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Leaving Pointe-à-Pitre by Route N1, you can explore the western coast and the island of Basse-Terre. Here you'll find views as panoramic as those along the corniche along the French Riviera, but without the heavy traffic and crowds. After 2km (1 1/4 miles), you cross the Rivière Salée at Pont de la Gabarre. This narrow strait separates the two islands that form Guadeloupe. For the next 6km (3 3/4 miles), the road runs straight through sugar-cane fields.

Turn right on Route N2 toward Baie Mahault. (Don't confuse this with the town of Mahault on Basse-Terre's westernmost coast.) Head northwest to Lamentin, a village settled by corsairs at the beginning of the 18th century. Scattered about are some colonial mansions, but neither of these villages merits a stopover.