Saturday, March 23, 2013

Sulphur Springs & Fond Doux Plantation - St. Lucia

Tuesday, March 19

We had a full day planned for Laura and Eric when we woke up on Tuesday morning. We headed into the town of Soufriere and took a taxi to the Sulphur Springs which is the drive-in volcanic area of St. Lucia. This was the second time Gene and I had seen the springs after seeing them first with Dana and Andrea earlier in March. The Sulphur Springs was packed with cruise ship passengers. We were corralled into one of the groups where a guide was beginning the tour. This guide was much more entertaining and knowledgeable than the guide from our last visit, so we enjoyed listening to his jokes and explaining the geography and history of the area.

  Gene with his Mom, Laura, and Cousin, Eric

Later in the afternoon, we headed to the Fond Doux Holiday Plantation which is a boutique hotel and old cocoa plantation renovated with beautiful gardens filled with local fruits and vegetables that they use in their restaurant. We had arranged a tour of the plantation and lunch.

Our tour guide, Phillip, started by taking us on a short hike to a lookout with a beautiful view of Petit Piton and Soufriere Bay. After the lookout, Phillip guided us through the plantation, pointing out various local plants and fruit trees. There was one really interesting large pnk flower that he picked for us that produces nectar that is specifically eaten by hummingbirds. When we held the flower out near the hummingbirds, they approached the flower and drank the nectar while we held it up for them.

View of Soufriere Bay and Kalalau anchored in the distance

Petit Piton from the lookout at the top of the trail

Eric, Phillip, Laura, and Gene

Gene and his Mom hiking back down the mountain

The plantation Spa tucked inside the rainforest

 Cocoa Pods - where the cocoa seeds come from.  They grow out of the trunk of the tree.

Laura feeding the humming bird

Phillip climbing to pick us some pink grapefruit

Cocoa seeds drying in the wooden bin

Phillip carving some cinnamon from the bark

After a very thorough tour of the plantation complete with freshly picked fruit provided by Phillip, we headed to the restaurant for lunch. The restaurant is a beautiful open patio area amidst the vegetation of the plantation. Laura and Eric got to try a bunch of the local cuisine. Once we were all entirely full with the delicious food they prepared for us (most of it grown locally in the plantation), we met back up with our taxi driver, King, who took us back to Soufriere where we had a beer with him in one of his favorite local bars. 

Jardin Cocoa Restaurant

This humming bird was next to our table for most of our lunch


Gene, Eric, and King (our taxi driver)

Laura, Eric, Kat & Gene with Soufriere Bay in the background

Local bar - Piton beers are $2EC!

Beautiful sunset in Soufiere Bay behind the boat

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