ST. LUCIA OVERVIEW
Languages: English is the official language - secondary language is St. Lucian Patois
Airport: Hewanorra International Airport at Vieux Fort
Time Zone: UTC-4
: East Caribbean Dollar
: A passport is required to enter or leave St. Lucia from the US
WHERE TO STAY
Book a room at Smuggler’s Cove Resort & Spa if you’re looking for a bit of seclusion with great views of the sea and tropical gardens. This all-inclusive village-style resort offers unlimited meals at four different restaurants, premium drinks from all bars, traditional afternoon tea, water sports, land sports, children’s activities, and entertainment, among many other amenities. At Anse Chastanet, you can experience classic Caribbean style with an environmentally -friendly flair. With a view of the Pitons, the estate encompasses 600 tropical acres and two soft-sand beaches. For a romantic dinner, dine at the Treehouse Restaurant in one of two open-air tree houses overlooking the Caribbean Sea. At Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort, enjoy a romantic stay in an ocean view room, a variety of delicious dining options, and activities including windsurfing, snorkeling, and Hobie Cat sailing.
St. Lucian cuisine generally combines French and British elements. Before colonization, though, the Caribs and Arawaks who lived on the island sustained themselves with mangoes, oranges, tangerines, avocados, and breadfruits. Some famous dishes include banana and salt fish, breadfruit and salt fish, and bouyon which is made with fish, chicken, or meat and cooked with plantains, bananas, dasheen, yams, and dumplings. Some common spices include garlic, cinnamon, nutmeg, cocoa, parsley, cloves, and allspice. Additionally, many St. Lucians enjoy coconut water with their meals.
St. Lucia has a tropical climate and the average temperature usually ranges from the 70s to upper 90s (Fahrenheit). Additionally, the island is located very close to the equator so seasons are not necessarily clearly defined. Humidity averages between 70 and 90 percent throughout the year and the rainy season tends to fall between June and November. St. Lucia receives the most rainfall from July through September and the drier months are usually February through May.
INSIDER TIPS FROM OUR TRAVEL EXPERTS
St. Lucians are very friendly people, so don’t be afraid to say hello and flash a smile to a stranger on the street. If you plan on taking the bus while you’re on vacation, make sure to tell the bus driver where you’re going as soon as you get on so you don’t end up getting lost. Also, you should check the pricelist onboard or ask a local how much it costs to get where you’re going as not to get overcharged. Near Souffriere, you might see women washing their clothes in the river; this is a common local practice. If you really want to fit in with the locals while you’re in St. Lucia, grab a drink made with Bounty rum and buy some to give to your friends back home. It’s the national rum of the country!
Be sure to take advantage of the beautiful beaches that St. Lucia has to offer. On the north side of Marigot Bay, Marigot Beach is ideal for swimming and accessible by a ferry that operates from one side of the bay to the other. The water here is calm and the sand is dotted with palm trees, providing a picturesque view. Closer to Rodney Bay, Reduit Beach is located very closely to the many hotels. Here, vacationers have access to a water-sports center where they can rent sports equipment and beach chairs. This location is not only great for swimming, but snorkeling and windsurfing, too! If you prefer dark sand beaches, Anse Cochon is located in front of Ti Kaye Village and is part of the Marine Reserve which is accessible only by boat or Ti Kaye’s rugged access road. However, once there the waters and nearby reefs are splendid for swimming, diving, and snorkeling.