Backpacking in St. Lucia
Palm-lined beaches, untouched rainforests and natural splendors make St. Lucia one of the best vacation spots in the Caribbean. Not only is the weather fantastic all year round but the people of St. Lucia are time and again rated the friendliest community in the Caribbean. While you may be thinking this all sounds wonderful but St. Lucia must be expensive like most Caribbean islands- think again! While it does have it high end pockets, the island also provides travellers with the basic comforts, friendly staff and delicious food at backpacker friendly rates. Due to the multitude of activities, sights and panoramic views, St. Lucia it is the perfect escape for a romantic vacation or even a trip into solitude.
Accommodation in St. Lucia
- Reef beach huts- (s/d $50/60 breakfast included)
- This laid back, 4 room hotel offers simplistic accommodation directly on the beach. While the rooms do not offer a sea view you can still fall asleep to the sound of the waves. Breakfast is served on the beach. This hotel also offers kitesurfing and windsurfing lessons for the adventurous traveller.
- Address: The Reef Beach Cafe, Anse de Sables Beach, Vieux Fort
- Tel: +758 454-3418
- Chalet la Mar (starting from $60)
- This hotel has self-contained cottages nestled among the exquisitely lush green hills of Laborie (10 minute drive to Balenbouch). From the hotel, you have a beautiful view of a private bay which is only a 5 minute stroll from the hotel.
- Address: Box 16, La Mar, Laborie, St. Lucia
- Tel: ((758) 455-9725
- Kimatrai Hotel (s/d from $50/55, bungalows are available for $100 and weekly rates start at 315/350 for s/d)
- This friendly hostel always gets good reviews from backpackers due its comfortable lodgings, gorgeous views, delicious food and helpful staff. The hotel is situated in the town of Vieux Fort which makes it ideal for sightseeing and the beach is about a 20 minute walk away. This hotel is a great place to stay if flying out of St. Lucia early in the morning due to its proximity to the airport.
- Tel: (758) 454 6328
- Villa Caribbean Dream
- For a taste of St. Lucian hospitality check out Villa Caribbean. This hotel is perched on a cozy hillside, set in a remote location perfect for getting away from it all. Since Villa Caribbean is a 40 minute walk to the beach most travelers staying at this hotel rent a car to get around. For those looking to kitesurf and windsurf at Anse de Sable beach this hotel offers another great budget option. While breakfast comes at an additional charge of $12 p/p Bridgette, the owner, cooks up some of the best food on the island. If she offers to cook you dinner at a reasonable rate, its an opportunity not to be missed.
- Moule-a-Chique, P.O.Box 288, Vieux Fort
Adventure Activities in St. Lucia
- Kitesurfing/ Windsurfing- Des Sable Beach in Vieux Fort is home to the best windsurfing/ kitesurfing spot in St. Lucia and one of the best beaches in the Caribbean for adventure lovers to test the waters. The best time to go windsurfing is during the tradewind season which lasts from December until May.
- The Reef Kite and Surf School (also home to Reef Beach Huts listed in ‘accommodations’) has been offering windsurfing/ kitesurfing classes for over 15 years. This school is also a member of the International Kiteboarding Association and practices a high standard of safety and professionalism.
- Check out their website at http://www.slucia.com/windsurf/index.html
- ATV Adventure- get off the beaten track and immerse yourself in some of St. Lucia’s most breathtaking scenery. This excursion is perfect for those looking for an eco adventure but wanting to experience a serene landscape while exploring the island’s beautiful countryside.
- For a quality ATV tour check out ATV Paradise http://www.atvstlucia.com/tours.html
- Ziplining- This is the perfect activity for thrill seekers looking to observe St. Lucia’s flora and fauna while swinging with adrenaline. Zipping through the island’s second largest rainforest, participants whizz through 11 ziplines above the forest floor and experience stunning vistas at jaw dropping heights.
- For ziplining tours contact Treetop Adventure Park at (758) 458 0908
Eating in St. Lucia: Local Cuisine
- Martha’s Table (Soufriere)
- Tucked away from the hustle of Soufriere lays this quaint restaurant that serves up some of the best home cooked food on the island. Locals and tourists can be seen here chowing down on mama’s delicious, affordable food.
- Address: Malgretoute | Jalousie Road, Soufriere, St. Lucia
- Tel: 758 459 7270
- Jambe De Bois (Pigeon island)
- This rustic waterfront cafe delivers some of the best food in St. Lucia. The walls are decorated with interesting art, comfy couches align the walls, cats peruse the restaurant and innovative cocktails are served up to cool down beach-goers. Try their fried fish or roti. Try to get there before the sunset to enjoy the view.
- Tel: (758) 450-8166
Sights in St. Lucia
- Pitons- these eye-catching cone shape peaks jutting out of the water signify the natural splendor of St. Lucia. From a distance the two pitons (Gros Piton and Petit Piton) appear to be attached but they are actually 3 miles apart. Travellers looking to hike up one of the pitons should only attempt to trek up Gros Piton as it is the only piton to offer a trail.
- Sulfur springs- just north of Soufriere lies the hot springs. While they seem a little grungy at first glance the water is perfectly hot and after a day of sightseeing, it makes for a nice mid afternoon dip.
- Hikes- adventurous travellers who want to explore the island beyond its beaches should try out one St. Lucia’s rugged yet scenic hiking trails. The island’s various trails can take you through plantations, past waterfalls, along beaches and even through rainforests. This is a great way to experience the island’s natural beauty while exercising. For more information about St. Lucia’s trails visit the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry and Fishery Site
Tour Guides in St. Lucia
- Janique Freddy is not only one of the sweetest ladies on the island of St. Lucia but she is also one of the best guides I have ever had. She is extremely knowledgeable and knows all the hidden spots to make your trip that much more memorable.
- You can contact her at 001 758 720 4586 for either half day/ full day tours
Taxi Service in St. Lucia
- Want to see experience the island but you don’t really feel like renting a car to test the laws of gravity on St. Lucia’s winding roads- then hire Steven to take you around the island. He has a big van and his rates are excellent compared to the standard taxi fare.
- You can contact Steven at (758) 702114
- His taxi number is M762
St. Lucia is a tropical paradise for all budgets and is an island begging to be explored.