About Saint Lucia

This small, volcanic island forms part of the Leeward Caribbean Islands, located at 14ᵒ1’N, 60ᵒ59’W. It is also known as the Helen of the West Indies, being likened to the irresistible Helen of Troy! Indeed who can deny the drama of its 238 mi²/381 km², majestic volcanic scenery, the highest point being Mt. Gymie (3,120ft/950m), climaxed only by the unique Pitons (2,000ft/610m), rising like two giant sentinels from the sea (wonderful snorkelling).

Fun things to do in Saint Lucia: visit lush rain forests, natural harbours, white sand beaches, unique drive-in volcano (take your nose plugs – it’s a little sulphuric!), hot springs, and cassava bread (on the way to Soufriere). Local arts and crafts in Castries. Historic points – Pigeon Island, or better still, go there during the Jazz Festival.

Local businesses

Visiting Saint Lucia and wondering where to stay, what to do, where to eat and how to get around? We’ve got you covered with our list of hotels, restaurants, activities, car hire, shopping & more. Browse through for more details.

Accommodation

Choose from hotels, real estate, villas & cottages

Shopping

Shop for souvenirs, local crafts, art, jewellery, clothes & more

Events

Annual events

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec

Events in Feburary

22-Feb-17 to 22-Feb-22
Independence Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:

Events in April

14-Apr-17 to 14-Apr-17
Good Friday (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:  A day of church services for all denominations throughout the island

17-Apr-17 to 18-Apr-17
Easter Monday (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday: 

Events in May

1-May-17 to 1-May-17
May day (Saint Lucia)

Public: Holiday: International Workers Day

Events in June

5-Jun-17 to 5-Jun-17
Whit Monday (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday: Seventh Monday After Easter Monday

15-Jun-17 to 15-Jun-17
Corpus Christi (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:The Feast of Corpus Christi ("Fronleichnam" in German) is a Catholic festival celebrated on the second Thursday after Whitsun.
More information

16-Jun-17 to 18-Jun-17
Saint Lucia Roots & Soul Festival (Saint Lucia)

A festival dedicated to musicians who are setting new trends in reggae, conscious hip-hop, Afro-punk and R&B, with performances, master classes and encounters between artists and other actors in the music business.
More information

Events in July

14-Jul-17 to 18-Jul-17
Saint Lucia Carnival (Saint Lucia)

Pumping rhythms, sexy costumes and the people dancing under the warm Caribbean sun
More information

29-Jul-17 to 29-Jul-17
Emancipation Panel Discussion (Saint Lucia)

An informative Cultrual Discussion held at the Hewanorra House @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
More information

Events in August

1-Aug-17 to 1-Aug-17
Emancipation Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:

5-Aug-17 to 26-Aug-17
Emancipation Art Exibition (Saint Lucia)

Art Exibit displaying Cultural Depections By Various Artists held at Blue Coral Shopping Mall
More information

12-Aug-17 to 12-Aug-17
Lawoz Gwan Séance (Saint Lucia)


More information

24-Aug-17 to 27-Aug-17
Food and Rum Festival (Saint Lucia)

This is the revival of a festival that first took place in 2006, a gastronomic event to attract the best chefs, wine connoisseurs, rum fanatics and food critiques from the Caribbean and internationally.
More information

30-Aug-17 to 30-Aug-17
Lawoz Gwan Fet (Saint Lucia)


More information

Events in September

15-Sep-17 to 17-Sep-17
Country & Blues Festival (Saint Lucia)

An encounter between genres of music that are 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.
More information

Events in October

2-Oct-17 to 2-Oct-17
Thanks Giving Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:

7-Oct-17 to TBA
Atlantic Rally for Cruisers (Saint Lucia)

World ARC is a round-the-world adventure taking place over 15 months and covering 26,000 nautical miles. Following the classic tradewinds route, the rally avoids regions of political instability, piracy and the storm seasons in both hemispheres.
More information

14-Oct-17 to 14-Oct-17
La Magwit Gwan Séance (Saint Lucia)


More information

17-Oct-17 to 17-Oct-17
La Magwit Gwan fet (Saint Lucia)


More information

28-Oct-17 to 29-Oct-17
Arts & Hertitage Festival (Saint Lucia)

Festival is a celebration of the richness and diversity of Saint Lucia’s cultural, ethnic and artistic heritage. With musical, theatrical and other performances, with seminars and lectures, with varied culinary experiences, with street parties and with art exhibitions
More information

Events in November

18-Nov-17 to 18-Nov-17
Tri St Lucia? (Saint Lucia)

Professionally organised annual triathlon event at Rodney Bay, Fun, Family, Fitness
More information

Events in December

2-Dec-17 to 2-Dec-17
Lantern Festival (Saint Lucia)


More information

3-Dec-17 to 3-Dec-17
Festifal of Carols (Saint Lucia)


More information

12-Dec-17 to 13-Dec-17
Festival of Lights and Renewal? (Saint Lucia)


More information

13-Dec-17 to 13-Dec-17
National Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:  Feast Day of Saint Lucia

25-Dec-17 to 25-Dec-17
Christmas Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:

26-Dec-17 to 26-Dec-17
Boxing Day (Saint Lucia)

Public Holiday:

History and Culture

Like many islands in the Caribbean, Saint Lucia was inhabited long before the Europeans arrived. Arawak Indians had settled in Saint Lucia around 2,000 years ago. They called the island ‘Iouanalao’, Land of the Iguanas. The second wave of settlers consisted of the warlike Carib Indians who had more or less removed the Arawaks by 800AD. They called the island ‘Hewanarau’ and, in fact, Saint Lucia was christened with its saintly name only in the late 1500’s.

There is some speculation as to which European set foot on Saint Lucia first. Columbus in 1502 on his 4th voyage to the West Indies or, more likely, the Spaniard Juan de la Cosa, a lesser known but no less prolific explorer, who had sailed alongside Columbus on two previous voyages. The first European settler was Francois Le Clerc, a French pirate known as Jambe de Bois (peg-leg) who set himself up in Pigeon Island with 330 men and waylaid any passing ship. The Dutch got going at Vieux Fort in around 1600; and the English arrived accidentally in 1605 when their ship, The Olive Branch, was blown off course whilst attempting to reach Guyana. This resulted in 67 Brits stepping ashore. They were gradually whittled down to 19 in one month by the resident Caribs. The remaining settlers decided at that point not to push their luck any further, and fled in a canoe.

The French West India Company’s representatives bought the island in 1651 but eight years later the English disputed the sale (on principle, one suspects), and this ignited hostilities between the two nations for the next 150 years. During this period, the island officially changed hands no less than 14 times until 1814, when it was ceded to the British. The French and English place names are a legacy of this struggle.

Saint Lucia’s sugar cane industry prospered with cheap imported slave and indentured labour from Africa and India but with the abolition of slavery in 1838, it declined and had totally disappeared by the 1960’s. Thus today’s Lucians are of mixed African, European and, to a lesser extent, Amerindian origin, and you will find this delightfully apparent in the faces you see. Local culture is reflected in the vibrant French Caribbean rhythms of Zouk and Cadence (pronounced ‘k’dance’), the widely spoken Patois language and the distinctive Creole cuisine – inventive, spicy and always colourful.

A New Era

As with many of the British territories after World War II, Saint Lucia sought total independence. The right to vote was introduced in 1951 and, after unsuccessful attempts to gain increasing autonomy through the ill-fated West Indian Federation of 1958, Saint Lucia enacted a new constitution. When it expired in 1967, full self-government was granted by the British with Saint Lucia becoming fully independent on February 22, 1979. It remains a member of the British Commonwealth.

Saint Lucia’s tourist industry has grown steadily in the last 20 years. Its increasing appeal as an eco-destination because of its delightfully unspoilt natural resources, augurs well for the future. Lucians have a reputation in the rest of the Caribbean for being surprisingly worldly, mentally tough and resourceful. Despite the many perplexing developmental issues for the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) across the Caribbean, there is no doubt in anyone’s mind as to Saint Lucia’s potential – one feels that the St. Lucian people are just the sort to realise it. Beautifully.