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Discovering Beauty in St. Lucia

You don't have to look hard to find beauty on the island of St. Lucia. Breathtaking sights are all around you – in the crystal-clear cerulean water, the tropical flowers, the lush rolling hills & the mystical mountains. However, if you want to be truly amazed, it's worth seeking out specific sights on your luxury vacation that showcase the island's natural wonders & remarkable talents.

Put these spots on your itinerary & prepare to be stunned:

Diamond Botanical Gardens It's no surprise that the 6-acre Diamond Botanical Gardens is one of the main attractions for visitors in St. Lucia as it offers a perfect blend of history & nature. In fact, the gardens, mineral baths & historic Estate Houses were built for the French troops of King Louis XVI in 1784. Between cascading waterfalls & scenic nature trails filled with tropical flora & fauna, there is much to see at this remarkable site. Tours begin around 10 a.m. If you're seeking a more leisurely stroll, opt for a privately arranged tour at 2 p.m.

Llewellyn Xavier Studio There's a reason that Llewellyn Xavier is the island's most well-known artist. Using innovative techniques that it took him forty years to perfect, he manages to create works that perfectly capture the color & light of the Caribbean. He isn't just famous in St. Lucia, either. With permanent collections at The Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. & the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art in New York, art enthusiasts & collectors alike have grown to appreciate his paintings. His studio, which is located at Cap Estate, can be visited by appointment only. It's worth a visit to see his inspiring works & afterward, you can stop by St. Lucia Fine Art in the Pointe Seraphine shopping complex to purchase one of his pieces for your home.

Fregate Islands Nature Reserve The fertile volcanic soil on the island of St. Lucia actually offers perfect conditions for sustaining a diverse animal life. Midway up the eastern coast are a cluster of rocks, which were named for the scissor-tailed frigate birds that breed there. If you visit between May & July, you can spy large groups of these graceful birds fly in impressive choreographed formations. A great way to get a closer look at the the Fregate Islands and protect the ecosystem at the same time is to follow the trail the government has carved along the clifftop of the mainland, about 45 miles inland. Bring along binoculars for watching the birds overhead or getting a more detailed view of the sea caves, swaps, waterfalls & ravines along the coast below.

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