What to do on Grande-Terre | 7 things not to miss

What to do on Grande-Terre | 7 things not to miss

What to do on Grande Terre ? The Guadeloupe is a pretty butterfly with two contrasting wings. Basse-Terre is known for its unspoilt nature, while Grande Terre is famous for its beaches and water sports. Close-up of Grande-Terre’s attractions with our top 7 things to do on the east wing of the Grande-Terre archipelago. Guadeloupe.



Welcome to Grande-Terre in Guadeloupe for a journey of contrasts and emotions. It’s true that Grande-Terre has many assets to offer, including white sandy beaches, translucent waters, steep cliffs and hidden coves, as well as an astonishing variety of landscapes and atmospheres that will draw you into this tropical paradise. You’ll fall under the spell of the Lesser Antilles and the West Indies!

Feel free to consult all our articles on Guadeloupeto help you plan your trip:


What are the 7 things you shouldn’t miss on your trip to Grande-Terre?



And yes, it’s not the first thing you think of when you discover Guadeloupe for the first time. But let’s start with a cultural touch. Pointe-à-Pitre may not be a city of great architectural interest, but it is nonetheless brimming with creative and artistic energy, as demonstrated by its street art.

Every 2 years takes place the World Kreyol Festival, a creative week that brings color and soul back to the city as the island abounds with talented artists. The principle is simple: the city offers a wall or a house, and the artist proposes a creation. And to discover all these original and colourful works, we opted for a tour with the company « Pousse Pousse cab».

A small local company offering original tours aboard large tuk-tuk vehicles for 4 to 6 people. Guided by Loïc, we set off to explore the colorful streets of Pointe à Pitre where graffiti and murals of the city follow one another, a true open-air museum! And his eye is very useful for seeing the subtleties of some creations and understanding the meaning of others, all without having to walk through the city in the sweltering mercury and high ambient humidity of August.

The tour starts in the morning, lasts around 3 hours and ends at an atypical, totally underground venue. Opposite the town hall, a real estate project that had remained at the shell stage due to financial mismanagement has been taken over by the enthusiasm of this effervescent artistic creativity. Artists take it in turns to propose works on the building’s interior walls. Authorized by the city, this place deserves to be given a real status in order to perpetuate it over time.

Street art in Pointe à Pitre is a visit not to be missed! We were able to discover many portraits of famous personalities, as well as small masterpieces hidden in the old town. At the end of the tour, we had lunch at a small local restaurant “at the drop of a hat ” to the market.

→ Duration: 2h30 to 3h

→ Departure every day (except Sunday) at 9:30 am and 2:30 pm.

→ 6 people maximum per tuktuk


➡️ Check availability and book street art here




Grande terre is sometimes nicknamed « Little Brittany in the West Indies ». You’ll get a good idea of what’s on offer by taking a stroll around the Pointe des Châteaux.

Located to the east of the island of Grande-Terre, on the Saint-François side, this peninsula overlooking the Atlantic Ocean is often swept by strong winds that can, at times, become violent. The walk is fairly short and the climb up to “La Grande croix “very affordable since the path is only a little over 500 meters along a seaside path. (allow about 15 minutes for the climb)

We did it without any problem with Gabriel on his back, slipped into the baby carrier. Make sure you bring a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen to protect yourself and your little one, even on cloudy days! At the end of your short hike, you can buy drinks or coconut sorbets to quench your thirst in the wooden guinguettes and stalls.

From here, you’ll have a fine view of Grande Terre and, in fine weather, of the island of La Désirade which faces 8 kilometers offshore.On the way back down, take a stroll along the “Grandes Salines “but if you feel like it, beware of swimming, as the currents can be very strong and therefore dangerous here.

Did you know ? From December to the end of May, with peaks in March/April, it is possible to see humpback whales as they come to warm waters to breed. Pointe des Châteaux is therefore a very attractive spot. Sitting up high, you can listen to and contemplate their breaths from a few metres above. In the mornings and evenings, the sun’s rays are oblique and the wind is more visible. You may also see repeated jumps, caudal or pectoral fin snaps. These giants are sometimes very very close to the shores of the Baie des Châteaux or in the Baie de Moule.

Take the Pointe des Châteaux walk before 11 a.m. to escape the heat and the crowds..

→ Coconut sorbets cost 3€ and homemade guava or pineapple jams are available for 5€.




Another way to discover the beauty of the archipelago is by air. A curiosity of the island, you’ll find gyrocopters here. But what exactly is it? At first glance, this rather strange-looking machine is nothing other than the ancestor of the helicopter. It’s to helicopters what microlights are to airplanes. To discover the north of Grande-Terre and the islands opposite, there are several routes ranging from 30 minutes to 1h30.

Departing from the Saint-Francois aerodrome, Fréderic, director ofULM Archipelago offers you various itineraries from Pointe des Châteaux to the Petite-Terre island reserve, via La Désirade and the rest of Grande-Terre. I chose to test the longest route to give you my opinion on this experience, a first for me.

I’m not going to lie to you, but when Frédéric, the pilot, told me that the weather was great up there and that he’d opened the gyrocopter to take full advantage of the view, I was a little liquefied! But Frédéric is a very reassuring person who put me at ease throughout the flight. I think what scared me most was the turbulence! I’ve never been a big fan of turbulence in a plane, so in a gyrocopter, I’ll leave you to imagine. However, to my surprise, once I’d settled in, I didn’t really feel anything. There were a few windy passages where I did indeed feel a bit sick to my stomach, but once again Frédéric reassured me by explaining what he was doing each time via the microphone provided.

The flight begins with the flight to Pointe des Châteaux, then on to Petite Terre and or La Désirade depending on the weather. At the microphone, Frédéric relates some very interesting historical and cultural information on the various points you see. The view of Petite Terre from above is so incredible, you can see the beauty of the translucent lagoons in an infinite range of blues, as well as the famous pass where turtles, rays and sharks swim. The relief of the island of La Désirade is unique, a truly verdant setting, resembling that of Jurassic Park! With green everywhere and steep cliffs jutting out into the sea, it’s a truly breathtaking sight!

I can only advise you to try out this 1.5-hour flight to really appreciate these different aspects. breathtaking landscapes. A word of advice: if you want to take good photos, try to Book your flight around 12 p.m. for the best light up there.

If, like us, you’re coming with a baby or small children, you can wait your turn, seated in the shade of a small table. It’s important to remember that everyone takes a turn, so there’s no point in arriving too early, because you’ll just have to wait like everyone else. Frédéric is in high demand because he’s professional and doesn’t take flight after flight like his competitors. In my opinion, this is a guarantee of quality not to be overlooked when making your reservation.


➡️ Check availability and pre-book your gyrocopter here


The Pointe des Châteaux



In our opinion, the discovery of a destination is inconceivable without a culinary discovery. And what better way to find out more about this destination than with an introduction to Guadeloupean cuisine. I’ve often noticed that a country’s history is best understood through its cuisine, and this is even more obvious in the West Indies.

Let’s meet Maggy, a charismatic and smiling woman, in Sainte-Anne on Grande-Terre, for a little tour of the market. It’s an opportunity to discover together and taste some less familiar products before going into the kitchen. At times like this, I love observing the locals and discovering their little habits. Maggy is a real character, and you’ll let her guide you through the preparation of the recipe, collecting her cooking secrets in the process. For us, it was cod accras, chicken colombo and banana flambéed with vanilla and rum. Dishes from the Tamul culture of the Indians who came to work in Guadeloupe. Our cooking classes are perfect for beginners and advanced cooks alike, as they’re an introduction to Creole cuisine first and foremost!

Maggy is a generous woman, who knows perfectly how to adapt to her audience and offer you a menu that suits you and is close to your heart. What I really liked was that she kept to the real traditions of West Indian cooking, that she quickly showed you how to do it, but it was up to you to cut and cook! She’ll make sure everything’s done right, giving you her little tips and telling you stories. It’s a fun course and a real exchange that awaits you. We also loved the setting in which she gives her courses: a cozy little nest, a house where you feel on vacation and very welcome.

She offers this introduction to cooking as well as other activities at the Nid Kreyol, a residence it owns, offering 5 functional villas with a shared swimming pool. It’s a superb place for cooking, but also for relaxing. I would have loved to have discovered the Ka Boukan evening, an initiation to the traditional “Gwo Ka” dance from Guadeloupe. A show that can be booked in advance to immerse yourself in deep Guadeloupe.




North of Grande-Terre, from Port-Louis to the Pointe de la grande Vigie, a wilder coastline awaits you, or at least a coastline that’s a little wilder. much less frequented. It’s a real coup de coeur for us!

But if you choose to stay on land, you can enjoy a nice ride from Port-Louis to Anse-Bertrand.

Among the highlights of this coastline are the plage du souffleur in Port-Louis. One of the prettiest beaches on Grande Terre, overlooking the mountains of Basse-Terre. A beach with calm waters, ideal for safe swimming, but beware of mosquitoes at the end of the day. We found a great restaurant there, and we still remember it! The setting was perfect and the food delicious.

As diving enthusiasts, this is where we discovered our first seabed off the coast of Port-Louis. We dived in with Eden diving, a PADI club run by an absolutely friendly Frenchman. Here, you can makebeautiful dives, thanks to the relief of the seabed offering arches, small canyons and a rich variety of species. Among the most emblematic are rays (eagles and stingrays), barracudas, lobsters, turtles (hawksbill and green) and more. It’s also less crowded with travelers, so it’s not a factory, and you can dive in peace and quiet! Expect to pay around €45/p for exploration diving.

Another interesting beach at Anse-Bertrand is the La Chapelle beach. An atypical white-sand beach with coconut palms dotted around and greenery scattered here and there. Between these two beaches, there’s a lovely 9km hike through a swampy mangrove area with several species of mangrove.

A little further north of Anse Bertrand, you’ll find the pretty anse Laborde beach perfect for swimming and lounging on the sand at sunset. There is also letrou at Man Lwi, a tiny secret beach where thehe access is slightly steep, but the small beach offered by this cove is atypical. A very pleasant beach surrounded by cliffs, less crowded, for a mid-day or afternoon swim. We didn’t have Gabriel that day, but you can only get there with the baby carrier. The best time to discover the hole at Man Lwi, enjoy the peace and quiet and take some nice photos with the right light, is best in the morning and early afternoon. At the end of the day, the sun sets behind the mountain and the cove darkens.

Finally, a little further north, the more sporty among you can discover the beach of l’Anse Castalia. A very pretty wild spot, which must be earned and requires a few precautions when approaching. We didn’t have time to do it, as the path is very steep and criss-crossed with large roots. (in any case, it would have been complicated with Gabriel, who was 12 months old at the time of the trip). The cove is below you, so remember that you’ll have to climb all the way back up to reach your vehicle! However, go and read this very well done explanation if you want to get started.

You’ll end this little roadtrip with The Pointe de la Grande Vigie located at the very north of Grande-Terre, I’d even say the North Cape of Guadeloupe. It offers you an exceptional panorama, one of the wildest in the West Indies, more than 80 meters above sea level. There are huge cliffs covered in vegetation reminiscent of parts of Brittany or Normandy. You can take a quick stroll along a rocky path that makes a small loop. With your hair blowing in the wind, you really feel like you’re at the end of the world. And yes, here you’ll be on the border between the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea.

For those with little time to spare, you can opt for a day trip which will allow you to combine the Grands Fonds region, visit the Damoiseau distillery, one of the oldest distilleries in Guadeloupe, visit the Souffleur beach in Port Louis, and walk along the Grande Vigie cliffs to enjoy the incredible view of Grande Terre and the surrounding islands.


➡️ Check here for availability and book the North Coast excursion


Curiosity with a false air of Angkor temples : if you still have a little time to spare, I invite you to discover a corner that might remind you of one of the Angkor temples in Cambodia. the former Petit Canal prison, a ruined building once used as a prison, in the commune of Petit-Canal, Guadeloupe. The atmosphere here is a little strange, with the huge branches and roots of this old fig tree intertwining along the walls, and nature reclaiming its rights! I saw that there was a buggy excursion departing from Petit-Canal through prison.

➡️ Check here for availability and book your buggy in advance


Abandoned prison Petit Canal


From Grande-Terre, you can also explore the seas. Among the possible outings, we chose to discover the Caret islets and the Fajou reserve, as well as La Désirade and the Petite-Terre nature reserve.





Departing from the Marina du Gosier on Grande-Terre, we discovered Ilet Caret and Fajou nature reserve. Rendezvous for a Motor catamaran for 12 people, with a space at the bow for lying in the sun and an enclosed space at the stern, ideal for embarking with children in complete safety.

First stop: l’îlet Caret to start the day. A white sandbank created by a cyclone several years ago, forming a small paradise atoll. Quite busy, we’ll be honest, not our favorite place of the day. Indeed, îlet Caret is a meeting point for many boats, and some companies even operate cabins on the îlet for day trips with lunch. This idyllic spot has become a little less so due to overcrowding, despite the picture-postcard scenery and warm, translucent waters.

When you’re at anchor, as we were, and therefore a little way from the sandbar, you can swim to Ilet Caret. It’s a lively little adventure, but you’ll need to be a good swimmer, as there’s a bit of current and often a swell. But what’s really amazing is that you can quickly get within a few metres of the boat, so there’s nothing to panic about either! This allowed us to go with Gabriel, who was in a buoy and floating in the waves without any problems. He wasn’t scared and rather enjoyed the ride! The captain provides some snorkeling equipment and 2 buoys on board, including one for the kids (it’s better to have your own equipment!).

The main interest of the day is rather the second part, namely the îlet Fajou reserve. Its access is highly regulated, so not all excursion boats can reach it. Limited access to protect the reserve and at the same time provide greater peace and quiet. And so we found ourselves with no other boats in sight, in the middle of the lagoon. After a briefing on best practices, as well as the areas suitable for observing the various animal species populating the area, the boat’s crew put themselves at our service to prepare us a apéro local ti-punch and a lunch in the pure Guadeloupean tradition.

All in all, a 4-hour stopover in a dream setting awaits you. Translucent waters where, if you’re lucky, you can spot turtles, stingrays, barracudas and lots of little reef fish. An ideal place for snorkeling (PMT).

I still had a very good and positive impression of the day, as the team was friendly, the boat comfortable and intimate, and the site of îlet Fajou quite tranquil. Going out on this boat is no problem with babies and children. You can take a stroller on board and leave it either inside the boat or on the sundeck, cool and sheltered from the sun.

The service providers I work with for tailor-made trips to Guadeloupe are hand-picked and chosen for their ethics. They don’t do mass tourism! They will be proposed to you in the quote, only on the booking of a trip from A to Z.


➡️ Check availability and book boat to Ilet Caret in advance





It’s certainly the must-attend day of the Grande-Terre activities we’re talking about in this article. A superb day at the discover the island of La Désirade (the island of soccer player Thierry Henri) and the Petite Terre archipelago

Departing from the port de Saint-François, we started the day by crossing to the island of La Désirade. Once we arrived, a local agency took over and showed us the highlights of the island: Bellevue Chapel the La Désirade reserve, where you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the island. see the island’s endemic iguanas and the Baie-Mahault beach, just idyllic. After a leisurely lunch on the beach, it’s time for a 30-40 minute crossing to the Petite Terre reserve.

When we arrived mid-afternoon, the scenery was absolutely sumptuous, despite the gloomy weather on the day we were there. The seabed lived up to its promise, as we soon spotted a few baby lemon sharks, green turtles, stingrays, a barracuda and reef fish – almost all the species that can be seen in this area. Our visit to Petite Terre ends with a guided tour of the island, given by the captain himself, which is highly instructive on the history of this part of the world. Another opportunity to observe endemic plants and iguanas, which live in profusion on this territory.

By arriving at this time and choosing this combination for the day, we avoided the numerous boats coming and going for the same reasons. Indeed, by the time we docked on the beach, the majority of travelers were returning to Grande Terre. So we’ve had the island all to ourselves, and it’s a great privilege. Choose your excursion carefully to make the most of it.

We chose this option because Gabriel was 12 months old at the time of the trip, and we decided to have him babysat for this outing. Indeed, it is not recommended for small children, particularly as the crossing can be very rough if you choose a fast boat. To give you an idea, the captain of our boat set off alone with his boat from Grande Terre to Désirade, and we met up with him on the big boat that made the daily connection between Grande Terre and the island. The sea was particularly rough that day, and nobody wanted to take any risks on this trip.

It is also possible to discover only Petite-Terre by catamaran for a half-day or full-day trip. The ride is more leisurely, so even small children can enjoy it. However, it is in great demand and can be booked weeks in advance. I’d advise you to choose your service provider carefully, because there’s a lot of choice (too much, in fact) and not all services are of the same high standard.

The service providers I work with for tailor-made trips to Guadeloupe are hand-picked and chosen for their ethics. They don’t do mass tourism! They will be offered in the quote only when booking a trip from A to Z.


➡️ Check availability and book your boat to Petite Terre in advance



A trip to Guadeloupe requires a lot of logistics if you’re looking for something authentic. The service providers I work with to create your tailor-made trip are hand-picked for their ethics and professionalism. They don’t do mass tourism! They will be proposed to you in the quote, only on the booking of a trip from A to Z, i.e. flights, accommodation and activities.

To request a quote and a tailor-made trip to discover the authentic Guadeloupe, contact me by email atcontact@mademoiselle-voyage.fr. I invite you to read the customized travel where I present my business as a licensed travel agency.


before you leave, don’t hesitate to consult all our other articles on Guadeloupe to help you prepare for your trip:







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