• Languages: French and Creole (English widely spoken)
  • Currency: Euro
  • Temperature: Average 73-80°F year-round
  • Square Miles: 530 Approx.
  • Population: 412,000

ABOUT. Guadeloupe, a French overseas territory, is an island group in the southern Caribbean Sea. Resembling a butterfly, its 2 largest islands are separated by the Salée River. Guadeloupe is a unique mix of France and the Caribbean, with French-influenced towns and typical Caribbean fruit and vegetable markets. The island is divided into Grande-Terre to the east and Basse-Terre to the west. On Grande-Terre, Pointe-à-Pitre is the main city with the major airport, while the other main towns of Gosier, St. Anne, and St. François host resorts along the shore. Basse-Terre is characterized by a more mountainous landscape, with the highest peak at the top of La Soufrìere at 4,813 feet.

A national park covers about 74,000 acres of Guadeloupe’s western half, and the island’s capital, Basse-Terre, lies to the southwest. South of Guadeloupe are the small islands of the Les Saintes and Marie-Galante. Guadeloupe, one of the larger islands of the Lesser Antilles, is diverse in its landscape.

Guadeloupe is an archipelago of nine inhabited islands, including Basse-Terre, Grande-Terre, Marie-Galante, La Desirade, Iles des Saintes, Saint-Barthelemy, Iles de la Petite Terre, and Saint-Martin (French part of the island of Saint Martin). Guadeloupe has been a French possession since 1635. The island of Saint Martin is shared with the Netherlands; its southern portion is named Sint Maarten and is part of the Netherlands Antilles and its northern portion is named Saint-Martin and is part of Guadeloupe.

It has white beaches and arid lowlands as well as diving grounds and mountain forests. Bananas, and sugar cane mainly grown for rum, are abundant and are regularly exported from this French archipelago. French is the official language, and the islanders have French passports and French citizenship. Agriculture consists of bananas, sugarcane, tropical fruits and vegetables; cattle, pigs, goats. Industries consist of construction, cement, rum, sugar, tourism. The climate is subtropical tempered by trade winds and moderately high humidity.