Sainte-Anne is, for many people, one of the most beautiful beach in Guadeloupe. If you visit the island, it is quite likely that Sainte-Anne will be one of the places you stay (or perhaps your main destination) during your trip. Although the sea bed is not very interesting, don’t hesitate to pay it a visit, as this is a spot that is accessible, free, and anything but disappointing.

Queen conch at Ste Anne Beach, Guadeloupe snorkeling

How to get there?

Sainte-Anne is located on Grande-Terre, the eastern wing of the main Guadeloupe island, some 15 miles (25km) east of Pointe-à-Pitre. From Pointe-à-Pitre, take the N4 (route nationale 4), following the signs for « Gosier » and « Sainte-Anne/Saint-François ». It takes about 45 minutes by car from Pointe-à-Pitre when the traffic is light. The beach is well signposted (“Plage du Bourg”) from the main road, just after you enter the village.

Sainte-Anne Beach snorkeling map, Guadeloupe

Water entrance

Sainte-Anne’s beach is divided by three rocky jetties. We recommend getting into the water from the beach, near the first jetty you will see when you arrive in Saint-Anne from Pointe-à Pitre.

Exploration

The area to explore is enclosed by the beach and the barrier reef, which are distant of 150 to 200m in this part of the lagoon. It covers sandy and grassy seabed, poor in coral, but relatively rich in underwater life.

As you move away from the beach, you cross 100 meters or so of sandy seabed with scattered rocks and coral areas (↕0.5-1m), which grow denser as you move closer to the reef. Approximately 50 meters before the reef (↕0.5m), the coral becomes so dense that you can’t go any further, while the water level gradually falls.

Ste-Anne Beach, Guadeloupe snorkeling

The rocks provide small areas of sea life that are interesting to explore. Small groups of grunt, beau gregory or jewel damselfish move between the rocks and small corals, which are colonized by a few sea urchins. You will also see young Atlantic blue tang and foureye butterflyfish, which are among the most colorful species in the lagoon. You can also explore the sandy seabed to find a queen conch, which are really common in this spot.

Grunt and sea urchins at Ste Anne Beach, Guadeloupe

This spot is only partially sheltered by a coral reef. Stay at a distance from the reef (waves are strong in this area) and don’t try to go to the other side of the barrier, where the sea is rougher. Swim carefully, because the area is shallow and there are a lot of sea urchins. There are always a lot of swimmers on the spot, so watch out for others.

Restaurants and accommodation

Sainte-Anne is the most popular beach of Guadeloupe. It is a particularly lively town, including in the evening. It has a wide range of accommodation and many places to eat. There is a series of bar vans, restaurants and hotels along the sea front. A daily colorful market is located in front of the small fishing port.

Species you may spot while snorkeling Plage de Sainte-Anne
COMMON NAME SCIENTIFIC NAME ABUNDANCE FISHBASE WIKIPEDIA
Beau gregory Stegastes leucostictus  
Yellowtail snapper Ocyurus chrysurus  
French grunt Haemulon flavolineatum  
Sergeant major Abudefduf saxatilis  
Foureye butterflyfish Chaetodon capistratus  
Doctorfish tang Acanthurus chirurgus  
Yellowfin mojarras Gerres cinereus  
Queen conch Lobatus gigas  

 

  • Level required Beginner
  • Maximum depth8ft/2.5m
  • Water entranceEasy, from a sandy beach
  • Potential DangersUrchins
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersLow
  • Access costsFree
  • Restaurants nearbyYes
  • Public toilets & showersNo

MAP Spot

These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.

This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.