We’ve already spoken a bit about places you can visit if it so happens that you spend some time on the island, but I believe I haven’t given the proper attention to the historical monuments built here and to their significance, not only for the locals but for history in general.
Of course, the beaches and natural wonders of the place will attract a great number of tourists, especially if you take into consideration that the two volcanoes rising from the sea are both included one the UNESCO’s world heritage list.
However, Santa Lucia is such an interesting place due to its multiple cultural influences. It has gathered in time several cultural layers: the British, French and Caribbean peoples all play a part in the history and transformation of the island.
For example, if you’re interested in military history, you can visit the 18th century Fort Charlotte built by the French in 1764. Though it is nowadays only a ruin, it is interesting to see and preserves many original artifacts. However, if you’re interested in the British domination that followed a few decades after the French have imposed their administration on the island, you can go to Pigeon Island National Park and visit Fort Rodney from which you can admire the wonderful sight that the fort offers.
If you have a particular interest on local cultures and regional history and traditions, you can visit the St. Lucia Folk Research Center, where you can find out more about the life of the people inhabiting the island in the past, local traditions, but also read books and articles, watch videos and pictures related to the history of the island, because the museum has a library annexed. The museum hosts a souvenir boutique where you can purchase local art souvenirs. If you want to focus on official history, the second museum on the island, Le Pavilion Royal gathers a collection of official documents and other historical exhibits.
You may want to know that the island is the place where Derek Walcott, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992, was born. Though the poet doesn’t live on the island anymore, you can visit the Derek Walcott Square, named in his honor. The square is located in Castries, nearby other touristic attractions such as the Immaculate Conception Cathedral. However, you should know that Walcott is not the only Nobel Laureate to have been born in Santa Lucia. Sir William Arthur Lewis is the first, winning the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1979, and so, becoming the first black person to have won the Nobel in another category than peace at that moment. If you happen to be an economy graduate or passionate, you can visit Sir Lewis’s burial place on the grounds of the college that bears its name.
Santa Lucia is not only a place of past cultural reminiscences, but one that supports contemporary culture as well. If you’re interested in cultural events, the island hosts an annual Jazz Festival in the month of May where you can listen to world famous artists and enjoy traditional music genres as well.