Historic River Doree Church in Choiseul
Beausejour Cricket Ground
Cricket lovers may enjoy seeing Saint Lucia’s ground that was built for the 2007 Cricket World Cup. It’s easy to find. The road to Beausejour goes east from the Gros Islet Highway intersecting across from the Shell service station just north of the Rodney Bay Marina. The Cricket Ground is just a couple of miles up the road, you can’t miss it. Read more on sport in Saint Lucia.
Grand Anse & Anse Louvet
One of the most neglected sightseeing locales in Saint Lucia is the northeast coast. Featuring rugged landscapes and beautiful white sand beaches the ever-present trade winds and rougher seas create completely different environments than are found on the calmer leeward west coast. If you are looking for a bit of out-of-the-way adventure and photo opportunities, give this area a go.
Of course, the northeast coast is much more accessible for those staying in the north of the island but do keep in mind Saint Lucia’s rugged stature; some locations which are five or less miles away – as the crow flies – can be rather gruelling to actually reach via the roads and trails.
There are two beaches definitely worth visiting but it must be noted that IT IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED THAT YOU DO SO ONLY WITH A REPUTABLE TAXI DRIVER THAT IS FAMILIAR WITH THE ROADS AND HAS AN APPROPRIATE VEHICLE FOR THE CONDITIONS. Four-wheel drive with good ground clearance may be required for some sections of the tracks after a heavy rain.
Grande Anse Beach is the island’s longest. Along the way there you will pass through a few rural communities, lush rain forest and lands that have been designated an Iguana Reserve. The beach itself is more than a mile long. Due to the rough conditions bathing is not advisable but the photographic possibilities are many.
A bit to the south and slightly further into the bush is Anse Louvet which offers an even more rugged landscape. Not as long as Grande Anse the rocky coastline that frames the beach is truly spectacular. Again, bathing is not advisable due to the waves and dangerous currents.
Egrets at Auberge Seraphine
Tucked away in a quiet cove on the north side of Castries Harbour is a very comfortable small hotel named Auberge Seraphine. Directly in front of the property is a mini-wetland environment with trees that regularly fill up with beautiful white Cattle Egrets. When viewed from a distance it is totally unclear what the large puffy white objects are amidst the lush green leaves. But upon approach, small movements and bird chatter quickly solve the mystery. The males depart to feed during the day but most females who are nesting remain. The best times to view them are very early in the morning or around 5:00 in the afternoon when the males return. If you are a bird lover it’s worth a visit.
Marigot Bay to Canaries
Marigot Bay Ferry Boat
Marigot Bay is widely recognized as one of the Caribbean’s most picturesque harbours. It has long been a favourite of arriving yachts and land-lovers staying at one of the laid-back accommodation options that ring the bay. As there are no access roads to the north side of the bay the only way across is by the ferry boat operation that criss-crosses to various bars and restaurants and small hotels. If you visit Marigot Bay the ferry is an inexpensive and perfect way, day or night, to take a look around. And if you are so moved, you can jump off at any stop and enjoy a cold one!
Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail
Located in the central mountains of the island, the Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail is a true haven for bird watchers and nature lovers alike. Over 30 species are found along the 1.75 mile trail including five of Saint Lucia’s endemic species – the St. Lucia Parrot, St. Lucia Black Finch, St. Lucia Oriole, St. Lucia Pewee and St. Lucia Warbler. The trail also provides views of Roseau Dam, the largest such reservoir in the Eastern Caribbean. Note: the Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail can be visited only with the permission of the Department of Forestry.
Dunstan St. Omer Mural in Anse La Raye
In the heart of the west coast fishing village of Anse La Raye, visitors are treated to an artistic depiction of some of the island’s cultural history. On a wall that extends along the sidewalk next to the Catholic Church grounds, a mural was painted over fifteen years ago by one of Saint Lucia’s best known artists, Sir Dunstan St. Omer. While the effects of the tropical sun and weather have taken their toll, the scenes still reveal the emotions of the cultural scenes which are depicted. If you are there after dark for the Seafood Friday Street Party be sure to take some photos as the streetlights completely wash out the vivid colours to be seen. Feel free to ask any local strolling by what the various scenes represent to fully enjoy the experience.
The bat cave is located in the cliffs along the north side of Soufriére Bay not far from the Hummingbird Beach and is accessible only by water. As you approach the tall slender crack in the rock wall you hear the bats before you see them; once you are up close hundreds of fruit bats are seen hanging and fidgeting in mass. At dusk thousands of the creatures stream out making a line to the night’s feeding grounds, generally areas of fruit trees in the rain forest. Large boats can’t really get close enough to appreciate the site but small water taxis or kayaks can nose right up to the cave entrance. Caution is urged but strong swimmers can visit from the beach but do stay close to the cliff and watch for boat traffic.
Jah Lamb (Lamb of God) is a friendly Rastafarian gentleman who has a small vegetarian restaurant located on High Street just a block south of the Soufriére town square. Jah Lamb is a bit of a legend for his knowledge of organic vegetables and natural preparations. He even grows and produces his own soy products including flour that he uses to make fabulous vegetarian pizza. Anyone interested in his virtuous lifestyle and strict organic vegetarian code would very much enjoy a chat with this very friendly fellow; and did we mention the pizza!
A Natural Spa Treatment at the Sulphur Springs
Most tourists visit the Sulphur Springs, one of Saint Lucia’s most popular attractions, to see the active volcanic features. But while there you can also enjoy a natural mineral bath in the waters which flow through the steaming alien landscape. Just walk down the path to the pools below the bridge; the stream’s hot water is dense with mud and minerals that naturally rejuvenate the skin while the heat soothes the aching muscles. Because of the temperature of the water – we’re talking hot – most regulars enter only early in the morning or late in the evening. There is a small fee which includes the use of shower and changing facilities.
A few miles east of Soufriére sits the quiet rain forest community of Ravine Claire and one of the better kept secrets on the island, Spike’s Waterfall. Spike’s never made much of an effort to be a tourist attraction and generally goes unvisited. The two-tiered falls is over 300 feet in total with a rock shelf perched mid-way down where you can stand to get a great view of the entire cascade. Like nearly every falls on island, Spike’s is much more dramatic during the rainy season or following some good showers in the hills above. The very short trail to Spike’s starts adjacent to the Rain Forest Disco; just ask anyone around who you can request permission from to visit the falls and they’ll take good care of you.
Dunstan St. Omer’s famous mural featuring a black Christ
Fond St. Jacques Catholic Church
The community of Fond St. Jacques, nestled into the rain forested mountains just east of Soufriére, makes for enjoyable sightseeing for visitors passing through on their way to the central rain forest reserve nearby. Also of interest to many is the community’s Catholic Church which was built by locals using materials from the immediate area giving the stout building a unique and proud character. The Fond St. Jacques church also features a large mural painted by local artist Dunstan St. Omer which features a black Christ along with representations of all of the people in the community making the statement that the church welcomes everyone regardless of church affiliation or creed. Visitors staying in the Soufriére area enjoy attending services to see the church and its interesting artwork.
Belle Plain and the Road to Roblot
Saint Lucia has numerous out of the way places that offer spectacular tropical scenery that very few visitors ever get to enjoy. One such area is found to the south of Soufriére near the community of Myer’s Bridge where the road from Fond St. Jacques intersects the West Coast Road. To the east is a sizeable area of agricultural activity called Belle Plain. Rimmed by lush rain forested hillsides, the fields offer a variety of colours and features that are sure to catch any artistic eye. Additional views and sites can also be enjoyed if you go a few hundred meters past the Myer’s Bridge gap and turn east on a very scenic back road that winds up to the community of Roblot and eventually rejoins the West Coast Road. This narrow but easily passable road first offers superb views over the fields of Belle Plain. Continuing on, the road climbs high to provide panoramic views of the entire southwest coast all the way to Vieux Fort. This area also features numerous agricultural fields terraced on the steep slopes of the rugged landscape. You’ll need a rest just thinking about having to work those gardens by hand!
Fond Gens Libres
Nestled into the side of Gros Piton is the scenic community of Fond Gen Libres, one of the most historic on island. Fond Gen Libres, meaning Village of the Free, was established by ex-slave freedom fighters, known as Maroons, more than two centuries ago. Today, many of their descendents still live in the very picturesque community which is best known as the starting point for the hike up Gros Piton; the young people in the community run the operation and serve as guides. Even if you’re not up for the strenuous hike to the top, visiting Fond Gen Libres is a very enjoyable experience. The road leading in is scenic as you ford a couple of streams and pass through the island’s largest cocoa estate. Once there, enjoy a cold drink in a rum shop and a little conversation with the friendly local residents.
A short distance north of the Choiseul Village is Sab-We-Sha Beach and its adjacent community park. Visitors staying in the south or others taking a round-the-island tour will find Sab-we-Sha an enjoyable stop for a quick dip in the Caribbean or a relaxing picnic lunch.
Anse I’lvrogne, located at the base of Gros Piton, is truly one of the most scenic and isolated beaches in Saint Lucia. The easiest way to find it is to head north out of Choiseul Village along the waterfront and just follow the coast. There is a great view from the road looking down on Anse I’lvrogne that will make for a great photo with which to impress friends back home. There is also a very rugged 4-wheel road and a separate hiking path to take you to the bottom if you wish to see it up close.
Choiseul Arts & Crafts Centre
The countryside community of Choiseul is renowned as the arts and crafts production center of the island. Many of the residents still utilize methods of basket weaving, wood carving and pottery production handed down from Amerindian ancestors that flourished in the area centuries before colonization arrived in the Caribbean. The Choiseul Arts & Crafts Centre, located on the West Coast Road a mile south of the village, is an excellent place to see the wonderful products coming from the community and to learn more about their activities and methods.
Laborie Village Waterfront & Square
The village of Laborie features the most scenic waterfront on island. A classic crescent beach with overhanging coconut palms extends the entire length of the community and is great for a walk and a swim. A few paces from the beach in the center of the village there is a small square that is tidy and interesting and offers a few spots for a cold drink and tasty local lunch right next door.
Moule á Chique and Lighthouse
Moule á Chique is the rugged towering peninsula that is the southern-most tip of the island and the meeting point of the Atlantic and the Caribbean. A well-paved road winds its way to the very top where extraordinary views can be enjoyed in every direction; sheer cliffs dropping over 800 feet to the sea are home to many sea birds. The lighthouse located atop Moule á Chique is the third highest in the world. Go up on a clear day and be dazzled.
Anse de Sables
Anse de Sables, one of the island’s most beautiful white sand beaches, is located just east of Vieux Fort near the Hewannorra International Airport. The turquoise waters of the Atlantic roll in with the ever present breezes. The beach offers views of the Maria Islands and Moule á Chique along with kite and wind surfers that are in action much of the year.
Road to the Descartiers Trail
Anyone who enjoys a good old fashioned scenic drive would be hard pressed to find a more enjoyable one than this country road in Micoud. The road heads west from the East Coast Road just north of the village; there’s a sign there for the Descartiers Trail so you can’t miss it. Part of the enjoyment of the road is seeing how the vegetation changes as you move along being dry near the coast and ending up in lush rain forest. A river winds along the road much of the way as you pass through a rich agricultural area. Once you reach the Descartiers Trail there is a small visitor center. Even if you’re not up for a hike you can take a brief look up the trail and get a peek at the beauty of the rain forest.
Visitors passing during some sightseeing or on the way to the airport in the south will find it well worth the stop to get a view of Fond d’Or. The best place to see it from the road is the Dennery Fire Station, located just north of town right on the East Coast Road. There’s plenty of room for a pull off at the restaurants and bars next door. Fond d’Or is a great example of the ruggedness of the island’s east coast as the ever-present trade winds drive the waters of the Atlantic ashore.