What to do in Guadeloupe with children? We wondered the same thing when we visited this island unknown to us. We visited Guadeloupe for a total of 5 days and were positively surprised. The roads are good, the beaches are beautiful and you also have beautiful waterfalls to visit on this French island. In addition, the island has good restaurants and large (French) supermarkets where you can do your shopping. We list for you the best tips for Guadeloupe!
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General information Guadeloupe
Guadeloupe is a French island and the influences of France are evident in the streets. Everyone speaks French, you have big French supermarkets and also many French stores and restaurants. This sometimes makes you really feel like you are in France and not the Caribbean.
The island of Guadeloupe is best explored by rental car. We found the roads in Guadeloupe to be very good. You drive all the way from the west to the east of the island in about 1.5 hours. However, you do have to be careful of the many speed bumps and occasional potholes in the road. After all, sometimes these don’t stand out super well.
The island of Guadeloupe actually has two parts. So you have Basse Terre and Grand Terre. Basse Terre is the western part of the island and is very green. And Grand Terre is the eastern part of the island and is known for its beaches. Also, the sun shines a lot more here than in the western part, where it rains a lot more often.
Most beautiful beaches in Guadeloupe
Most tourists visit Guadeloupe because of its fine climate and beautiful beaches. We list some of these most beautiful beaches below.
#1 Plage du Bourg: we actually came across this beach by accident when we stopped somewhere to eat something, but we found this to be a super nice beach and very suitable for kids. The water is clear and you can walk far into the sea. Because it is between rocks, the sea is very calm. The beach is also very white and nearby there are restaurants and food trucks. So in that respect, there are plenty of facilities. You can park your car on the side of the road or for 3 euros in one of the grassy areas near the beach.
#2 Plage La Caravelle: This beach is located near Plage du Bourg and is known as the Club Med beach. Still, there is no problem entering the beach as a non-guest here. Follow the signs to the beach and you can park your car for free. Then walk a bit along the water to the beach in front of the hotel. This is a beautiful beach with beautiful palm trees. Around the hotel, local people sell food and drinks.
#3 Plage de Bois Jolan: This beach is also located in the south of the Grand Terre part of Guadeloupe. This is another beautiful beach, but there are fewer amenities here. You can’t really eat or drink anything here, so bring your own if you visit this beach. Here too you have a beautiful white beach and because this is a fairly long beach with many bushes, you can lie quite sheltered and also somewhat private. More than at the first two beaches in this list.
#4 Plage du Souffleur: the owner of our apartment was all lyrical about this beach located in the northwestern part of the Grand Terre section. We thought it was a beautiful beach, but certainly not the most beautiful beach in Guadeloupe. You do have some sort of beach club here by the beach and you also have several local food stalls by the beach. The sea here is also very calm and therefore definitely suitable for kids. This beach is located near the town of Port-Louis and, as with most of the beaches in this list, you can park your car for free.
#5 Plage de Grande Anse: You have several beaches named Grande Anse in Guadeloupe, but here we mean the beach located in the northwest of Basse Terre. This beach does have yellower sand instead of white and there are several palm trees surrounding the beach. The sea here is also a bit rougher, but our daughter actually likes that to play in. The beach also comes across as more pristine because it is also not crowded with beds and the like.
#6 Plage de la Perle: This beach is a few minutes’ drive from Plage de Grande Anse and is perhaps even a bit more rugged. The sea was so rough when we were here that we did not go into the sea. You do have a restaurant located near the beach (as at Plage de Grande Anse, by the way). Keep in mind that in this part of the island it rains more often than at the first four beaches in this list.
Of course you have more beautiful beaches, but these are the ones we visited that we really liked. Therefore, read up on several websites so that you can make a good consideration of which beaches you all want to visit.
Waterfalls of Guadeloupe
Guadeloupe also has several beautiful waterfalls you can visit. Perhaps Guadeloupe’s most famous waterfalls are the three waterfalls of Chute du Carbet. Certainly the second waterfall seems to be good to walk with children. You do pay a small entrance fee at these waterfalls. We ourselves did not visit these falls due to lack of time. A good reason to come back again ;).
However, we did visit two other waterfalls, which we will describe below.
#7 Cascade aux Écrevisses: this waterfall is located in the middle of the Basse Terre section and is very easy to visit. You can park the car in a parking lot near the waterfall and you can walk in a few minutes on a good path to the waterfall. The waterfall is not super big, but you can swim at this waterfall (or at least go into the water for a while, since it is not a very big place). You can do several hikes near this waterfall, but we only visited the waterfall here.
#8 Saut d’Acomat: The second waterfall we visited was a lot more adventurous. First we drove towards the waterfall through the interior of the country on very narrow adventurous roads and when we reached the waterfall we had to make a rather steep descent towards the waterfall. Here we had to cross another stream to finally reach the waterfall. At the waterfall we swam and it was not super crowded. The descent down and of course back up is not recommended with very small kids. With our 8-year-old daughter, this was fine.
Swimming with turtles
You can swim with turtles quite easily on the island of Guadeloupe. At Plage de Malendure, you can encounter them in the water about 30 meters from the beach. Plage de Malendure is a popular beach in Guadeloupe and therefore it can be difficult to find parking. We drove around for quite a while before we got a parking spot. Therefore, a tip would be to go to this beach early in the morning.
The turtles come here to eat from the grass that sits at the bottom of this beach. In all, we saw about 6 to 7 turtles in a small area. We also saw starfish lying near the buoys and there were turtles there as well. Very nice to see both. Snorkeling is also good here with children.
The beach itself is also a great place to spend a few hours. The sand here is a bit darker, though, because it is volcanic sand. There are also some restaurants and some stores at this beach.
Child friendly hotel Guadeloupe
You have plenty of family-friendly accommodations in Guadeloupe. If you start looking for accommodation, we would recommend staying in the east of the island in Grand Terre. Here the sun shines the most on the island and you also have the most beautiful beaches. To visit the nature in the west, it is not too long a drive from Grand Terre and you can see a lot in a day if you leave early.