Guadeloupe’s musical tradition is very much alive and well, so it plays host to big events like Creole Blues Festival, which attracts the world’s best Blues stars to perform, and the Antilles Music Festival, which showcases biguine, gwo ka and zouk music. The gwo ka genre also has its own music festival in June. Sporting events are equally popular, while celebrations like Creole Week, International Creole Day, and the Carnavale are not to be missed for their colorful and fun atmosphere. No matter what month you visit, there are Guadeloupe holidays and island events year-round.
A week before Ash Wednesday, islanders dress in colorful and extravagant costumes and parade the streets. The main events are held in Basse-Terre and Pointe-a-Pitre. On the day before Ash Wednesday, people are dressed as white and black devils and go outdoors to dance.
La Desirade Goat Festival
Held in April, this event is a fashion show for goats. The animals are fit for fancy dresses that are normally worn by humans. Participants can also sample goat dishes cooked in a variety of ways.
French Surfing Competition
More than 200 delegates come to Guadeloupe in May to participate in surfing events held in Saint-Francois, Grande-Terre and Anse-Bertrand. Dates vary by year, so check the official competition calendar.
Guadeloupe International Zouk Festival
This internationally renowned festival honors the zouk music genre and is held in July. Spectators can enjoy local performances by renowned artists and traditional musicians.
Fete des Cuisinieres
The Festival of Women Cooks in August is one of the most spectacular events on Guadeloupe. Contestants serve a banquet of French and Creole foods, and everyone is welcome to participate and sample the dishes. Parades and dances also take place, and the attendees dress in traditional Creole costumes.
International Creole Day is the highlight of a full week which honors the Creole heritage in Guadeloupe in October. Festivities include theater performances, concerts and poetry readings.
Documentary Film Month
.An event that should not be missed for movie buffs and fans of independent films, every year in November French films that are rarely shown to the public are screened in Guadeloupe’s theaters, libraries and schools for all to appreciate.