Here’s why you need to add this stunning island to your bucket list
Saint Lucia is known for being the most beautiful Caribbean island, and with its lush rainforest, banana plantations, long curving sandy beaches and year-round sunny weather, we can see why. Flights leave London daily and, with a flying time of just under eight hours, there’s never been a better time to visit.
Where to stay
We spent the week at the beachfront Windjammer Landing, which is nestled along 60 acres of the northwest coast in Labrelotte Bay, and has recently undergone a multimillion-dollar refurbishment. The stunning hillside resort looks incredible, with a new design that blends nautical and coastal elements and utilises soft neutrals and pops of St Lucia’s renowned blue hue. The resort offers 212 rooms and suites, and guests return year after year – in large part due to the staff, who are one big happy family that can’t do enough for you. Part of the refurb includes ultra-modern seafront suites Ocean Point, which range from one-to-three bedrooms, and most include private pools. They make a great choice for a multi-generational family holiday.
The exquisite villas are set high on the lush hillside – hidden gems that offer stunning views across the ocean. On a clear day, you can see the island of Martinique. They offer complete privacy, so it’s no wonder the likes of Mary J Blige and late singers Whitney Houston and Amy Winehouse have stayed here. Don’t worry about walking up and down the steep hill, there are free shuttles running all the time to take you wherever you fancy in the resort.
The hotel has its own private crescent-shaped, powdery golden-sand beach with lots of loungers for you to enjoy a cocktail or two. If you are feeling energetic, we suggest taking out a kayak or getting involved on the huge inflatable slide in the ocean. There are also six pools, (two for children) and the most peaceful spa, where we sampled incredible massages and facials. Make sure to book into one of the weekly Hummingbird Yoga sessions, which take place in the resort’s gardens high on the hill. What dreamier way to unwind during a class than by watching the local hummingbirds?
Taste of the Caribbean
Whether you fancy traditional Caribbean, fine dining, Italian or Indian cuisine, Windjammer Landings has got you covered – and we can guarantee you won’t go hungry. Guests can choose B&B, half board or all-inclusive options or you could try the private dining in your suite or villa. Most of the restaurants have recently had a refresh and Jammers, one of the main eateries, offers relaxed lunch and dinner with tasty St Lucian and Caribbean menu choices.
The Perch is the newly renovated terrace and bar, located just behind Dragonfly, and sunset chasers will enjoy sipping a cocktail there as the day is swallowed by night.
Embers is another casual breakfast and lunch restaurant, but by night, it offers the tastiest curries created by their award-winning chef.
What to do
There is so much to do at the resort. We enjoyed the Paint and Sip class, which involved painting our own canvas with the guidance of a local artist, while sipping a glass of chilled rosé and gazing at the ocean. Another activity we very much enjoyed was the rum and chocolate tasting with head mixologist Yannick. All are bookable at the hotel.
Windjammer Landing is the perfect base from which to explore the incredible attractions the island of St Lucia has to offer. Enjoy the island’s natural beauty with a rainforest excursion, or go on a thrilling adventure by zip-lining through the forest canopy. Climb the Gros Piton, the tallest of the island’s iconic twin peaks The Pitons – a UNESCO World Heritage site – and go dolphin and whale watching, take a helicopter tour or ride on horseback along the beach. Pigeon Point, Marigot Bay, Castries Market and Rodney Bay are all within reach and easily booked through Jammin’ Tours, the resort’s own excursion team.
You could also book a scenic boat tour with Knotty Girl Tours. The half-day excursion was so much fun, and we got to cruise along the coastline to Margot Bay and then on to explore lots of famous landmarks, such as the Piton Volcanoes and a beautiful waterfall, and have a mud bath in the Sulphar Springs! There was even time to hop off the boat and snorkel among the tropical fish and sea turtles at the Anse Chastanet marine reserve.
If you fancy a boogie and a strong rum punch with the locals on a Friday night, we 100 per cent recommend going to the Gros Islet street party – aka the “Jump Up”. It’s the island’s biggest shindig of its kind and the atmosphere is fantastic. Don’t forget to try the jerk chicken while you’re there!
Need to know
Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort offers rooms from £324 per night, with villas starting at £471. Book at Windjammer-landing.com
Knotty Girl Tours cost from around £110 per adult and are totally worth it. To book, visit Knottygirlboattours.com
For more information on this beautiful island, visit Stlucia.org
Words: Carly Honeyfield.