A practical guide to St Lucia
National holidays and celebrations
St Lucians observe religious holidays and national celebrations throughout the year. To plan your holiday around a particular event, speak to one of our travel advisers about the best times to visit.
Religious public holidays
- New Year's Day: 1st and 2nd January. St Lucians celebrate a two-day national holiday.
- Good Friday: Between late March and April.
- Easter Monday: Monday after Good Friday.
- Whit Monday/ Pentecost: 50th day after Easter Sunday.
- Corpus Christi: June: Commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ and his apostles.
- Emancipation Day: 1st August. Enslaved ancestors revolted against the British Empire to achieve freedom.
- Christmas Day and Boxing Day: 25th and 26th December.
- Boxing Day: Like in all other Commonwealth nations, the originally British Boxing Day holiday falling one day after Christmas.
Non-religious public holidays in St Lucia
- Independence Day: 22nd February. Liberation from British rule back in 1979.
- Labour Day: 1st May. Celebrates the accomplishments of labourers.
- Thanksgiving Day: Second Monday of October.
- National Day: Commemorates the nationhood of St Lucia with parades and rallies.
Other special celebrations throughout the year include:
- St Lucia Jazz Festival: May.
- St Lucian Carnival: July.
The national currency in St Lucia is the East Caribbean dollar (EC$). US dollars are also accepted by some cab drivers and larger hotels and resorts.
- For the best rates, take British pounds and exchange on arrival at local banks or exchange bureaus.
- To get the most for you money, pay in Eastern Caribbean dollars rather than US dollars.
- Credit/debit cards are widely accepted in restaurants and large shops.
- ATMs accept international credit/debit cards and are accessible across the island.
- When eating out, expect a service charge of between 8 and 10 per cent to be added to the bill.
St Lucian cuisine has strong French and British influences, with many flavours borrowed from neighbouring Caribbean islands. Presentation is key for local chefs and food tends to be generously-spiced with typical Creole cuisine flavours. At most hotels and beach bars you'll also find food to suit a range of international palates.
Some of the most authentic dishes are based around Salt fish, which is served with banana, breadfruit or green figs. Other national specialties include "callaloo" (spinach soup), conch fritters, breadfruit, accra fish cakes, pepperpot stew, cassava bread and plantains. St Lucia also has plenty of delicious tropical fruits such as mangoes, papayas, coconuts, guavas, passion fruits and the exotic 'soursop'. No St Lucia holiday is complete without trying some of these local delicacies.
Vegetarians will also be pleased to find that the St Lucian diet is mainly based around starches, fruit and vegetables, whilst meat eaters are certainly not excluded and can enjoy local meaty favourites such as pork hocks, chicken back and pig tail. Popular seafood dishes include fresh lobster and stuffed crab back, as well as 'mahimahi' and 'potfish'. We find that the stalls along Anse La Raye's waterfront serve the freshest seafood.
St Lucia enjoys sunshine and warm weather all year long with daytime temperatures averaging 29°C and dropping to around 18°C at night with cooling breezes. Any time of year is good to visit although most Europeans and North Americans choose to do so in the winter time to escape freezing temperatures at home.
- The hot and humid climate is moderated by northeast trade winds, making weather conditions comfortable and offering a welcome respite from the heat.
- Due to its geographical position close to the Equator St Lucia doesn't have very well defined seasons. The hottest summer months are June through August with temperatures sometimes peaking at 35°C.
- St Lucia sees a rainy season from June to November with the driest weather seen on coastal regions.
- The dry and cooler season runs from December to June with slightly lower temperatures but still plenty of radiant sunshine.
- Like in the rest of the Caribbean, hurricane season runs from June to November in St Lucia but isn't likely to disturb your holiday as hotels are well prepared to cope with storms.
St Lucia Holidays Browse all
Experience a fabulous family comfort at Bay Gardens Inn
- Thursday Night is Cocktail time, with the Manager's cocktail pary with complimentary rum punch. The hotel offers more weekly entertainment for you to enjoy
- All Guests gain complimentary access to Bay Gardens Beach Resort's Splash Island Water Park and Water sports!
- Enjoy a taste of the Caribbean at Creole Pot restaurant, with island favourites prepared each morning
Escape to a vibrant resort nestled in St Lucia's most striking landscape - beautiful Labrelotte Bay; it's captivating for families and couples
- Book All Inclusive to include breakfast, lunch and dinner, snacks & beverages, including alcohol (wine and sparkling wine by glass), access to both motorized & non motorized water sports and a tennis court
- Located in beautiful Labrelotte Bay on the island of Saint Lucia
- Enhancement sale: Massive Savings on Accomodation and Meal Upgrades of upto 56%
- 6 swimming pools including two children's swimming pools
Discover Castries' lively atmosphere, then head to your intimate luxury hideaway Sandals Halcyon Beach St. Lucia
- Luxury Included® - All Included, All Unlimited, All the Time with the choice of upto 27 five Star Global Gourmet™ restaurants and 7 bars
- Enjoy HALF PRICE luxury accommodation with 'The Sandals Upto 60% off SALE’
- Discover a perfect place for relaxation and rejuvenation at Red Lane Spa®
- Dine beneath the stars at the Bayside Restaurant or enjoy complimentary golfing at the nearby Sandals Regency La Toc Golf Resort & Spa
Enjoy your stay in Anse Chastanet, the only resort with the iconic view of both Pitons mountains as they rise from the azure Caribbean Sea
- Perfect for Divers - with a 5 star PADI scuba centre on resort
- St. Lucia's only resort with the iconic view of both the Piti & Gros Piton mountains floating upon the Caribbean Sea
- A private Helipad for helicopter arrivals is available to all guests
- A private estate of 600 lush tropical acres with two soft-sand Caribbean beaches with unspoiled coral reefs just offshore
It doesn't get any better than this perfect escape, designed for couples looking for an intimate and romantic experience
- Recently refurbished, including the addition of a new "toes in the sand" restaurant
- All beverages included, such as Premium Brand Alcohol and Wine by the bottle at dinner
- Water Sports and Scuba Boat Dives with Personalized Instruction
The Hidden Gem Hideaway that offers the ultimate St Lucia experience at Marigot Bay Resort & Marina by Capella Hotel Group
- Book now and receive a FREE upgrade
- Boutique hotel hidden away in marigot bay
- Lush gardens and wonderful views of the marina
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St Lucia NewsBrowse all St Lucia News
A new General Manager has been appointed at the Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort in St Lucia. Mark Sterner has taken over the role at the luxury beachfront resort, and he brings nearly 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry after working in upscale hotels including the Viceroy Yas, Abu Dhabi, the Viceroy Maldives and the Burj Al Arab in Dubai.
The Fairmont Saint Lucia hotel is scheduled to open to guests in late 2019 with 120 guest rooms and 40 private residential villas. Located in Sunset Bay on the southwest coast of the Caribbean island, the new hotel has been designed by WATG and Wimberly Interiors and the property has been built into a natural amphitheatre surrounded by lush hillside, trickling streams, and mango groves.
St Lucia will add another 2,000 hotel rooms over the next four years, according to the St Lucia Tourism Board. New hotels and expansions to existing hotels will see the addition of new hotel rooms for holidaymakers. Project include the new Fairmont St Lucia on Sabwisha Beach, a new 500-room Hilton dual-hotel project in the Reduit beach area, and 250 rooms at the new Honeymoon Bay Resort in Cannelles.