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Ships now dock at the new cruise terminal at Pier 5/6, which houses an Internet café, a duty-free shop, and the colorful Karuland Village, where cruisers can browse and buy spices, pareos, and souvenirs or just sit and listen to the local music while having coconut ice cream. In downtown Pointe-à-Pitre, it is about a five-minute walk from the shopping district. Passengers are greeted by local musicians and hostesses, usually dressed in the traditional madras costumes—and often dispensing samplings of local rum and creole specialties. These multilingual staffers operate the information booth and can pair you up with an English-speaking taxi driver for a customized island tour. To get to the main tourist office, walk along the quay to the Place de la Victoire; it is a large white Victorian building with wraparound veranda.
Taxis are metered and expensive; during rush hour, they can be very expensive. Renting a car is a good way to see Guadeloupe, but it is expensive and best booked in advance. Be aware that traffic around Pointe-à-Pitre can be dreadful during rush hour, so allow plenty of time to drop off your car rental and get back to the ship. There are many rental agencies at the airport, but that is a €35 taxi ride from the city at least.
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