Whether a couple on a St. Lucia holiday consider themselves beach bums or adventurers, these among the island activities that everyone is likely to enjoy.
Climb Gros PitonWhile some couples are content to simply gaze at the island's two most majestic peaks, those up for more adventurous activities on a St. Lucia holiday may want to climb this World Heritage Site.
Gros Piton, a volcanic mountain about 2,600 feet high, is the only one of the two that the government sanctions as a legal climb. The climb, about four miles up and down, takes about four hours. The terrain is rocky and uneven, so a guide is recommended. But at least as exhilarating as the climb itself is the view.
Soar Through the Rain ForestCouples on a St. Lucia holiday who are looking for different kinds of activities will find genuine thrills at Treetop Adventure Park in Dennery.
After being outfitted with special harnesses, visitors slide high above the rainforest from platform to platform on eight cables called ziplines that stretch 80 to more than 400 feet.
It's a good idea to wear sturdy sandals or sneakers -- and once you begin, there's no turning back. Ziplining is guaranteed to be exhilarating, at times frightening, and always a true bonding experience.
Explore Balenbouche EstateTravel back in time to this former 19th-century sugar plantation, which is spread over 80 acres. Surrounding it is a tropical garden and historic ruins that hint at its past. There's a guided trail that leads to the sugar mill, and there you can find out how the sweet stuff was processed. You can also learn about the early Caribs and Arawaks who roamed the land.
Or steal away to the secluded beach beyond. After a tour of the Estate house and tropical gardens, enjoy a cool beverage on the verandah. If there's time, you can browse the adjacent Choiseul craft center.
Browse for Souvenirs at the Castries Craft MarketThe Craft Market in Castries, located at the corner of Jeremie and Peynier Streets, is chockablock with color and plenty of Caribbean flavor. It's also a center of activities to pick up colorful straw baskets, hats, animal carvings, and painted wooden parrots.
Next door at the Castries Market, locals hawk produce, spices, cocoa, hot sauce, fruits and vegetables, and more local crafts. There's a Vendors Market across the street, but it tends to feature less distinguished merchandise. Castries is also a center for duty-free shopping, with plenty of jewelry shops and perfumeries at La Place Carenage.
Sail a Cat and See the Diamond Botanical GardenCruise aboard a catamaran and also tour the Diamond Botanical Garden. Even couples who are on a St. Lucia holiday but don't have much of a feel for local flora will enjoy seeing weird plants like the "red dreadlocks," which looks just the way it sounds, the walking tree, the shrimp plant, and the "macaroni and cheese plant," which as its name implies is edible.
There are more familiar exotic species such as anthurium, ginger, bird of paradise, and cocoa trees, plus a calming Japanese Water Garden. The garden also includes the Diamond Mineral Baths, built in 1784 to ease the sore joints of Louis XVI's troops, and the Diamond Waterfall, the backdrop for scenes from Romancing the Stone.
This tour also allows time for swimming or snorkeling.
Cruise Above the Rain ForestTaking the hour-long tram ride at Rain Forest Aerial Trams in Babonneau is among St. Lucia's most peaceful and relaxing outings.
While slowly drifting above the lush tropical rain forest of the Castries Waterworks Reserve, visitors will come to appreciate the island's unusual biodiversity. A knowledgeable guide can point out wild grapes, cashew nut trees, varieties of palm trees, vanilla vines, sweetly scented magnolias, and many other plants.
Lucky visitors may even spot a parrot. The ride also affords magnificent views of island's mountains and water, and on a clear day, Martinique. A 30-minute guided walking tour is also available.
Gorge on Fabulous Seafood at the Anse La Raye Fish FryEvery Friday night, crowds gather at a closed off street in the small seaside town of Anse La Raye for the weekly Fish Fry, giving couples on a St. Lucia holiday the chance to mingle with the locals as well as other visitors to the island.
The food is first rate: red snapper cooked on a grill in foil with spices and broth, grilled lobsters, stuffed crabs, and prawns the size of a woman's hand. There's plenty of loud music and dancing, as well as a chance to sample some of the local beverages like Bounty Rum and Piton Beer.
Dine Outside Your HotelEven couples staying at an all-inclusive resort on their St. Lucia holiday will enjoy seeing more of the islands. Dinner presents a great opportunity for exploring, especially when the destination is a special restaurant.
One of the most romantic restaurants on the island is Ti Bananne at the Coco-Palm Resort. The eatery is in a lovely open-air setting, with natural wood and plenty of island breezes. The food is outstanding, especially the cream of pumpkin soup with cream cheese fondue, mascarpone, and walnuts. Try the house drink, the "Dirty Banana," made with rum, cream of coconut, and of course banana.