St Lucia Mini Guide
It’s an island in the Windward Islands, partway between Barbados and Martinique. The islands have a British feel about them despite being independent for decades and are best known for the iconic rock formations called The Pitons. It’s a popular beach destination having the customary white sand and palm fringed shores. For a great tropical holiday, it’s hard to beat.
Getting to St Lucia?
There are two ways with two airports on the island. Castries Airport serves island hopper planes so if you’re coming in from say Barbados, you’re likely to land there. If travelling from further afield, you’ll fly long haul to Hewanorra Airport, St Lucia's international airport.
What to do on St Lucia?
Take a look at Pigeon Island Nature Reserve for some wild St Lucia following it up with a relaxing bathe in the sulphur springs at Soufriere; the island’s main tourist attraction. Seeing the Gros Piton often means many think about climbing it and it’s not too difficult. It’ll cost you $30 to enter the Piton Park and it’s vital you take a guide with you.
The island of St Lucia is made up of two majestic volcano peaks which rise out of the Caribbean Sea. The Pitons are covered in lush, dense forest and are incredibly scenic, making St Lucia one of the most beautiful spots in the Caribbean. The rocky territory which they provide means that St Lucia’s roads were once notoriously unstable, but they have improved over time.
St. Lucia has two airports, the George FL Charles Airport, which is near Castries, and Hewanorra International which is close to Vieux Fort. George FL Charles Airport is a small airport which deals with inter-island flights and is closer to many of the all-inclusive resorts. Hewanorra is a larger airport but is about an hour’s drive from the resorts, though this route is scenic to say the least.
One of the all-inclusive resorts on the north west side island is 155 room Le Sport which specialises in fully pampered luxury for its guests. Their famous Body holiday treatment promises to improve the quality of your life and make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated. There are also a large number of water sports offered here. Other resorts are the couples only Sandals hotel and Ladera, a five star eco-tourist hotel.
If you are looking for something smaller and more intimate in the way of accommodation try the Inn on the Bay in Marigot Bay which has only five rooms, all with fabulous sea views, and caters to romantic getaways. When you go to St Lucia be sure to try the local food and drink.
The Caribbean specialty of rum punch is excellent here as is the coal pot, a delicious stew. You should also sample the jerk chicken or fish with rice and vegetables and vegetable or meat rotis, which is curry wrapped in a thin pastry.
St Lucia Factfile
- St Lucia has been ruled seven times each by the British and the French
- The island is quite big, covering nearly 240 square miles
- The island was named after St Lucy of Syracuse by the French after a deal was signed by the Carib Indians in 1660
- The legal system on St Lucia follows that of English Common Law
- The capital of the island is called Castries and it’s there that the island’s second airport is located
Should we rent a car in St Lucia?
St Lucia simply begs to be explored. No one can sit on the beaches and look up at the Pitons without wondering what they’re like close up. By all means book an excursion with your tour guide but the cash savvy tourist spends the money on car hire and spends as much or as little time as they like exploring.
Is it safe to drive in St Lucia?
Yes, it's very safe to rent a car and self-drive in St Lucia, however don't expect roads or driving standards to be like driving back home. Local driving standards leave a little to be desired so take extra care in and around traffic and an excess insurance policy is well worth considering.