St Thomas and St Lucia are gorgeous islands if you are seeking a Caribbean vacation.
They both have great beaches, impeccable restaurants and friendly people.
As a general rule, St Thomas is better for travelers who are interested in beaches and duty free shopping. Alternatively, St Lucia is ideal for a visitor who is looking for a honeymoon destination with interest in natural scenery such as the hiking the famous Piton and visiting a drive in volcano.
Read on for further details and explanations on how these two beautiful Caribbean islands compare. Contribution to this article was made by individuals who visited both islands on vacation.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Is Better For A Vacation
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Is Bigger
St Thomas is only 32 square miles and the highest point of elevation is 1, 555 feet called Crown Mountain.
St Thomas is an overseas US territory and part of the US Virgin Islands.
According to St Thomas Source based on a census completed in April 2010, the population of the island was 51,634.
St Croix, St John and Water Island are the other islands that are included in the group called US Virgin Islands.
Alternatively, St Lucia is 238 square miles and the highest point is Mount Gimie which is 3,120 feet.
According to Worldometer, the population of St Lucia at the time of writing was 184,711.
St Lucia is a single island state meaning that it has no dependencies.
The head of state of St Lucia is His Majesty King Charles III.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Entry Requirements
St Thomas is an US territory so travelling to the island is an internal flight.
Therefore, no passports or visa is required for entry on the island.
On the other hand, if you travel to St Lucia, a valid passport is required for usually up to 6 months with proof a return ticket for entry to the island.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Has Better Beaches
If beaches are your priority, then hands down St Thomas is the destination for you.
The island has over 40 beaches with Magens Bay being one of the favorite of locals and visitors to the island.
Magens Bay is a beautiful one mile stretch of white sand. It has calm waters with no reefs or sharp currents which makes this beach perfect for swimming and great for children.
An entry fee is charged to keep the beach and facilities in good order.
In terms of snorkeling, Coki beach is one of the more preferred options.
The reef of this beach is located near the shoreline which makes it easy for individuals with little or no experience to enjoy snorkeling.
Alternatively, Sugar beach is one of the best beaches in St Lucia where you can get a view of the famous twin peaks called The Pitons.
This beach is loved by divers and individuals who enjoy snorkeling.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Is Safer
Both islands are relatively safe destinations.
Nevertheless according to The St Thomas Source, in an article published August 17th, 2021, the police department on the island of St Croix indicated an increase in armed robberies and carjackings.
Victims were threatened at gunpoint and valuables such as cash, cellphones and vehicles were demanded.
The police have asked citizens to be vigilant and to safeguard their valuables.
According to the US Department State, Overseas Advisory Council based on a 2018 crime report per 100,000 citizens, St Vincent recorded the second highest number of murders being 31 while St Lucia had 21 during the same period.
In both countries however visitors can walk and take public transportation safely during the day.
Nevertheless, due care must be taken as in any other country especially in tough economic times.
Visitors should avoid walking in secluded areas at nights and take only taxis authorized by the relevant taxi associations.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Has The Better Entertainment
If you are looking for exciting night life, St Lucia is definitely the better destination. Rodney Bay Village usually comes alive at nights.
There are several restaurants with a variety of cuisine that you can choose from such as Mexican, Indian and Chinese foods.
Additionally every Friday evening except for Good Fridays, the village of Gros Islet comes alive.
Vendors sell barbecues and other local dishes and there is a live band featuring music from the island.
Vendors also sell souvenirs and other arts and craft items.
Alternatively in St Thomas there are a number of restaurants are bars in areas such as Red Hook, Frenchtown, Charlotte Amalie and Haven Sight areas.
These restaurants and bars are nearby so it is very easy to go bar hopping on foot. Restaurants and bars usually feature live music from local bands.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Is Better For A Honeymoon
If you are considering a Caribbean honeymoon, St Lucia is a better destination when it comes to luxury and all inclusive hotels.
Jade Mountain is an award winning resort and is a one of a kind unique property on the island of St Lucia.
This resort features uninterrupted views of the Pitons.
The bold architecture of the resort with long bridges and infinity pools makes Jade Mountain an unforgettable location for a honeymoon.
Below is a picture of Jade Mountain resort from a nearby beach.
St Lucia is also home to three luxurious Sandals resort. These are the Sandals Grande St Lucia, Sandals Halcyon Beach and the Sandals Regency La Toc.
With Sandals, you can pay to stay at any one of these resorts but enjoy the amenities at the other two properties.
These properties feature several restaurants, swim up rooms, swim up bars and golfing facilities.
Alternatively, St Thomas does not have a great stock of all inclusive high end resorts for honeymooners.
Marriotts’s Frenchman Cove and The Ritz Carlton would be the better choices for persons considering a honeymoon in St Thomas.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Can You Island Hop To Other Islands
Visitors to the St Lucia will find that it is easy to travel to the neighboring islands of Dominica, Martinique and Guadeloupe from St Lucia by ferry.
There are day trips available and persons usually travel across for shopping trips, recreational purposes and also medical reasons.
St Thomas is also a great island to hop over to other islands. Ferries are available daily from St Thomas to St Croix, St John and Water Island.
Additionally there are ferry services available from St Thomas to the British Virgin Islands.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: Which Island Is More Expensive
As a general rule, St Thomas is more expensive island than St Lucia. The US dollar is the official currency as the island is an overseas US territory.
The official currency of St Lucia is the Eastern Caribbean Dollar which has been pegged to the US (United States) dollar since July 7th, 1976 at a rate of USD $1 to XCD $2.70.
This currency is also shared by seven other Eastern Caribbean islands and is managed through a regional central bank which is based in St Kitts.
Several persons from each of the Caribbean island work at the central bank. The US dollar is generally accepted at most business places in St Lucia.
As with other countries, businesses at times may be skeptical accepting higher denominations. US notes that are torn and worn are usually rejected by businesses.
St Lucia Vs St Thomas: What Are The Unique Things To Do
Unique Things To Do In St Lucia
Climb The Piton Mountains- the piton is an incredible twin peaks that are designated as UNESCO World Heritage site since 2004 located at the south of the island.
The Gros Piton is 2462 feet while the Petit Piton is 2619 feet. The Gros Piton is the designated hiking trail while the Petit Piton is rarely climbed.
Visit The Drive In Volcano- The sulphur springs is one of the most visited attractions on the island located in Soufriere which is the world’s only drive in volcano.
Visitors are able to enter at certain points and give themselves a mud bath. It is widely believed that these mud baths have medical benefits.
Unique Things To Do In St Thomas
Visit Coral World Ocean Park– This Park is an amazing way to see and learn more about sea life in St Thomas.
There are activities available for all ages such as educational shark and sea lion tours.
In addition, you can enjoy kayaking with the dolphins while at the park.
Duty Free Shopping– St Thomas is one of the best islands for duty free shopping in the Caribbean.
Each visitor including children is allowed $1600 each of duty free purchases back into the USA.
Visit Mountain Top & Drake’s Seat– These two areas are must visit spots to take in the panoramic views of the island.
Mountain top is 1500 feet above sea level and provides a stunning view the other Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.
From mountain top you can see a total of 20 islands.
Alternatively Drake’s seat offers an amazing view of Magens Bay and the other Virgin Islands and British Virgin Islands to the East.
These two areas as the perfect stops to make to enjoy the view and take some photos if you are on an island tour.
On a whole, St Lucia is the ideal choice for a traveler who wants to enjoy beautiful natural scenery famous twin peaks, The Piton as well as bustling nightlife. Alternatively, St Thomas is an exceptional choice for a traveler whose priority is enjoying the beach and snorkeling.
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