We are in a rainforest at an elevation of 550 feet almost two miles from town or the beach and the roads to the villa are rough, rocky and steep.  You will need transportation – either a rental vehicle or a driver.  Most of our guests hire our affiliated driver.

Driving in St Lucia

✦  On the left (“British”) side of the roads (although that’s actually the least of the challenges!)
✦  Driver sits on the right side of the vehicle (opposite of US)
✦  Most roads are unnamed and unmarked
✦  Almost no traffic lights – mostly stop signs and roundabouts
✦  Most homes and stores don’t have street addresses
✦  Roads are narrow, often with steep ditches for drainage
✦  Roads may be only one lane wide in places, such as the roads from Soufriere to the villa
✦  Road hazards, such as stopped vehicles, pedestrians, dogs, chickens, goats, cattle, and deep potholes, are common
✦  There are very few straight sections of roads as the roads follow the contours of the mountains and have frequent hairpin curves
✦  Very few safety barriers on the edge of drop-offs

Transportation Options

✦  Most of our guests do not rent a vehicle.  They hire Junior, a local driver that partners with us.
✦  About half of our guests that rent a vehicle change their mind and hire Junior after they arrive and see the driving conditions.
✦  If your group is four or more people, or you want a relaxing vacation, we strongly recommend you hire the driver.

Driver service

Driver service in St Lucia is essentially taxi service, but there’s no app or central dispatchers.  Junior is a local driver that partners with us.  But he is much more than just a driver – he’s a tour guide, an itinerary advisor, a reservation-maker, a luggage and shopping assistant, and a deterrent to persistent vendors.

Just let Loretta know at least a week before you arrive that you want to use the driver service and we’ll arrange the airport pickup. Junior will come to the villa your first morning to meet with you to set your itinerary (don’t worry – you can make changes to it later).

He accepts cash, or you can pay us with Zelle or a credit card and we’ll pay him for you (transaction fees apply).

Driving yourself around

If you think you want to rent a vehicle and drive yourself around, we urge you to first read the guide below on whether to rent or hire a driver.  Our vehicle recommendations are in the “Renting a vehicle” document. 

Each driver will need a St. Lucian driving permit (about $20 US) through the rental company.  An international driving license might be accepted but confirm that with the rental company.

Drivers over the age of 65 may need a doctor’s note that they are fit to drive, and drivers over 70 may be denied a license/rental.  Please check with the rental agency.

We suggest you hire the driver for your airport pickup even if you want to rent a vehicle. Most rental companies will deliver the vehicle to the villa at no extra cost.

Why do we recommend you hire Junior?

It’s because he’s a great tour guide and resource (think of him as our concierge) and driving really can be challenging and stressful. As some guests have said after arriving at the villa, “The road to heaven is never easy”!

We get no benefit from your hiring him other than supporting him so he can continue to provide great service to our guests.

If you were cheated by drivers on other travel, you might be worried that Junior might cheat you, too. That’s why we insisted he put his prices in writing and that he meet with you at the beginning of your stay to confirm prices. And read our reviews on Vrbo or AirBnB – a complaint would definitely be there if he had cheated any of our guests.

But it’s absolutely your choice on how you want to get around. You won’t get treated differently if you rent a vehicle. And if you change your mind after arriving and want to use his services during your stay, you can catch him when he brings the staff up in the mornings, or you can call him.

Rent a vehicle and drive yourself if… Hire a driver/taxi if…
You seek adventure – you LOVE off-roading! You want to just relax
You are an exceptionally alert driver, easily responding to sudden obstacles/potholes You like to chat with your companions while you drive or aren’t good about dodging obstacles
You want to explore independently You prefer having a tour guide
You don’t mind stopping to ask for directions for roads that are so small they are not on Google Maps (like our road) You don’t like driving in unfamiliar places where the roads don’t have street addresses, and the idea of being lost in a foreign country sounds intimidating
Your group can fit in a small vehicle Your group needs a large vehicle
One person will be the designated driver and will abstain from drinking then driving No one wants the responsibility of being the designated driver
You prefer to make your plans for the day while you eat breakfast (or lunch….) You like to plan ahead what you’ll do and when, or will use Junior’s “VGP Special” plan
Anyone driving will be between the ages of 25 and 65 The driver is under 25 or over 65 (more difficult/expensive for those age groups)
You are comfortable driving on the left-hand side of the road You have not driven on the left side of the road and you don’t look forward to it!
Your whole group will be on the same schedule The person driving wants to stay at the villa sometimes when others go out
You are comfortable maneuvering through tight spaces You are worried every time you pull into your garage that you’ll side-swipe the door
You are great at parallel parking The last time you parallel-parked was high school
You want to know your full transportation costs prior to arrival and pay via credit card You are willing to pay the driver in cash or pay us for the driver with a credit card/Zelle
You are willing to take the risk of having to pay for a scratch or ding on the rental car You don’t want to argue with the rental car agency over minor blemishes
You are going to be out and about every day You want to spend a lot of time at the villa
You want to explore every inch of the island, including the furthest points Most of what you want to do is within a short drive of the villa