Does anyone who has been on the St. Lucia land and sea tour know what the lunch is that is served at the plantation? I was wondering if my kids would like it or are there several choices? The itinerary says a "creole lunch." Do you think this tour would be good for kids or is most of it spent in the bus? How long do you get to swim at the beach for?
My experience with this tour goes back a few years, but I believe it is essentially the same tour now.We found this to be one of the most comprehensive tours we had ever taken off a ship. HOWEVER. It was a very long and exhausting day. If it still goes the same, half the group does the land part first and half does the water part and the itineraries are reversed. We did the water first. You cruise around the island from Castries to Soufrie(my spelling is probably wrong). It is a nice cruise, pulls into several harbors for a quick look see and then stops at a quiet little cove for a 45 minute or so swim and snorkel..Continues on towards the Pitons ,with great photos of them from the water.
At the dock in Soufrie you get on a van to the mill where you are served a buffet lunch. I think there is enough choice to satisfy everyone except for a real picky eater (adult or kid).
We then went to the volcano, the botanical gardens and the waterfall. The bus ride, from Soufrie to Castries (or the reverse) is a long windy ride along the mountains of the coast.
It is twisty and curvy . There are beautiful vistas of the coast along the way and you do get to see some inland areas with banana plantations. My wife felt the bus ride was a bit much.
In summary we thought this was a fabulous tour if you were only going to experience St. Lucia once or for a real complete exposure for a first timer. One of the best tours overall we have ever taken off a ship, however, it was a long day. The kids would have to be real troopers. I would recommend doing it and would DO
THE LAND PART FIRST. This way you can relax unwind and cool off on the boat on the way back.
We too did this years ago and the land part first. The luncheon was lovely but my "grandkids" probably would prefer nuggets and fries! It included an alcholic drink too. It is a long day with kids. Maybe you would be better off with just a tour at sea to allow them time for swimming. We did not dock at a beach but swam with Life Vests (if you weren't a strong swimmer) in the bay. It was lovely. A taxi to the Volcano would be interesting for the kids, too but allow plenty of time as the roads are terrible.
I did this tour last month and had to say it was one of the best tour taken so far as you get a good sample of what St. Lucia has to offer. The tour is exactly how Bill outlined. The boat ride was over 2 hours with a swim break. You have a chance to talk to your guide who point out the sights during the ride. Free soft drinks and rum punch is offered on the boat. Once you are off the boat, you stay with your guide for most of the trip as you are assigned a bus/van as you go to the pitons, banana plantation, botanical gardens, and lunch. The creole lunch was buffet style with creole chicken, rice, pasta, string beans, and boiled banana (didn't try it, but it is a common St. Lucia dish as banana is the main export item). Outside of the buffet lunch, you really do not have a place where you can get food outside of snack items offered at the souvenier shops.
The bus ride was about 1 1/2 hours as you do stop for a 15 minute bathroom/souvenier shop break.
I'm not sure if this is always the case, but when you first gather to meet while on Infinity, when you first enter the people on the right did the land first and the ones on the left were assigned to the boat.