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Practical info


Time difference
5 hours behind Mainland France in winter, and 6 hours behind in summer.
Flight time
8 h  

Area size
1 780 km
6 732 km
(from Paris)

443 000 inhabitants


Before leaving  vous must carry :

  • A valid passeport 
  • A return ticket is mandatory

Information on customs and security formalities is provided as a guide.
Under no circumstances may Corsair be held responsible if your official documentation is not in order.

To prepare your trip, we suggest you contact the island’s tourist office:Interface Tourism

11, Bis Rue Blanche, 75009 Paris
01 53 25 11 11 / fax. 01 53 25 11 12

Worth knowing


There are no obligatory vaccinations. However, remember to take sun cream, sunglasses and mosquito repellents.

Shopping hours

Shops are open between 08:00 and 18:00, with a break between 12:00 and 14:00.



There are various ways to get around Guadeloupe. To reach the neighbouring islands, use the regular boat links. Coaches are the most common way of getting around the island, but the ideal way to discover the island remains hiring a car.



Before swimming, do watch out for certain fish and marine animals: seek advice beforehand.



Administrative offices are open between 09:00 and 17:00 from Monday to Friday.


Holidays and celebrations

  • New Year’s Day: 1st January
  • Easter Monday: between 22nd March and 25th April
  • Labour Day: 1st May
  • VE Day: 8th May
  • Ascension: 20th May
  • Pentecost Monday: 30th May
  • National holiday: 14th July
  • Assumption: 15th August
  • All Saints’ Day: 1st November
  • Armistice Day: 11th November
  • Christmas: 25th December

Going to / Leaving the airport

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The essentials

Not to be missed


Though the administrative capital of Guadeloupe is Basse-Terre, Pointe-à-Pitre is very much the economic capital. Near the old colonial centre, a modern city is now developing. By day, the city is lively, noisy and filled with the scent of spices and the various market stalls.


Place de la Victoire, Darse, rue Frébault, rue Nozières and rue Schœlcher, the port area and Saint-Antoine market are among the city’s essential landmarks.


How to see Pointe-à-Pitre

The most pleasant way of paying a visit is to come on foot from the centre, which allows you to observe the contrasts between the colonial houses and its more recent structures, the bustle of its markets and shops, as well as the various monuments and museums.


Monuments and museums


Be sure not to miss the Basilica of St Peter and St Paul, or the city pavilion. As for museums, Schœlcher Museum and Saint John Perse Museum are worth the trip.


The Guadeloupe aquarium


Located in the Pointe-à-Pitre marina, the Gosier aquarium is one of the biggest in the West Indies. Here you can discover the natural treasures hidden beneath the waters of the archipelago, with hundreds of species. There are also videos and educational activities on offer for younger visitors.


The historical centre


The old centre of Pointe-à-Pitre comprises colonial architecture buildings from the 18th century. Laid out in a grid pattern, the streets cross each other at right angles. The administrative and military apparatus is also concentrated in the centre.


A regularly altered city


Pointe-à-Pitre has been struck by many natural catastrophes. Fires, earthquakes and hurricanes have led to reconstructions, which have altered the morphology of the city several times.



A cuisine full of character

Guadeloupean cuisine has retained the mark of all those who have lived on the island, bringing their culinary traditions with them.


From the first Arawak inhabitants, Guadeloupeans have retained the use of very spicy seasoning, grilled or smoke-dried meat, shellfish meat preparations mixed with manioc flour and manioc bread (cassava). Colombo was inherited from the Indians arriving after the abolition of slavery. Like all West Indian dishes, Guadeloupean specialities are very spicy.



Sea food

Abundant and succulent. The red snapper has excellent flesh. Marlin, king mackerel or shark are often served as grilled steaks. They can also be smoked. Also good to try are lobster, chatrou (octopus often served fricassee) and lambis (big sea snails).



Some specialities

You cannot pass up the chance to try the famous accras. A source of West Indian pride, these cod (or vegetable) fritters with fine herbs are definitely moreish. Stuffed crabs, Colombo chicken or féroce (pureed avocado with very spicy cod) are just as succulent. The desserts are not found wanting either: preserves, coconut sorbets and “tourments d’amour” (cakes with coconut jam) will delight the sweet-toothed.




Rich and full of depth, Guadeloupian rums are among the best in the world. The famous ti-punches are a blend of rum, lemon and sugar. Fruit juices are fresh and inexpensive, often squeezed in-situ and sold in the street. Mabi is a sparkling drink inherited from the Caribbean Indians. A liana, ginger, nutmeg and aniseed base is blended with fruits and cane sugar.



Bite size

When you feel like a snack, give in to a bokit. This cheap local sandwich may contain meat, fish or raw vegetables. It is closed like a fritter and then fried.


Picturesque celebrations

A number of beliefs and traditions are combined in Guadeloupe, such as cock fights or religious dances. The island has an anthology of rites and other mystic practices from Africa, still well rooted in local culture, which you can attend, especially in the capital.



The festivals are full-on "cultural immersions" featuring music, games and culinary art in close association. The most popular are the All Saints’ festivities, with the illuminated cemeteries, the carnivals, Christmas, Easter and Pentecost. Numerous patron saints’ days are also celebrated every year, including on the outskirts of Pointe-à-Pitre



Creole dance and music are omnipresent. Zouk in particular, and even zouk-love, a romantic and intimate zouk, for close-up dancing. The more traditional orchestra dances are still going strong at some balls. There’s also the waltz, mazurka, polka (from the colonial past) and above all the biguine, which is very popular in the city.


The Rum Route

For sports lovers, Pointe-à-Pitre is also the finish for the mythical Rum Route. Every four years in November, you can come to cheer on the heroes of this solo transatlantic race. The city is always buzzing to mark the occasion.


Worth knowing

If you are still in doubt over the dates to book your flight for Pointe à Pitre, think about the local festivals: Grand Carnival (during January, February and March), the anniversary of the abolition of slavery on 27th May or Victor Schœlcher day on 21st July (public holiday) are good opportunities.


Sun, wind and rain

The tropical climate makes for a pleasant atmosphere, with an average temperature of 25°C all year round. The more pleasant dry season runs from December to April. The rainy season runs from July to October. Cyclones generally come in August and September. At higher altitude, it is distinctly cooler.


When night falls

The sun rises at between 05:00 and 06:00 all year round, and sets at between 17:30 and 18:30, i.e. fairly early.


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