Of all the beaches on the southeastern part of the main island of Guadeloupe, the most developed and probably the most popular is Plage de la Caravelle.
This beach has it all, wide stretches of soft white sand, clear emerald water with gentle waves, multiple bars and restaurants, access to vendors offering massages and fun sea toys like jet skis, and even instructors leading seniors in ocean water aerobics! Yes, that part about water aerobics is true.
The trickiest part about this beach is actually finding it if you aren’t a guest at the “Club Med” resort. It looks like the resort blocks access to everyone that’s not a guest, but the public is still allowed (I think the resort does this on purpose). You just have to know how to get there!
- Plage de La Caravelle Quick Tips
- Where is Plage de La Caravelle located?
- How To Actually Get To The Beach As a Non Club Med Resort Guest
Plage de La Caravelle Quick Tips
- Sand & water color: White sand and clear turquoise water
- Other names: Sainte-Anne Beach, Caravelle Beach
- Best for: Relaxing, snorkeling, good for kids as it is shallow.
- Famous for: Watersports (Kitesurfing rentals nearby)
- Facilities: there are a couple of restaurants on the walk in (for those that aren’t resort guests)
- Lifeguard: none
- Cost: Free
- Parking: Limited parking, so arrive early if possible. You can park on the side of the neighborhood streets just beyond the Club Med resort
- Other: tricky to find the access point. You need to park beyond the Club Med resort on one of the neighborhood streets and walk around the back side of the resort to the beach
Where is Plage de La Caravelle located?
The main “island” of Guadeloupe is actually two different islands, Basse-Terre and Grande-Terre that are basically connected. Both islands make a butterfly shape, with the east or “right wing”being Grand-Terre, or the side where Plage De La Caravelle is.
It is also located in the city of Sainte-Anne, and it is directly behind the resort named Club Med.
If you decide not to rent a car or just don’t want to deal with the hassle of finding a parking spot they do offer cheap transportation to and from the beach here. If you do drive from the airport it will take you about 35 minutes.
How To Actually Get To The Beach As a Non Club Med Resort Guest
This is the trickiest part, so pay attention. We ALMOST missed this beach because we thought access was forbidden. GPS will take you directly to the “Club Med” resort gate which you will not be granted access to.
To access the beach as a non-resort guest you will drive a little bit further east and then see signs for Plage De La Caravelle. If you turn in you will be a crowded little residential area. Once you find a parking spot on the side of a random road you will walk to the end of the road.
You will be convinced you are in the wrong spot as you will arrive at a dirty shoreline and not a beautiful beach. Turn right and follow the shore for a couple hundred yards.
You will soon see that you are following a sand path along the backside of the Club Med resort. If you follow this for a couple hundred yards you will see it soon open up into a wide beach.
Parking is a bit tricky but manageable. Once you’ve located the path at the end of the road find a spot along one of the roads any way you can.
It is much easier if you know how to parallel park. There are a number of roads that cross cross the area, so you should pretty quickly be able to find a spot.
If you don’t want to deal with the hassle of finding a parking spot you can book transportation to and from the beach in advance here.
What you can Expect at Plage de La Caravelle
This beach has it all. It offers a complete suite of amenities, though you won’t be able to access all of them if you aren’t a resort guest.
For example, we sat on some of the lounge chairs and were soon asked to vacate for resort guests, though there were still plenty available.
You can expect lots of shade at this beach from the plethora of Coconut trees right on the beach.
All Types of Rentals and Services
There are opportunities to jet skis, get a massage, or bars you can sip a drink in. You can also book excursions departing from here.
If you want to participate in the on beach yoga classes or water aerobics make a Club Med reservation.
Want to try an introduction to Electric Surfing?! This is one of the coolest rentals offered at La Caravelle beach. Get your rentals here.
To find the rental, you have to go to the Caravelle beach. Then walk along the beach and they are the first orange and white building. Ask for the premises of Fun Kite Academy. Reserve your rental in advance here.
You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
Snorkeling at Plage de La Caravelle
The snorkeling here is decent. The water is generally calm, which not only makes it great for swimming (especially with kids) but it also allows you to snorkel in the shallows you may spot urchins, queen conch, and lots of small fish.
Tip – Make sure if you snorkel you have a waterproof phone case (I have this waterproof housing from amazon that works ridiculously well) and a good dry bag for your electronics. This is my favorite dry bag. I never travel without it. Go pro also works wonders!
If you want to be able to take over/under water pics you will need an additional dome housing. I have this one from amazon that connects perfectly to my axis go waterproof phone case and is expensive, but works amazing.
When To Visit
The proximity of the resort means that you are basically never going to have this beach to yourself, but it also isn’t likely to get overrun due to the finite quantity of hotel guests and difficulty of access.
Pros and Cons
- Gorgeous Beach
- Lots of shade
- Snorkeling and kid friendly swimming opportunities
- Vendors and food trucks
- Limited parking
Conclusion: Does Plage de La Caravelle live up to the hype?
Yes! This is one of my favorite beaches in Guadeloupe. Once you go through the burden of getting here you will not be disappointed. It offers all types of services, even if you aren’t a hotel guest. The beach itself is worth the trip though as it is one of the prettiest on the entire island!
Things to do near Plage de La Caravelle
- Plage du bourg (6 minute drive from this beach)
- Plage de Bois Jolan (12 minutes away)
- Beach of Petit-Havre (8 minute drive)
What to Bring to the Beach
Travel towel – So much easier to pack these quick dry microfiber travel towels than go without or be forced to buy one once there. We always travel with at least two of them.
Dry Bag – There are some lessons you just don’t want to learn the hard way. Ruining your phone, camera, or other valuables at the beach is a very expensive lesson to learn. This dry bag is amazing and works for any and all water activities.
Reef-safe sunscreen – The sun here can be very strong. Make sure to wear a reef safe sunscreen or a rashguard.
Rash guard or long sleeve swim top – I wear the one from Skims and I love not having to worry about getting burned when I am out in the sun ALL DAY. Free people also has some amazing rash guards you can shop here.
Backpack or waterbottle sling – I am obsessed with my Beis travel backpack. I never travel without it. It is seriously the perfect size. Not too big, not too small. If you don’t want to bring a full backpack this waterbottle sling is my absolute favorite. It fits a waterbottle, iPhone 14 pro max, plus some extra space for bars or snacks or your wallet.
Packable snacks – I always travel with these That’s it bars from Amazon. OMG, they are sooo good and only have a few minimal ingredients.