St. Lucia is not the most well-known island in the Caribbean. In fact, when we planned our cruise through the Caribbean, it was one of the islands that we didn’t know what to expect. St Lucia was one of the islands that we hadn’t heard a ton about, so we didn’t have anything that we felt like we had to do. However, after some heavy research, St Lucia soon became the island we were most excited for. On most of the islands we visited during our cruise, our plans mostly consisted of finding a taxi to take us to the beach. This was actually the only port that we planned a shore excursion. After doing some research we soon found out that St. Lucia is a beautiful island with huge green mountains and a ton of culture. St Lucia is an absolutely gorgeous island and a great place for adventurers. The island is very mountainous, more than most Caribbean Islands. St. Lucia also is home to a drive-in volcano. Once we really started paying attention there was actually TOO MUCH to choose from on St. Lucia! To help see as much as possible we booked an excursion with Spencer Ambrose Tours.
Spencer Ambrose has many different tours you can book online. We wanted to see a good amount of the island so the tour we booked was the Land, Sea and Boat tour. You can see a little of everything on this tour. We emailed and reserved our spot and they gave us clear instructions on where to meet them the day of the excursion. They picked us up at the cruise port, it was easy to find them and we waited a little while for everyone to get together, before heading out to the water. They took us by speed boat to Soufriere, which is 25-30 minutes away.
The Piton Mountains
*Going by speed boat was great because you got to view the island from the water. Most of the other tours that we had researched drove you to Soufriere, which takes longer.*
Here you visit Sulphur Springs, the hottest and most active geothermal area in the Lesser Antilles, which unfortunately also smells like rotten eggs. This is known as the Caribbean’s only drive-in volcano, called Soufriere Volcano. You have two options here: a mud-bath or a tour of the volcano. We choose the volcano tour, where you can walk through the pools and watch the springs bubble furiously like its about to erupt. The hot springs and mud bath have volcanic minerals, which is great for the skin. The locals say the mud bath will cure all that ails you and keep you young.
From there, its a short drive through the town of Soufriere to the Toraille Waterfall & Gardens. The falls are one of St. Lucia’s heritage sites. The falls cascade 50 feet into a small pool, where you can swim below. The water was freezing cold but it felt nice to cool off! Surprisingly, there was only one other party while we were at the waterfalls. From the falls, its back to the speed boat where the final stop is Jalousie Beach located between the Piton Mountains.
The Piton Mountains, or the “breasts of St Lucia” as the locals call them, are unique and tropical cone-shaped volcanic peaks that rise 2600 feet above the sea and are designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located between the two Piton Mountains, Jalousie Beach is the most scenic beach on the island. You are literally sandwiched between the two mountains. It is quite picturesque. There is a resort, Sugar Beach, on one side of the beach and some chairs on the left. Spencer Ambrose tours included a delicious creole lunch with jerk chicken and drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) as part of the tour. We stayed at the beach for 2 hours before heading out. Here you can choose if you want to swim, snorkel, or just enjoy the beach.
*Now, be forewarned! The Rum punch provided by Spencer Ambrose Tours is extremely delicious and extremely dangerous!!!*
After being out in the sun all morning, and not having a ton to eat all morning, the rum punch got the best of us. The rum punch was so good we just kept drinking. Which led us to get pretty drunk and for one of us (who shall remain anonymous) to not remember the boat ride home OR arriving back at the cruise ship. Luckily, the other half is pretty strong 😉
On the way from the beach back to the cruise port, you will have some more time to enjoy the scenery of the mountainous island. You will pass the bat cave and the natural bridge, which was featured in “The Pirates of the Caribbean”.
Spencer is the owner and the captain of the boat. Be prepared as he drives his speed boat like a bat out of hell! His daughter, Shequana, or She She, was our guide, alongside Terry. They were all great-very friendly and informative. You can tell they do this because they actually enjoy it and want people to enjoy their hometown. They really made this tour worth it!
We loved that we were only traveling in a van for part of the time, and the other part was on the boat. It was a great way to see more of the island and enjoy the weather. The views from the speedboat really make you appreciate how mountainous and picturesque the island is. We never found that we were bored or rushed from one spot to the next. We saw a lot in a day, but we felt like it was evenly spaced out. I can see why Spencer has so many return cruise guests. Its a great way to see most of the island! I wouldn’t hesitate to book another tour with Spencer Ambrose.
Cruise ship passenger price:
- Adult: $105
- Child ages 5-12: $70
- pick up and return from the cruise ship
- all entrance fees
- creole lunch
- local treats
- complimentary beverages
Duration: 6-7 hours including 2 hours at the beach. Spencer guarantees to have you back at the port well before the cruise ship leaves!
You can check out this tour and more online here
Things to try while on the island:
- Banana ketchup- Tastes just like it sounds!
- Spiced rum- They call this “the local viagra”, it’s WAY too strong for me!
- Sweet ripe bananas- this is their leading export crop, so there are banana trees everywhere
- Jerk chicken- so good!
Here are some other ideas for your day on St. Lucia. If you are looking for more of an active day, you can hike the Pitons. This is on our list for next time we visit St. Lucia. We will definitely be back to visit St Lucia and to take another Spencer Ambrose tour! 🙂
Have you ever been to St. Lucia? What is on your list to do when you visit this gorgeous island? Tell us in the comments below!