The Islands of Saints, Les Saintes or also known as Îles des Saintes are an island group dependency of Guadeloupe, which in turn is an overseas department and Region of France.
Located just 6 miles south of mainland Guadeloupe, these idyllic ‘Islands of Saints’ boasts spectacular beaches, exceptional snorkeling, gorgeous bays, and fascinating historical sites. Too small for sugar plantations and slavery, the islands that make up the archipelago are home to the blue-eyed descendants of impoverished Norman and Breton colonists.
Terre-de-Haut is the largest of the eight small islands that make up Les Saintes. You’re truly on Caribbean island time here. Lots of English is spoken on the island thanks to a big international sailing scene, and it’s definitely the most cosmopolitan of Guadeloupe’s outlying islands. Ferries dock right in the center of Bourg des Saintes, the island’s only village. The airstrip is to the east, a 10-minute walk from the village center.
Where to stay on Terre-de-Haut
Offering an onsite restaurant and spectacular Caribbean Sea views, Hôtel Bois Joli has 30 air conditioned rooms set on a private beach, just 10 minutes away from Des Saintes Airport. Found near Anse de Bourg Beach, Maogany is a 3-bedroom apartment with a fully equipped kitchen, free Wi-Fi and a terrace with views of beautiful Les Saintes Bay. Several local restaurants are within a 10 minute walk. Anse Figuier Gites de France is a beautiful tropical-style villa located in Destrelan. The owners are friendly and helpful too! Amarelao features a wooden deck, garden and sun terrace with a swimming pool, and is just a 5 minutes’ walk from Grand Bourg and from Anse du Figuire Beach. The property offers tropical-style décor and air conditioning. Guests at Amarelao can enjoy free breakfast and also they can find a variety of restaurants nearby.
Terre-de-Bas is only a few minutes away by boat from Terre-de-Haut and has preserved its natural and cultural environment. A peaceful island, Terre-de-Bas is a land of discovery for hikers, and sun worshipers alike with the beautiful beaches found here. Fishing in Terre-de-Bas is a long-lived tradition. It is still today the main economic activity.
Both day-trippers and those planning extended stays, traveling by ferry is the most popular way for travelers to reach the island. In addition to established ferry services, charter boat rentals are also available.
Where to stay on Terre-de-Bas
Coco D’Iles is set on the hills of Les Saintes Island – Terre-de-Bas and overlooks the stunning Caribbean Sea. This 3 bedroom house is full equipped and has wifi and ac throughout. Guests at Coco D’Iles can find a variety of restaurants, shops and convenience stores at Grand-Anse. This house is 1.5 km from Petite-Anse village and 3 minutes’ drive from Le Mapou, the ancient port at Les Saintes Island.
Getting around Les Saintes
Scooters are available for rent near the ports and village centers. A credit card deposit is usually required. Many visitors choose to explore the islands by foot, but mountain bike rentals are also a convenient option. Taxis are available for island tours, with many carrying a capacity of 5-10 passengers. Shuttle boats travel between Terre-de-Haut and Terre-de-Bas several times per day and charge a small fee.