Saint Lucia's Beach Life

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Saint Lucia's Beach Life
All of Saint Lucia's beaches are open to the public—from the rain forest–shrouded coves of the west that hug the tranquil waters of the Caribbean, to the stretches that line the rolling waves of the Atlantic, frequented by kitesurfers and horseback riders.

With additional copy by Lebawit Lily Girma.
By Flash Parker, AFAR Ambassador
Photo by Flash Parker
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    Snorkeling and Scuba Diving
    Saint Lucia is a snorkeling and underwater paradise, no matter your skill level or experience. Anse de Cochon features a stark rocky seascape, pristine coral, and seawalls close to shore. The Anse Chastanet reef begins just 10 yards from shore, a proximity that permits easy access to Saint Lucia's water world even for novice snorkelers; more than 150 species of marine wildlife live here, including turtles, octopuses, and rays. The underwater slope below Gros Piton, which can be reached via Sugar Beach, reveals vibrant corals and critters.
    Photo by Flash Parker
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    Water Sports Haven
    Nearly five miles long, Reduit Beach is a beautiful white-sand destination for motorized and nonmotorized water sports. The beach skirts Rodney Bay on the northwest tip of the island; you can rent Jet Skis, kayaks, and parasailing equipment from one of the resorts or from dedicated outfitters on the beach. If you'd rather stay on dry land, jump into a pickup beach volleyball game. On the east coast of the island, Cas en Bas Beach is the place to rent a surfboard or learn how to kitesurf. South of the capital, Marigot Bay, one of the finest yachting and sailing havens in the world, is so stunning that you'll want to linger until sunset, and you should!
    Photo by Flash Parker
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    Secluded Beaches
    It's not hard to find a beautiful beach on this garden island. Pigeon Island National Park, across a causeway from the mainland, makes a perfect day trip for sunseekers. The colonial ruins at Fort Rodney provide a historic backdrop, while the beachfront rum bar beneath the fort is the perfect place to quench your thirst. In Laborie, Rudy John Beach Park features a wide stretch of often untouched sand, and the beaches on the Maria Islands Nature Reserve are blissfully secluded.
    Photo by Flash Parker
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    Oceanside Dining

    Saint Lucia's stunning topography and mountainous landscape mean plenty of romantic seaside dining options with views of the Pitons, the Caribbean, or one of the island's beautiful bays. Jambe de Bois is popular with residents for its mellow driftwood vibe, beachfront patio, casual dining, and live jazz. Down south, the tables at Salt Rush Cafe are set right on the beach for dinners enjoyed with your toes in the sand. For a down-home experience, the Coal Pot lets guests grill their own fish. For an exclusive, five-star dinner under the stars, visit Ladera Resort's Dasheene or the Cliff at Cap.

    Photo by Flash Parker
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    Island Romance
    This island, prime for romance and honeymoons, offers more than just five-star retreats and majestic Piton views. If you want to lose the crowds, head to Anse L'Ivrogne (called Sevoigne by locals), secluded even by Saint Lucia's standards and reachable only by hiking or by boat. Those who take the trip are rewarded with sweeping views of the Caribbean and Gros Piton. The beach's on-site bar offers farm-to-table meals and drinks. Another tranquil option: The waters off intimate Anse Cochon are ideal for snorkeling à deux.
    Photo by Flash Parker
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    Family-Friendly Beaches
    Reduit Beach offers a lot of pluses for families: calm water and proximity to resorts and to Rodney Bay Marina's shopping, restaurants, and amenities. For those who prefer to immerse in local vibes, Laborie's beachfront offers a safe and quiet stretch for kids to run around and maybe even make friends. A short drive from Castries, Cas en Bas Beach is quieter and more rustic than those on the busy Caribbean side, and offers the attraction of horseback riding on the beach and, for older kids, kitesurfing lessons.
    Photo by Flash Parker