25 Top Things to Do in St. Lucia While on a Cruise

Get ready for your St. Lucia cruise vacation! Here are 25 of the top things to do in St Lucia to make the most of your trip.

St. Lucia is one of the most breathtakingly beautiful islands in the Caribbean. It’s located on the southeastern side of the Caribbean and bears the most dramatic landscape in the entire West Indies. Twin Volcanic hills blanketed by lush vegetation rising from the sea create the island’s unique feature and induce awe in anyone who sees them.

The island, an emerald gem sitting on top of blue waters, features thick tropical rainforests, natural wonders, colorful villages, and stunning beaches. These features, coupled with the island’s warm and laid-back nature, provide countless attractions. That makes it easy to fall in love with the place.

Whether this is your first or the 10th time cruising to the island, you are likely to want to explore all of St. Lucia, and luckily, we know the 20 top things to do in St. Lucia that you can try:

1. Explore Castries, The Island’s Capital

When cruising to St. Lucia, ships dock at Castries, which is the capital city. Cruise ships dock at either Pointe Seraphine, which is a 20-minute walk to the center of the town, or at La Place Carenage, which is at the center of the town.

One of the things that you should do in the city is to visit Castries Central Market, found in the town center in the iron warehouse with bright orange roofing. Here, you can peruse and shop for unfamiliar tropical fruits and familiar ones like bananas.

Or maybe not so familiar as St. Lucia boasts of 127 varieties of bananas; it’s actually the island’s main fruit. You can also shop for Caribbean spices, island-made chocolate, and rum.

Castries, Saint Lucia
Castries, Saint Lucia (Photo Credit: Nandani Bridglal)

Right next to the open-air fruit market is the handcrafts market, where you can shop for hand-printed silk garments, Carrabelle batik, straw items, and wooden items.

After leaving the market, you can visit the nearby Derek Walcott Square. Named after the famous poet who was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize for Literature in 1992. Opposite the square is St Lucia’s Cathedral, a plain old church on the outside but bearing the most beautiful murals and old decor on the inside.

2. Vieux Fort, Saint Lucia’s Main Point of Entry

Not only is Vieux Fort now St Lucia’s main point of entry, but it is also a big industrial area where you can find St Jude’s Hospital and the George Odlum Stadium.

It is a town at the southernmost point of the island. Vieux Fort is home to the Moule-e-Chique Lighthouse, which was built in 1912 and is the second-highest in the world. 

3. Visit Pigeon Island National Landmark

There is not much to do in Castries, and an hour exploring is enough. However, a point of interest in St. Lucia is at the northernmost point of the island, Pigeon Island. Grab a taxi or bus from town and head there. Pigeon Island is not an island but more of a peninsula now, with a causeway that connects it to St. Lucia.

The 44-acre piece of land is a historical landmark for this island nation. Visit this park to learn about St. Lucia, from the earliest settlers, the Carib Indians, to the pirates, the French and British powers. Which fought over the island for so long that it got nicknamed “Helen of the West Indies.”

Pigeon Island in St Lucia
Pigeon Island in St Lucia (Photo Credit: Andrew F. Kazmierski)

Start with the museum, then move on to the park to explore St. Lucia’s nature. Climb the fort for stunning 360-degree views of the island with perfect seascapes on the horizon. If you get hungry, head over to Jambe de Bois (Wooden Leg), a popular restaurant named after the famous pirate.

If you have the time to visit in the early morning hours, you will feel as if you have the island to yourself. There are two beaches and some restaurants that can be found within the island’s 44-acre landmark. There is a small entrance fee, and you can pay extra for a map of the area. 

However, many visitors have said you don’t need to shell out the extra money on a map since there are so many signs posted along the trails.  

4. Explore Rodney Bay Marina

While still on the North Western coast of the island, take a water taxi, a bus or a taxi ride to Rodney Bay Marina—a beautiful wide arc of blue waters. Rodney Bay is the island’s beehive, and you can’t miss its entrance from the road.

Rodney Bay Marina features a street lined with commercial buildings, shops, and restaurants. Streetside eating is popular here. But even more popular are the beach, the beautiful bay, and the party life of the island.

When visiting St Lucia, you can do some duty-free shopping, eat your fill of good food, stroll on the beach or head over to the water park for some thrilling water adventures. If the mention of adrenaline tires you out, try the many hidden spas for a relaxing day at the port. Some of the places to shop include the Bay Walk shopping mall.

5. Explore Marigot Bay

From Rodney Bay, take a water taxi over to Marigot Bay. This beautiful and picturesque bay with a deep natural harbor is also known as the Hurricane Hole on account of it being protected from strong winds by the surrounding forested hill peninsulas.

Marigot Bay features big resorts and private residences and bears a laid-back vibe to it that is just perfect for vacation. There is plenty to eat here, and one of the most popular restaurants is the “Hurricane Hole.” It serves delicious St. Lucia cuisine as well as international favorites.

Marigot Bay
Marigot Bay (Photo Credit: IJS Photography)

There is plenty to see and do, including hiking to the top of the adjacent hills for panoramic views of the bay and the island. It’s a good place to charter a boat for a sailing trip. The beach is gorgeous and public.

You can take a beach break there or even kayak in the mangrove. This small, charming, and serene harbor, which was featured in the Dr. Dolittle movie of 1967, is just the slice of island magic that one needs. The hidden nature of the bay serves to draw in tourists looking for a private island escape.

6. Explore Soufriere Town

However, for the best parts of St. Lucia, head on over to Soufriere on the southern coast of the island. This town, which was once the capital of St. Lucia when the French were in power, features most of the island’s unique and iconic attractions.

It boasts of the world’s only Drive-in Volcano, the award-winning Diamond Botanical Garden, the black beaches of Anse Chastanet and, of course, the iconic pitons that have become the postcard image of the island.

Soufriere is located south of Castries, and it takes about 75 minutes to get there by road. The way to the town is on a windy road, and the journey can be tiring. You can try a boat ride instead.

Approaching this town by sea allows you a magnificent view of the pitons from the seaside. The finest resorts, historical aspects and more cultural vibe of the island are found here in Soufriere. Explore the harbor and the surrounding town, taking tours of the popular attractions on this side of St. Lucia.

7. Tour of the Island

Take a tour of St Lucia either by boat or by road, or by both ways. St. Lucia is beautiful and has much to offer. For a cruise tourist, a boat tour is better because of the limited time at the port.

View of Saint Lucia
View of Saint Lucia (Photo Credit: San Spain)

Visit popular towns like Marigot Bay, Rodney Bay and Soufriere with breaks on their sandy beaches, short detours to their main attractions, and indulge in a snorkeling adventure on your way back to port.

8. Hike the RainForest

Over 19,000 acres of St. Lucia are covered in rainforest. St Lucia resembles an emerald jewel in the Caribbean, with almost 70% of the island blanketed with lush vegetation.

As such, it goes without saying that the most popular activities on the island involve nature, specifically rainforest adventures. Hiking is one of the best ways to explore the rainforest. You’ll need your travel insect repellant for these types of shore excursions.

You can take a hike into Edmund forest reserve, which is accessible from St. Jacques, or hike the mile-long trail through Barre de Isla forest reserve, which is closer to Castries. When doing a hike in St. Lucia, you are provided a guide who leads you through scenic trails, where you can explore beautiful tropical flowers, plants, and even animals.

9. Scuba Dive and Snorkel

Whether you are a novice diver or just a beginner, you are guaranteed an awesome diving experience in St Lucia. All the waters of the major towns on the island teem with tropical marine life. There are plenty of spectacular coral formations teeming with colorful marine life.

Snorkel at Soufriere
Snorkel at Soufriere (Photo Credit: stbar1964)

Explore the tranquil waters of the West Coast in great diving spots, from walls to shipwrecks, and an abundance of coral reefs and trenches. The waters around the Pitons and Anse Cochon are protected marine reserves and are best for diving.

There are plenty of scuba diving shops on the island and classes offer PADI certifications. Go under and experience St. Lucia’s miracle of the underwater world. Fairyland and Coral Gardens are two of the best scuba diving sites in St Lucia. 

10. Sail on a Catamaran

Nothing spells island fun more than a luxurious catamaran ride along the coast of the island. St Lucia offers this popular tourist activity as well. Book a catamaran tour along the island’s west coast. This leisurely tour takes you along the coastline with stops at major attractions.

On such a tour, you get a chance to snorkel at Anse Chastanet coral garden. Get a lunch of freshly caught grilled fish. Get to explore and swim in secret coves, do some more snorkeling, and at the end of it all, hit a beach. If you find nothing else to do in St. Lucia on your port day, which is highly unlikely, then book a catamaran tour of the island.

11. Float Gently on an Aerial Tram Ride

Exploring St Lucia’s forest is a popular activity for all tourists on the island, and you will enjoy it, too. Take a gentle aerial tram ride through the island’s northwestern rainforest.

Tram Tour through the Rainforest
Tram Tour through the Rainforest (Photo Credit: Andreas Vogel)

This ride happens on a suspended open-ended gondola that slowly takes you on a tour of the forest’s canopy with a guide who explains the local tropical flora and fauna. Enjoy this activity as you get panoramic views of the rainforest and its inhabitants.

12. Take a Relaxing Mud Bath in Sulphur Springs Park

One of the most popular attractions in St. Lucia is the mud bath in Sulphur Springs State Park. Located about a mile from Soufriere’s harbor are the Sulphur Hot Springs, which are reminiscent of the volcanic nature of the island. Just a few steps from the drive-in volcano are the mud baths. The mud is said to heal, restore, tighten and rejuvenate your skin.

A visit to the bath involves applying the warm gray mud on your body. Then, take a bath in the mineral-rich waters of Sulphur Springs. Afterward, you can cool off at a nearby waterfall. This is an experience you don’t want to miss, even if the place smells like rotten eggs.

13. Go Horseback Riding

On a lush island like St. Lucia, a horseback ride along the jungle’s scenic path and on the beach is an enchanting experience that one shouldn’t miss. The horses in St. Lucia are shorter, sturdier, and like to go on adventures. There are several stables on the island, and one of them is the Atlantic Shore Stables.

Horses on the Caribbean Island
Horses on the Caribbean Island (Photo Credit: DidierHaus)

The 3 hour horseback ride along the scenic verdant landscape and swimming in an untouched beach makes for a great romantic break. However, due to how far the stables are from the cruise port, making good preparations and arriving early at the port will help cruisers get the best out of their time in port.

14. Dolphin and Whale Watching

Another magical thing about this tropical oasis is the 3000-foot-deep ledge that has the most stunning sightings of whales and dolphins.

Book a Whale watching tour and enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime experience on a whale-watching ride along the ledge to Soufriere. Once at the French capital, you can take a vehicle ride back to Marigot Bay or Castries. This serves as a great two-in-one tour of the island.

15. Bird Watching

With the highest number of endemic birds in the Eastern Caribbean region, St. Lucia is a bird watchers haven. There are over 167 species of birds on the island that you can explore, and you can see many of these colorful birds year-round. 

If tropical birdwatching is on your list, then try it in St Lucia, where bird sites are dotted across the island, from nature trails to wetland areas. Travel to the heart of St Lucia and visit the Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail. Here, you can find over 30 species of birds, including the Saint Lucia Black Finch and the Saint Lucia Warbler. 

16. Pirate Ship Ride

Become a pirate for a day onboard the Black Magic Spanish Galleon ship. Let Captain John T take you on adventures with his buccaneer mates.

Pirate Ship
Pirate Ship (Photo Credit: John Ray Gordon)

Ply the west coast to Soufriere, where you will have plenty of fun, including treasure hunts, walking the plank, visits to the drive-in volcano, a mud bath, and Creole buffet lunch, and you can stop to swim or snorkel in a secluded cove along the way.

17. Food, Chocolate and Heritage Tour of the Island

Take a gastronomic tour of the town. Tasting authentic foreign flavors is a crucial part of vacations. In St Lucia, you will have incredible flavors bursting in your mouth with each bite of their island cuisine. The national dish is the salt fish with unripe bananas, which they call “Green Figs.”

Ask for it in any restaurant, and you are sure to be amazed. Coupled with their hot sauce and chutneys, you will have a true taste of St. Lucian cuisine. Other island cuisine includes fresh fish fry, barbeque, jerk chicken and delicious salads.

Check all of these food-related tours for the Caribbean island.

And don’t miss the coconut water drinks offered by the people with machetes and trolleys full of green coconuts along the road. With a swift action of the machete, they will slice the top of the coconut and hand you the tropical fruit with a straw to enjoy fresh coconut water. In some places, they will even lace it with rum.

As you can see, one of the best things you can do while in St Lucia is sample local cuisine. Another classic you might come across on your travels to the area is Bouyon stew. It is a homestyle dish and comfort food the locals love. 

The stew consists of vegetables and dumplings in a stock with cassava and cinnamon. It is slow-cooked in a clay vessel over the fire with a mangrove tinder. It results in a thick and hearty stew that you can find all over the island as well as in the market in Castries port. 

18. Feeling Thirsty? Take a Rum Tour

When visiting the Caribbean Islands, don’t forget to stop by St Lucia’s only rum distillery and meet up with a knowledgeable guide, with whom you can book a rum tour where you will get a behind-the-scenes look as well as a tasting of several different rums and rum liqueurs.

Rum Tasting at Distillery
Rum Tasting at Distillery (Photo Credit: Chris Allan)

You will learn how their rum is made from sugar cane, see their processes, and hear all about the history of rum production in St Lucia. 

The Rhythm of Rum tour can be found at St Lucia Distillers in Roseau Valley. It is open to pre-booked groups and takes about an hour to complete.

19. Take a Beach Break

All Caribbean islands have plenty of gorgeous beaches, and it’s the same with St. Lucia. There is an old island feel to its beaches, which are dotted with swaying palm trees and large stretches of clean sandy beach.

The nearest beach to the cruise port is Rodney Bay. It is known as Reduit Beach. It is covered by swaying palms and features golden pristine sand.

The beach is beautiful and calm and has plenty of sun loungers (for rent) for a day at the beach. You’ll find these beach pads for your feet handy for protection.

At the end of the beach is the popular Splash Island Water Park, which features a climbing wall, trampoline, swings, water polo, and high jumps. It’s fun for the kids and the young at heart, too.

Rodney Bay Coast
Rodney Bay Coast (Photo Credit: Chris Allan)

Nearby at Pigeon Island, the white, soft-sandy beach here features a thicket of lush tropical trees. The beach lacks amenities such as bathrooms but has vendors selling food, and there are small eateries offering snacks.

The picnic tables on the beach are great for having picnic lunches while enjoying the coast and views of the island of Martinique in the distance. Find all the beach accessories needed for your time in port.

But one of the island’s most beautiful beaches is found at Anse Chastanet, which is located in Soufriere. This beach is part of a marine reserve. The silvery sands of Anse Chastanet Beach and the abundance of swaying palm trees make this beach a nice escape. Snorkeling is one of the best activities to do at this beach.

20. The Pitons

Of course, the one attraction that you shouldn’t miss on the island is the Pitons. These volcanic fangs rising out of the sea make for an incredibly picturesque scene. It’s no wonder they are the island’s most iconic features and are a world heritage site. Most people just admire these green hills from lookout points, but some go climbing.

Piton Mountains
Piton Mountains (Photo Credit: BlueOrange Studio)

The Gros Piton is the most popular one for climbing. Its highest point is 2,619 feet, and the view is breathtaking. The Petit Piton is, however, not a recommended climb; it’s steeper and unmarked.

21. Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens

Another great feature on the island is the Diamond Botanical Garden. This garden boasts plenty of colorful tropical flowers found alongside the walking paths that run through the gardens.

These paths lead to the Diamond Falls. Here, you will see the waterfall spilling out on the rock beneath it, causing it to sparkle like diamonds. Visit this garden and enjoy peace and tranquility as its tropical beauty surrounds you.

22. Make Chocolate from Pods to Bar

Enjoy St. Lucia’s chocolate experience. Visit restaurants such as Hotel Chocolat to experience a tree-to-bean-to-bar chocolate workshop.

Bar and Cocoa House
Bar and Cocoa House (Photo Credit: EWY Media)

Create your own chocolate from scratch and enjoy it. Or try the popular chocolate tea, which is nothing like hot chocolate but hot water added to grated chocolate sticks with sugar.

23. Hike the Tet Paul Nature Trail

The Tet Paul Nature Trail, also known as the Stairway to Heaven, is a great place to visit for more scenic views, some rich history, and a great workout rolled into one. You can participate in a 45-minute guided tour on the trail near Soufriere. 

On your tour, you will visit a traditional St Lucian house, beautiful foliage, and breathtaking views of Gros Piton, Jalousie Bay, and so much more. Since the trail is rated as easy to moderate, it is a great activity the whole family can enjoy.

24. Find Some Adventure in Anse Mamin

Anse Mamin Beach is connected to Anse Chastanet via a coastal path but provides a much more secluded atmosphere for those visitors who want to escape the hustle and bustle of crowded beaches. You can snorkel, lay out on the beach, or wade into the calm waters, where you can see a variety of fish and other marine life.

Anse Chastanet beach, Soufriere
Anse Chastanet beach, Soufriere (Photo Credit: Eduardo Cabanas)

Looking for more action? Make your way through the tropical foliage, and you can find yourself some adventure as you explore the Anse Mamin Plantation. There are jungle trails for biking and hiking, or you can choose to take a guided tour of the French Colonial site. 

25. World-Class Ziplining at Treetop Adventure Park

You have already viewed the grounds and Caribbean Sea and want to see what the treetops offer. Treetop Adventure Park is a definite stop you must make when visiting St Lucia. It offers one-of-a-kind rainforest adventures for visitors who wish to fly through the treetops on a rapid tour. There are 12 zip lines with a total length of 5,100 feet. The highest elevation sits at 150 feet. 

The only caveat? If you are interested in this tour through Adventure Tours St Lucia, you cannot reserve a spot if you come in on a Princess Cruise Ship. This is due to a Contract Agreement, and your reservation will be canceled. 

See You in St Lucia!

These are just but a few things you can try out in St. Lucia for a day in port. However, when you have more time to explore the island, you can also try hitting the island’s spas. The spas are found in almost every resort on the island, but the most popular has to be the BodyHoliday and Sugar Beach resort.

Also Read: Things to Do in St. Kitts While on a Cruise

You can also plan a vacation during the island’s Jazz Festival Week or enjoy St. Lucia’s numerous festivals throughout the year. If you love golfing, the island also offers a great, challenging course that you can conquer and add to your golf stories.

There you have it: 20 top things you can do in St. Lucia. Remember to plan well and book activities in advance. That’s all from us here, see you in St. Lucia. Happy Cruising!!

Things to Do in St Lucia: FAQs

What is St Lucia best known for?

There is a lot to appreciate when it comes to St Lucia, but if you want to know what the island is best known for, we would have to say the Piton Mountains, the world’s one and only drive-in volcano, the amazing waterfalls, its many scenic hiking trails, and sandy beaches. It is also the only country where you will find the Jacquot or St Lucia Parrot. 

How many days is good to explore St Lucia?

A solid week is what you need to really get a feel for everything St Lucia has to offer visitors. However, when on a cruise, you may be in port for only a limited amount of time, so you want to make the most of your time.

If you just have time to visit the beach on your stay, Choc Beach is about ten minutes away from the Cruise Port in North St Lucia. This is one of the island’s most popular beaches. 

When is the best time to cruise to St Lucia?

If you want to avoid big crowds, then you want to consider cruising to St Lucia between March and April or October to November. This is when the weather is at its best, and there are fewer people on the island. 

What months should I avoid when cruising the Caribbean Sea?

The absolute worst time to cruise the Caribbean Sea would be between August and September. This is the peak of hurricane season.

Haiyan Ma
Haiyan Ma
I absolutely love cruising with my favorite ports of call being in the Caribbean. As a former crew member for Disney Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival Cruise Line I can continue my passion by sharing my experiences with readers. Find out more about us here.

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