One of the oldest French settlements within the Caribbean, Basse-Terre is the administrative state capital of Guadeloupe. Sprawled alongside the towering Soufriere Volcano, it was originally founded in 1640. Home to an amazing number of marvelous French buildings from a colonial past, the main historic attractions of Basse-Terre are the cathedral, Etang As de Pique, Fort St. Charles, Palace du Champ d’Arband and the delightful botanical gardens located on the banks of Riviere aux Herbes. Other prominent eye-catching Basse-Terre monuments include the Prefecture buildings, Cours Nolivos townhouse and the church of Notre-Dame du Mont Carmel.
Displaying a French provincial atmosphere and a charming port life, Basse-Terre offers relatively consistent temperatures throughout the year. Located within a mountainous section of the island, this settlement had been destroyed many times in history, primarily as a consequence of Anglo-French Wars, the French Revolution, the Napoleonic Suppression and the Anti-Slavery Movement. Thankfully, the La Grande Soufriere volcano has been silent and never erupted since 1976, allowing the culturally diverse population of Basse-Terre to breathe peacefully.