The end of January calls for some serious sunshine and warmth. What better time to reminisce on my family’s winter break vacation to the Caribbean? I’m sharing everything about our treetop resort, the stunning beaches, and the adventures we took!
We stayed at on the north side of the island of St. Lucia at Anse Chastanet. It was unlike any resort we’ve ever been to before. It is built on the side of a mountain, with its rooms open to the jungle and ocean. There are only a few dozen rooms on the property so it was a really intimate, personalized setting. The staff knew all of our names and were beyond helpful and accommodating. We ate at the resort’s three restaurants each night and spent the day on the beach and exploring the rest of St. Lucia with the help of welcoming guides and St. Lucian natives. Anse Chastanet can ultimately be described as authentic and unspoiled– it is rare to find such a gem of a resort!
Here is the view of our resort from the water. Jade Mountain, Anse Chastanet’s sister resort, is one of the premier honeymoon destinations in the world. It is pictured here sitting up on the mountain a little higher in the brown architecture. Each ledge is a room with an infinity pool overlooking the ocean and the Gros Pitons! Talk about romance…
See more of Jade Mountain’s architecture in my Pink Pitons post.
This is what our bungalow looked like on the inside. The fabric of almost everything at the resort was made of St. Lucian plaid, which is a large plaid full of warm colors! You can definitely tell that it is a fabric inspired by the tropics.
Here’s a look at our living space in the room.
My little sister and I had our own beds with individual nets. Yes, those are actual nets. The entire room was open to the rainforest– the shower overlooked the ocean. This is what I liked to call the Critter Factor. As in there was the possibility that a bird/bug/rainforest critter of some sort would be in the same room as us when we slept… Needless to say, the first few nights I really struggled to fall asleep under the net. But as the week went on, I started pretending it was really just a princess canopy and started getting a lot better sleep– it’s the little things. By the end of the trip, I loved snuggling up in my little canopy and totally understood why the resort opted for the fresh rainforest breeze instead of air conditioning.
This was the view from our balcony! Easiest the best view we’ve ever had on a vacation. I mean… breathtaking.
Anse Chastanet had two beaches on its property. The sand was a darker ash color because it stemmed from a volcano. You can see the sand on the Anse Chastent beaches in my New Year’s Eve and Anse Mamin posts. The beach pictured below is Sugar Beach, a resort located in the cove around the bend from Anse Chastanet. The Sugar Beach Resort imported pristine white sand for their beach, which was gorgeous as well!
Another look at Sugar Beach. We spent a day here where we got lunch, took a few dips in the ocean, and shopped at their boutique.
When you give a girl a selfie stick in the ocean… This is my ultimate happy place. This was taken at Anse Mamin beach, where the sand is darker.
I packed all of my beach the essentials!
A look at my little sister, Jacqueline’s cute beach bun and ocean blue sunglasses.
What is a family vacation without a few excursions?! At Jacqueline’s request, we decided to go zip lining. I was a little nervous about it at first (I’ve heard a few horror stories about monkeys/snakes hanging out on zip line wires…) but I ended up loving every moment! The harness/hair net/helmet/oversized gloves was a really good look for me too (why do you think NO zip lining pictures are included in this post?!!). We also toured the island’s dormant volcano, mineral baths, botanical garden, and a few hidden waterfalls. We saw this “Pink Torch Ginger” flower at the botanical garden — one of the hundreds exotic and spectacular flowers there.
Here’s the fam on New Year’s Eve! The resort threw a spectacular New Year’s dinner on the beach (literally in the sand) where we dined and chatted, listened to a live local band, lit up dozens of sky lanterns into the night sky, and watched a montage of stunning fireworks shoot up over the ocean.
Needless to say, 2015 could not have started out any better.
When we were in the mood for a more low key activity (unlike the time we took a boat dangerously close to an oceanside bat cave….), we sipped tropical drinks and played Boggle by the ocean. I do love word games and colorful drinks.
Yet another stunning view of the pitons from beneath the trees and foliage around the resort. We also found time to sail a sunfish, fall off of paddle boards on multiple occasions (looking at you, mom!), and snorkel on the resort’s reef.
The sunsets on St. Lucia never seized to amaze us. This one we saw while sitting on our balcony on our last night there. The island could not have given us a more beautiful and serene vacation spent together as a family. We adored all of the people we met at the resort and on our various excursions. It was definitely worth the travel time, even if it meant driving down the tumultuous dirt road that led onto Anse Chastanet’s property!
I am so thankful for our time spent there. We will definitely be returning in the future!
I would love to hear about your travels to St. Lucia/the Caribbean if you’ve visited! All this talk of tropical paradise is getting me through January:)