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St. Lucia is very much a Caribbean island that is divided, attraction-wise at least, into two halves. In the north of the island is Rodney Bay where you can be pampered by all modern comforts and conveniences in the natural beauty of its welcoming bay. However, for adventurous travellers, a trip to the southern region of Soufriere will suddenly reveal old plantations, secluded beaches and the geologic wonders of the photogenic twin cone-shaped peaks of the Piton mountains.
Soufriere – The gateway to the Pitons, this is where you can start your ascent of the photogenic peaks and nearby you will find the hot sulphur springs of a volcanic crater, the Diamond Botanical Gardens to relax in and the Pitons waterfall to soak your weary legs in.
Around Gros Islet – Small resorts and quieter beaches can be found at Gros Islet but the main activity here centres on Reduit Beach. Try scuba diving, kitesurfing or other watersports, or head into the rainforests near Rodney Bay to zip line your way through the canopies.
Vieux Fort – The second-largest town on the island nestles at its southern tip, with the calmer waters of the Caribbean Sea meeting the rougher Atlantic Ocean. This makes for perfect coastal scenery and ideal conditions for kitesurfing and windsurfing.
Castries – The capital city’s historic buildings were whittled away by fires between the 18th and 20th centuries, yet the scenic backdrop of the soaring Morne Fortune (standing at 2795 feet) still remains.
The fertile hills and mountain peaks are what really set St. Lucia apart. The views of Morne Fortune from the capital, and those of the Pitons from the south of the island, help frame the coastal splendour. Yet, it is the views that are rewarded to those who climb the Pitons that really deserve to be seen. Despite the popularity of St. Lucia it is still possible to seek out secluded bays and beaches where you can pretend you are Robinson Crusoe as you take in the views and enjoy the peace and quiet.
The massage and spa treatments will really come into their own after you have made the hike up the Pitons! There are waterfalls to feel the spray of, sulphur springs to feel the heat of and kitesurfing to try to get the hang of. More relaxing may be the tours of working plantations where you can sample the local cuisine, but, if this seems a little tame the regular 'fish frys' that are held all over the island are your chance to sample the dishes, drink yourself silly and strut your stuff on the dance floor. Don’t worry you can sweat it all out on a rainforest hike the next day!