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wrigley2 Apr 1st, 2007 06:00 PM

Island for hiking/biking?
I would appreciate any suggestions on which island to use as our "home base" for a one week vacation this summer. My husband and I like to hike and bike and do a bit of playing in the ocean. We're not super-fit but probably above average. Not into night-life. Considering St. John or St. Lucia. Comments on those or other suggestions?

brenandg Apr 1st, 2007 07:53 PM

We have been to both islands twice and I think you would like them both. They do have their differences though.

St Lucia is extremely lush, tropical and mountainous. Even though it is not that large of an island, it does take a while to navigate around. It is the perfect island for some eco adventure. Check out for some ideas as to activities there. I did see a mountain biking excursion and some new ones since I had last checked their website. We haven't been since 2004. Lots of rainforest hikes. The beaches on STJ are far superior to STL. I'm not sure what you meant by a home base. If you want to island hop from STL you can take a catamaran to Martinique or a day trip to the Grenadines (highly recommend if you go). STL has a charming West Indian feel to it. Really not much nightlife except the Rodney Bay area.

St John holds lush beautiful scenery and gorgeous beaches. Plenty of opportunities for hiking and exploring, not sure about the biking. Far easier to get around STJ than STL in a rental car. Lacks the West Indian flavor of STL. Other perks are the ease of island hopping to The British Virgin islands and the fine dining available. We love both islands and I don't think you can go wrong with either one. St Lucia is more for exploring away from the beach into its lush interior. St John has plenty of hiking and exploring but the beaches are its star attraction. They both take a bit of work to get to.

Knowing Apr 2nd, 2007 06:45 PM

Although we didn't care for St. Lucia, some people feel as though the island has an exotic, laid back atmosphere reminiscent of the South Pacific. If you are a person that enjoys a kayak tour of an island and that sort of thing, this place may be for you.
If the idea of sitting in a bar enjoying a cocktail, enjoying some famous beaches, or browsing through shops is more in your thoughts, you may want to invest your energy into looking at St John. Let us know what you decide.

CanadaKate Apr 2nd, 2007 07:39 PM

We've twice spent a very enjoyable time at the Anse Chastenet resort on St. Lucia. There are many steps so not a place to stay if you don't want the exercise.

But ... wonderful rooms, with open air balconies that view the Pitons or the forest. Great snorkeling and tiny presumptous birds that try to steal your breakfast.


bajangirl Apr 3rd, 2007 04:05 PM

Haven't been to St John (yet), but St Lucia is a fab island and would fill your requirements. Great hiking/biking and sea activities are also available on Nevis and Dominica - probably best of all in the hiking department. The beauty of Nevis is that a day trip to St Kitts is minutes away, or vice versa. You might find some helpful info at

Odin Apr 3rd, 2007 10:53 PM

The road network is great for cycling in Guadeloupe and the National Park on Basse-Terre has numerous hiking trails thru rainforests/kayaking.

There are some beaches on Basse Terre but for the best ones, they are on the other side Grande Terre.

You can get to Dominica easily from PTP. It's a much bigger island than St Lucia and offers more options for those who like the outdoor pursuits. Other islands eg Marie Galante, Les Saintes can be reached also.

wrigley2 Apr 5th, 2007 03:16 AM

Thanks to everyone for replying. One more follow-up question. I'm looking through the info for hiking in St. Lucia. Is it possible to hike on your own or does everything have to be with a guide? We wouldn't mind joining a group a couple of times but I don't want that to be our only option. Thanks!

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