Jardin botanique de Deshaies#14 in Best Things To Do in Guadeloupe
The Deshaies Botanical Garden shelter a wide range of plants and trees, with bougainvillea, hibiscus, orchids and many other flowers and birds. The garden, which sits on a more than 10-acre property once owned by a French comedian, was designed by Michel Gaillard, a well-known landscape designer.
According to recent visitors, the gardens are beautiful, rain or shine, and worth spending a couple of hours exploring. Different collections at the park include Asian tropics, palm trees and arid plants. In total, the garden boasts 15 different themed areas, with an array of tropical flowers and plants representing more than 1,000 species. There are also some animals, including koi, lorikeets, pink flamingos, hummingbirds and more.
You'll find the garden in the village of Deshaies on the northwest coast of Basse-Terre. The garden is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (the park officially closes at 5:30 p.m.). Admission is 15.90 euros (about $18) for adults and 10.90 euros (about $12) for children ages 5 to 12. For more information, visit the garden's website.
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#1 Parc National de la Guadeloupe (Guadeloupe National Park)
Tucked amid Basse-Terre's verdant mountain landscape sits the Parc National de la Guadeloupe (Guadeloupe National Park), a 74,100-acre rainforest filled with picturesque traces (walking trails). The park's trails brush past lush forest foliage, magnificent waterfalls and the summit of La Soufriere volcano. The trails range from short- to long-distance routes that vary in difficulty. Before you strap on your hiking gear, you'll want to pick up a "Guide to the National Park" brochure from the Guadeloupe tourism office (located in St. Claude, Basse-Terre) to map out your journey. If you would prefer to admire the park's natural splendors from behind the wheel, drive along the Route de la Traversee, a scenic 16-mile road that cuts through the forest.
Recent travelers recommended packing bug spray and snacks for the trip and said there is plenty to see and do in the park. Reviewers also warn that the park is muddy – plan to wear shoes with good traction.
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