Map of St Lucia with cities. St Lucia on the world map
Map of St Lucia with cities. Where St Lucia is on the world map. The main geographical facts about St Lucia - population, country area, capital, official language, religions, industry and culture.
St Lucia Fact File
Official name St Lucia
Form of government Constitutional monarchy with two legislative bodies (Senate and House of Assembly)
Area 620 sq km (239 sq miles)
Time zone GMT - 4 hours
Projected population 2015 169,000
Population density 258.2 per sq km (669.9 per sq mile)
Life expectancy 72.8
Infant mortality (per 1,000) 14.8
Official language English
Other language French Creole
Literacy rate 67<5
Religions Roman Catholic 90%, Protestant 7%, Anglican 3%
Ethnic groups African 90.5%, mixed 5.5%, East Indian 3.2%, European 0.8%
Currency East Caribbean dollar
Economy Services 65%, agriculture 26%, industry 9%
GNP per capita US$4,400
Climate Tropical, moderated by trade winds; wet season May to August, dry season January to April
Highest point Mt Gimie 950 m (3,117 ft)
Map reference Page 427
An island in the Caribbean, St Lucia is one of the prettiest of the Windward Group of the Lesser Antilles. Tropical beaches and typical Caribbean towns like Soufriere have long drawn tourists to the island, who also come to see its varied plant and animal life. Once inhabited by Arawak and Carib Indians, St Lucia was wrangled over between France and Britain before finally being ceded to Britain in 1814. As elsewhere in the Caribbean, African slaves were imported to work sugar plantations until slavery was abolished in 1834. Most of the population are descended from slaves, though some are from South Asia. Internally self-governing from 1967, St Lucia has been fully independent since 1979.
The main features of the island are its forested mountains stretching north to south, cut by river
valleys, and rising to Mt Gimie. In the southwest lies the Qualibou, an area with eighteen lava domes and seven craters. In the west, marking the entrance to Jalousie Plantation harbor, are the spectacular twin Pitons, two peaks rising steeply from the sea to a height of about 800 m (2,625 ft). The climate is tropical, with annual rainfall varying from 1,500 mm (59 in) in the lowlands to 3,500 mm (137 in) in mountainous areas.
While not poor, St Lucia still depends heavily on bananas (sixty percent of export income), a crop which is easily ruined by hurricanes and disease. Bananas are also a source of political tension: in recent years the USA has pushed for the abolition of the preferential treatment the EU accords banana imports from the Caribbean. The people of St Lucia have strongly objected to this. Other agricultural exports are coconuts, coconut oil, and cocoa. Clothing is the second largest export, and the free port of Vieux Fort has attracted modern light industry. Grande Cul de Sac Bay in the south is one of the deepest tanker ports in the region and is used for the transshipment of oil.