In the central highlands of Grenada, Grand Etang Lake was formed in the natural crater of one of the island’s extinct volcanoes. Multiple waterfalls and creeks flow into the 20-foot-deep (6-meter-deep) lake, now filled with bright blue water, creating a tropical landscape at the center of Grenada’s national park.
Grand Etang Lake is a popular hiking spot, and many visitors enjoy following the trail that surrounds the lake or one of many shorter treks through the lush rain forest. It takes about an hour and a half to hike the entire loop, but the views are worth it. Native birds and brightly colored reptiles inhabit the rain forest, along with Mona monkeys, which can be seen and heard in the surrounding jungle. Armadillos, mongooses, mahogany trees, and rare tropical orchids are other common sights. Full- and half-day guided tours of the national park are available.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Mona monkeys have been known to steal items like sunglasses and hats.
- The walk around Grand Etang Lake features gentle terrain, but it can get muddy and slick if it rains.
- You’ll encounter vendors selling wares such as nutmeg, necklaces, and rum punch when you arrive at the park.
How to Get There
Grand Etang Lake is located in Grand Etang National Park, in the island’s central highlands. The park is 4.5 miles (about 7 kilometers) northeast of St. George's. You can hop bus 6 (which is inexpensive) from St. George’s bus terminal to Grand Etang Lake. Guided tours typically include round-trip transportation from Grenada hotels.
When to Get There
Keep in mind that the trails can become very muddy during Grenada’s rainy season, which runs from June to December; dry season runs from January to mid-April, which is also the island’s busiest season. If you want to avoid big crowds, plan to visit the lake on days when cruise ships aren’t docked.
Derived from the French word carenage, meaning “safe anchorage,” St. George’s bustling waterfront promenade wraps around Grenada’s inner harbor and is lined with colonial-era buildings. It’s also located near the island’s busy open-air market, where vendors sell spices such as cinnamon, cloves, ginger, bay leaf, turmeric, and nutmeg on Saturday mornings.