Hike through Rainforests In St. Lucia
Check into the Sugar Beach, Viceroy Resort
Our chauffeur will be waiting to collect you from the airport to transfer you to your hotel. We’ve chosen the exquisite Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort. This luxury base is set within a hundred acres of verdant rainforest where an old sugar plantation once stood. Nestled in a bay overlooked by the majestic twin peaks of the famous Pitons, the hotel’s white sand beaches are lapped by gentle waves making it one of the best places on the whole island to swim. Just offshore, the clear Caribbean waters form part of the National Marine Reserve which will delight snorkellers too. We’d recommend booking one of the luxury villas, which each have their own private plunge pool and butler service for that extra bit of pampering. We’ll get you checked in with a minimum of fuss so that you can spend the rest of the day relaxing and exploring your delightful surroundings.
This morning we’ll enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel and enjoy the very special view of the bay. Afterwards, we’ll head to the nearby Morne Coubaril Estate which partners with the hotel to offer guests the opportunity to visit a working plantation, St Lucia’s oldest French Creole estate. There, you’ll learn about how the estate processes crops such as sugar cane, coconut and cocoa to turn them into juice, copra and chocolate. At the plantation, it’s possible to ride horses, visit the herb garden and find out about the traditional agricultural methods practised here. There’ll also be plenty of chance to sample the produce.
Afterwards, the tour continues by boat to Anse Ivorgne Beach below Gros Piton. You’ll see how the local fishermen land their catch and also find out about the process of making charcoal before enjoying a beach barbecue. There’ll be time for a relaxing swim before we return to the hotel. We’d recommend a relaxing massage to ease away any knots and stiffness before changing for dinner at the hotel.
Gros Piton hike
A hike up Gros Piton is a challenging, but rewarding experience and one we recommend to begin today’s programme. Gros Piton is the easier of the two peaks to climb, standing at 2619 feet above sea level. From its summit, you’ll have sweeping views of the Caribbean and also much of verdant St Lucia itself. Apart from a few steep sections, much of this safe hike is straightforward. It’s suitable for anyone with a reasonable level of fitness and can be completed in around three hours, after which we’ll return to the hotel for a dip in the pool and a bite to eat. This afternoon, we’re going to explore some of the volcanic scenery that gives St Lucia such character.
We’ll begin at Sulphur Springs, which bills itself as the “world’s only drive-in volcano”. The attraction was created when an enormous volcanic crater collapsed to leave a series of hot springs and mud pools, some of which are a suitable temperature for bathing. The high sulphur and iron content, part of a mineral mix which includes copper, alkaline lead and calcium oxide, is believed to have health-enhancing properties.
Hotel check out and transfer to the airport
After a lazy start and a hearty breakfast, we’ll check out of the hotel. Today we’ll transfer to the airport for our mid-morning flight to the island of Grenada, touching down briefly in Bridgetown to pick up passengers.
Arrival and relaxation at the Calabash hotel
Touching down on the Spice Island, we’ll take you to your hotel, the ever-popular Calabash Hotel. This is an island institution, described by some repeat guests as being like the hotel equivalent of “a big warm hug”. Its suites are luxuriously furnished and well-equipped, each with its own balcony or patio for a private breakfast with maid service. We’d recommend a pool suite which not only has a pool for your exclusive use but also an outdoor bathtub and shower on the secluded deck. The hotel is located a ten-minute drive from the international airport, situated on the white sands of pretty L’Anse Aux Epines beach.
Non-motorised water sports
After you’ve checked in, why not take to the water for a spot of paddle boarding or kayaking? Alternatively, borrow one of the complimentary Hobie cats to explore the bay. As the sun sets, it’s time to think about dinner. Suite guests are offered in room canapés before dining at Rhodes Restaurant. Nightly entertainment including steel bands and pianists add to the atmosphere.
Grand Etang National Park and Annandale Falls
Today we’ll head out to explore the lush island of Grenada, one of the Caribbean’s greenest. Accompanied by a local driver, we’ll make our way inland to the verdant forest of the Grand Etang National Park by way of pretty Annandale Falls, just outside the capital St Georges. This forest reserve is one of Grenada’s most popular hiking areas, forming part of the island’s mountainous interior. You’ll wander amidst towering mahogany trees, lime-green ferns and tropical flowers. It’s an excellent place for bird watching, and there’s a good chance you’ll spot some of the island’s native species, including the Doctor Bird, gree-gree and soursop. There are plenty of land-based creatures to look out for too in the form of frogs, lizards, mongoose, armadillos and the mischievous Mona monkeys.
Depending on your energy and level of fitness, you can opt for hikes of just fifteen minutes up to more challenging trails that will occupy you for hours. We’ll explore until we’ve had enough, and then return to the hotel to clean up for dinner.
St. Georges’ forts
It’s time to find out a bit about Grenada’s history and where better to start with the forts in St George’s? Forts Frederick, George and Matthew are all fascinating stops and help to improve our understanding of the island’s colonial past as well as affording incredible views over the coastline and Caribbean Sea.
Grenada National Museum
Later, we’ll have a stroll around the delightful streets of St George with their colourful buildings and call in at the Grenada National Museum to find out about the ways of life, culture and traditions of the people here.
Westerhall Estate rum distillery
Lunch will be in St George, after which our final stop today will be at the rum distillery located on the Westerhall Estate, located in St David’s to the south of the island. This 500 acre estate is where you’ll find Grenada’s oldest working waterway. Our pre-arranged tour will explain the process of rum making from start to finish and there’ll also be time to sample a selection of rums and rum punch. Tonight, we’ll dine at the hotel.
Carriacou by ferry or plane
The laidback island of Carriacou, nicknamed the Land of Reefs, is our target today on a day trip from our Grenadian base. It’s a short flight or a 90-minute journey by public ferry to the island which lies to the north of its larger neighbour.
Guided tour of plantation and historic sites
Once there, you’ll have a guided tour beginning in Hillsborough, the only settlement of significant size, before exploring the ruins of French and English colonial plantations located in Belair National Park. Sugar was once produced here and you’ll see the remains of a windmill once used during the process. You’ll learn about the boat-making trade and visit the aptly named Petite Carnage, the site of a battle between the French and the English.
After a casual lunch, island-style, we’ll take you to the beautiful Paradise Beach, a classic combination of pure white sand and clear turquoise waters. You can swim, snorkel with tropical fish or sip a cocktail; whichever you choose this is the perfect place to unwind. We’ll return to Grenada at the end of the day for dinner back at the hotel.
Flight back home
It’s the end of our vacation so you’ll enjoy as late a check out as your flights permit before transferring to the airport for your flight home.