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St Lucia

Blessed by nature, St Lucia has geographic and cultural riches enough to embarrass far bigger nations. Notwithstanding, it remains a down-to-earth place that wears its breathtaking beauty with nonchalance.

Noted for its oodles of small and luxurious resorts that drip color and flair, it is really two islands in one. Rodney Bay in the north offers lazy days and modern comforts amid a beautiful bay. In the south, Soufrière is at the heart of a gorgeous region of old plantations, hidden beaches and the geologic wonder of the impossibly photogenic Pitons.

Nature lovers can hike to jungle-clad waterfalls, climb extinct volcanic cones or zip through the forest canopy on land, or dive beneath the calm Caribbean to get up close to St Lucia's marine life. Foodies will be enamored with the islands delicious Creole cuisine.

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