Caribbean Tourism

La Désirade

La Désirade is an attractive but rather arid island of 20 sq km, with 1,610 inhabitants, who occupy themselves in fishing, sheep-rearing and cultivating cotton and maize. A road 10 km long runs along the S coast to the E end of the island, where a giant cactus plantation can be seen. Also at the E end of the island is Pointe du Mombin where there is an outstanding view of the coastline.


There are excellent beaches, such as at Souffleur. Perhaps the nicest is in the E at a village called Baie-Mahault, enhanced by a good restaurant/bar, Chez Céce, where you can sample dozens of different rum punches.

Columbus named the island La Desiderada as it was the first land he saw on his second voyage in 1493. Archaeological research has shown evidence of Amerindian settlement but it was uninhabited when Columbus passed by.

La Désirade was occupied by the French for the first time in 1725, when all the lepers on Guadeloupe were deported there during an epidemic. In 1930 a leper hospital was built, but it was closed in 1954.

The lack of fresh water has always hampered economic activity. In 1991, however, La Désirade was linked to Grande-Terre underwater with a fresh water supply.


More . . .

Basse-Terre

On the other wing of the island, Basse-Terre is the administrative capital of Guadeloupe and the entire Department. There are some very...

Grande-Terre

Pointe-à-Pitre on Grande-Terre at the S end of the Rivière Salée, is the chief commercial centre, near the airport of Le Raizet and the...

Accommodation & Places to Eat – La Désirade

B L'Oasis du Désert, Quartier Désert Saline, T 20 02 12, 8 rooms, restaurant, reservations advisable; Le Mirage, 7 rooms, T 20 01 08, F 20...

Transport – La Désirade

Air There are daily air services from Guadeloupe 0700, 1545 Mon-Fri, 0900 Sat, 1645 Sun (Air Guadeloupe). Sea Boat services from St-...

Les Saintes

On Les Saintes (a string of small islands named Los Santos by Columbus: only Terre-de-Haut and Terre-de-Bas are inhabited) the people are...

Transport - Les Saintes

Air Daily flight from Pointe-à-Pitre, 180F one way, 1545, 1645, also Mon-Sat 0800, 1415, 15 mins, Air Guadeloupe. Road Bus mini-buses take...

Marie-Galante

Marie-Galante, a small round island of 158 square km , is simple and old-fashioned but surprisingly sophisticated when it comes to food and...