Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe surprised me. After a frightening tender boat ride in where we weathered two torrential downpours and a guest’s head injury where we almost had to turn the tender around and go back, we arrived at the pier feeling exhausted and anxiety ridden – and the day had yet to begin! Luckily, the island was everything I didn’t know I was hoping for.
I quickly realized that this is the type of island I liked: rugged, woodsy, and unrefined. The rich and famous can keep their hoighty-toighty Saint Barts. Give me Guadeloupe and its dirt roads, wooded coves, and laid back lifestyle any day.
We even found some of the best food in a small cafe by the name La P’tite Gourmandise. The kind old French lady inside made everything herself. How can a simple sandwich be so good? When the baguette is freshly baked which results in the perfect combination of soft on the inside and crusty on the outside. Oh my was that tuna sandwich one of the best I’ve ever had! My friend decided on the French eclair for dessert. Call it anything you like; it’s still a cream donut to me and so I’ll pass, but he said it was great as well.
The cafe even decorated for Christmas using palm branches. It was nice to have a sense of the holidays, albeit not exactly the kind I’m used to!
So although the day may have started out rough, I left the island feeling refreshed, renewed, and hoping there will be more Caribbean ports-of-calls like Terre-de-Haut.