Saint Lucia Forging Ahead with Village Tourism
ith eight communities across the length and breadth of Saint Lucia earmarked for the development of village tourism, the scenic west coast town of Soufriere has taken the lead to serve as the pilot project. Visitors to Saint Lucia can now enjoy several amenities in the town of Soufriere. With must-do iconic sites including the renovated Sulphur Springs and expanded Mud Baths, Tet Paul Nature Trail, The Botanical Gardens and several waterfalls, whether visiting by land or sea, there is lots to see and do in this vibrant, picturesque and historic getaway. The government of Saint Lucia recently unveiled several projects in the warm touristic town. Humming Bird Beach underwent a major transformation
52 THIRD QUARTER 2019 | TRAVEL & CRUISE
project resulting in the new “Soufriere Beach Park at Hummingbird Beach.” Officially opened in June, the beach park offers the services of a restaurant, beach bar, smoothie bar, spa, outdoor showers, a pizzeria and a souvenir shop amongst other amenities. With the newly commissioned public bus terminal at Old Trafford, getting to and from Soufriere has been made more comfortable and easier. From Castries to Vieux Fort, there are coded routes of 4F, 3F, and 4J. Soufriere also offers great dining facilities and boutique accommodations, but if you are looking for a daily farm-to-table experience, then you’re in the perfect place for organic fruits and vegetables sold at affordable prices by market vendors.
At the latest unveiled project, the Soufriere Town Square, visitors can also rest, relax and bask in the stunning backdrop of a modern water fountain, a freedom monument built over a clad stone base that resembles an old windmill, numerous seats, urban umbrellas, bins, Victorian lights, security cameras, free Wi-Fi and handicap accessibility. The other communities listed for development under the National Village Tourism Programme are Gros-Islet, Anse La Raye, Canaries, Choiseul, Vieux Fort and Micoud. The idea is to convert each of the communities into a tourism destination, showcasing its unique culture, heritage and history. Each community’s focus will be different, thereby creating an experience for visitors unlike any other destination. Gros-Islet, Anse La Raye and Soufriere are ideally fishing villages and will be the first three hamlets under the pilot project to realize transformation into Tourism Villages.