St. Lucia Basics

by Female Abroad

The flag of St. Lucia has a blue background with three triangles imposed upon themselves in the center. Throughout my travels of the country I found out that the colours as well as the shapes all stand for something.

The "Blue Background" is actually a shade called Cerulean and it represents the sky as well as the water that surrounds the island. The bottom yellow pyramid stands for prosperity and sunshine. The Black and white triangles signify two different races and how they are unified. St. Lucia is best known for the Pitons which is why there are three triangles, they represent each of the Pitons. Even the fact that the triangles point upwards has a significance, they stand for the hope and aspirations of the St. Lucian people.

Besides knowing all the symbolism of the flag, here are a few other important tid-bits.

National Bird: St. Lucian Parrot

National Plant: Bamboo (brought over by Chinese settlers)

National Dish: Green figs and salt fish (kinda like a tuna casserole)

Language: English & French (everyone speaks perfect English)

Time Zone: AST (same time as EST)

Capital: Castries

Climate: tropical with little seasonal temp variations. Rainy season is June to Nov

Electricity: 220 volts

Airport: George F L Charles Airport - departure tax of EC$ 54/person

Cruise Ports: Place Carenage and Pointe Seraphine - both walking distance to Castries

Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar but USD is widely accepted and preferred. If you want to pay in EC and the item is priced in USD, expect twice as much (ex. 1 USD = 2 ECD).


credit cards are widely accepted

ATM's found in all the tourist zones, dispenses in ECD

Food: safe to eat - 10% service charge is usually included in the bill

Water: safe to drink

Medical: good and easy to find

Safety: Stick with normal tourist recommendations (ex. avoid flashy jewelry). As always, be aware and respectful of locals and you'll have no issues. Women can travel solo here and feel safe. Theft is common - secure your purses and wallets.

There are three main cities on the island:

Soufriere (sue-free): found on the west coast, this town used to be the capital of the island when the French were in control. This is also the city that is also the closest town to the Piton’s so if you are interested in a hike or wanting to explore them then this is the place to be. Here you will also find lots of botanical gardens, waterfalls, and luxury resorts. If water is more your speed there are some world class dive sites in the area and it’s easy to charter a sailing at or catamaran.

Rodney Bay: main tourist area with a pulsating nightlife, beach, shops, restaurants, 18-hole golf course, and casino. Expect to be yelled at by vendors in the area trying to sell their wares. This area through is known for its Friday night “jump-up” street party that mixes locals and tourists a like in a festive atmosphere. From here you can also get to Pigeon island where you can explore ruins (for a fee) and enjoy the views of the area.

Castries: The current capital of the island and features the majority of the duty free shopping. There are two main shopping areas (La Place Carenage & Pointe Seraphine) and you can take a ferry across the harbour back / forth. The local airport is also found here along with the Governor General’s residence.

Island Attractions (in no particular order):

  1. La Soufriere Drive-in Volcano: moonscape of bubbling mud, mineral pool of boiling water, and sulfur springs
  2. Diamond Botanical Gardens Mineral Baths and Waterfall: gorgeous garden with a restorative spring that streams into tiled basins
  3. Pitons: twin peaks of Petit and Gros Piton
  4. Jalousie Plantation Resort: known for snorkeling
  5. Fond Doux Estate: 30-minute walking tour of these dual plantations built in 1745 and 1763
  6. Rain Forest: lush and striking
  7. Pigeon Island: national park that is a historic site and a natural playground
  8. Souriere: oldest town in St. Lucia, founded in 1746
  9. Derek Walcott Square: green oasis in the middle of the city
  10. Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception: built in 1897 with colourful murals inside
  11. Our Plant Centre: first of it's kind and aimed at teaching about the earths' environment - family friendly
  12. Rodney Bay: restaurants, hotels, large mall, casino, and an 80-acre man made lagoon
  13. Morne Fourtune: "Hill of Good Luck" key battleground between the English and the French
  14. Union: natural travel with interpretive center and some parrots
  15. Annual Jazz Festival: held in May
  16. Fort Rodney: ruins of the fort with a museum in the former Officers Mess
  17. Sandals St. Lucia Golf
  18. Cap Estate Golf Club
  19. Central Library: colonial-style
  20. Brazil Street: wooden buildings from the 19th century
  21. Tet Paul Trail: easy hike with a view of the Pitons
  22. Coral Gardens: take a water taxi to it and do a snorkel by boat
  23. Roseau Valley Banana Plantation
  24. Choiseul: Saltibus Waterfall Trail, sab wee-sha black beach, Balenbouche estate sugar plantation, Morne Sion Windmills, Pn George (Devil's Bridge)
  25. Soufreie - New Jerusalem Waterfall: warm and cold bath
  26. Frigate Islands Nature Reserve
  27. Maria Island Nature Reserve

Beaches (in no particular order):

  1. Anse Chastanet: excellent diving sites
  2. Reduit Beach: (red-wee) golden sand beach that is one of the finest on the island
  3. Marigot Bay: a British fleet was once ambushed here by the French
  4. Vigie / Malabar Beach: nice beach in the resort area by the airport
  5. Pigeon Island: good beach with U$ 5 entry fee
  6. La Toc Bay: Sandals resort beach
  7. Marine National Park: great for dive or snorkeling
  8. Below Petit Piton: diving site around a deep coral reef
  9. Anse Cochan: sunken freighter, great for diving
  10. Anse La Raye: snorkeling and wall dives


  1. Central Market / Vendor Arcade / Craft Market: mix of tourist souvenirs with local product from farmers
  2. La Place Carenage: duty free shopping complex
  3. Pointe Seraphine: duty free shopping
  4. La Place Carenage: duty free shopping