Floating like an emerald teardrop between the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea is the island nation of St Lucia.
For centuries the original Arawak and Carib made their homes around the islands northern bays. In the 1550s, the notorious buccaneer, Peg Leg Le Clerc, became the first European to settle here.
After the pirates came the plantations, and the bittersweet years of sugar and slavery. Between the 17th and 19th centuries, St Lucia was pulled back and forth between the French and British, before finally gaining her independence in 1979.
Right in the heart of the capital, Castries, the main square pays tribute to two of the island’s Nobel Prize winning sons. Just across from the park, visit the basilica, filled with murals that blend the colours and traditions of Africa, the Caribbean and the West.
At the Central Market, taste the fruits of this island’s volcanic soil, enjoy real St Lucian home cooking, and browse crafts made by local hands. The creation story continues at Eudovik’s Art Studio, where master carvers transform tree roots into sensual works of art.
The sleepy French colonial town, Soufriere, is cradled by some of the island’s greatest natural treasures. Just a short boat ride away is one island’s finest resort beaches, Anse Chastanet. While nestled between the two volcanic spires of Gros and Petit Piton, is one of the west coast’s most secluded hideaways, Sugar Beach.