GRAND ANSE BEACH,DES BARRAS, ST. LUCIA
LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY, AVERAGE 1 to 5: 2
Grand Anse Beach is located on the North East of St. Lucia near the mountain community of Des Barras and is one of the few beaches in the world that the endangered Leatherback turtle along with a couple other species of turtles lay their eggs. This is seasonal and usually occurs between the months of March and August, usually at night. The beach is about a mile long and very isolated. The sea is very rough as it is on the east coast and swimming/snorkeling is not recommended, but there is a 40 yd. wide sandbar that runs the length of the beach that you can float in. The only problem with this beautiful beach is its location, but if you can get there it is well worth it.
A 4x4 vehicle is a must to get down the very old dirt road. It is possible to walk down the road on foot but it is a very long way; apx. 4 miles. Once you get to the beach there are a couple of great camping spots (unofficial) where you will have shelter from the wind.
There is no fresh water available, so bring plenty.
The Tourism Association of Des Barras offers “turtle watching” tour packages for $50EC per person not including food or transport in which they bring you and your party down to the beach in 4x4’s, set up camp, lead an all night turtle watching expedition, then break down camp the next morning and drive you out. It is recommended, although you can do it on your own if you have a vehicle, or can get a public bus to take you to the beginning of the dirt road, then are willing to hike the distance down to the beach.
Very limited cell phone reception on the beach. Contact: Aloysius at (758) 717-1653
PEACE CORPS PROCEDURE:
-Call your APCD to inform them that you’ll be overnighting out of site and again upon returning safely to town.
-ALWAYS camp with at least one other person, preferably two.
-ALWAYS camp with at least one partner, preferably two.
TAMERON EATON, EC76
A few of us camped for two nights at Grand Anse Beach and were fortunate enough to see a Leatherback turtle lay her eggs. I have done a lot and seen a lot on St. Lucia but this was truly the most amazing experience. Once you have seen the massive turtles for yourself you will understand. The beach is very beautiful but water sports are extremely dangerous. There is some good camping but the inaccessibility makes this beach average unless you can see the turtles. Before you leave St. Lucia you have to try and see these turtles!
NICHOLAS KLINGER, EC76
Go ahead and chalk this experience up as one of the coolest of my life. An
absolutely awe inspiring and humbling experience. Well worth the $50EC for guide and transportation and something I’ll be doing again before I leave St. Lucia.