- Saint Lucia
native_name = Saint Lucia
common_name = Saint Lucia
national_motto = "The Land, The People, The Light"
national_anthem = "
Sons and Daughters of Saint Lucia"
official_languages = English
demonym = Saint Lucian
latd=14 |latm=1 |latNS=N |longd=60 |longm=59 |longEW=W
largest_city = capital
government_type = Parliamentary democracy and
leader_title1 = Queen
leader_name1 = Elizabeth II
leader_title2 = Governor-General
Dame Pearlette Louisy
leader_title3 = Prime Minister
established_event1 = nowrap|from the
22 February 1979
area_rank = 193rd
area_km2 = 620
area_sq_mi = 239
percent_water = 1.6
population_estimate_rank = 187th
population_census = 160,765
population_census_year = 2005
population_density_km2 = 298
population_density_sq_mi = 672
population_density_rank = 41st
GDP_PPP = $866 million
GDP_PPP_rank = 197th
GDP_PPP_year = 2002
GDP_PPP_per_capita = $5,950
GDP_PPP_per_capita_rank = 98th
HDI = increase 0.795
HDI_rank = 72nd
HDI_year = 2007
HDI_category = medium
East Caribbean dollar
currency_code = XCD
utc_offset = -4
calling_code = 1 758
Saint Lucia (pronEng|ˌseɪnt ˈluːʃɪə) is an
island nationin the eastern Caribbean Seaon the boundary with the Atlantic Ocean. Part of the Lesser Antilles, it is located north of the islands of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, northwest of Barbadosand south of Martinique. It is also known as the "Helen of the West Indies" because it switched between British and French control so often it was likened to the mythical Helen of Troy.
Saint Lucia is one of the
Windward Islands, named for Saint Lucy of Syracuse. It was first visited by Europeans in about the year 1500 and first colonized successfully by Francewho signed a treaty with the native Caribpeoples in 1660. Great Britaintook control of the island from 1663 to 1667 then went to war with France over it fourteen times, and finally took complete control in 1814. Representative government came about in 1924 (with universal adult suffragefrom 1953) and from 1958 to 1962 the island was a member of the Federation of the West Indies. Finally, on February 22, 1979, Saint Lucia became an independent state of the Commonwealth of Nations. The island nation celebrates this every year with a public holiday.
Commonwealth realm, Saint Lucia recognizes Queen Elizabeth II as the Head of Stateof Saint Lucia, represented on the island by a Governor-General. Executive power, however, is in the hands of the prime ministerand his cabinet. The prime minister is normally the head of the party winning the elections for the House of Assembly, which has 17 seats. The other chamber of Parliament, the Senate, has 11 appointed members.
Saint Lucia is a full and participating member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the
Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States(OECS).
The volcanic island of Saint Lucia is more mountainous than many other
Caribbeanislands, with the highest point being Mount Gimie, at convert|950|m|ft|-1 above sea level. Two other mountains, the Pitons, form the island's most famous landmark. They are located between Soufrière and Choiseul on the western side of the island. Saint Lucia is also one of the few islands in the world that boasts a drive-in volcano.
The capital city of Saint Lucia is
Castries, where about one third of the population lives. Major towns include Gros Islet, Soufrièreand Vieux Fort. The local climateis tropical, moderated by northeast trade winds, with a dry season from January to April and a rainy season from May to December.
The recent change in the
European Unionimport preference regime and the increased competition from Latin American bananas have made economic diversification increasingly important in Saint Lucia. The island nation has been able to attract foreign business and investment, especially in its offshore banking and tourismindustries, which is the island's main source of revenue. The manufacturingsector is the most diverse in the Eastern Caribbean area, and the government is trying to revitalize the banana industry. Despite negative growth in 2001, economic fundamentals remain solid, and GDP growth should recover in the future.
The population of Saint Lucia is of mostly
Africandescent (82.5% of the population). There is a significant Mixed minority representing 11.9%, and with a Indo-Caribbeanor East Indian groups at 2.4% and the small European origin minority (descendants of French, British, and Irish colonists). Other or unspecified ethnicity accounts for 3.1%. There are small numbers of Lebanese, Syrians and Chinese.
The official language is English, but a
creole languagecalled Kwéyòl is spoken by 80% of the population and is getting increasing usage and official recognition. [cite web|url=http://stlucia.gov.lc/pr2005/may/kweyolphone_countries_take_stock_of_the_languages_growth.htm |title=Kweyolphone Countries Take Stock of the Language's Growth |publisher=Government of Saint Lucia |accessdate=2008-08-22] It evolved from French, Carib and elements of African languages. Saint Lucia is a member of "La Francophonie".
St. Lucia boasts the highest ratio in the world for number of Nobel laureates produced with respect to the total population of the nation. Two winners have come from St. Lucia: Sir Arthur Lewis won the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1979, and
Derek Walcottreceived the Nobel Prize in Literaturein 1992. Both were born on January 23rd, but in different years.
About 70% of the population is
Roman Catholic. The rest are Seventh-day Adventists (7%), Pentecostalists (6%), Anglicans (2%), Evangelicals (2%) and Rastafari (2%). [ [http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0855613.html infoplease.com] ]
Migration from Saint Lucia is primarily to
Anglophonecountries, with the United Kingdom(see Saint Lucian British) having almost 10,000 Saint Lucian born citizens, and over 30,000 of Saint Lucian heritage. The second most popular destination for Saint Lucian expatriates is the United States, where combined (foreign and national born Saint Lucians) almost 14,000 reside. Canadais home to a few thousand Saint Lucians, whilst most other countries in the world have less than 50 citizens of Saint Lucian origin (the exceptions being Spainand Francewith 124 and 117 Saint Lucian expats respectively). [http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/18/23/34792376.xls]
;FestivalsSaint Lucian cultural festivals include La Rose and La Marguerite, the one representing the
Rosicrucianorder, the other one representing Freemasonry, which can be seen on a mural painted by Dunstan St. Omer, depicting the holy trinityof Osiris, Horusand Isis.
Traditionally, in common with other Caribbean countries, Saint Lucia held a
carnivalbefore Lent. In 1999, it was moved to mid-July in order to not to coincide with the much larger Trinidad and Tobago carnival, so as to attract more overseas visitors.
;Music and danceA popular folk dance is the
As well as other Caribbean music genres such as soca,
zouk, kompa, and reggae, Saint Lucia has a strong indigenous folk music tradition.
Each May since 1992, Saint Lucia has hosted an internationally-renowned Jazz Festival.
Tourism is vital to St. Lucia's economy and the economic importance of such is expected to continue to increase as the market for bananas becomes more competitive. Tourism tends to be more substantial during the dry season (January to April). St Lucia tends to be popular due to its tropical weather and scenery and its large number of beaches and resorts.
Other tourist attractions include the world's only drive-in
volcano, Sulfur Springs(at Soufriere), the Botanical Gardens, the rain forests and Pigeon Island National Park, which is home to Fort Rodney, an old British military base.
The majority of tourists visit St. Lucia as part of a cruise. Most of their time tends to be spent in
Castries, although Soufriere, Marigot Bayand Gros Isletare popular locations to visit. Tourists should venture from the beaten path of shops and beaches and explore the beautiful nature of St. Lucia. Marigot Bayis where a second home to the boxer George Foreman is situated.
Communications in Saint Lucia
Foreign relations of Saint Lucia
List of cities in Saint Lucia
Military of Saint Lucia
* National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO)
Tourism in Saint Lucia
Transport in Saint Lucia
The Saint Lucia Scout Association
Saint Lucian diplomatic missions
Sports in Saint Lucia
States headed by Elizabeth II
* [http://www.stlucia.gov.lc/ Official website of the Government of Saint Lucia]
* [http://www.sluswma.org/ Official Home of the Saint Lucia Solid Waste Management Authority]
* [http://www.slumet.gov.lc/ Official Website of Saint Lucia Met. Service]
* [http://www.stlucia.org/ Portal of the Saint Lucia Tourist Board]
* [http://www.stluciaforums.com/ St. Lucia Forums / Message Board]
* [http://www.geographia.com/st-lucia/ Saint Lucia - Simply Beautiful]
* [http://glacierbliss.com/ St. Lucia Pictures]
* [http://cruiserfaqs.com/wiki/index.php5?title=St._Lucia A Cruisers Guide to St. Lucia]
* [http://www.zerokarma.com/modules.php?name=Photo_Album&file=thumbnails&album=15 Pictures & Images of St. Lucia]
* [http://www.worldaware.org.uk/education/projects/st_lucia/index.html Teaching Resources on St Lucia]
* [http://www.tasstlucia.com/ The Technical Analysis Society of St. Lucia]
* [http://www.caribbean-on-line.com/islands/sl/slmap.shtml Map of St. Lucia]
* [http://www.ianandwendy.com/st-lucia Photos, videos, and travelogue from St. Lucia] Template group
title = Geographic locale
list =Template group
title = International membership
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