Below are my notes for visiting St Lucia. These travel tips, such as the best time to visit St Lucia are obtained from a variety of sources including some of the following: my first hand observations, personal conversations, magazines, newspapers, websites, books and so forth. Whenever I hear something that interests me about St Lucia, I jot it down here. Hope this comes in handy.
Overall I found St Lucia to be an okay Caribbean destination. It isn’t my first choice for a Caribbean island. It was safe with decent food and okay beaches. If you like exploring the rainforest and hiking, it makes for a better destination.
Best Time to Visit St Lucia
June to August – hot
July to early-November – rainy season
So avoid June to October.
December – green
Jan through April – least amount of thunderstorms
December through May – slightly lower humidity
Best time to visit St Lucia in mid-November to April/May
Miscellaneous Travel Tips for St Lucia
Buy Mauby Extract, Chocolate Sticks, Hot Pepper Sauce (at some of the markets you can find the good homemade stuff, but the store brands, like Viking, are at least made on island and are decent), Spices (nutmeg, etc), St Lucian coffee, coconut oil (cold-press)
A good place to buy the above is the Castries market in the morning. Inquire about refilled bottles and jars of things to find surprises. Sometimes you can find vanilla. The little booths serving up food are a good place to fill up on good local fare.
Drink fresh fruit juices (tamarind, grapefruit, lime, sorrel, orange, passion fruit, etc.)
Eat Roti’s (beware that meat often comes with the bones), fish
Fish fry in Dennery on Saturdays
Driving from Castries to just south of Dennery is nice – through rainforest, etc. Just south of Dennery are nice overlooks.
Public bus service has green license plates. Flag them down. If they don’t stop, they are probably full. Wait for another to come which shouldn’t be long. Bus service can be very limited after sunset and on Sundays.
All beaches require public access by law.
Anse Chastanet can be walked to from Soufriere (up steep hill) in 45 minutes. Anse Chastanet has good snorkeling on the left side of beach. You can also head a little further and go to Anse Mamin which also has snorkeling and is a bit less busy than the main Anse Chastanet beach.
Sugar Beach can also be accessed from Soufriere along a road that runs along the beach and then up a long steep hill and then down a steep hill. It is quite a climb. Read more: #049: Crashing Sugar Beach Resort, St Lucia
For Sandals Grande and Pigeon Point (there is a beach in between the two), you can walk from the end of the bus line in Gros Islet in approximately 20-30 minutes.
Balenbouche to Souffriere, $4.25. To Vieux Fort, $3.75. VF to Castries, $8. Castries to Gros Islet, $2.50.
If you come during the day, Monday through Saturday, and traveling lightly you can take the public bus from the airport which will be much cheaper than a taxi. However, if you are staying up north, it’ll be a trek and is not at all recommended if you have more than a handbag. It is possible to walk to the main bus station in Vieux Fort where you can get a minivan. They also pass near the airport entrance (don’t recall if they actually drive in, but I don’t think they do).
Language is English. Currency is Eastern Caribbean Dollar (XCD) but US Dollars are often taken.
Don’t wear or bring camouflage clothes or bags