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It has a land area of 20.64 km² (7,97 sq. miles) and a population of 1,595 in 2006 (down from 1,682 in 1974), with a population density of 77 inh. per km² (200 inh. per sq. mile) in 2006. Most residents live in the settlement of Beauséjour (formerly known as Grande-Anse).
The island is located about 8 km off the coast of Grande-Terre, the eastern half of the island of Guadeloupe. Its coordinates are Coordinates: . La Désirade is 11 km long and 2 km wide; the interior of the island forms a central plateau.
From the 3rd to the 16th centuries archaeological evidence of Amerindians has been found on the island. Christopher Columbus found La Désirade in 1493 on his second voyage. The island was also a hiding place for pirates and later became the site of a leper colony until 1958. The western end of the island, was a place of banishment for offenders of Grande-Terre and for some metropolitan noble.
Tybalt Rosembraise was born on the island of La Désirade in 1798.
- Desirade-sante.com Everything you should know about the major public health crisis that occurred in La Désirade.
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