Carbet Falls

Origin and environment

“Carbet Falls” also known as the “Grand Carbet River” is located in Guadeloupe National Park”, on the lower slopes of “La Soufrière” volcano and count amongst the most spectacular waterfalls of the Lesser Antilles. With approximately 400,000 visitors annually, these impressive waterfalls are popular tourist destinations in Basse-Terre Island. “Carbet Falls” also has an interesting historical significance. In November 1493, Christopher Colombus marvelled at the beauty of the falls and described them in his ship’s log.

Three Falls, three Hiking trails

There are three separate waterfalls set in the tropical rainforest.

– The first cascade

The first cascade is 115 metres (377 feet) tall and is the highest. Situated in Guadeloupe National Park in Capesterre-Belle-Eau Township, the touch of originality is in the red-orangey coloured stones due to the waterfall. Visitors reach the cascade by a long, steep trail at an elevation of 900 metres (3000 feet). The source of the Carbet River is located another 2 km (1.2 miles) upstream from the first cascade, at an elevation of 1300 metres (4300 feet). To access the cascade it will take you around 3-4 hours to go there and back from the parking and the small welcome desk. The trail leading to the cascade is averagely difficult but it’s worth it.

First Cascade (photo: http://ti.racoon.free.fr/)
First Cascade (Photo: Greg)

– The Second cascade

The second cascade is 110 metres (361 feet) high and is the most visited due to its convenient accessibility (45 minutes from the parking area). To attain it the trail is very nicely maintained, paved, well designed and effortless even for disable people. The small welcome desk collects a small fee of 1.6 € per adult at the entrance. Many hot springs are located nearby. Less adventurous travellers will want to visit only this second cascade, while others might set out to see all three. It is highly recommended that experience hikers attempt to see all three, as there is some challenging terrain to cover in the rain forest.

Second cascade

– The third cascade

The third cascade is the lowest with 20 metres (66 feet) tall and has the greatest water volume of any waterfall in Guadeloupe. The cascade plunges down into a magnificent circular basin where swimming is allowed. You will need between 4-5 hours to get the fall by foot as it is the only way. This part of the Guadeloupe National Park has a reputation for being especially challenging and usually, experienced hikers are those who have the courage to go there.

Third cascade (photo:Greg)

Carbet Falls is a suitable spot for Guadeloupe hiking. Besides, it offers the opportunity to discover a different side of Guadeloupe Archipelago: national parks. When visiting Basse-Terre Island, don’t miss the beautiful scenery, vegetation and waterfalls of Carbet Falls.

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