Unlike the majority of the Caribbean islands which are British owned, the island of Guadeloupe belongs to France, giving it a distinctly French atmosphere often found in its popular cities like Paris combined with a touch of Gallic influences. It has the beaches plus miles of attractive scenery across its mountainous terrain full of colorful flora. Even though it’s referred to as single entity, Guadeloupe is actually two individual islands (Grande-Terre and Basse-Terre) separated by the Rivière Salée.
Guadeloupe was originally known as the Island of Beautiful Waters, the name given it to by the Carib tribes that once dwelled there before they were driven out by the French in the mid 1600s. When Christopher Columbus discovered the island in 1493 he named it “Santa María de Guadalupe de Extremadura”. Interestingly, it was this trip to Guadeloupe that lead Columbus to discover the fruit everyone recognizes today as the pineapple.
The French gained control of Guadeloupe in the mid 1600s after they successfully drove out the Carib tribes that once dwelled on the island. For a brief period France played a game of tug of war with the British as the latter was able to seize control of Guadeloupe on multiple occasions. The two sides eventually compromised, finally giving France full control of the island, at least until the 1800s when the British resumed their takeover efforts.
Guadeloupe’s resorts and hotels are on a much smaller scale than the mega resorts seen in other Caribbean islands like Anguilla and Jamaica but there are plenty of Guadeloupe hotels and properties by the beach. Where Guadeloupe really stands out is in its homemade Caribbean cuisine which you can taste at just about any of its small inns. At Guadeloupe, the experience leans more towards natural seaside tranquility and discovering the Guadeloupe customs, culture and way of life. Old banana plantations allow you to explore some of the island’s beginnings while the natural landscapes act as complements to the white sand beaches.
Guadeloupe has developed a positive reputation for its several literary achievements, Alexis Leger being one of the more famous poets from the Caribbean who managed to win a Nobel Prize in 1960. Thus, Guadeloupe culture heavily emphasizes arts and entertainment with music painting, dancing and sculpture being of particular importance to Guadeloupians. The Creole Blues Festival and Marie-Galante Festival are two events held annually on the island. The women of Guadeloupe are also known for wearing elaborately designed, colorful dresses which contain lots of gold jewelry and bear influences from Africa, Europe and India.
Guadeloupe's real estate appeal stems from its Caribbean setting. Guadeloupe's high elevation and clear blue waters provide an ideal location for Caribbean oceanfront property. Guadeloupe is very much a boating culture and part of its ocean scenery usually involves the passing of one or more sailboats. Guadeloupe's clear waters have distinctive tower-like landmasses that resemble rock castles in the middle of the ocean. Homes are placed along the shoreline of this archipelago and have Caribbean-style open floor plans.
Guadeloupe's most popular properties remain the oceanfront homes. These homes can be up to three-stories high featuring two sets of balconies. Many have pools, patios and docks located right on the white sands of Guadeloupe. Homes often come with sunrooms, outdoor furniture, and pavilions for shade. Most beachfront homes have their own stretch of private beach that offer a very private and tranquil Caribbean beach experience.
Resorts and hotels in Guadeloupe like La Toubana Hotel and Le Meridien La Cocoteraie offer condo-style living. These resort-hotels have amenities and features like in-house fine dining options, babysitting, spa treatments, golfing, swimming pools and vibrant nightlife options. Also, most hotels and resorts are located on excellent real estate with great views of the ocean.
Guadeloupe has a growing economy. Its strong relationship with industrialized nations like France, England and the United States continues to boost industry and overall growth. The Caribbean island nation has had a history of strong tourism and foreign interest in business that has kept their real estate industry stable. Property value in Guadeloupe is sturdy and rises steadily.
Le Meridien La Cocoteriae
Sofitel Auberge de la Vieille Tour Guadeloupe
Karibea Salako Beach Resort
Hotel Eden Palm
Residence Pointe Batterie
The official currency of Guadeloupe is the Euro (EUR)
Calling Code: 1 (590)
Top Level Domain: (.fr)
Guadeloupe is an overseas region of France and a member of the European Union, headed by a Regional President.
Valid Travel Documents: Required upon Exit and Entry
Government Issued Photo ID: Required
Climate: Guadeloupe has standard Caribbean temperature with highs of around 32°C (89°F) and lows of 20°C (68°F).
Tips when you get there
Guadeloupe has an international airport with most direct flights coming from France.
Also, Guadeloupe has a variety of transportation options. Public buses provide sufficient transportation, car-rentals are readily available, taxis are always ready to take visitors to and from the airport and motorcycle rentals can be lots of fun for the more adventurous traveler. The island is large but most of its attractions can be seen in a single day if guests want to get an overview of the island on their first day of their visit.
What to do
There are many fascinating places to visit in Guadeloupe like Jacques Cousteau Underwater Reserve which has amazing coral reefs and marine wildlife. Historic buildings also add to the flair of Guadeloupian culture by displaying glimpses of popular colonial historic times. National parks also offer great opportunities to see Guadeloupe's well preserved natural vistas and wildlife sanctuaries.
Guadeloupe offers active pursuits like golfing at the Golf de St. François, hiking at Parc Naturel de Guadeloupe, tennis at the Tennis Club de St. Francois, scuba diving, deep-sea fishing and windsurfing. Guests can partake in these activities or just relax on Guadeloupe’s white sand beaches.
Guadeloupe’s development over the years has lead to an infrastructure that serves tourism well. Polite residents and convenient, friendly shops with good public transportation makes visiting and living in Guadeloupe pleasant and comfortable.