St Lucia’s beaches are among the finest in the world, sandwiched between swathes of tropical jungle and mesmerisingly emerald sea. They’re mostly on the island’s western Caribbean coast and are blessed with every shade of sand — think dusty golden, volcanic grey and sugar-white. Whether you’re looking for family favourites, snorkelling sanctuaries or romantic retreats, we’re here to help you tailor your island escape — take a look at our pick of the best beaches in St Lucia.
Out of all the St Lucia beaches, Anse des Pitons has the best location. It’s directly in between the iconic Gros and Petit Piton peaks on the island’s south-west coast, against a 100-acre UNESCO World Heritage-listed backdrop of tropical forest. It’s also known as sugar beach thanks to its pristine white sand, imported from Guyana, and the bay’s blissfully calm waters are protected under St Lucia’s National Marine Reserve, making them ideal for swimming and snorkelling. The effortlessly luxurious Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort is in the perfect place to lap up the views, just steps from the sand.
You’ll find this fabulous beach nestled in a south-western corner of the island, home to 150 metres of dark sand lapped by turquoise-blue waters. It’s surrounded by superb coral reef, making it a brilliant spot for watersports; enjoy free snorkelling equipment from the on-site scuba centre, or head out on a boat trip, before unwinding at the beach bar. Sophisticated hillside hotels Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain have direct access to the beach; otherwise it’s a 10-minute drive along a steep and uneven road from Soufrière, so we recommend hopping into a water taxi for a more scenic and comfortable journey.
This beach in Rodney Bay Village near Castries is the busiest stretch of St Lucia’s coastline, but there’s a reason why it’s so popular — over a mile of powdery golden sand and beautiful views towards Pigeon Island. There’s also an excellent range of things to do, from swimming and the inflatable water park Splash Island for families, to watersports including scuba diving, snorkelling and sailing. Spinnakers, the beach’s laid-back bar/restaurant, is a great place to unwind with a cocktail and snacks, and the beach gets lively on the weekend — expect picnics, welcoming locals and upbeat music.
Anse Cochon lies halfway down St Lucia’s west coast, between Castries and Soufrière, in a pristine bay of dark emerald water and tropical forest. Still relatively undiscovered, it’s one of the most serene spots in St Lucia; you can quite easily spend time strolling along the 200-metre strip of sugary-white and dark volcanic sand, or just lie back and unwind under the shade of a lofty palm tree. Anse Cochon is also one of the best beaches in St Lucia for snorkelling — be sure to spend some time exploring the crystal-clear sea and offshore reef.
Head slightly further up the coast from Reduit Beach and you’ll discover Pigeon Island Beach, a much quieter but spectacular long stretch of golden sand and a fantastic place to spend the day. The beach leads onto Pigeon Island, a 44-acre islet joined to the mainland, so you can actually drive to the beach despite its name; explore the leafy national park if you fancy a break from sunbathing and swimming, and go for lunch at Jambe de Bois, the charming waterfront café. The decadent Sandals Grande St Lucian Spa & Beach Resort is directly on the beach, with sweeping views over gorgeous turquoise waters in the distance.
Vigie Beach is in an unusual spot, parallel to the smaller of St Lucia’s two airports, but it still has a remarkably quiet feel. Two miles of soft sand and calm sea make it ideal for a wander, and it’s just 20 minutes’ walk from a great range of dining and shopping in the centre of the capital, Castries. Adults-only Rendezvous, the ultimate for romance in St Lucia, is tucked back from the middle of this stretch of sand, only a stone’s throw from stunning blue waters.