St Lucia
August 29, 2014
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Map of St Lucia
National Flag
National Flag
Facts about St Lucia
Airport
Hewanorra (UVF) Vigie (SLU)
Annual Rainfall
63-142 inches
Area
238 sq miles
Area Code
758
Banks
Monday-Thursday 8am-3pm/Friday 8am-5pm
Capital City
Castries
Co-ordinates
13 30'N, 60 30'W
Currency
East Caribbean dollar (EC$)/US$ & credit cards widely accepted
Departure Tax
EC$68
Dimensions
27 miles x 14 miles
Dress Code
Casual, swimwear on the beach, long sleeves at night
Driving
Left, permit required (EC$54)
Drugs
Illegal
Electricity
220V, 50 cycle
Exchange Rate
EC$2.67-US$1.00
Highest Point
Mount Gimie (950 m)
Language
English, Creole
Medical
Emergency phone 999
Nudity
Illegal
Population
165 500
Public Transport
Privately owned route taxis
Shopping
Monday-Friday 8.30am-4.30pm/Saturday 8am-12.30pm with variations
Smoking
No prohibitive legislation
Taxis
Fixed fares, trained and knowledgeable drivers
Telecommunications
Phone cards, cellular phones, internet access
Temperature
Average 80F
Time Zone
Atlantic Standard Time
Tipping
10% usually included
Water
Potable, bottled available
ABOUT ST LUCIA
History
The first known inhabitants on St Lucia were Arawaks from South America around 200-400 AD. There are many archaeological sites on the island to support this. Caribs gradually replaced the Arawaks 800 and 1000 AD. The Amerindian name for the island was Hiwanarau, and later Hewanorra, which is now the name of the international airport. St Lucia is also known as the "Helen of the West Indies" because it changed hands between the British and the French so often that it was likened to Helen of Troy. St Lucia was first visited by Europeans around 1500, and was first colonized successfully by France after signing a treaty with the native Carib peoples in 1660. Great Britain took control of the island from 1663 to 1667. England and France went to war over possession of the island fourteen times, and Great Britain finally took complete control in 1814. St Lucia gained independence from the United Kingdom on 22 February 1979.

Geography
St Lucia is of volcanic origin, and is a very mountainous island, with the highest peak being Mount Gimie, at 3120 feet (950 metres) above sea level. The famous Pitons are located on the western side of the island. S Lucia also boasts a unique drive-in volcano. Approximately one third of St Lucia's population live in the capital, Castries, which also boasts an excellent natural harbour. Other major towns are Gros Islet, Soufriere and Vieux Fort. The climate is tropical punctuated by northeast trade winds. The dry season runs from January to April, and the rainy season from May to December. St Lucia is approximately 21 miles south of Martinique and 90 miles northwest of Barbados. St Lucia lies in the hurricane belt and has suffered direct hits in the past.

Economy
St Lucia's main industries are agriculture (bananas), offshore banking and tourism. Manufacturing also plays an important role as a foreign exchange earner.

Religion
Approximately 80% of St Lucians are Roman Catholic. Other denominations practiced include Anglican, Methodist, Baptist, Seventh Day Adventist, Church of the Nazarene, and Christian Science.

Language
English is the official language, but St Lucians also speak a French Creole called Kweyol. Kweyol is widely spoken by St Lucians from all walks of life. Kweyol is a language with its own rules of grammar and syntax. The language is celebrated every year with the month of October being dedicated to the Creole Festival.

Sport
Soccer is the dominant sport in St Lucia, with cricket following close behind. Tennis and basketball are gaining rapidly in popularity. St Lucia takes part in the Davis Cup every year. St Lucia has also produced some outstanding athletes and squash players. The scuba diving opportunities are also in abundance, particularly on the marine reserve in Soufriere. Outstanding hiking experiences are available on the island, but a guide is required at all times.

Entry Requirements
Visitors are required to have valid passports. Residents of some countries are required to have a visa. The international airport in the south of the island accommodates several international airlines makingaccess easy, and the smaller airport just outside of Castries handles flights from within the region. Caribbean Express (L'Express des Isles) operates a modern high speed catamaran service between St Lucia, Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe.
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Probably the best known rum cocktail in the world. An easy way to remember the recipe: one of sour, two of sweet, three of strong, four of weak!

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