Saint Lucia is more than a sun, sea and sand destination. Blessed with stunning natural beauty from the iconic Piton Mountains and lush rainforests to beautiful palm-fringed beaches and idyllic bays, you might be mistaken in believing this is all the tropical island has to offer.
However, in Saint Lucia there is an abundance of activities to choose from so you can be as active or relaxed as you want. Why not make your own chocolate bar at Hotel Chocolat’s cocoa plantation in Soufriere? Visit one of the many beautiful botanical gardens and take a guided tour through colourful flora or how about a helicopter tour of the island?
For the adventurous, why not try jungle-biking through an old sugar plantation, or go on an exciting Segway tour along forest trails, zip-line across the rainforest canopy, snorkel or dive in crystal clear waters or see if you can spot a whale or dolphin on a tour. There is something for everyone to enjoy. To find out more, visit www.stlucia.org
Great new summer festivals
This year, Saint Lucia launches six new summer festivals showcasing the musical talents of international and local artistes as well as its rich cultural heritage.
Roots & Soul Festival
16th – 18th June
Dedicated to new trends in reggae, conscious hip-hop, Afropunk and R&B, the Roots & Soul Festival will also mark the launch of Saint Lucia Carnival.
Saint Lucia Carnival
June – July
Saint Lucia’s cultural landscape morphs into a flurry of chrome-plated-steel drums, feathers, and beads. No matter who you are, or where you are, Saint Lucia Carnival is something to behold – a variety of musical and creative events lead up to the Parade of the Bands on 17th & 18th July.
Food & Rum Festival
24th – 27th August
This gastronomic festival invites chefs, wine connoisseurs, rum fanatics and foodies from the Caribbean and around the globe. Inspired by Chefs Nina Compton and Doran Payne, the event will feature culinary demonstrations, rum and wine tastings, dining events and experiences, and musical performances.
Country & Blues
15th – 17th September
Country & Blues is rooted in folk traditions, with the musician serving as a storyteller and expressing the emotions, struggles and hopes of real people. This festival reflects the richness, diversity and modernity of these musical styles.
Arts & Heritage Festival
28th – 29th October
This month-long festival is a celebration of the richness and diversity of Saint Lucia’s cultural, ethnic and artistic heritage. With musical, theatrical and other performances, seminars, lectures, and varied culinary experiences, this festival will culminate on the weekend of 28th – 29th October with a celebration of International Creole Day in designated communities.
For more information on the summer festivals, visit www.soleilsaintlucia.com
How to get to paradise
There are 13 flights a week to Saint Lucia from London Gatwick with British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Thomson. Thomas Cook flies once a week from Manchester.