If you are dreaming of running away to an island paradise that is about as close to perfection as can be, look no further than the island of Saint Lucia. A petite and vividly beautiful place that dots the waters of the Caribbean's Lesser Antilles.
With a volcanic past that has blessed the island with its lush landscape, mountain vistas, sulphur springs, and of course the iconic twin Pitons; Saint Lucia can be summed up in one word, spectacular! It's a place of rainforests filled with wild orchids and giant ferns; beaches that are white, pink, golden and even black in colour; rich history and gourmet treats; first-class service no matter where you go. In short, Saint Lucia is a world-class vacation destination and it is ready to prove it every time.
Saint Lucia's rich cocoa history extends all the way back to the 18th century, with a chocolate-making process that has hardly changed since that time, solidifying the island's reputation as a top chocolate producer. A tour of an illustrious chocolate-producing estate begins with strolling through cocoa groves, selecting ripe pods from trees and ends with making your own chocolate bars and truffles in the kitchens.
Get the best view of Saint Lucia from up high. It's nice to take this tour as soon as you arrive as it gives you a great sense of the island and possibly even some ideas as to where you might want to visit. Your guide will educate you on all the major points of beauty to be found here, including best hideaway spots, small pockets of lush rainforest scattered throughout the island, and of course an up-close view of the majestic Pitons.
For formal corporate gatherings Saint Lucia also offers an abundance of exquisite and stately event venues. But what this islands seems to be tailor-made for are some of the most perfect, most magical settings for a truly elegant and memorable wedding experience. A Caribbean beachfront wedding offers the idyllic setting for a romantic ceremony, while Mount Soufrière and both Petit and Gros Piton are also a popular choices that offer wildly beautiful vistas and an unrivaled adventurous atmosphere.
The romantic ambiance is further magnified when meals begin! Saint Lucia's top restaurants don't stop at simply serving up mouth watering cuisine, the full experience is always considered. This ideal goes further than quality service and stylish ambiance, it is extended to providing the absolute perfect backdrop as well; the best tables always offer up the best views of the island.
In terms of cuisine, the island nation excels at Creole and Caribbean dishes, and of course fresh seafood is top-notch as well. What may surprise you is that many fabulous chefs have flocked here to impart some of the Caribbean's most interesting twists on Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Indian and French fare. Another incredible bonus of dining in Saint Lucia is the fresh produce; exotic fruits and vegetables grown on these shores.
The nightlife on the island is fairly casual, with beachfront taverns and weekly "jump-ups" (street parties thrown by the locals in Rodney Bay) offering the majority of the good times. Rich rums and the island's own "Piton" beer flows steadily to the island's thumping calypso and reggae beat.
Take a bath in the Diamond Falls at Mount Soufrière – the top of Saint Lucia's natural wonders list. What makes these waterfalls so special is the fact that they actually change colours (from yellow, to black to green to grey) several times a day. While you're up in the mountains, you should continue your cleanse at the Sulphur Springs, known as “the world's only drive-in volcano". The water at the centre of the springs boils at roughly 170°C creating large plumes of steam. Venture further downstream and the water cools enough (45°C) for a detoxifying hot mud bath! Just south of the mountain you'll find the famous Pitons and the Piton Waterfall at the foot of Petit Piton – a refreshing cascade fed by a mix of natural streams and underground thermal springs. Jump in, swim and rejoice!
Petit Piton and Gros Piton sit at the foot of Soufrière and Choiseul on the south western side of Saint Lucia. The Pitons are actually volcanic plugs, or spheres, that are considered the island's most visible landmarks and can be seen up close too! Hiking the Pitons has become a rite of passage for many visitors. The intermittent waterfalls and refreshing streams are welcomed by all as a restful and rejuvenating reprieve.