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Guadeloupe

Getting there & away

Sea

Popular with yachties and sailors, there is mooring in Deshaies and St-François, and at the marina near Pointe-à-Pitre. Cruise ships regularly call on the island. There are a number of ferries to the outlying islands of Guadeloupe and other Caribbean destinations.

Cruise ship

Cruise ships dock right in the city at Centre St-John Perse, Pointe-à-Pitre’s old port complex, and at the spiffy new cruise ship terminal.

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Water

Ferry

There are two companies providing regular ferry service between Guadeloupe, Martinique, Dominica and St Lucia. All the ferries listed leave from the Gare Maritime de Bergevin in Pointe-à-Pitre.

L’Express des Îles (harbor office 91-69-68, admin office 83-72-27; www.express-des-iles.com) operates large, modern catamarans between Guadeloupe, Martinique and Dominica. The boats have air-conditioned cabins with TV entertainment and a snack bar.

There are three weekly crossings to Fort-de-France, Martinique, from Pointe-à-Pitre (one way/round-trip €67/100). Ferries leave on Sunday, Wednesday and Friday, and the journey takes three hours.

Boats leave Pointe-à-Pitre for Roseau in Dominica, and Castries, St Lucia, on Friday, Wednesday and Sunday (one way/round-trip €67/100). It’s nearly a seven-hour journey, usually with stops in Martinique and Dominica on the way.

Departure days and times for these services change frequently and often bear no relation to the printed schedule. The only way to be sure is to call L’Express des Îles or check with a local travel agent.

There are discounts of 50% for children aged two to 11, and 10% for passengers aged under 26, or aged 60 and older.

Brudey Frères (90-04-48; www.brudey-freres.fr) has a 350-passenger catamaran with a daily service between Pointe-à-Pitre and ­Fort‑de-France (one way/round-trip €57/87). In season, there’s an extra boat on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

It also has a regular service (every day in high season) between Guadeloupe and Dominica for €55/80 one way/round-trip and a once- or twice-a-week service to St Lucia (one way/round-trip €80/115).

Brudey offers discounts for youths and elders. Schedules change, so check current timetables.

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Entering the destination

Entering Guadeloupe

You’ll be required to fill out a simple immigration slip on arrival, outlining details of your stay and the purpose of your visit. All visitors officially require a return or onward ticket.

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Air

Guadeloupe Le Raizet Airport (PTP; Pole Carïbes; 21-14-72) is north of Pointe-à-Pitre, 6km from the city center on N5. The terminal has a tourist information booth, car-rental booths, a couple of restaurants, ATMs and money-change bureaus. Immigration officers here are relatively fast and professional.

Air Antilles Express (21-14-47; www.airantilles.com) St-Barthélemy, St-Martin/Sint Maarten

Air Canada (21-12-77; www.aircanada.com) Montreal

Air Caraïbes (82-47-00; www.aircaraibes.com) Cayenne, Fort-de-France, Panama City, Paris, Santo Domingo, St-Barthélemy, St-Martin/Sint Maarten

Air France (82-61-61; www.airfrance.com) Cayenne, Fort-de-France, Miami, Paris

American Airlines (www.aa.com) San Juan

Corsairfly (21-12-11; www.corsairfly.com) Brest, Lyon, Nantes, Paris

LIAT (82-13-93; www.liat.com) Antigua

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