Guadeloupe, the southernmost islands of the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean

Tuesday, 10 June 2014 - 01:00 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General

I'let du Gosier © bobyfume

I’let du Gosier © bobyfume

Guadeloupe is a Caribbean island located in the Leeward Islands, in the Lesser Antilles, with a land area of 1,628 square kilometres (629 sq. mi) and a population of 400,000. It is an overseas region of France, consisting of a single overseas department. Its departmental code is “971”. As the other overseas departments, Guadeloupe is also an integral part of the Republic. Besides Guadeloupe island, the smaller islands of Marie-Galante, La Désirade, and the Îles des Saintes are included in Guadeloupe.

As part of France, Guadeloupe is part of the European Union and the Eurozone; hence, as for all Eurozone countries, its currency is the euro. However, Guadeloupe is not part of the Schengen Area. The prefecture and the capital of Guadeloupe is Basse-Terre. Christopher Columbus named the island Santa María de Guadalupe in 1493 after the Virgin Mary, venerated in the Spanish town of Guadalupe, in Extremadura.

Tourism is a key industry, with 83.3% of tourists visiting from metropolitan France, 10.8% coming from the rest of Europe, 3.4% coming from the United States, 1.5% coming from Canada, 0.4% coming from South America and 0.6% coming from the rest of the world. An increasingly large number of cruise ships visit the islands. The traditional sugar cane crop is slowly being replaced by other crops, such as bananas (which now supply about 50% of export earnings), eggplant, guinnep, noni, sapotilla, paroka, pikinga, giraumon squash, yam, gourd, plantain, christophine, monbin, prunecafé, cocoa, jackfruit, pomegranate, and many varieties of flowers. Other vegetables and root crops are cultivated for local consumption, although Guadeloupe is still dependent on imported food, mainly from France. Light industry features sugar and rum, solar energy, and many industrial productions. Most manufactured goods and fuel are imported. Unemployment is especially high among the youth. Hurricanes periodically devastate the economy.

View from Guadeloupe © J Aubert/GFDL Town hall of Sainte Rose © KoS Pointe des Chateaux © bobyfume Guadeloupe_Airport-Skenzy0497 Guadeloupe 2007 © Hardouin/GFDL I'let du Gosier © bobyfume
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View from Guadeloupe © J Aubert/GFDL
Guadeloupe’s culture is probably best known for the islanders’ literary achievements, particularly the poetry of Saint-John Perse, the pseudonym used by Alexis Léger. Perse won the 1960 Nobel Prize in Literature “for the soaring flight and the evocative images of his poetry, which, in a visionary fashion, reflects the conditions of our time.” Guadeloupe has always had a rich literary output, continued today by many living writers, poets, novelists, essayists and journalists, among them Mesdames Maryse Condé and Simone Schwartz-Bart, M. Ernest Pépin.

Music and dance are also very popular, and the widely accepted interaction of African, French and Indian cultures has given birth to some original new forms specific to the archipelago. Islanders enjoy many local dance styles including zouk, zouk-love, kompa, as well as the modern international dances such as hip hop, etc.

Read more on Administration of Guadeloupe, Guadeloupe Tourism, Wikitravel – Guadeloupe, caribbean-sun.com – Guadeloupe, Pointe-à-Pitre International Airport and Wikipedia Guadeloupe. Learn more about the use of photos. To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facebook pages/Twitter accounts. In addition more and more destinations, tourist organizations and cultural institutions offer Apps for your Smart Phone or Tablet, to provide you with a mobile tourist guide (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State). If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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