One of the biggest up and coming travel destinations, Saint Lucia offers everything you need for a Caribbean escape. Crystal clear blue waters bordering white sandy beaches only to be broken by piercing mountain peaks covered in greens. Between the shores lies an eclectic terrain complete with tropical forests, diamond waterfalls, and steaming volcanoes. Saint Lucia takes romance to the next level and the beach escape to new heights. Plan your trip today! 5 Must-See Attractions: Pitons- Two beautiful mountain peaks right on the coastline overlooking Soufriere Bay on the western side of the island. They stand out along the horizon, iconic and majestic capturing the essence of St. Lucian beauty. Anse Mamin- A secluded beach a short distance from Soufriere with a nearby resort, Anse Mamin offers an amazing burger and one of the most peaceful locales on the island for beach bums. Marigot Bay- In contention for the best view on land, Marigot Bay is much more than just an overlook, with plenty of boating, snorkeling, and other activities available. Drive-In Volcano- Located near Soufriere, the drive-in volcano is an awesome sight. Just make sure to prepare yourself for the accompanying sulfur smell. Don’t wear anything too nice! New Jerusalem Mineral Bath- A natural hot spring bath perfect for those looking for a spot to relax. The New Jerusalem Mineral Bath uses water heated naturally by the volcano in a tropical outdoor pool. 5 Great Sites for Kids: Tet Paul Nature Trail- Tet Paul Nature trail is one of the most accessible hiking trails on the island, and provides the best view of the Pitons and the bay. Treetop Adventure Park- A huge network of zip-lines in the treetops of central-eastern Saint Lucia. Through rainforest and over water, the lines are exhilarating and breathtaking in both sight and speed! Scuba Diving- There are a number of different scuba diving opportunities available throughout the island, and there’s no better way to entertain the kids than a one of a kind dive! Splash Island Water Park Saint Lucia- This takes the term waterpark to a whole new level. Located in Rodney Bay, Splash Island Water Park resembles a playground on the water. Diamond Botanical Garden- There is a small entrance fee, but the waterfall is beautiful and the baths are filled with mineral water! 5 Free Attractions: Gros Islet Street Party- A small strip of street where travelers and locals alike can kick off the weekend with a drink and a party! Reduit Beach- A huge stretch of beach with lots of activity, Reduit beach is a fun place to take the kids out amidst the commotion for a little while. Rodney Bay- The beach itself is scenic and amazing, with soft sand and straw cabanas, Rodney Bay also offers nearby shopping centers just a short distance from the beach! Rain Forest- Depending on what you do, a trip to the rain forest might cost you a little bit of money, but it’s well worth the trip. The views are priceless and the atmosphere is unlike anything you’ll find back home. Castries Market- A local market filled with spices, fruit, fish, and plenty of souvenirs. It’s a great place to buy or just walk through and admire the local produce. 5 Great Restaurants: The Beacon Restaurant- Between the views and the authentic local cuisine, the Beacon restaurant is hard to beat in Saint Lucia. The chicken curry and the plantains are the best around! Blue Olive Restaurant and Wine Bar- A mix of Mediterranean cuisines and a wine bar featuring possibly the best bread in Saint Lucia. The conch fritters are a hit with frequent travelers! Gobble- A nice place to grab lunch or a snack! The cookies and cheesecake set the standard in Saint Lucia; they even offer local juice for those interested! Martha’s Table- An authentic menu featuring breadfruit balls, plantains, and much more! Frequent travelers gush about the atmosphere and the unique dishes that are Martha’s Table’s staple. Seaview Bar- It may not have all of the frills of some of the other spots on this list, but if you’re looking for good St. Lucian food in Gros Islet, then the Seaview Bar will leave you full and satisfied. 5 Great Nightlife Spots: Irie Bar- An authentic street bar with an awesome reputation and spiced rum that leaves everyone talking! Marie’s Fish Shack- If you’re looking for fresh fish on the beach in Rodney Bay, then check out Marie’s Fish Shack to end your day! La Terrasse- For an elegant night out on the island try La Terrasse for a mixture of French food and island flavor. The crème brulee and the fresh fish always receive top marks from travelers. The ambience along Rodney Bay adds a special romantic element that’s intriguing. Pulse Nightclub- Another spot in Rodney Bay (It’s the place to be for nightlife!), Pulse Nightclub sports a combination of the cocktail bar and a nightly dance party. Happy Day Bar- Happy Day Bar offers drink specials daily! The bar on the beach attracts a steady flow of travelers due to the affordable prices, well made drinks, and beach atmosphere. 5 Romantic Getaways: Jade Mountain- A secluded resort with an ocean view and elegant beachfront rooms. There’s an infinity pool in each room while the spa and beach access are serene and relaxing. It’s the perfect spot to honeymoon or spend a romantic getaway. Jungle Biking- If you’re a sporty couple, take a jungle bike ride through St. Lucia’s tropical forests available via the Anse Chastanet Resort. Coconut Bay Beach- Located on the eastern side of the island, Coconut Bay Beach is a white sandy stretch over a mile long uninterrupted by city. The accompanying resort is top of the line with beautiful views and spa perks, but a walk along the beach makes for an intimate date night. Diamond Waterfall- A stroll through the botanical gardens to the waterfall helps couples retreat into the natural beauty of St. Lucia. Catamaran Trip- Take a catamaran out onto the ocean as a couple! The sun and sea spray is complimented with fantastic island views in an airy escape from the island terrain. 5 Must Try-Foods: Piton Beer- Available throughout the island, Piton beer originated in the Windward & Leeward Brewery! It’s a lager that leaves an impression on every traveler. Breadfruit- A fruit available in markets throughout the island, the breadfruit has a potato taste and a loafy appearance. Salt Fish & Green Figs- A dish consisting of fish sautéed with peppers, onions, and spice, served with immature, boiled bananas. Crab Backs- A spiced crab and onion concoction stuffed “back” into the shell. Bakes- Flat dough discs (No not doughnuts!) that are stuffed with meat and cheese, or even unstuffed and fried. Climate: As a tropical island destination, Saint Lucia’s climate stays fairly constant throughout the year. The average temperature stays in the 70’s (Fahrenheit) year round. There is a slight increase (by a couple of degrees) from April throughout September, but the temperatures still average in the high 70’s throughout these “warmer” months. While the temperature fluctuates very little throughout the year, the precipitation varies a great deal. From January through May, the average rainfall stays under 6 inches a month. However, once June rolls around, the precipitation jumps north of 8 inches until it peaks in December at just under 12. If you plan on visiting in the latter half of the year, make sure to bring a rain jacket! Transportation: The primary system of public transportation around the island is the minibus. The minibus runs on an “as needed” basis, only departing when full of passengers and only operating until 10pm. In addition to the minibus, there are taxis and water taxis available. Safety Precautions: Like any destination, Saint Lucia has some safety concerns. Try to stay in the more crowded, touristy areas as opposed to wandering unknown streets alone at night. If you’re staying at a resort, it’s best to try and stay around the resort area without venturing too far unguided. For the most part, just be smart, do a little research, and try not to explore too much without preparing some first. Saint Lucia is an exciting and awe-inspiring destination! Enjoy it, but plan ahead. Souvenirs: One of the most popular souvenirs to take home with you from Saint Lucia is a straw hat. These hand-woven mementos are often available in markets and gift shops throughout the island. Trip Highlights: The most memorable sights from a trip to Saint Lucia are the peaks of the Pitons, and the zip-line journey through the jungle rainforest. Romance is always in the air throughout the island with beautiful locales, intimate beach spots, and secluded resorts. Documentation: U.S. residents visiting Saint Lucia need to obtain a passport before departing for your trip as you will need it for entry back into the country. It’s also a good idea to keep a copy of your personal identification and trip itinerary handy when you travel. Air Travel Information: Saint Lucia is primarily serviced by two major airports. The larger, Hewanorra International Airport (UVF), is located on the southern tip of the island and the smaller, George Charles Airport (SLU), is found in the capital city Castries. Most major airlines, including Delta, United Airlines, US Airways, and American Airlines all provide transport to the island. Taxi services and car rentals are available to travelers once they arrive on the island.