30 kilometres south of Grande-Terre lies Marie-Galante, an island of 158 km², accessible by boat from Pointe-à-Pitre or Saint-François in about 1h. It delights visitors with its beautiful landscapes and rich heritage. While its idyllic picture postcard beaches are particularly popular with sunbathers, the island of a hundred windmills also enchants lovers of authenticity and tranquillity, with its peaceful sugar cane fields dotted with the ruins of windmills, once used for sugar production. One of the best-preserved windmills is that of Bézard, to the north of the town of Capesterre-de-Marie-Galante - it still has its internal grinding mechanism. Near Grand-Bourg, the Murat house, now converted into an Ecomuseum of the Arts and Popular Traditions, is also a reminder of the area's past as an important sugar production centre. Owned by the General Council of Guadeloupe, this estate is a listed Historic Monument where visitors can not only see the ruins of an old sugar refinery and a garden of medicinal plants, but also discover the island's cultural and historic heritage through various objects and documents.
History and heritage buffs can also see the ruins of the Roussel-Trianon house, an old sugar refinery to the north of Grand-Bourg, and the Punch pond, a historic site opposite the old Pirogue factory, where the whole sugar and rum stock of the Pirogue house was tipped over in the night of 24 to 25 June 1849, and where the permanent abolition of slavery was celebrated for three days and nights.
To the south-east of the island, the town of Capesterre-de-Marie-Galante charms visitors with its relaxed lifestyle and stunning beach of La Feuillère. Popular with kitesurfers, the latter, with its white sand, coconut trees and turquoise lagoon, really has it all... A little further north of Capesterre lies the beautiful beach of Anse Feuillard, a wilder and less crowded place which rewards those who are willing to undertake the twenty-minute walk there!
Throughout your journey, you can also spread out your towel on the lovely beaches of Grand-Bourg and Saint-Louis before continuing your tour of the island towards the Gueule Grand Gouffre chasm. This is an impressive site where you can stand on a specially constructed belvedere and admire a natural arch carved by the sea...
Marie-Galante is also ideal for hiking, with its signposted paths around Anse Canot, the town of Capesterre and the Murat house.
Last but not least, you can't talk about the island without mentioning its famous cane juice rum, now made by the distilleries of Bellevue, Bielle and Poisson. The latter, well-known among connoisseurs, produces the famous Père Labat 59° rum! Open to the public in the morning from Monday to Saturday, the Marie-Galante distilleries allow visitors to take a tour of their facilities and learn more about the various stages of the rum production process, not forgetting a tasting at the end of course.