Caribbean Cruise Part 4: St Lucia

Read Part 3 (Grenada): click here
To see my many photos taken of St Lucia: click here

2pm Sunday 25 March (St Lucia)

Today in St Lucia has been ok, and in reality a bit of a disappointment. We had booked on an all day inclusive outing to a Sandals Resort. I have always imagined that these were up market resorts with stunning facilities, lots of young trendy couples and glorious beaches. We are at the Halycon St Lucia and it is a bit of a dump. At around US$160/ £80 each for the day we felt it was money badly spent.

The minute we drove in the mini-van onto the complex my heart sank. The place looked jaded and cheap, with bad taste furniture and clearly decoration done on the cheap. The welcome was sloppy and they seemed unprepared for us all.

The thing that really disappointed me was the beach, which was awful. The water, unlike the rest of the Caribbean, was mucky and dirty, as they have built a pier and some sort of hall or restaurant on it. It causes the sand to be churned up and so no one seems to swim in the sea, relying on the pool instead. It seemed pointless to have come all the way to the Caribbean and St Lucia to sit by a pool.

Far from lovely people, there were a lot of large couples and quite elderly making the place feel a bit like a rest home by the sea. The resort is all-inclusive and so the alcohol though free seemed to be watered down cocktails served with surly attitude. This was made worse by the bizarre choice of the “Sound of Music” film soundtrack being played loudly around the pool on repeat. We could not work that out at all.

There is a decent looking gym and so I will use that before the end of the day though.

We were going to get a cab back to the ship but decided to make the most of it and so messed about in the pool, which was fine and fun in the end.

St Lucia is very tropical looking and very dense, lush and green. The harbor is an inlet and looks fantastic. There is an airport for small planes close by. The main airport is in the North of the island and this is apparently where the best resorts are as well. Like most of the Caribbean, as I am finding out the more I read, the UK and France seems to have kept fighting over it with the UK holding on to it eventually until it got its independence in 1979.

Last night on the ship, by the way, was the Captain’s formal welcome cocktail party and dinner. He gave a good speech at the cocktail party, and told us that 1000 of 2100 or so passengers are 1st time on P&O, which seems a lot. Though as this is a repositioning cruise maybe it attracts a new and different crowd to the usual mix. We went and watched a comedian/ impressionist last night in the main theatre that was really silly but very funny.

Read next instalment St Kitts: click here

Gary Bembridge

I grew up in Zimbabwe, but I have been based in London since 1987. My travel life spans more than three decades and that includes more than 95 cruises. In 2005, I launched Tips for Travellers to make it easy and fun for people to discover, plan and enjoy incredible cruise vacations. And the rest, as they say, is history. I have the largest cruise vlogger channel currently on YouTube, with more than 3 million video views per month.

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