the tranquil paths of Jardin Botanique de Deshaies, a lush sanctuary of tropical plants, flowers, and wildlife. An especially enriching addition to your 7-day Basse-Terre itinerary! This botanical garden offers a peaceful and educational stroll, allowing you to immerse yourself in the island’s biodiversity. Enjoy the vibrant colors, exotic species, and the soothing ambiance of this natural haven.

Snorkel around Ilet Blanc and Ilet Caret

Embark on an exhilarating snorkeling expedition around the enchanting Ilet Blanc and Ilet Caret. Here, you’ll immerse yourself in the crystal-clear Caribbean waters and discover a vibrant underwater realm. Delight in the awe-inspiring marine life and intricate coral formations as you gracefully glide through these pristine waters.

Most excursions conveniently depart from Sainte-Rose harbor. Numerous operators have set up shop here, allowing you to book your adventure on the spot.

Day 6-7: In and around Saint-Claude

Chutes du Carbet - - randonnée en Guadeloupe hiking
Chute du Carbet

Trek to Chutes du Carbet

Ascend through lush rainforest terrain to the awe-inspiring Chutes du Carbet, a series of towering waterfalls. Opt for Chute du Carbet 2 if you’re seeking a more manageable adventure or if you’re not too keen on tackling La Soufrière hike.

This easy, leveled trail allows you to revel in the spectacular views of the cascading waters and the surrounding tropical landscape. As you progress along the path, the resounding roar of the 100-meters tall waterfall and the rejuvenating mist provide a truly invigorating experience amidst the grandeur of nature.

Soak in Bains des Amours

Submerge yourself in the soothing embrace of Bains des Amours, an oasis of natural thermal springs. Nestled amidst the verdant tropical forest, this hidden gem comprises three cascading natural thermal pools and one artificial pool. Surrounded by lush greenery, these mineral-rich waters create a serene haven for relaxation and rejuvenation. Take a moment to unwind and immerse yourself in the tranquil environment, allowing nature’s therapeutic touch to soothe both your body and mind.

Visit Pointe Du Vieux Fort

Discover the captivating viewpoint at Pointe Du Vieux Fort, celebrated as one of Guadeloupe’s premier sunset spots. Especially when enjoyed from the Le Phare restaurant‘s refined yet casual terrace, with a delicious planteur cocktail in hand. You’ll be treated to panoramic vistas of the Caribbean Sea and the rugged Basse-Terre coastline.

Tour Boulogne rum distillery

Embark on an immersive journey through Guadeloupe’s rich rum heritage with a visit to the historic Bologne rum distillery. It is stunningly nestled on the lush cane plantation slopes of La Soufrière volcano. Established in 1887, it proudly holds the distinction of being the oldest distillery in Guadeloupe. Discover the art of rum-making, from sugarcane cultivation to aging. Also sample a variety of rums to enrich your understanding of this Caribbean tradition. Definitely one of the top things to do in Guadeloupe!

Delve into the captivating history of rum in Guadeloupe, which traces its roots back to the colonial era. Then, sugarcane plantations like the one surrounding the Bologne distillery were the economic backbone. The distillery’s enduring legacy stands as a testament to its pivotal role in shaping the island’s identity, making it a cherished part of Guadeloupean history.

Hike La Soufrière volcano

Ascend the challenging trails of  still active La Soufrière volcano, the highest peak in the Lesser Antilles. While clear viewing days are a rare occurrence, typically in the single digits each year, the journey remains exceptionally worthwhile.

However, caution is advised, particularly in the final hour or so of the hike. Slippery grounds and strong winds, coupled with increasingly treacherous terrain, can present challenges that demand careful navigation.

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