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Holidays in Saint Lucia

Understanding Saint Lucia

Tourism is vital to Saint Lucia's economy Its economic importance is expected to continue to increase as the market for bananas becomes more competitive Tourism tends to be more substantial during the dry season January to April Saint Lucia tends to be popular due to its tropical weather and scenery and its numerous beaches and resorts

Other tourist attractions include a drive-in volcano, Sulphur Springs at Soufrière, the Botanical Gardens, the Majestic twin Peaks "The Pitons", A world heritage site, the rain forests, and Pigeon Island National Park, which is home to Fort Rodney, an old British military base


Saint Lucia's first known inhabitants were Arawaks, believed to have come from northern South America around 200-400 CE Numerous archaeological sites on the island have produced specimens of the Arawak's' well-developed pottery Caribs gradually replaced Arawak's during the period from 800 to 1000 CE

Europeans first landed on the island in either 1492 or 1502 during Spain's early exploration of the Caribbean The British failed in their first attempts at colonization in the early 17th century The island was first settled by the French, who signed a treaty with the local Caribs in 1660 Like the British and Dutch, the French began to develop the island for the cultivation of sugar cane on extensive plantations

Caribbean conditions were hard, and many slaves died before they lived long enough to have children The French and later British continued to import slaves until the latter nation abolished the trade, and then the legal institution By that time, people of ethnic African descent greatly outnumbered those of ethnic European background

Thereafter Saint Lucia was much contested by the two European powers until the British secured it in 1814 It was part of the British Windward Islands colony It joined the West Indies Federation 1958–62 when the colony was dissolved In 1967, Saint Lucia became one of the six members of the West Indies Associated States, with internal self-government In 1979 it gained full independence


Tropical, moderated by northeast trade winds; dry season from January to April, rainy season from May to August; Experiences hurricanes


Volcanic and mountainous with some broad, fertile valleys

Natural hazards: volcanic activity

Highest point: Mount Gimie 950 m

Talking in Saint Lucia

English official, French patois

Virtually all residents will be able to converse with travellers in English

What to see in Saint Lucia

  • Pigeon Island nature reserve - just north of Gros Islet, the park has some of the oldest buildings on StLucia and affords views across to Martinique

What to do in Saint Lucia

  • The Sulfur Springs - just south of Soufriere, these hot springs are one of the main attractions on the island There is a pool that the hot water runs through, so make sure to take your swimming trunks and go for a dip!
  • Rainforest hikes - there are several offical hiking routes on the island The Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries 5 site has links to information about the ones they support
  • Climbing the Gros Piton is an achievable goal for most people The trailhead begins at an elevation of about 600 feet approx 180 m above sea level and requires about two hours of moderate to strenuous hiking to reach the summit of about 2600 feet approx 800 m above sea level A further 1-and-a-half hours are needed to descend Guides are required and entrance costs $30 US Taxis or local buses can be used to reach the trail head
  • Snorkeling is popular and a number of beaches are suitable

Buying stuff in Saint Lucia

Castries market is a good place to buy gifts as is the JQ Shopping Mall in Rodney Bay There is also La Place Carenage, a duty free and gift and souvenir outlet located in the main harbour of Castries There you will find fine jewellry arts and crafts, ideal for gifts

Supermarkets have quite good prices on rums produced or bottled on the island, eg, Elements 8, Admiral Rodney, and especially Chairman's Reserve

Visits by cruise ships over the years have generated a duty free mall at dockside, Point Seraphine, Castries with jewelry, souvenirs, art, liquor/rums and other offerings typical for cruise shoppers

You may also find lower, "duty-Free" prices available across the island in strip malls and resortts You may need identification as a visitor to qualify for duty-free treatment

Food and eating in Saint Lucia

There are many dining options in St Kitts Some of the popular restaurants are:

  • Sprat Net - Old Road
  • Ballahoo Restaurant, Basseterre 9
  • Marshall's, Frigate Bay, 10
  • Chevy's Beach Bar & Grill, Pinneys Beach Nevis, 11
  • 'The Poopdeck Bar & Grill Turtle Beach
  • PJ's Bar and Restaurant, Frigate Bay 12

You'll find lots of beach bars located in the Frigate Bay and South East Peninsula

Drinking in Saint Lucia

St Lucia has fantastic Rum Punch It's hard to go wrong Highly recommended:

  • Chairman's Reserve cask-aged dark rum
  • Crystal Lime clear rum infused with lime

Most bars will have both, even at the smaller resorts

In addition to rums, Piton Lager beer is brewed and bottled on the island and is quite good although it has a slightly higher alcohol content than most American beers It's usually offered in eight ounce bottles, often for $1 US

Also seen in coolers: Heineken, Champagne, Wine, Water, Coke usually $1 US

Accommodation in Saint Lucia

St Lucia is home to a huge number of resort hotels as well as small boutique hotels and self-catering villas, condos, and vacation apartments

  • Villa Beach Cottages Castries 6 Self-catering beachfront villas
  • The Inn On The Bay Marigot Bay 7 A romantic 5-room Hotel overlooking beautiful Marigot Bay

  • Oasis Marigot 177 Seaview Avenue Marigot Bay 1-800-263-4202 http://wwwoasismarigotcom 4:00 PM 11:00 AM From $159 Oasis Marigot is a vacation community nestled on the hillside overlooking Marigot Beach, St Lucia It offers different types of accommodations to fit any travel budget All units enjoy a spectacular view of the most beautiful bay in the Caribbean Active vacationers who want a unique experience, such as island hopping on a 42-foot yacht, diving or sailing, will find it at Oasis Marigot

  • Mago Hotel, Soufriere Eco-Hotel, overlooking the bay, set amongst the tropical forest
  • Windjammer Landing Labrelotte Bay 1-758-456-9000 http://wwwwindjammer-landingcom 4PM 11AM Mediterranean village-style resort on 55 acres of lush tropical landscaping overlooking picturesque Labrelotte Bay

All inclusive resorts

  • East Winds Inn 8
  • Ladera - 5 Star - Amazing Views, Eco-Tourist 9
  • Sandals - Exclusive, couples only- 10
  • Rendezvous 11
  • LeSPORT 12
  • Stonefield Estate Villa Resort 13
  • Anse Chastenet - 5 Star 14
  • Fond Doux Plantation- 3 Star 15
  • Coconut Bay Resort & Spa Vieux Fort 16
  • Calabash Cove Resort - Boutique, Ocean front cottages 5 Star 17

Cities in Saint Lucia

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