Why choose a cruise to Castries
There’s more to Castries than duty-free shopping, but if a spot of retail therapy’s what you’re after then you’ll love the bustling market selling local crafts and foodie treats.
Castries also offers a variety of cultural sites, despite most of the city’s historic buildings being destroyed by a series of major fires between 1785 and 1948.
As for the beaches, you’re spoiled for choice. Some are within walking distance while others are only a short taxi ride away. Remember, you may need to book your beach pass in advance.
A guide to Castries’ hotspots
Take a stroll to the centre of Castries where you can admire the murals painted by Saint Lucian artist Dunstan St Omer inside the Cathedral Basilica of Immaculate Conception. He also designed Saint Lucia’s flag when it gained independence in 1979, and was knighted for his contribution to the arts in 2010.
For panoramic views over the city and a clear view of Mount Gimie and the twin Pitons, head to Morne Fortune, meaning ‘hill of good luck’ in the south. It rises a whopping 260m from La Toc in Castries Harbour.
If walking in tropical Caribbean heat becomes too much, relax on one of the nearby beaches. Vigie Beach is only two miles north of Castries, while the more popular Reduit Beach on Rodney Bay is a 20-minute taxi ride away. Alternatively, find a shady spot under the 400-year-old Samaan tree in the leafy Derek Walcott Square, renamed in 1993 after Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott.
If you’ve got time and want to get closer to the magnificent Pitons and Sulphur Springs Park, you can take a boat to Soufrière or hop on a jeep and journey through Castries’ windy roads.
Cruise lines that sail to the port of Castries
The best time to visit
The best time of year to visit Saint Lucia for heat is from mid-August to the end of October when the temperature rarely falls below 31°C.
The best time of year to go for the most sunshine is March, when there are more than 10 hours of sunshine a day. Water temperatures range from between 27°C and 29°C which is perfect for swimming and water sports.
Did you know
- Saint Lucia became independent from British rule on 22 February 1979
- It’s the only country in the world named after a woman – Saint Lucy of Syracuse
- Piton beer is a local pilsner lager named after the Gros Piton and Petit Piton mountains