Saint Lucia

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Saint Lucia - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Anse Chastanet

    In front of the resort of the same name and Jade Mountain, this palm-studded, dark-sand beach just north of Soufrière Bay has a backdrop of...

    In front of the resort of the same name and Jade Mountain, this palm-studded, dark-sand beach just north of Soufrière Bay has a backdrop of green mountains, brightly painted fishing skiffs bobbing at anchor, calm waters for swimming, and some of the island's best reefs for snorkeling and diving right from shore. Anse Chastanet Resort's gazebos are among the palms; its dive shop, restaurant, and bar are on the beach and open to the public. The mile-long dirt road from Soufrière, though, is a challenge even for taxi drivers, given its (by design) state of disrepair. Amenities: food and drink; parking (no fee); toilets; water sports. Best for: snorkeling; sunset; swimming.

    Anse Chastanet Rd., Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
  • 2. Anse Cochon

    This dark-sand beach in front of Ti Kaye Resort & Spa is accessible by boat or by jeep via Ti Kaye's mile-long, tire-crunching access road—and...

    This dark-sand beach in front of Ti Kaye Resort & Spa is accessible by boat or by jeep via Ti Kaye's mile-long, tire-crunching access road—and then 166 steps down to the beach. The calm water and adjacent reefs, part of the National Marine Reserve, are superb for swimming, diving, and snorkeling. Most catamaran cruises to Soufrière stop here on the northbound leg so that day-trippers can take a quick swim. Moorings are free, and boaters and swimmers can enjoy refreshments at Ti Kaye's beach bar. Snorkeling equipment is available at the dive shop on the beach. Amenities: food and drink; toilets; water sports. Best for: snorkeling; swimming.

    Off West Coast Rd., Anse-la-Raye, Saint Lucia
  • 3. Anse des Pitons

    The white sand on this crescent beach, snuggled between the Pitons, was imported years ago and spread over the natural black sand. Accessible through the...

    The white sand on this crescent beach, snuggled between the Pitons, was imported years ago and spread over the natural black sand. Accessible through the Viceroy resort, or by boat, Anse des Pitons (aka Sugar Beach, Jalousie Beach) offers crystal-clear water for swimming, excellent snorkeling and diving, and breathtaking scenery—you're swimming right between the Pitons, after all. The underwater area here is protected as part of the National Marine Reserve. Neighboring resorts provide shuttle service to the beach for their guests, but if you're not staying nearby, prepare to pay a hefty fee. Amenities: food and drink; toilets; water sports. Best for: snorkeling; sunset; swimming.

    Val des Pitons, Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
  • 4. Castries Central Market

    Market/Bazaar

    Under a brilliant orange roof, this bustling market is at its liveliest on Saturday morning, when farmers bring their produce and spices to...

    Under a brilliant orange roof, this bustling market is at its liveliest on Saturday morning, when farmers bring their produce and spices to town, as they have for more than a century. (It's closed Sunday.) Next door to the produce market is the Craft Market, where you can buy pottery, wood carvings, handwoven straw articles, and innumerable souvenirs, trinkets, and gewgaws. At the Vendors' Arcade, across Peynier Street from the Craft Market, you'll find still more handicrafts and souvenirs.

    55 John Compton Hwy., Castries, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
  • 5. Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens and Mineral Baths

    Garden

    These splendid gardens are part of Soufrière Estate, a 2,000-acre land grant presented by King Louis XIV in 1713 to three Devaux brothers from...

    These splendid gardens are part of Soufrière Estate, a 2,000-acre land grant presented by King Louis XIV in 1713 to three Devaux brothers from Normandy in recognition of their services to France. The estate is still owned by their descendants; Joan Du Boulay Devaux maintains the gardens. Bushes and shrubs bursting with brilliant flowers grow beneath towering trees and line pathways that lead to a natural gorge. Water bubbling to the surface from underground sulfur springs streams downhill in rivulets to become Diamond Waterfall, deep within the botanical gardens. Through the centuries, the rocks over which the cascade spills have become encrusted with minerals tinted yellow, green, and purple. Near the falls, mineral baths are fed by the underground springs. King Louis XVI of France provided funds in 1784 for the construction of a building with a dozen large stone baths to fortify his troops against the Saint Lucian climate. It's claimed that the future Joséphine Bonaparte bathed here as a young girl while visiting her father's plantation nearby. During the Brigand's War, just after the French Revolution, the bathhouse was destroyed. In 1930 André Du Boulay had the site excavated, and two of the original stone baths were restored for his use. Outside baths were added later. For a small fee, you can slip into your swimsuit and soak for 30 minutes in one of the outside pools; a private bath costs slightly more.

    Soufrière Estate, Diamond Rd., Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
    758-459–7155

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $7, public bath $6, private bath $7
  • 6. Fond Doux Estate

    One of the earliest French estates established by land grants (1745 and 1764), this plantation still produces cocoa, citrus, bananas, coconuts, and vegetables on 135...

    One of the earliest French estates established by land grants (1745 and 1764), this plantation still produces cocoa, citrus, bananas, coconuts, and vegetables on 135 hilly acres within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Soufrière. The restored 1864 plantation house is still in use, as well. A 90-minute guided walking tour begins at the cocoa fermentary, and takes you through the chocolate-making process. You then follow a lushly-planted nature trail, where a guide points out various fruit- or spice-bearing trees, tropical flowers, and indigenous birds (and their unique songs). Additional trails lead to old military ruins, a religious shrine, and a vantage point for viewing the spectacular Pitons. Cool drinks and an optional Creole buffet lunch are served after the tour. Souvenirs, including freshly-made chocolate sticks, are sold at the boutique.

    Vieux Fort Rd., Château Belair, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
    758-459–7545

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $25, $40 with lunch
  • 7. Morne Coubaril Historical Adventure Park

    Farm/Ranch

    On the site of an 18th-century estate, a 250-acre land grant in 1713 by Louis XIV of France, the original plantation house has been rebuilt...

    On the site of an 18th-century estate, a 250-acre land grant in 1713 by Louis XIV of France, the original plantation house has been rebuilt and a farmworkers' village has been re-created. Both do a good job of showing what life was like for both the owners (a single family owned the land until 1960) and those who did all the hard labor over the centuries producing cotton, coffee, sugarcane, and cocoa. Cocoa, coffee, coconuts, manioc, and tropical fruits are still grown on the estate using traditional agricultural methods. On the 45-minute Historical Estate Tour, guides show how coconuts are opened and roasted for use as oil and animal feed and how cocoa is fermented, dried, crushed by dancing on the beans, and finally formed into chocolate sticks. Manioc roots (also called cassava) are grated, squeezed of excess water, dried, and turned into flour used for baking. The grounds are lovely for walking or hiking, and the views of mountains and Soufrière Bay are spellbinding. More adventurous visitors will enjoy ziplining past Petit Piton and through the adjacent rain forest—or a two-hour horseback ride on a trail to the beach.

    West Coast Rd., Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
    758-459–7340

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $11 estate tour, $75 zipline, $120 horseback ride
  • 8. Reduit Beach

    Many feel that Reduit (pronounced red-WEE) is the island's finest beach. The long stretch of golden sand that frames Rodney Bay is within walking distance...

    Many feel that Reduit (pronounced red-WEE) is the island's finest beach. The long stretch of golden sand that frames Rodney Bay is within walking distance of many hotels and restaurants in Rodney Bay Village. Bay Gardens Beach Resort and Mystique St. Lucia by Royalton face the beachfront; Harmony Suites is across the road. At Mystique's water-sports center, you can rent sports equipment and beach chairs and take windsurfing or waterskiing lessons. Kids (and adults alike) love Splash Island Water Park, an open-water inflatable playground near Bay Gardens Beach Resort with a trampoline, climbing wall, swing, slide, and more. Amenities: food and drink; toilets; water sports. Best for: snorkeling; sunset; swimming; walking; windsurfing.

    Rodney Bay, Gros-Islet, Saint Lucia
  • 9. Splash Island Water Park

    The Eastern Caribbean's first open-water-sports park, installed just off Reduit Beach a dozen or so yards from the sand in front of Bay Gardens Beach...

    The Eastern Caribbean's first open-water-sports park, installed just off Reduit Beach a dozen or so yards from the sand in front of Bay Gardens Beach Resort, thrills kids and adults alike—but mostly kids. They spend hours on the colorful, inflatable, modular features, which include a trampoline, climbing wall, swing, slide, hurdles, and water volleyball net. Children must be at least six, and everyone must wear a life vest. A team of lifeguards is on duty when the park is open.

    Reduit Beach Rd., Rodney Bay, Gros-Islet, Saint Lucia
    758-457–8532

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: From $13 per hr
  • 10. Sulphur Springs Park

    Nature Sight

    As you approach Sulphur Springs Park and the crater of the "drive-in volcano," your nose will pick up a strong scent emanating from more than...

    As you approach Sulphur Springs Park and the crater of the "drive-in volcano," your nose will pick up a strong scent emanating from more than 20 belching pools of murky water, crusty sulfur deposits, and other multicolor minerals baking and steaming on the surface. You don't actually drive all the way in. Rather, you drive within a few hundred feet of the gurgling, steaming mass and then walk behind your guide (whose service is included in the admission price) around a fault in the substratum rock. (Don't worry ... the volcano hasn't erupted since the 1700s, probably because it continues to let off steam.) Following the fascinating, educational half-hour tour, you're welcome to take a quick dip in the nearby hot, mineral-rich bathing pools—they can also be pretty stinky on a hot day, but your skin (and joints) will thank you! You can rinse off under the waterfall.

    Malgretoute, Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
    758-459–7686

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $9 tour, $5 bath, $13 combo; from $120 for half- or full-day tours with hotel transportation
  • 11. The Pitons

    Rising precipitously from the cobalt-blue Caribbean just south of Soufrière Bay, these two unusual mountains—named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004—have become the iconic...

    Rising precipitously from the cobalt-blue Caribbean just south of Soufrière Bay, these two unusual mountains—named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004—have become the iconic symbol of Saint Lucia. Covered with thick tropical vegetation, the massive outcroppings were formed by a volcanic eruption 30 to 40 million years ago. They are not identical twins, since 2,619-foot Gros Piton is taller and 2,461-foot Petit Piton is broader. It's possible to climb the Pitons, but it's a strenuous trek. Gros Piton is the easier climb and takes about four hours round-trip. Either climb requires permission and a guide; register at the base of Gros Piton.

    Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
  • 12. Antillia Brewing Company

    Antillia brews handcrafted wheat beers, stout, and specialty ales in its brewery at Emerald Farm in Soufriere. Their niche is beer aged and brewed with...

    Antillia brews handcrafted wheat beers, stout, and specialty ales in its brewery at Emerald Farm in Soufriere. Their niche is beer aged and brewed with citrus, passionfruit, cocoa nibs and other add-ins. You can take a tour of the brewery, but it’s easier (and more fun) to enjoy a pint or two—or a flight—at the company’s Antillia Beer Garden, adjacent to the cruise terminal at Pointe Seraphine in Castries, or at the TapShack on the beach at Anse Chastenet.

    Saint Lucia
    758-459--0844
  • 13. Barre de l'Isle Forest Reserve

    Saint Lucia is divided into eastern and western halves by Barre de l'Isle ridge. A mile-long (1½-km-long) trail cuts through the reserve, and four lookout...

    Saint Lucia is divided into eastern and western halves by Barre de l'Isle ridge. A mile-long (1½-km-long) trail cuts through the reserve, and four lookout points provide panoramic views. Visible in the distance are Mt. Gimie (pronounced Jimmy), immense green valleys, both the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, and coastal communities. The trailhead is a half-hour drive from Castries. It takes about an hour to walk the trail—an easy hike—and another hour to climb Mt. LaCombe Ridge. Permission from the Saint Lucia Forestry Department is required to access the trail in Barre de l'Isle; a naturalist or forest officer guide will accompany you.

    Micoud Hwy., Micoud Quarter, Saint Lucia
    758-468--5649-Forestry Dept.

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $20, $10 for the guide, Call weekdays 8:30–4:30
  • 14. Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception

    Directly across Laborie Street from Derek Walcott Square stands Castries's Roman Catholic cathedral, which was built in 1897. Though it appears rather somber on the...

    Directly across Laborie Street from Derek Walcott Square stands Castries's Roman Catholic cathedral, which was built in 1897. Though it appears rather somber on the outside, the interior walls are decorated with colorful murals reworked by St. Lucian artist Dunstan St. Omer just prior to Pope John Paul II's visit in 1985. This church has an active parish and is open daily for both public viewing and religious services.

    Micoud St., Castries, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
  • 15. Derek Walcott Square

    The city's green oasis, bordered by Brazil, Laborie, Micoud, and Bourbon streets and formerly called Columbus Square, was renamed to honor the late Derek Walcott,...

    The city's green oasis, bordered by Brazil, Laborie, Micoud, and Bourbon streets and formerly called Columbus Square, was renamed to honor the late Derek Walcott, the hometown poet who won the 1992 Nobel Prize in Literature and one of two Nobel laureates from Saint Lucia. (The late Sir W. Arthur Lewis won the 1979 Nobel Prize in Economics.) Some of the 19th-century buildings that have survived fire, wind, and rain can be seen on Brazil Street, the square's southern border. On the Laborie Street side, there's a huge, 400-year-old samaan (monkey pod) tree with leafy branches that shade a good portion of the square.

    Castries, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
  • 16. Edmund Forest Reserve

    Dense tropical rain forest that stretches from one side of Saint Lucia to the other, sprawling over 19,000 acres of mountains and valleys, is home...

    Dense tropical rain forest that stretches from one side of Saint Lucia to the other, sprawling over 19,000 acres of mountains and valleys, is home to a multitude of exotic flowers, trees, plants, and rare birds—including the brightly feathered Jacquot parrot. The Edmund Forest Reserve, on the island's western side, is most easily accessed from the road to Fond St. Jacques, which is just east of Soufrière. A trek through the verdant landscape, with spectacular views of mountains, valleys, and the sea beyond, can take three or more hours. The ranger station at the reserve entrance is a 30-minute drive from Soufrière and 90 minutes or more from the northern end of Saint Lucia. You'll need a four-wheel-drive vehicle to drive inland to the trailhead, which can take another hour. The trek itself is a strenuous hike, requiring stamina and sturdy hiking shoes. Your hotel can help you obtain permission from the Saint Lucia Forestry Department to access reserve trails and to arrange for a naturalist or forest officer guide—necessary because the vegetation is so dense.

    Soufrière, Soufrière, Saint Lucia
    758-468–5649-Forestry Dept.

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Nature trails $10, guide $25
  • 17. Fort Charlotte

    Cemetery

    Begun in 1764 by the French as the Citadelle du Morne Fortune, Fort Charlotte was completed after 20 years of battling and changing hands. Its...

    Begun in 1764 by the French as the Citadelle du Morne Fortune, Fort Charlotte was completed after 20 years of battling and changing hands. Its old barracks and batteries are now government buildings and local educational facilities, but you can drive around and look at the remains of redoubts, a guardroom, stables, and cells. You can also walk up to the Inniskilling Monument, a tribute to the 1796 battle in which the 27th (Inniskilling) Regiment of Foot wrested the Morne from the French. At the military cemetery, first used in 1782, faint inscriptions on the tombstones tell the tales of French and English soldiers who died in Saint Lucia. Six former governors of the island are also buried here. From this point atop Morne Fortune, you have a beautiful view of Castries Harbour, Martinique farther north, and the Pitons to the south.

    Morne Fortune, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
  • 18. Government House

    The official residence of the governor-general—and one of the island's few remaining examples of Victorian architecture—is perched high above Castries, halfway up Morne Fortune (Hill...

    The official residence of the governor-general—and one of the island's few remaining examples of Victorian architecture—is perched high above Castries, halfway up Morne Fortune (Hill of Good Fortune), which forms a backdrop for the capital city. Morne Fortune has also seen more than its share of bad luck, including devastating hurricanes and four fires that leveled Castries. Within Government House is Le Pavillon Royal Museum, which houses important historical photographs and documents, artifacts, crockery, silverware, medals, and awards; original architectural drawings of the house are displayed on the walls. Open Tuesday and Thursday from 10 am to 4 pm.

    Morne Fortune, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
    758-452–2481

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 19. La Place Carenage

    On the south side of the harbor near the pier and markets is a duty-free shopping complex with a handful of shops and a café....

    On the south side of the harbor near the pier and markets is a duty-free shopping complex with a handful of shops and a café. It's busiest when a cruise ship is in port.

    Jeremie St., Castries, Castries Quarter, Saint Lucia
    758-453–2451
  • 20. Mamiku Gardens

    One of Saint Lucia's loveliest botanical gardens surrounds the hilltop ruins of the Micoud Estate. Baron Micoud, an 18th-century colonel in the French army and...

    One of Saint Lucia's loveliest botanical gardens surrounds the hilltop ruins of the Micoud Estate. Baron Micoud, an 18th-century colonel in the French army and governor-general of Saint Lucia, deeded the land to his wife, Madame de Micoud, to avoid confiscation by the British during one of the many times when Saint Lucia changed hands. Locals abbreviated her name to "Ma Micoud," which, over time, became Mamiku. (The estate did become a British military outpost in 1796, but shortly thereafter was burned to the ground by slaves during the Brigand's War.) The estate is now primarily a banana plantation, but the gardens themselves—including several secluded or "secret" gardens—are filled with tropical flowers and plants, delicate orchids, and fragrant herbs. The bird watching is excellent here; three species of hummingbirds have been spotted on the grounds.

    Micoud Rd., Praslin, Praslin, Saint Lucia
    758-714-4824

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: $8, guided tour $12, Guided tours must be booked at least 3 days in advance

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