Saint Lucia's volcanic landscape is a natural wonder. Lush rainforests, beautiful volcanic beaches, green mountains and geothermal springs make it a nature escape you won't forget. One of its biggest draws are the dormant twin volcanic peaks, Gros Piton and Petit Piton, which are a designated UNESO World Heritage site.
Saint Lucia's natural beauty combined with its selection of luxurious amenities and unique hotels make it the perfect destination for a mix of relaxation and adventure. We recommend spending 1 week in St Lucia to unwind and explore the sights.
Although St. Lucia is known to be very romantic with couples celebrating their honeymoon or anniversary, I spent the week on the island with my sister for a 'sister's trip' and we had a blast!
In our St. Lucia itinerary we intermingle relaxing beach days with adventurous exploration days. Discover local life on the island, go beach hopping, dine with sunset views over the Pitons, swim in thermal baths, hike to spectacular viewpoints and eat delicious Caribbean cuisine all in your one week in St. Lucia.
Our St. Lucia guide includes the best time to visit, what driving is like, the best area to stay, where not to stay, a 7 day itinerary and our Top 5 travel tips.
Overview: 7 Days in St Lucia
Day 1: Settle into your hotel and eat cacao inspired-cuisine at Rabot Restaurant
Day 2: Unwind with spa & pool time and treat yourself to dinner at Dasheene for one of the best sunset views over the Pitons
Day 3: Explore Soufriere village and hang out at a local beach
Day 4: Hike the "stairway to heaven", eat lunch at Orlando's and go for a dip in the hot springs
Day 5: Go snorkelling at Anse Chastanet beach and relax nearby at the tranquil Anse Mamin beach
Day 6: Take a scenic road trip to explore the northern end of the island
Day 7: Have a classic beach day at Sugar Beach and enjoy homemade creole cooking at Martha's TablesOur 5 top travel tips for St. Lucia
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Best time of year to visit St Lucia
The best time of year to visit St Lucia is from December - May. These are the sunniest months with the least amount of rain.
June - November sees the highest amount of rainfall. Avoid traveling during September & October when hurricanes are most likely to occur.
Driving in St Lucia
Driving in St Lucia is not the relaxing island drive you would expect. Small windy roads take you up and down mountains through the volcanic landscape. And when you go off the main highway, the roads usually get even steeper, bumpier and skinnier. Deep rain gutters on the sides of the roads can also make driving more stressful, especially if you're not used to driving on the lefthand side.
Even with that said, driving is one of the best ways to explore the island if you're up for the adventure. It's so much fun and you get a lot more from exploring on your own time.
Tips for driving:
- Familiarize yourself with the road conditions to your destination. For example, the 2-mile side road to Anse Chastanet Beach is bumpy, narrow and steep (this is the only place we visited that we hired a driver for). You can usually look up the road conditions in forums online or YouTube videos to see if you're comfortable.
- Rent the smallest car possible - it makes driving on the narrow roads feel more comfortable, especially when commercial trucks go by.
- Don't drive a manual car if you aren't used to driving on the lefthand side of the road - you will have to shift wth your left hand!
If you're not comfortable with driving, you can easily hire a private driver through your hotel. You can hire for drop off/pick up to a certain location or a half day/full day depending on how many stops you want to make.
Best area to stay in St Lucia
We explored the areas of Rodney Bay, Gros Islet, Marigot Bay, Cap Estate and Soufriere, which are popular areas travellers stay. Out of these places we can easily say that Soufriere is the best area to stay in St. Lucia for a few reasons:
- Soufriere is the hub for exploring the famous Pitons and has some of the most dramatic views on the island. The Pitons are a magical sight that you don't want to only see on a day trip. Watching the sunset over the two volcanic peaks is special. It feels like a true nature escape in the rainforest.
- It's way less crowded compared to other areas of the island and is far away from cruise ships.
- This area feels more local and not like a commercial tourist hub.
- There is a good mix of wild beaches, local beaches and luxury beaches that are just minutes away.
- The volcanic area is known for its geothermal attractions and mineral rich natural pools
- If you're traveling with your lover, it's definitely the most romantic area to visit.
- It has a good selection of unique boutique hotels and luxury resorts.
- Soufriere is about a 45 minute drive from the airport, whereas the popular northern area is about 1.5 hours away.
Popular areas we don't recommend staying:
- Rodney Bay/Gros Islet: feels commercial with big resorts and cruise ship crowds. It's not as beautiful as other parts of the island and is a 1.5 hour drive from the Pitons.
- Cap Estate - this area is quiet with some nice beaches, but it lacks a "local feel" with its manicured luxury villas and golf course. It's a 1.5 hour drive from the Pitons.
- Marigot Bay - This is a popular area for yachts to dock. The beach here felt touristy and not as nice as others. There also isn't a lot around here to do and could get boring fast. Under an hour drive to the Pitons.
Where to stay in Soufriere
For luxury: Rabot Hotel from Hotel ChocolatThe luxury hotels in Soufriere feel more "boutique-like" and blend into the natural surroundings. We stayed at Rabot Hotel from Hotel Chocolat and highly recommend it if you're up for the splurge. It was a flawless stay.
The boutique hotel has 25 luxury eco lodges tucked away in the rainforest with stunning views of the Pitons. We were able to watch the sunset over them from our large terrace. The amenities at Rabot Hotel are also amazing with its pool and restaurant overlooking the Pitons and its peaceful garden area and spa that feel like an oasis in the jungle.
Breakfast is included in your room rate. Choose their daily feature (eggs benedict, French toast etc.) or create your favourite combination from their selection of eggs, bacon, vegetables, toast, oatmeal, fresh fruit, smoothie, coffee, or tea.
At lunch you will find free snacks by the pool. We played Scrabble poolside as we munched on chocolate muffins, plantain chips, cinnamon roll bites and pecan cookies. There is also free water. Their Rabot Restaurant is also one of the best on the island and specializes in cacao-inspired cuisine.
The location is perfect with stunning beaches and the village of Soufriere just minutes away.See rates for Hotel Rabot
For value: Samfi Gardens
Similar to Hotel Rabot, Samfi Gardens sits up high in the mountains with stellar views of the Pitons from your room and outdoor pool. Not only do you get to see views of the Pitons, you also get expansive views of the Carribean Sea and the charming village of Soufriere below. The family owned hotel is great value compared to other hotels with a similar view. Its colourful decor matches the eye-catching architecture and natural sights found throughout the island.
Browse more hotels in Soufriere
1 Week St. Lucia Itinerary
Settle into your hotel and eat cacao inspired-cuisine at Rabot Restaurant
Settle into your hotel
Welcome to paradise! Most hotels are about a 45 min - 1.5 hr drive away from the airport, so if you're not driving, make sure to arrange pick up with your hotel in advance. Once you arrive at the hotel, settle into your room and relax with a refreshing Saint Lucian rum cocktail or Piton beer.
Eat cacao-inspired cuisine at Rabot Restaurant
Assuming you're staying in Soufriere region, book dinner at Rabot Restaurant, Rabot Hotel's open-air restaurant serving cacao-inspired cuisine. They have their own cacao plantation and delicately use cacao in both savoury and sweet dishes. Most people associate cacao with sweet dishes, but it has in fact been used for over 3,000 years in savoury dishes!
The view of the pitons is gorgeous from the restaurant and it feels like you're dining in the middle of a rainforest.
Unwind with spa and pool time, and treat yourself to dinner at Dasheene for one of the best sunset views over the Pitons
Unwind with spa and pool time
Today is about unwinding and fully embracing island time. Leave your phone in your room and benefit from the hotel's amenities. Meditate in the quiet garden space, enjoy a poolside lunch, go for a refreshing swim, have tea while taking in your surroundings, book a spa treatment, or read that novel you've been meaning to get to.
I always bring Scrabble with me when I'm traveling. It's a great game to play when you're having downtime.
Treat yourself to dinner at DasheeneFor dinner, make a reservation at Dasheene for one of the island's best sunset views over the Pitons. The farm-to-table restaurant is part of Ladera, a luxury hotel made for honeymooners and couples. Dining at their restaurant is a good way to enjoy the space without having to spend a ton to stay there.
It felt magical being so high and up close to the twin volcanic spires. Our only complaint was the music they played - the American Top 40 sounding music didn't match the setting or vibe of the island.
Explore Soufriere village and hang out at a local beach
Explore the cool village of Soufriere
Soufriere is the coolest little village and one of the best ways to discover local life on the island. It has friendly locals, colourful buildings down every street and even a new beach park at Hummingbird Beach. The small fishing port was once the capital of St. Lucia under French Rule and is now the hub for exploring the Pitons and surrounding geothermal area.
Don't miss popping into one of the liquor stores to get well-priced Saint Lucian Rum. Our favourite brands are Chairman's Reserve for amber rum and Marigot Bay for their Banana Creme liqueur.
Swim at the local beach in Soufriere
After exploring the cute town, walk over to Soufriere Beach Park to spend the rest of your day on the Caribbean Sea. Hummingbird Beach didn't feel like a "resort beach". It felt wild swimming with the Pitons nearby and the locals were very nice. In fact, we got a great recommendation from a local, coming up soon in this itinerary!
Note: If you're not driving, arrange transportation with your hotel. Rabot Hotel offered free shuttle service to Soufriere. If you are driving, parking is free at the beach park.
Hike the "stairway to heaven", eat lunch at Orlando's and go for a dip in the hot springs
Hike the "stairway to heaven"
The Tet Paul Nature Trail is an easy 45 minute hike (0.6 miles) that takes you up to one of the best viewpoints in the Soufriere region. Once you reach the top of the stairs, you're rewarded with panoramic views of the Pitons, rainforest and Caribbean Sea. At the very top there is a little hut and hammock where you can buy a beer or water.
The entrance fee is 27 ECD (~10 USD) per person. View the trail map on AllTrails.
Eat authentic Carribean cuisine at Orlando's
Once you're done your hike, fill up on authentic Caribbean food at Orlando's. The Gault Millau awarded restaurant serves up delicious daily specials in the courtyard of celebrity chef, Orlando Satchell's home. It's right across from the Soufriere Beach Park. We were offered the chicken or fish special to choose from. It was one of the best meals we had on the island.
Take a relaxing soak in the New Jerusalem Mineral Baths
The volcanic area of Soufriere is known for its geothermal attractions, like the popular Sulphur Springs Park and Toraille Waterfall. We got a local tip to visit New Jerusalem Mineral Baths, a unique hideaway with mineral rich natural pools located about a 4 minute drive away from the town of Soufriere. It's a hidden gem that not many tourists know about, especially since it's not on typical guided tours. We were the only ones there!
We visited Torraile Falls afterwards, but it was underwhelming compared to New Jerusalem Mineral Baths.
How to get to New Jersualem Mineral Baths
To get to New Jerusalem Mineral Baths, drive about 4 minutes down St. Arthur Lewis Street from Soufriere village and look for a sign on the righthand side of the road that says "Welcome to New Jerusalem Mineral Baths". Don't search for it on Google Maps because it's inaccurate.
The sign is before the junction with Cresslands road, and if you drive past Toraille Waterfall, you know you've gone too far. We parked our car on the side of the road in front of the sign. Take the trail to the right of the sign to begin your scenic walk to the baths.
The path takes you on a beautiful 5-10 minute walk through the jungle beside small waterfalls and streams until you reach the baths. Two of the pools are warm and the third is cool. We didn't see a washroom there, but there was a changing room. The entrance fee is 10 EDC each (~$3.75 USD), which you pay once you get to the actual springs.
Note: If you're not driving, book a driver through your hotel for a half-day to do all these activities.🤠 For more fun excursion ideas, browse guided tours in St. Lucia through Viator.
Go snorkelling at Anse Chastanet beach and relax nearby at the tranquil Anse Mamin beach
Go snorkelling at Anse Chastanet Beach
Anse Chastanet and Anse Mamin are easily two of the most beautiful beaches on St Lucia. They are located down a very bumpy and steep single lane road with pull outs, so even if you are renting a car, we recommend hiring a private driver through your hotel instead. It cost us $50 USD roundtrip.
Anse Chastanet is the more popular beach and known to have some of the best snorkelling on the island. We rented snorkelling gear for $17 USD each per hour right at the beach. If you want to store your stuff in a locker, it's $7 USD for a key. A $50 USD cash-only deposit is required, so make sure to bring enough cash for everything. There are buoys that show you the areas to snorkel.
Hang out at Anse Mamin Beach next door
After you're done snorkelling, walk about 10 minutes up the shore to find Anse Mamin beach, a relaxed spot with less people. This was our favourite beach for chilling. It's easy to spend the day here.
Since Anse Mamin is located close to the famous Jade Mountain Resort and Anse Chastanet Resort, we were able to order some beachside bites from the server walking around. The milkshake and wings were delicious. It's expensive to rent the beach chairs and umbrellas ($66 USD for the set), but we were happy sitting on our beach blankets, since the sand was so soft.
Take a scenic road trip to explore the northern end of the island
Today you will take a scenic road trip to explore the northern end of St. Lucia. The drive takes about 1.75 hours from Soufriere on windy roads through the mountains and colourful villages. At the north end of the island is Gros Islet, a more commercial part of St Lucia where cruise ships dock and you find larger resorts like Sandals. Skip the touristy spots, like Pigeon Island (we found it boring compared to sights in Soufriere) and instead stop in at these two amazing peaceful spots:
Eat brunch at Pink Plantation House
About an hour drive from Soufriere is the Pink Plantation House, a former colonial mansion turned authentic Caribbean restaurant and guesthouse sitting beautifully in a tropical garden. Dining on the outdoor terrace brings gorgeous views of St. Lucia's capital city, Castries, far in the distance.
Hang out at the Naked Fisherman
From the Pink Plantation House, you're about a 40 minute drive away from your next destination, the Naked Fisherman. Once you drive past the crowded and touristy Gros Islet, it gets a lot quieter on the northern tip. This area doesn't feel very "local" with its private villas and golf course, however spending time at the Naked Fisherman makes it worth the visit.
The beachside bar & grill sits on a natural cove and is a gem to hang out at. It feels like a wild private beach all with the luxury of having fresh seafood and juicy BBQ bites available at anytime. We shared the tuna poke, Kobe burger and fish & chips. The food was excellent and the servers friendly. Afterwards, sway on the Bali-style swing located on the rocks, or play in the waves.
Make sure you're full before taking the road trip back to your hotel. If you're not driving, organize a private driver with your hotel for a full-day to fit in these activities.
Enjoy homemade creole cooking at Martha's Tables and have a classic beach day at Sugar Beach
For your last day on St Lucia, have a classic beach day between the Pitons at the beautiful white-sanded Sugar Beach. This beach may feel the most "resorty" of the bunch since it's part of the Sugar Beach Viceroy Resort, but it's relatively easy to get to and offers good amenities, like beachside service (if you don't mind paying for extras).
Enjoy homemade creole cooking at Martha's Tables for brunch
Before heading down to the beach, stop in for a casual lunch at Martha's Tables, located at the top of the hill. The colourful restaurant is known for its homemade creole cooking and is one of the best restaurants on the island for authentic local cuisine. The mac and cheese was fantastic!
Have a classic beach day at Sugar Beach
The catch with Sugar Beach is that if you drive there you have to pay $50 USD per person for a day pass, which includes parking and a round-trip shuttle that takes you down to the beach. On the positive side, this $50 USD day pass is a credit you can use for the restaurant or beachside service (alcohol included).
It cannot be used for beach chairs/umbrellas however, which is an extra $50 USD per person. You could alternatively get dropped off at the top and walk down, but it's going to be a tiring journey coming back up.
You won't have an issue spending your $50 USD credit since it's very expensive at the restaurant. Save your money on water by bringing your own bottle and instead spend it on Pina Coladas. It costs $13 USD for a large bottle of water there!
Don't miss the cute store on the righthand side of the beach that sells crochet clothing.
Our Top 5 St Lucia travel tips:
- Don't just eat in your resort/hotel - eat at local spots for authentic Caribbean cuisine
- Stay near Soufriere - it's one of the most beautiful parts of the island with the famous Pitons as its backdrop, it's way less touristy than the cruise-ship crowded north and has fun geothermal activities.
- Be aware of of extra costs at beaches - some beaches charge for a day pass and most charge for beach chairs/umbrellas
- Skip touristy sights that aren't worth the hype - instead of the Pigeon Island hike, do the Tet Nature Trail. Instead of Toraille Waterfall, do the New Jerusalem Baths.
- Familiarize yourself with the road conditions to see if you're comfortable driving. Driving is on the lefthand side and the roads are small and windy through the mountains. If you're not comfortable, you can easily hire a private driver through your hotel.
Enjoy your 7 days in St Lucia!
Start planning your trip to St. Lucia
- 🌃 Book your accommodation: Booking.com is our go-to for finding places to stay. Sort by top reviewed.
- 🚗 Book your car rental: see Rentalcars.com to compare car rental prices across different companies.
- 🤠 Guided tours: browse fun excursions through Viator
- 🛫 Book your flight: use Skyscanner to compare flights across different airlines (we recommend booking direct with the airline however).
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