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2023 - St Lucia - Day 10

As we didn’t have any milk or much in the way of food in the Villa, Graham & I agreed to meet in the kitchen to head down to the local supermarket at 7am. The supermarket called Massy was a reasonable size, clean ad organised. Again, it seemed to have many Waitrose own products.

We gave the strawberries a miss at the equivalent of £12.50 a punnet but managed to get almost everything else that had been put onto our shopping list by the girls. We then all sat and had our breakfast together on the terrace admiring again the ‘million dollars’ view. It was fabulous. The additional touches the villa needs couldn’t distract from the view from the balcony.

Anyhow after clearing away breakfast, we headed out to the Sulphur Springs that were only just over 10 minutes away. We purchased combo tickets and drove to the parking spot for the tour. The tour itself only lasted about 15 minutes but was very interesting explaining about the volcanic caldera and the fact they were overdue an eruption. The smell of sulphur in the air was strong and reminded us of our visits to Rotorua in New Zealand.

After moving the car to a different parkin area, we walked to the Sulphur Baths. This was great fun. We all changed into our swimming costumes before getting into the 38c Black Sulphuric Water. It was like being in a public Hot Tub. Now this water is supposed be very therapeutic for you. The claim is that you come out looking 10 years younger. Following a 10-minute dip we all got out into the beautiful 28c sunshine. We were then invited to covered ourselves and each other all over in a light grey mud which acts like an exfoliant and dries to an even lighter colour. Then you invited to paint yourself and each other in a dark black mud. It is great fun and we had lots of laughs doing it.

To wash off the mud there are some basic showers with just refreshing cold water available. It took a bit off effort under the cold water to remove all traces of the sulphur but was well worth it.

On the way back to the villa we stopped again at the Supermarket to pick up another fresh baguette as well as a bottle of gin for later. We sat for a couple of lovely hours on the balcony. Then we decided to hold our tasting competition of the bars we had each made the day before at Project Chocolat. We all sampled our own before trying each other’s. The unanimous winner was Jo’s which tasted like something we could have bought and liked. Mine was voted second best which I thought was fair. Grahams came last as it tasted like we were just eating sugar which overpowered the Cacao flavour. He more than made up for us by then working as Chef Graham and making us all a delicious omelette each for lunch.

Just after that and despite not showing up on any weather forecast, dark clouds rolled in and the heavens opened. The rain was torrential for over 1 hour. Not that it made any difference to us as we continued to sit with the shelter of the balcony.

Eventually it cleared and we thought we should really try out the infinity pool. The water was not heated but was an acceptable temperature. The steps were not long enough to get in and so it was a leap of faith from the bottom step to the bottom of the pool but in the end even Karen managed it. It was beautifully refreshing and gave us a different perspective of the garden and the view.

We then all changed ready to go out for dinner. We had planned to find a beach bar on route to watch the sunset. We found a car park but the tourism opportunity of beach bars doesn’t seem to have reached Soufriere just yet, or if it has everywhere was shut. There were several ‘dudes’ hanging around in the area so we didn’t stop and carried on driving to The Mango Tree where we had a dinner reservation. This turned out to be inside a really nice resort. The restaurant had a perfect location high on the cliff overlooking the Caribbean Sea yet almost at the base of one of the Pitons. It was a beautiful restaurant in a beautiful setting. The service was outstanding and the food just as good. The bill at the end reflected all of this.

Graham & I both had the beef stuffed with blue cheese with Dasheen Chips. We had to look up what Dasheen actually was. The chips were good and almost potato like. It was by far the best meal we have had this trip. How very brave and exotic of me to even try such things.

The drive back was challenging in the dark up the at times 1:2 unmade track with 18-inch-deep pot holes. Graham though relished the challenge and considered it a benefit from where we are staying. I’m not so sure that Karen would have been as calm if I had been driving. Each time we go up or down the track he has to engage the 4-wheel drive and the low ratio gearset. I have no idea what that really means but it sounds good and so far, has done the trick.

It had been another really good day. We like St Lucia a lot. Whether we like it enough to come back again we are not sure. We may only be here for another couple of days and by then we think we will have seen the best of it. If another Caribbean trip is considered then it would probably to another island to give that a try.

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