A spate of resort developments on St Lucia has made this high, green island one of the Caribbean's trendy package-tour destinations, but it's still a long way from being sanitised and overdeveloped. Bananas are still bigger business than tourism in this archetypal island paradise.
Much of the island is rural: small coastal fishing villages give way to a hinterland of banana and coconut plantations folded within deep valleys topped by rich, mountainous jungle. The rugged terrain continues beneath the sea in a diving heaven of underwater mountains, caves and drop-offs.
Its most dramatic scenery is in the south, where the twin volcanic peaks of the Pitons rise sharply from the shoreline to form distinctive landmarks. The coastline is pocketed with secluded coves and beaches made for one (or, naturally, at sunset, for two).
Facts for the traveller
Money & Costs
Off the beaten track