Travelling Solo in Saint Lucia
Although some say that you should be careful here, as long as you have a guide with you, you’ll be fine. It is not advisable to visit beaches by yourself especially ones away from the main tourist resorts. The crime rate here is low but any place where you don’t see many locals, don’t go by yourself. This includes the more secluded beaches. The street parties can be a bit hectic with loud crowds so get someone to accompany you if you’re wanting nighttime entertainment. Some say that vendors can be a bit aggressive so just be firm and only look at what you want to buy.
About Saint Lucia
Saint Lucia is one of the well-known islands in the Caribbean Sea and a mecca for those seeking wellness holidays. Lush rainforest, beaches, and plenty of volcanic mud are just some of Saint Lucia’s attractions but its main focal point are the Pitons, two mountainous volcanic spires which dominate the island.
Castries is Saint Lucia’s capital with a colourful Saturday market where you can buy anything from souvenirs and t-shirts to spices and fruits. Pointe Seraphine is a duty-free area where you can buy to your heart’s content then admire the architecture afterwards in Derek Walcott Square.
Although there is a usual tourist route you can take around the island, if you choose a private guide, you can pick and choose which places you would prefer to see if you only have a day to squeeze everything in. But there are so many excursions here that you can easily fill the majority of your days with the island’s treasures.
With 19,000 acres of rainforest to explore, you simply must venture into the forest. Choosing a guide to go with you will ensure that you see the waterfalls, wild orchids and exotic birds.
The north of the island is the easiest to hike through but in the south you can hike the Des Cartiers Rainforest trail. This trail takes two hours and goes along an old military road. Your accommodation can arrange transport to the beginning of the trails but team with others or use a guide. For those who want a challenge, you can’t get more challenging than scaling the Pitons. Out of the two, the Gros Piton stands 798 metres high and is meant to be easier than the Petit Piton. Allow four hours for this and hire a guide to tackle this huge spire.
If you don’t fancy walking there’s a tram ride instead which provides aerial views of the rainforest canopy whilst sitting in a gondola. This is near Babonneau in the north of the island.
Birdwatchers should head to The Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail which is the best place for bird watching and is home to five of the island’s species.
You can even horse-swim here, well technically it’s horse riding along the beach before taking your horse in the water with you. And don’t worry if you’ve never done this before, there are classes for beginners at The International Pony Club and Trim’s Horseriding Stables in the north of the island.
Learn more about the island’s history by exploring the forts and barracks at Pigeon Island National Landmark. Visit one of the plantation estates which date back to the colonial era to find out more about how cocoa is produced.
Visit Soufriere, an old seaside town, or watch the fishermen with their nets in the sleeping fishing village of Anse La Raye with wooden cottages which date back a few years.
Saint Lucia is known for wellness and one of its most popular attractions is the Sulphur Springs. They don’t really have an odour but bathing in the bubbling mud will leave your skin looking the best it’s ever looked. You can get really close to the steam in this drive-through volcano which hasn’t erupted since 1766. Many hotels offer spa treatments but if you don’t have the budget, you can soak in the restored baths in Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens for less.
Apart from smothering yourself in the mud baths, Marigot Bay is our favourite place in Saint Lucia. The green waters are so calming and this location was even used as a scene in the original movie of Dr Doolittle.
One of the best ways to see the island is by catamaran which takes you along the west coast. You can go yachting and also dolphin and whale spotting (although it is never 100% guaranteed). Snorkeling is best at Anse Chastanet which is part of a marine park, and one of the prime diving sites is Anse Cochon with a sunken wreck to explore.
If you’ve ever wanted to save baby turtles and an imaginary island from a hurricane, you can visit an attraction called Our Planet where you can find out more about environmental issues whilst doing your good deeds for the day.
The adventurous solo can zip line through the trees at various places on the island. Fly through the tress at the Morne Coubaril Estate, Babonneau and aptly named Treetop Adventure Park.
For beach lovers, the west coast on the Caribbean Sea is the most sheltered compared to those on the east. The liveliest beach is Reduit, a mile of sandy beach where you can waterski, take a banana boat ride or choose another watersport to wile away your hours. This is the best beach to meet others as it is lined by Rodney Bay hotels and there are bars on the beachfront to enjoy a Pina Colada as the sun sets. Anse des Pitons has one of the most beautiful beaches and you can visit The Jalousie Plantation, a luxury resort whilst you are there. You can kite-surf at Anse D'Sables and spot the endangered leatherback turtles at Grande Anse between March to August.
With great beaches, stunning nature, and a unique elegance, Saint Lucia has everything you need from a Caribbean island especially if you are seeking a wellness break.
How long do I need?
To see most of the island and spend some time relaxing on a beach, I would definitely recommend a week at least. This gives you time to visit Soufriere, the Saturday markets at Castries and the Pitons.
Accommodation in Saint Lucia
No matter where you stay here, you’re guaranteed a Caribbean escape. Whether you choose to stay on a plantation estate, a hotel near the beach or a private villa. Being the Caribbean there are plenty of all-inclusive choices if you don’t want to venture much outside of your resort or you can choose a smaller more intimate resort to relax in. For interaction with locals stay in a locally-run guesthouse.
Don’t be discouraged by thinking that this is just an island for those with an over modest budget. Saint Lucia has accommodation for the most discerning of travellers and all budgets.
GatG Favourite – Coco Palm, Rodney Bay Village
This cute little 3 star property is popular with solo travellers not only because it’s really great value but because the staff are so friendly. There’s a full-service spa and gym and a pool to relax at, plus they do great cocktails too. It can get booked up fast. Prices from £65 p/n. Find out more
GatG Favourite – Harmony Suites, Rodney Bay Village
A fab 3 star in an oasis of tropical gardens and fountains which overlooks the marina and it’s really close to the beach. They have a great sushi bar and you can also try European food here too. Plus there’s a tour desk to book excursions around the island such as visiting the very cool Pitons. Prices from £72 p/n. Find out more…
GatG Favourite – Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort, Gros Islet
If you’re ready to splash the cash, this 5 star resort has the most spacious rooms right on the Caribbean Sea. It’s easy to meet others here as you’ll find families and plenty of people to talk to. Treat yourself in the luxury spa or one of the 6 pools – nearly one for every day of the week! Prices from £202 p/n. Find out more…
GatG Luxury – Treat yourself at Capella Marigot Bay
We love this stunning property with 3 outdoor pools including an infinity one. The Rum Cave is the perfect evening spot to meet others and you can even choose your own suite with a hot tub. The resort provides a free shuttle to a nearby beach. $$$ Find out more…
Travelling Around Saint Lucia
If you don’t opt for a tour, you can book your own taxi driver to take you around the island (just agree a price beforehand). Water taxis operate in Rodney Bay and Soufriere which will take you to nearby beaches. Check out Shashamane water taxis.
There are buses which have cheap fares and take passengers all over the island. Look for the minibuses with the green licence plate displaying ‘M.’
It is easy to navigate your way around the island roads if you hire a car so there’s no need to worry about getting lost. You do need to purchase a temporary driving permit for $20 which you can get from the rental company.
If you have the cash, consider an aerial helicopter flight which you can take as a tour or a transfer between the north and south of the island.
From the Airport
Getting from the airport can be expensive. A taxi from the international airport can cost approx $75 to Rodney Bay for example. If you are flying from another Caribbean island, expect to arrive at George FL Charles Airport near Castries. All international flights arrive at Hewanorra International Airport in the south of Saint Lucia.
Feel more confident with someone waiting for you at the airport when you pre-book a transfer with Hoppa, a reliable and safe service for solo females.
Saint Lucia Tours
I used Real Saint Lucia Tours during my 3 days in St Lucia. Being solo, it was so nice to have my own private driver who designed my individual tour. Having spent a few days alone previously it was great to have someone to talk to, to teach me about the island and of course take me to the best spots in St Lucia. We even had lunch together. I would definitely recommend this company for solo females. Visit Real Saint Lucia Tours website.
Other recommended tour companies good for solos:
- Cosol Tours – With a native St. Lucian born proprietor.
- Atlantic Shores Riding Stables – Offers horse riding along the beach or on the island's country trails.
- Serenity Vacations and Tours – offers vacation packages and day tours on land and sea.
To The Other Islands
St Lucia to Martinique – There is a ferry from St Lucia to Martinique which takes 2 hours. A day trip leaves on Thursday for shopping and a barbecue which is a great way of meeting others.
Where can I go from here?
Martinique – 20 mins
Grenada – 50 mins
Barbados – 45 mins
- Can I drink the water? Yes it has been chlorinated.
- Is tipping expected? In hotels and restaurants they automatically add an 8% government tax and 10% service charge.
- Fixed price or barter? Fixed price but you can haggle at the markets in Castries.
- Any ATMs? Yes, all over the island.
- Which side of the road do they drive? Left-hand side.
- Good for vegetarians? There are vegetarian restaurants and a vegan one too.
- Any seven wonders of the world? No.
This is accurate at time of writing but we appreciate things can change. Please let us know if you experience anything otherwise. Thanks.
Capital – Castries
Population – 182,273
Language Spoken – English, French Patois
Local Currency – East Caribbean Dollar
The Best Time to Go – Jan-Apr, July, Nov – Dec.
Did you know? Mongoose were brought onto the island to control the snake population, and the World’s rarest snake – the Saint Lucia Racer has been sighted here.
Fond Doux Plantation and Resort
Calabash Mountain Villa
St Lucia has a creole culture. October is Creole Heritage month when folklore and indigenous events are held. Join a Creole and Rum Explosion tour with Heritage Tours St Lucia.
The St. Lucia Project is helping to raise the IQ of a single village’s children and discover their potential.
Mind Body & Soul
Retreats at Balenbouche Eco Resort & Heritage Site.
Spa Treatments at Capella Marigot Bay.
The Body Holiday offers yoga retreats.
Smugglers Cove Resort & Spa offers yoga and Tai Chi.
Issues in the Country
Poverty and unemployment are widespread amongst the population with many health-related problems due to frequent water shortages. Read more…