La Grande Soufriere, Pointe-A-Pitre, Guadeloupe | CruiseBe
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La Grande Soufrière

Natural sights
mount, volcano

La Grande Soufrière, (French: "big sulphur outlet"), is an active stratovolcano on the French island of Basse-Terre, in Guadeloupe. It is the highest mountain peak in the Lesser Antilles, and rises 1,467 m high.

The volcano's 1976 eruption led to an evacuation but no loss of life. There was a bitter, and well-publicized, controversy between scientists Claude Allègre and Haroun Tazieff on whether evacuation should be decided. Allègre held that inhabitants should be evacuated, just in case, while Tazieff held that the Soufrière was harmless. The prefect decided to evacuate, erring on the side of prudence: in the end the eruption did not result in any damage.

While the island was deserted, the German filmmaker Werner Herzog traveled to the abandoned town of Basse-Terre to find a peasant who had refused to leave his home on the slopes of the volcano. His journey is recorded in the film La Soufrière.

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