GUADELOUPE, IN THE CARIBBEAN SEA, is one of the four French overseas departments (similar to states in the UNITED STATES).
Guadeloupe is also a French region.
There are two main islands, Basse Terre and Grande Terre, separated by a strip of water called the Riviere Salee.
Other outlying inhabited islands are dependencies, namely Saint Martin, St Barthelemy, Desirade, Marie Galante, the Petite Terre and Saintes Islands.
These territories are collectively known as Guadeloupe.
The climate is tropical and humid and the dry season runs from December to May (careme).
During the rainy season (hivernage), June to November, temperatures generally rise.
Guadeloupe's climate is tempered by trade winds, but hurricanes and cyclones often wreak havoc in the area.
Neighboring islands in the southwest Caribbean include the UNITED KINGDOM's ANGUILLA and the NETHERLANDS ANTILLES.
The landscape is mountainous in the west (Basse Terre), and thick forest covers the slopes and thins out nearer to the coast.
The highest point in Guadeloupe is La Soufriere in Basse Terre, a live volcano.
Low limestone plateaus and coastal cliffs are typical of Grande Terre in the East.
The other outlying islands are mainly volcanic.
Approximately a third of the population lives in densely populated Point a Pitre on Grande Terre island.
Guadeloupe was colonized in 1635, and in spite of spells of British occupation in 1759, 1794 and 1810, the island remained a French possession.
The native Indian inhabitants were massacred, and the bulk of today's black and mulatto population is descended from the slaves imported into Guadeloupe to labor on the sugar plantations.
East Indians and some Chinese and Lebanese also contribute to the diversity of the population.
Slavery was abolished in 1848, and the colony became an overseas department in 1946 and a region in 1982.
As such, Guadeloupe is a member of the EUROPEAN UNION.
The official language is French, but French Creole is spoken by the black and metis population.
Guadeloupe enjoys the same advantages as any other mainland French department or region in terms of health, education, and social welfare.
The islands also benefit from special measures aimed at encouraging economic development (lower income tax for example).
The islands are also popular tourist destinations for the French.
Nevertheless, government subsidies are essential to Guadeloupe's economic survival.
- Another European railway strike
"The French railway strike is planned on October 8, and Belgium strike will be held the next day.
It is supposed that French train staff will stop working on the evening of October 7 and will resume it by the morning 9 October. The aim of the strike is to attract the attention of the authorities due to the worsened working conditions and also their payment dissatisfaction. To be more precise, the trade unions want to reassure the authorities not to reform the Labor Code and pension payroll system.
Their Belgium colleagues wish to come up with the same requirements. It was also reported that high-speed trains Eurostar will be routed between London and Lille without reaching Brussels due to the strike. Thalys trains connecting Belgium and French capital cities will be canceled. The tourists would better think of an alternative way or choose some other means of transport. "
- Free visit of Gaudi’s principal masterpiece in October
"The main treasure of the Catalan capital announces open days between 23 and 25 of October, 2015. The majestic cathedral will be absolutely free of charge to visit (usually the entry ticket costs 15 euro and with an excursion included the price reaches 19, 5 euro) on these days. However, there is still a limitation, everyone who wishes to get the right of free pass to the temple Basilica de la Sagrada Familia has to receive an e-ticket booked for one of the days mentioned above between 16:00 and 20:00 by local time.
The free ticket to the cathedral may be obtained starting from October 14, 2015. "