Saint Lucia is famous for the twin peaks of the Pitons, which rise dramatically from the sea to form one of the Eastern Caribbean’s most famous landmarks. In addition, the island also boasts a verdant, mountainous interior, with lush tropical flora and fauna, and active volcanos.
Saint Lucia is a favourite port-of-call for many Caribbean cruise liners and yachts. If you’re planning an island-hopping trip in the Eastern Caribbean, this can be easily planned using the wide network offered by Antigua-based LIAT airlines. I recommend including at least a few days in St. Lucia in your itinerary. The inter-island airlines utilise the conveniently located Vigie Airport in the capital, Castries, whilst other international flights use the Hewanorra Airport in the extreme southeast corner of the island.
From Vigie Airport, it is easy to rent a car to tour around the island. Soufriére, in the south of the island close to where the Pitons are situated, is about a two-hour drive from Castries, along a good road that hugs the coast and winds past many banana plantations, villages and tropical jungle (look out for the beautiful tree ferns), and that offers gorgeous views of the Caribbean Sea. On the way, you can stop for lunch at one of the many waterfront restaurants lining the very scenic Marigot Bay.
The southern part of the island features dramatic scenery that includes the Pitons and dense tropical vegetation that cover the mountainous interior. In this area, not far from Soufriére, you’ll also find what is touted as a ‘drive-in’ volcano at Sulphur Springs, as well as the lovely Diamond Botanical Gardens (scenes from one of the Superman movies were filmed here). The Pitons are indeed breathtaking. They dominate the scenery for miles and are best viewed from the sea (book a sunset cruise from Soufriére or one of the hotels, such as Anse Chastanet) or from the deck of the Ladera Resort (if you’re not staying here, this is a great place for a lunch with an unforgettable view!). The upper reaches of the Anse Chastanet resort and the adjacent Jade Mountain resort also offer fine views of the Pitons.
There are several notable beaches in St. Lucia including those fronting Rodney Bay in the north. In the south, the Anse Chastanet resort has its own private blackish lava beach a few meters away from which a stunning coral reef can be explored.
In addition, the Jalousie resort, near Soufriére, has a beautiful white sandy beach (which was purportedly imported from another Caribbean island!).
Search for hotels in St. Lucia.