Hiking to the Best Views in Saint Lucia
If you read my earlier post here, you may have noticed two iconic mountain peaks featured in many of our resort views. One of the most common activities I read about while planning our trip to Saint Lucia was hiking Gros Piton, which is the peak on the left of our resort when facing the water.
The hike is a popular excursion among tourists coming from cruise ships, all inclusive resorts in Castries, as well as the local guests staying near Soufriere. However, what I did not read about is how challenging this hike can be. This may be why we only saw one or two other couples during our climb.
First of all, it is very hot and humid, so there is no avoiding the amount of sweat that you will produce. Wear loose material that will breathe and wick away moisture, because you will be soaked in sweat.
Second, you will get dirty and you need proper shoes. We wore tennis shoes which were fine, but I would not have minded having my hiking shoes. The trail is very rocky and muddy and steep. At one point the trail resembled a rock wall more than a well trekked path.
I want to be honest because no one seems to mention this and the poor guides (which are required for this hike) sometimes take people up who either turn around within the first thirty minutes, or who take all day (as long as six hours) to hike up and down.
Coming down can be difficult because it is rocky and steep, so you really need to keep your center of gravity low to the ground and almost crawl down. That being said, it was not the hardest hike physically for us, we actually did the hike in just under three hours while most people average about four hours. I think this is because there are less views as you are hiking, so I was not stopping to take pictures every five minutes.
Our guide was fantastic. She made sure that we understood where the three best view points were, that we should stop for rest and drink water as often as necessary, and she even took really cute photos for us. I am amazed that she does this hike every day.
The views are beautiful looking out over the island and I'm really glad we did this activity first, if only because the rain would have made the trail impossible the next day! A note about the rain, it usually gets stuck out on the water or in the mountains, so rarely was it ever raining on us except sometimes at night or early in the morning as the temperature changed.
Let me know if you have any more questions about the hike, I am happy to help! My next post will cover the best beach in Soufriere!