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Charming locals Jeanette and Michel Laurent with their grandson in Sainte-Anne, Guadeloupe

GUADELOUPE / Local Culture / Calendar of Events

Guadeloupe’s local culture is diverse and well-developed. From distinguished Nobel laureate authors to the creators of popular Zouk music, from legendary cuisiniéres (cooks) to artists of every description who create unique works in their ateliers (workshops), there is much to experience and celebrate in Guadeloupe.

Colorful festivals are held throughout the year and performances of traditional music and dance are regularly scheduled. Art galleries, museums and fascinating historical sites abound.

Please click
here for a directory of galleries.
Please click
here for a director of additional local attractions.

2008 Guadeloupe Calendar of Events

Jan. 1: New Year's Day, public holiday. "Family Day" with "at home" festivities

Jan. 6: La Fête des Rois, or Epiphany. Wining and dining at home and in hotels, culminating in the serving of the traditional cake called galette des rois

Jan. 24 - Feb. 2: FEMI 2008. Guadeloupe 15th International Movie Festival

Feb. 2 - Feb. 6: Carnival in Guadeloupe, les Saintes and Marie-Galante

Feb. 5: Mardi Gras, or Shrove Tuesday. Carnival at height of frenzy, with parade of floats, costumed red devils and dancing filling streets of Pointe-à-Pitre

Feb. 6: Ash Wednesday. Parades, in black and white dress, and parties. Burning of King Carnival on a funeral pyre. Night parade with torches to bury Vaval in Pointe-à-Pitre

Feb. 23 - March 2: Les Nuits Caraïbes. Classical music festival. La Caféière Beauséjour

Feb. 28: Mi-Carême, or Mid-Lent, public holiday. Parades, parties during day-long respite from Lent

March 21 - 24: CARIFTA GAMES 2008. Junior track and field championships open to athletes, age 13 to 19, from the Caribbean nations, members of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). The games held in Guadeloupe in 2006 will be hosted for the first time by St. Kitts- Nevis.

March 23 - 24: Easter Sunday and Monday, public holiday. Family picnics at beaches and rivers. Soccer games between Guadeloupe and Martinique are year's classic sports events.

March 23 - 24: Crab Festival in Morne-à-l'Eau

March 23 - 30: Guadarun. 150km race held on the islands of Guadeloupe, Terre-de-Haut, Terre-de-Bas, Marie-Galante and La Desirade

March 29 - 30: Trophée Gardel. Regatta in Saint-François

March 29 - April 20: Transcaraîbes Cruising Rally. Guadeloupe to Cuba

April: Fête de la Mer in St. François

April: Trophée BPE - The solo transatlantique race Concarneau (France) to Guadeloupe will be held in 2009

April 22: Earth Day

April 24: Guadeloupe to Antigua sailing race. Deshaies to English Harbour

May: Exposision Florale et Artisanale. Terre-de-Haut, Les Saintes. Floral, art and craft show

May 1: Ascension Thursday, public holiday

May 1: Labor Day, public holiday. Workers parade through Pointe-à-Pitre

May 1 - 3: Le Moule Creole Blues Festival

May 3: Patrons Saint's Day, St. Philippe & St. Jacques, in Petit-Canal / Guadeloupe

May 3: Patrons Saint's Day, St. Joseph, in Vieux-Habitants / Guadeloupe

May 8: VE Day, public holiday

May 8 - 12: Marie-Galante International Music Festival. Creole Blues

May 11 - 12: Pentecost Sunday and Monday. Public holiday. Festivities identical to Easter Monday's

May 23 - 27: Tour de Guadeloupe. Regattas between Guadeloupe, Marie-Galante and Les Saintes

May 25: Mother's Day

May 27: Slavery Abolition Day, public holiday. Picnics, parties

May 30 - June 1: Zoo Regatta in Gosier

June 7: 7th Volcano Trail. 31 miles international marathon

June 21: Music celebration all around Guadeloupe archipelago

June 21: Summer solstice

June 24: Patron Saint's Day in Baie-Mahault and Le Moule / Guadeloupe (St. Jean Baptiste)

June 29: Patrons Saint's Day in Deshaies / Guadeloupe (St. Pierre and St. Paul)

July: Arts & Crafts Festival. Sainte-Anne. OMCS, Tel: 05 90 88 12 16

July: Gwo-Ka (big drum) Festival in Sainte-Anne (Music, Dances). OMCS, Tel: 05 90 88 12 16

July 1 - Aug. 31: Festival de la Guadeloupe, annual summer events (Gastronomy, Music, Folklore)

July 6: Patron Saint's Day in Port-Louis / Guadeloupe (Notre Dame des 7 Douleurs)

July 14: Bastille Day, public holiday. Pageants, parades

July 21: Schoelcher Day, public holiday, honors Victor Schoelcher and end to slavery in 1848.

July 26: Patrons Saint's Day in Goyave and Sainte-Anne in Guadeloupe and Capesterre in Marie-Galante (Ste. Anne)

August 1 - 10: Tour de la Guadeloupe. 10 day International Cycle race, teams from many countries. 9 rough itineraries cover island in reduced version of celebrated Tour de France.

August: Rally Automobile de Marie-Galante. Car racing

August: Traditional Music Festival in Le Moule / Guadeloupe

August: Miss Guadeloupe Beauty Contest

Aug. 10 : Fête des Cuisinières, or Festival of the Women Cooks. One of Guadeloupe's most colorful events. Women parade in Creole costume, carrying baskets brimming with island specialties. Morning mass at Cathedral and 5-hour banquet (visitors are invited). Locale: Ecole Amédée Fengarol, Pointe-à-Pitre. Information Maison de Cuisinières Tel: 05 90 91 22 75

Aug. 15: Assumption Day, public holiday

Aug. 14-15: Fishermen's Day in St. François

Aug. 15: Patron Saint's Day and Fishermen's Day in Les Saintes, Terre-de-Haut. Mass for the fishermen, procession, benediction of the sea

Aug. 15: Patron Saint's Day in Pointe-Noire, Trois-Rivières, Petit-Bourg / Guadeloupe

Aug. 15: Patron Saint's Day in Grand Bourg / Marie-Galante

Aug. 15: Patron Saint's Day in Petit Bourg / Guadeloupe

Aug. 15: Patron Saint's Day in La Désirade

Aug. 17: Patron Saint's Day in Capesterre-Belle-Eau / Guadeloupe (St. Hyacinthe)

Aug. 23: Patron Saint's Day in Sainte-Rose / Guadeloupe (Ste. Rose de Lima)

Aug. 25: Patron Saint's Day in Gosier and Bouillante / Guadeloupe (St. Louis Roi de France)

Aug. 25: Patron Saint's Day in Saint-Louis / Marie-Galante (St. Louis Roi de France)

Aug. 28: Patron Saint's Day in Saint-Claude / Guadeloupe (St. Augustin)

Oct. 4: Patron Saint's Day in St. François / Guadeloupe (St. François)

Oct. 4: Patron Saint's Day in Basse-Terre, quartier St. François/ Guadeloupe (St. François)

Oct. 9: Patron Saint's Day in Anse Bertrand / Guadeloupe (St. Denis)

Oct. 15: Patron Saint's Day in Basse-Terre, quartier Ste Thérèse / Guadeloupe (Ste. Thérèse)

November: IGWA 2008. Adventure & Discovery event of the Guadeloupean Territory and Identities

Nov. 1: All Saints Day, public holiday. All cemetery tombstones illuminated with candles

Nov. 2: All Souls Day. Public holiday also

Nov. 8 - 10: Triskell Cup Regatta.

Nov. 11: Armistice Day, public holiday. Celebrations, parades, fireworks

Nov. 11: Patron Saint's Day in Gourbeyre / Guadeloupe (St. Charles)

Nov. 18: Patron Saint's Day in Pointe-à-Pitre (St. Pierre)

Mid-Nov: La Route du Rhum sail-boats are expected to start arriving in Pointe-à-Pitre.

Nov. 22: Ste. Cécile. Music celebration in cities and towns.

Nov. 30: Patron Saint's Day in Morne-à-l'Eau / Guadeloupe (St. André)

Dec. 1 - 25: Nwèl Kakado. Chirstmas carols in Vieux-Habitants on Friday nights

Dec. 6: Saint Nicolas' Day in Terre-de-Bas / Les Saintes. To honor the Saint of the city: Sailors' mass, Procession, Benediction of the sea

Dec. 8: Women Merchants' Day in Abymes / Guadeloupe - Procession

Dec. 8: Marie-Galante traditional sail boat race

Dec. 14-16: Jazz Festival in Pointe-à-Pitre

Dec. 21: Winter solstice

Dec. 21 - 22: 4th Caribbean Pyrotechny contest in Sainte-Anne

Dec. 21 - 22: Expo Galante. Christmas market in Marie-Galante

Dec. 22: Cantiques, Paillettes et Comédie. Holiday show in Terre-de-Haut, Les Saintes. Carols, music and dances

Dec. 24: Christmas Eve. Dancing, and dining on Creole specialties (Réveillon). Midnight Mass with French and Creole carols

Dec. 25: Christmas Day, public holiday. Singing, exchanging of gifts, feasting

Dec. 28: Young Saints Day. Mass, parade for costumed children carrying toys

Dec. 31: Réveillon de la Saint Sylvestre, New Year's Eve celebration

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