St. Lucia Holidays Guide - Caribbean Experience - St. Lucia Holiday Island
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St. Lucia Holidays

The impossibly beautiful St. Lucia lives up to most people's expectations st. lucia - pigeon island of a Caribbean island. Yet it's important to realize that its beauty lies in the panoramic views and lush vegetation of a mountainous volcanic island, rather than in the pure white sands and clear turquoise waters of a flat coral one.

Indeed, although the island is just 27-miles long by 14-miles wide, St. Lucia gives every impression of being twice that size - undoubtedly because its hilly interiors, serpentine highways and steep slopes make a journey from top to bottom a matter of at least ninety minutes.

That's why it's particularly important to choose your resort carefully here, as do-it-yourself island exploration is not as easy as it can be elsewhere in the Caribbean. The best hotels are located either in the south near the old town of Soufrière or in the north near the capital of Castries and where you choose tends to greatly impact your stay.

If you opt for the former, you're slap-bang in the middle of the island's celebrated tropical beauty - st. lucia - the pitons all its famous natural attractions are nearby, including the 2,000 ft. high Pitons, the National Rain Forest with its wild orchids, the mineral-rich falls at Diamond Falls, not to mention the drive-in volcano at Sulphur Springs and the Anse Chastanet Reef in the Marine Park. Nature hikes, scuba-diving and bird watching will probably feature on your menu here, although there's absolutely nothing to stop you spending your days on the palm-fringed beaches or swimming in the crystal clear waters!

If you prefer to opt for the north of the island, you'll probably enjoy a more traditional resort experience - there's the duty-free shopping complex of Pointe Seraphine, the 18-hole St. Lucia Golf & Country Club and the lively nightlife of Rodney Bay, all within a 15-minute drive. And whilst the island's prime beauty spots are not right on the doorstep, they can of course be easily accessed courtesy of island tours, boat trips, car hire and even helicopter tours.

Easier to reach from this part of the island is Marigot Bay, a picturesque cove that is now a yacht haven and was once showcased in the Dr. Doolittle film with Rex Harrison. Pigeon Island is a 40-acre islet connected to the mainland by a causeway and here visitors will find a beautiful nature park with marked trails and historical remains - it's also a major venue for St. Lucia's famous Jazz Festival that takes place annually at the end of April.

St. Lucia also boasts a rich cultural heritage courtesy of its strong connections with countries as diverse as England, France and Africa. The British and the French fought fiercely over the island for 150 years and whilst the French were finally ousted in 1814, that country's influence remains very strong and can be seen in the names of its towns, as well as the widely-used Creole patois language.

Of course, nowadays the island enjoys its independence and revels in its ethnic diversity. Weekly jump-ups at places like Gros Islet show off the islanders appreciation for soca and reggae music, whilst its jazz festival is one of the most successful anywhere in the Caribbean. St. Lucia is also particularly proud of the fact that it has produced two Nobel prizewinners, most notably the poet, Derek Walcott, who won the prize for literature in 1992.

Sandals Holidays

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