Marigot Bay, St. Lucia, The Most Beautiful Bay in the Caribbean, as described by prolific author James A. Michener. I still remember the first time I saw it. Most people do, I’d imagine, thanks to its two unique entrances.
Whether arriving by land or by sea, Marigot makes a lasting impression.
Like most visitors not lucky enough to arrive in St. Lucia under sail, on my last trip I landed far in the south at the Hewanorra International Airport near Sandy Beach.
From there, I was in for an hour-long drive up the coast toward Marigot. Luckily, this drive is not without its charms.
Passing the picturesque Pitons, stealing glimpses of Hotel Chocolat, Stonefield Estate, Jade Mountain – all of it a veritable sweet feast of eye candy for the uncommon traveler set against St. Lucia’s lush, green southern rain forests. Also on the way is the Sulfur Springs National Park – perfect for soothing weary travelers – and the quaint little fishing village of Anse la Raye, home of St. Lucia’s fantastic Friday Night Fish Fry. Truth be told, it’s a fascinating drive.
Still, after an hour on St. Lucia’s winding coastal roads, I was anxious to get to my destination.
Then, after a few fields on the right, I hung a sharp left, climbed a hill with the ocean obscured by a stand of trees on the right, and finally crested the rise to see, quite assuredly, one of the most beautiful bays in the entire Caribbean sheltering a few fortunate sailboats in its warm embrace. The view from the hilltop is enough to make you stop the car and just admire the panorama.
Sure, it’s breathtaking the way it appears below you when arriving by land, but amazingly, arriving by sea is even more spellbinding.
As a natural hurricane hole surrounded by steep hills, Marigot Bay practically sneaks up on you when you approach skimming over the sea. One second you could be cruising south past bustling Rodney Bay, Choc Beach chock-full of tourists, and Castries City. The next, you round a bend and it simply materializes as if by magic.
In its heart is a tiny peninsula of sandy beach decked out with palm trees, the aptly named Hurricane Hole bar, where I’ve had more than my fair share of the Chairman’s finest, and a collection of other small shopping options perfect for resupplying the many sailors who regularly ply Marigot Bay’s protected depths.
So, while I can highly recommend both approaches for surprising beauty, if I had to pick one, it would definitely be by sea.
But you don’t have to take my word for it. For a limited time, you can be the judge while saving 20% off this one-of-a-kind experience by checking out our friends at Intrepid Travel and their Martinique and St Lucia Sailing itinerary.
Go ahead and set sail. I’ll be waiting to hear what you think!