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Kevin's girl

Guadeloupe - A Photo Review

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Let me just start out by saying that this port was wonderful. I was a little concerned about it after some of the reviews I had read. In doing some research before our cruise, I learned it was one of the few Caribbean ports where English is barely spoken and the US dollar is not widely accepted. It is a French island and French is the primary language. It is also an Embarkation/Debarkation port for 300-350 passengers per week.

Please do yourself a favor and exchange a little money at Guest Services before leaving the ship, book a cruise sponsored excursion and GO SEE THIS ISLAND. The island is beautiful and the people warm and friendly. I know very little French and chose an excursion with an English speaking guide and we had a great day.

I will post many pics of this port because there seems to be a great need. The area around the port is truly a city. We talked with a couple who had trouble with their taxi driver because they did not have Euros. They were quite upset that the driver took them to an ATM and told them to get Euros because he did not accept US dollars. But I think of our taxi drivers here in Chicago and how they would handle a passenger who wanted to pay in Euros instead of US dollars, they would take them to the closest ATM and tell them to get cash just as this couple’s driver did to them. Just please remember if you go out on your own, most taxis won’t take the US dollars and you will need Euros.

It will be a shame if RCI drops this port as they have much to offer those willing to try something different.

 

This is the shopping area set up just off the gangway. Prices in this area are written in both US dollars and Euros. The US dollar was also accepted here.

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Leaving the port area:

 

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The road/highway systems on the island were great. We have done many an island tour and these were some of the best we have seen anywhere.

 

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Edited by Kevin's girl

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We set out first to the Banana Plantation. Here the owner who happens to be the grandson of the original owner was our guide through the plantation. He asked Natalie our tour guide if he was to do the tour in English or French. She responded that we were an English speaking tour with several bilingual people as well. He did the tour in English. We have had a few other banana plantation tours in the past, but nothing like this. He was so very proud and shared so much information about bananas and his business. He even gave advise to a gentleman who is trying to grow bananas in his yard in Florida. There are going to be quite a few pics here. I was just so impressed.

 

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The grounds and the Great House

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Our chariot into the banana fields.

 

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This was our first look at the trees and the growing fruit. Note the flower at the end. I’ve seen it before, but never knew how it worked, but I do now.

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OK, this is the owner and our guide. He is holding the flower. He explained that the flower comes out pointing up and as the branch grow, it points down to the ground, looking for water. Once down the leaves or petals peel back and rows of tiny bananas are uncovered.

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Here you can see the flower sticking out of the blue bag and at the bottom of the banana bunch. The blue bag is to protect the fruit from sun exposure, bumps and bruises and bugs.

 

After the fruit is cut from the tree they are hung, and the pistil is pulled off. That is what gives the banana the dark, dry stub at the end.

 

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The bananas with pistils

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All of the pistils are removed by hand

 

 

 

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washed and sorted

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Bunches cut to size, rinsed again and packaged to ship to Europe.

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Now you can see why it is that I was so impressed. This tour was fantastic.

 

After the Banana Plantation we were off to the Longueteau Rum Distillery. Another family owned business.

 

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This is the Great House and the grounds.

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This is the view from the Great House. You can see the distillery and sugar cane fields. The distillery was not producing at the time we were there because they were getting new machines, but the shop was open and we bought some really rum.

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Views of the island as we drove to the Waterfall of the Crayfish (I think)

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And now the waterfall.

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After a very long enjoyable day we headed back into port to re-board the Brilliance. I wanted to share a few pics of the city as we came back.

 

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The port area from the ship.

 

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looking straight out into the city from the ship.

 

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A closer view

 

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Looking left

 

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And looking right.

 

This really was such a nice island to stop at.

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Views of Gaudaloupe as we were leaving the island:

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We booked our tour through Royal Caribbean it was tour GU28 Classic Basse Terre Full Day Tour

Edited by Kevin's girl

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You're welcome to both of you. I'm glad you enjoyed them. We loved our day here and would love to have the chance to go back.

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Excellent review and could not agree more it was a true cutural experence and well worth the stop. We found the locals very friendly and yes a lot spoke only french however that did not stop them from thrying to help you!!!!

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Thank you Kevin's girl. We really enjoyed Guadeloupe although we didn't go beyond the city at the port. I really hope we can find another cruise that stops there. Would love to see more, and your trip report points out some great directions. Thanks again!

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wassup4565,

I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed your time in Guadeloupe. I had read so many negative reports before we went I was a bit leery. We had so much fun while we were there and would love to go back and see more of this lovely island.

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Glad to see another great review about Guadeloupe! I visited in 2008 and was blown away with the beauty of this island!

I did a private tour and saw so much of the island.

I want to return again and enjoy it.

My French is not good, but a smile and trying got me way ahead!!

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Thanks for the photos and words of encouragement. Never been to Guataloupe, but will be going in March 2014. This is my first review/picture tour, so I'm glad I found it first!

 

I had no idea they prefer Euros and don't speak English. Good to know in advance!

 

Thanks again!

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Thanks for the photos and words of encouragement. Never been to Guataloupe, but will be going in March 2014. This is my first review/picture tour, so I'm glad I found it first!

 

I had no idea they prefer Euros and don't speak English. Good to know in advance!

 

Thanks again!

We really would like to return to this beautiful island sometime. We had read so many discouraging things before we went, and I was really leery of what we may find. As you can see in the photos, it is really beautiful and we never met anyone that wasn't friendly.

I hope you have a great day there and enjoy your cruise.

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I have been several times. Take a taxi to st anne or the club med beach in st anne. The beach is public on he property. Very beautiful. have lunch in st anne. Go to Carrefour to shop for french wine and food.Taxis are expensive but cheaper than an excursion.

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I just wanted to wish all of the cruisers to this wonderful island a wonderful day here. I hope you enjoy your time here as much as we did.

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Anything new here, as I will be there with Costa Fortuna this december ?

 

I wonder if the local tourist people are only distributing the maps or if there is an accual stand or office, where they can help us with booking a tour.

 

Or are there local people who will be happy to take you on an accual tour or

are there "only" taxi driver around?

 

Thanks for some answer.

 

(by the way my mother speaks some French!)

Edited by onyx007

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what tour did you take that covered so much? And do you know where Carrafour market is located?

This is the information for the excursion we did.

 

Pointe A Pitre, Guadaloupe

 

Classic Basse Terre Full Day Tour

09:00 AM start time

Total Cost*: $258.00 USD

Guaranteed Language: English

 

We booked it through Royal Caribbean and the price we paid above was total for the two of us and included lunch. Our tour guide was wonderful and it was a very comprehensive tour.

 

I'm sorry, but I'm not familiar with the Carrafour Market. When I did a search, it seems that there is one close to the airport.

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