St. Lucia safety

Jan 13th, 2012, 12:53 PM
  #1  
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St. Lucia safety

Hi all. My husband and I are trying to plan our next trip. We've never been anywhere tropical, but are thinking it's time we try it. I have my hesitations due to being a magnate for mosquitos and having a hatred of bugs. Either way, I have started a list ... Hawaii, Mexico, and St. Lucia, with St. Lucia at the top.

Last night I was on youtube watching peoples videos of the different resorts but kept coming across newscasts of murders (choppings?). I know there is crime everywhere and I am certainly not naive. I'm just curious if tourists ever get caught up in the craziness on this island. Any advice/ thoughts you can lend us would be great.
xpi6tiva is offline  
Jan 13th, 2012, 01:23 PM
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St. Lucia is an English-speaking, developing Caribbean island nation. Tourist facilities are widely available. Read the Departmenttravel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1027.html
fine in tourist enclaves ansechastenet.com beaches browner
AnseChastenet.com my fav

Might also look at briland.com runawayhill.com pinksandsresort.com closer safer for newbie PERFECT
pink sand beach.

Happy Hunting!
qwovadis is offline  
Jan 13th, 2012, 03:51 PM
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Hi,

I just got back from a three week holiday in St. Lucia (today actually)so I think I can give you a fresh opinion. I have been travelling to St. Lucia many times over the last 20 years since I have family there. Sadly the crime rate has gone up drastically the last years, just as everywhere else in the world. And as in the rest of the world the crimes in St. Lucia are mainly drug related or domestic. Staying at a hotel as a tourist in St. Lucia you would automatically not be around the bad neighbourhoods where shootings occur.

During 2010 the police in St. Lucia started "Operation restore confidence" and they have been coming down hard on criminals, actually shooting some of the well known "bad boys" on the spot when they have been caught in the act of serious crime!

The main tourist areas are around Rodney Bay in the northern part of the Island. This area is also the most developed part of the island with many shops, restaurants and a lovely marina. Some of the nicest beaches are also in and around this area (Reduit Beach and Gros-Islet/Pigeon Island Beach).A resort in this area I would recommend for a couple is Sandals Grande.

I feel very safe around this area and there are quite many policemen out walking the streets. The Friday night street party in Gros-Islet is an experience you will not want to miss if you are staying in this area, however I would recommend that you do not follow anyone into a backstreet and you should leave at about 10-11 pm before the locals take over the scene (it is mostly for tourists during the evening and you will be safe then, but things can get a bit hot later in the night).

As long as you use your common sense - don't flash money or expensive items on the beach, don't walk about the back streets or on the beach at night - you will not have any problems with crime as a tourist in St. Lucia. On the contrary, the locals will greet you with smiles and look after you if you address them with respect and friendliness.

The only warning I would give you is not to go to the capital city Castries after nightfall! Even during the day Castries can be a bit too much to deal with and you should not wander about since you can easily end up on the wrong street.

Just to sum it up - St. Lucia is one of the best locations in the world. I have also been to Hawaii but I think St. Lucia is a more exotic destination. It has the beauty of Hawaii with the dramatic volcanic mountains covered in rainforest but the culture of St. Lucia adds so much more spice and flavour that Hawaii simply does not have.

Regarding the mosquito problem and bugs... go to the local pharmacy, they have both tropical mosquito repellants (that you should rub or spray on as soon as the sun sets!) and they have potent bug killing sprays (Baygon or BOP) that you can spray your room with if you really have a bug fobia. In the tropics the cockroaches and spinders get really big but I actually only saw one spider during the tree weeks...

Hope you have a great holiday wherever you decide to go!
Swede_Lucian is offline  
Jan 14th, 2012, 08:32 AM
  #4  
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Swede,
Thank you so very much for your thorough response. Its for the reason you describe that we were considering St. Lucia. It's far more exotic that Hawaii. I've never traveled anywhere that I couldn't go about on my own at any time of day and not sure how quickly I'll get bored. I'll look a little closer at the location of the resorts I'm considering.
xpi6tiva is offline  
Jan 14th, 2012, 11:44 AM
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There might be a couple of resort areas in Mexico, like Acapulco, you need to avoid for safety. Most other places on your list for practical interests are safe.

The best choice to avoid bugs is an island like Maui, Caribbean being the worse and Mexico in the middle
FrankS is offline  
Jan 14th, 2012, 12:06 PM
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Agree with St. Lucia being an excellent choice for vacation. The north and south are very different so carefully look at where you want to base but be sure to visit both areas. Castries is to be avoided day or night as far as I am concerned. We went during the day and could not wait to leave. You will be fine with normal precautions and good choice of secure hotel. Good luck.
turaj is offline  
Jan 15th, 2012, 04:26 PM
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I'm no expert, but don't think St Lucia, or the Caribbean generally speaking, is necessarily "far more exotic than Hawaii". The Hawaiian islands are incredibly diverse. It just depends on which island, and which area you choose to go to.

Mexico is a safe destination to if you are talking about the usual tourist choices like Playa del Carmen/Mayan Riviera, Puerto Vallarta on the Pacific Coast, Cabo on the Baja, etc.
suze is offline  
Jan 16th, 2012, 06:31 AM
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You have all been so helpful and far more knowledgable about these places than I am. So, to give you a bit more detail and hoping to hear your opinion...
In St. Lucia, we are considering Jalousie Plantation and The Hotel Chocolat. In Hawaii, we are considering Koa Kea on Kauai. And in Mexico, we were considering Amuleto in Zihuantanejo. But during my research, I've read that this area is a hot bed for drug cartel. I know that the chances we'll become involved in the violence is slim but I don't want to go on vacation just to have to look over my shoulder constantly.
xpi6tiva is offline  
Jan 16th, 2012, 06:43 AM
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On Kauai, try looking to the North Shore for a more 'exotic' feel with the safety you desire.
FrankS is offline  
Jan 16th, 2012, 08:02 AM
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I think St Lucia is a beautiful island, and I enjoyed our vacation there. With that being said, I wouldn't go to the Friday night street party called Jump Up at Gros Islet. We were escorted by a c ouple locals that we met on a dive boat, and they were quite busy fending off the aggressive St Lucian men who were quite forward to the women in our group. And let's just say a simple "no thank you" to the offers of drugs wasn't well received. And good luck finding a bathroom!! As beautiful as St Lucia is, there are MUCH friendlier islands in the Caribbean IMHO. And there are also places in the Caribbean that are considered a LOT safer to roam freely around the island.....not true on St Lucia.

Although other islands might be considered safer, that doesn't mean you still don't use common sense. Staying out late in (NON) touristy areas on any island isn't what I'd call being very smart. Heck, you wouldn't do that at home, why do it in another country?

My picks for safer areas in Mexico & The Caribbean, would include Akumal Mexico and also Tulum. Most of the Riviera Maya (south of Cancun) is considered safe. In the Caribbean, so far I felt the safest on St John & Grand Cayman. Both of which had neighborhoods I wouldn't walk around at night in, but for the most part were very safe to drive around the island and explore. All the areas I've suggested inculding Mexico & The Caribbean had very friendly locals as well.

Just my .02
Bassguy66 is offline  
Jan 16th, 2012, 09:50 AM
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I do not believe Zihuat is a "hot bed for the drug cartel". Where are you reading this?

If your main concern is about safety, I think Hawaii is by far the most obvious choice.
suze is offline  
Jan 18th, 2012, 10:06 AM
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Thank you all for your responses. We are centering our research around Kauai, Hawaii for this next trip. A few days on the north shore, a few in the south. Eventually though, I'd like to get to Caribbean.
Suze- there was an article I read on cnn.com, I believe, that discussed how it's all moving southward and how there were a few bodies dumped in Zihuat back in October.
xpi6tiva is offline  
Jan 18th, 2012, 11:57 AM
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Yes am aware there are issues in the area and keep up with the news. I guess I meant even knowing of that violent incident, I do not consider Zihuat a "hot bed" of anything or unsafe for tourists at this time.

Regardless, for what you are seeking I believe Hawaii is a better choice than anywhere in Mexico or the Caribbean when safety and lack of crime is a concern.
suze is offline  
Jan 18th, 2012, 03:30 PM
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I think there are dangers lurcking anywhere you go. I have been to Hawaii and I love kauai. It was my favorite of all the islands. I loved the tropical side. I have been to many islands and the safest most friendly people I have ever encountered is Aruba. Aruba is a wealthy island by far in comparison to others and the they have zero tolerace for drugs. It also has one of the best water filtration systems. I have felt the safest there. It is a shame the quirky events that have transpired there in the past for it is truly a safe place. The winds keep all the bugs away. no bugs.
diann24 is offline  
Jan 19th, 2012, 10:56 AM
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We have traveled rather extensively through the Caribbean and we love it - with one exception. We hated St Lucia! It is the only island we have ever experienced a theft on, the bug bites were horrible (I literally didn't have an inch anywhere on me that wasn't bitten)etc.
We love the hang loose attitude in Kauai. Respectful people, great food and so much to see. I think to say that Kauai is less exotic than Kauai is incorrect. Take a helicopter ride in Kauai and you'll see what I mean.
Knowing is offline  
Jan 19th, 2012, 02:38 PM
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Knowing, we did the helicopter ride it was totally awesome and one of the highlights of our trip. That is not to be missed. Worth every penny.
diann24 is offline  
Jan 25th, 2012, 04:10 PM
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xpi6tiva,
Keep in mind that all Caribbean islands (except for the Caymans) are quite poor. and the islanders know that the people that are going to these resorts have WAY more in resources than they do. Now i am sure that 99% of the natives are nice, however there could always be that desperate 1% that cares more about feeding his kids than your safety. Just go, you'll have a blast. My wife and i have been to Jamaica and st. Lucia. Very poor when you get outside the resorts. don’t go to Mexico or Hawaii, they are so CLICHE. Might as well go to Paris also!
travel4425 is offline  
Jan 25th, 2012, 04:15 PM
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Knowing,
Don’t hinder people from going to other countries!! Hawaii is just another state. "If a destination doesn’t require a passport, it’s not REAL travel!!"


Dont listen, St. Luica rocks. Havent you ever watched DOG THE BOUNTY HUNTER? There is PLENTY of crime in HI. If you go to Hawaii you'll be sharing your experience with millions of people. The memories you will take back from St. Luica will be more intimate, since not everyone and their dog has been there.
travel4425 is offline  
Jan 26th, 2012, 08:09 AM
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travel4425 -
This is a forum for people to give their opinion. The OP stated that Hawaii is part of their wish list. Quite frankly, you need to expand your mind. Other states are worthwhile seeing. I use my passport plenty. I have not only been to many Caribbean islands, but also the French Polynesia, England, Scotland, Ireland, etc. I will also be using my passport this year to go to Monaco, Italy, and Greece, as well as to the Caribbean.
I am entitled to my view and I hated St Lucia. I have met people on other Caribbean islands that have had weapons pulled on them in St Lucia and the police got involved. The crime that is in HI tends to be confined to residental neighborhoods. We find Kauai to be more on the secluded side and saw less people there than we did in St Lucia. I wouldn't take my dog (if I had one) to St Lucia. My opinion.
Knowing is offline  
Jan 26th, 2012, 11:43 AM
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xpi6tiva,
stick with st. lucia, you wont regret it. Knowing probably did something stupid or left her/his guard down. you'll be fine. If you compare and contrast crimes in HI with St. lucia the HI will kepp going and going.

And Knowing by the way, i travel the states many timesover with my grandparents when I was a small child.
travel4425 is offline  

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