Mamin, St. Lucia

Photo: Bike St. Lucia
Photo: Bike St. Lucia

It shouldn’t be so hard to find a quiet beach on St. Lucia. Reduit Beach has more than a mile of fine golden sand, which attracts swimmers and beach parties. Anse des Pitons has dramatic views of the famous Pitons, but it’s in front of a popular, upscale hotel. While families have overtaken the two sheltered, shady beaches on Pigeon Island.

There is one beach on the Caribbean island that hasn’t been mentioned. Anse Mamin is a favorite of locals and in-the-know vacationers. But no one wants to talk about the silvery-sand beach. Like every other beach on the island, Anse Mamin is open to the public, of course. But its hidden location—down a treacherous road near an old French Colonial plantation—means few people venture to this quiet spot on the southwest coast.

Photo: Anse Chastanet
Photo: Anse Chastanet

Anse Mamin is just 10 minutes north of Soufrière, but it feels worlds away from the original capital of the island. A steep dirt road leads you two miles away from the main road. Deep potholes create obstacles on the already slow drive. Eventually, the dense jungle exposes the 18th-century ruins of the plantation. Mango, guava, and banana trees now grow inside the once-grand buildings. While the scent of wild orchids fills the humid air.

After exploring the ruins—how could you not spend at least a few minutes dreaming about what the hillside plantation used to be—and following some of the eight miles of bike trails, you finally walk along the path toward the beach. The quarter-mile beach is lined with tall coconut palms, thin cacti, and an open-air beach bar. Thatched palapas and wooden sun loungers dot the sand. Plus rock formations sit just beyond the edge of the warm, turquoise water.

Best of all, the beach is quiet. Very quiet. A single boat is anchored just offshore. A kayaker paddles through the calm water in the distance. Two snorkelers are exploring the water around the rock formations. While the grill at the beach bar is just starting to sizzle with the first burgers of the day. Now all you need to enjoy the gorgeous view is a cold Piton Beer. Just be careful with whom you share this hidden beach. Not that most people could find it anyway.

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