Christmas Kakado and Chanté Nwel in Guadeloupe

A major cultural event in Guadeloupe, the Nwel songs are traditional songs of Caribbean Christmas (hymns), which sometimes deviate from the strict religious tradition. Throughout the Advent season, practically in every commune, the villagers meet each other on week-ends to celebrate the approach of Christmas with songs. Around the kakado crib (named after a little black crayfish of the rivers, which we used to consume at Christmas), which moves every year, we sing Christmas carols, we pass on the ancestral traditions and we consume traditional dishes and drinks: Christmas ham, scrubb or orange rum, yam, anisette, currant syrup …

The Nwel Kakado festival of Vieux-Habitants is the most famous, the first Friday of Advent. In this city of Basse-Terre, Advent gives rise to all kinds of festivities: songs of songs, animations, traditional dishes, illuminations, election of the Queen of the nursery and concerts of Chanté Nwel.