Glamping in St. Lucia: Ladera Resort Day 3

After waking up again and seeing the morning light and pink clouds above the Pitons, it’s hard not to be a little swept away by how stunning St. Lucia is, and Ladera’s location, between the Pitons especially so.


I made a cup of tea in my room since Dasheene doesn’t begin serving breakfast until 7 am. Then I took a shower in the colorfully tiled rainforest rain shower. I headed to the restaurant. In-house guests get complementary continental breakfast, with the option of an added hot item/ full breakfast for an additional $7. I appreciated the pricing since the last hotel I stayed at charged me $9 for a glass of juice. I had coffee, fresh passion fruit juice and ordered the open faced vegetarian omelette. The squirt gun on my table came in handy when a friendly local bird decided to join me for breakfast. It was a memorable way to start the day.


The staff had helped me arrange the Soufriere Hotwire Zipline tour for later that morning. A driver from the hotel picked me up at 9:30 to take me to the nearby Morne Coubaril Estate for my 10 am Zipline tour. I paid $75 for the tour where my guides helped me into a harness and let me see St. Lucia while riding a course of eight ziplines strung between banyan and mango trees. The views were gorgeous– of Soufriere Harbor, the Pitons, and over a creek. My guides were fun and it felt very safe. I’ve never done a zipline before and really enjoyed the experience.


I headed back to Ladera to enjoy the rest of the day, which I spent drinking coconut water and hitting the gym (to work off all the local rum I’ve been drinking here).


In the evening I headed back to bar at Dasheene Restaurant. The evening was very cloudy and not particulary windy and the sunset was the least spectacular of those I’ve seen here at Ladera. I wasn’t all that hungry so I chose to eat from the lite bites menu at the bar (the chicken satay was delicious).


Then I booked a massage for the next morning so when I depart from St. Lucia I can return home as relaxed as possible. I’m going to miss this place. It’s definitely one of a kind.


I’ve met quite a few honeymoon couples here at Ladera. They all mentioned wanting to come to St. Lucia because they wanted both a beach vacation and an active vacation. Ladera is a great choice– the staff here can set up everything from rainforest adventures to hikes up the Piton, or you can just chill by the pool or take the free shuttle to the beach to paddle board or take a sunset cruise.

Ladera is a great option for couples looking for a romantic glamping getaway, be it a romantic long weekend or a honeymoon.

Glamping in St. Lucia: Ladera Resort Day 2

We woke up to pink clouds and birds chirping underneath the mosquito netting in room PR3 at Ladera. Since the fourth wall is missing, there was definitely an added exotic benefit– St. Lucia’s Pitons can be a bit windy and Ladera is located near Sulphur Springs, which claims to be the “Caribbean’s only drive in volcano.” The occasional waft of sulphur in the air reminded us to get to sulphur springs.

We asked our butler to bring our breakfast via room service so we could get some work done before we took off to explore the island, and the pot of coffee and eggs cooked to order arrived within 30 minutes.

Since my husband’s schedule only allowed him to spend one and a half days with me at Ladera, we prioritized what activities we wanted to do together– and there was no way were were going to miss out on the drive-in volcano– so our first stop was Sulphur Springs.


It’s an interesting layout, with walks among the bubbling water sources that reminded me of the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. There are also a few little water ways where the mineral rich water trickles out and down to mud baths. We skipped the mud bath option. I’ve found that mud baths and cameras are not a great combo for me.


Our next stop was Diamond Waterfalls and Botanical gardens near Soufriere. The nature hike to the waterfalls was lush and beautiful and mangos grow like weeds. A few fell on the car and made quite a thump. There were plenty of other trees growing cashews and There are mineral baths there with more modern tubs as well as vintage (and really cool) ruins from the former aqueducts used prior to the building of the more modern mineral baths.

Diamond Waterfalls was rather pretty and it was nice to get there early enough to not have the place swamped by tourists. Adrian, our driver/guide, showed us where we could feel the natural temperature of the mineral springs and they were indeed warm. But the sun was getting high enough that nature’s hot tub didn’t sound all that refreshing.


We drove back to Ladera for lunch, stopping along the way at a vista point overlooking Soufriere. There a woman named Big Momma convinced us to buy her homemade spiced rum which she claims is the “local Viagra.” Big Momma was entertaining enough to convince us to buy a bottle. When. we returned to the hotel, we sipped a bit and thought it tasted more like cough medicine.


We ordered room service so we could watch the mid-season finale of Mad Men before we encountered too many spoilers on the internet. My husband enjoyed the jerk fish wrap and I sipped on coconut water served in a fresh green coconut. It was fun.


After saying goodbye to my husband, I decided to head to Dasheene for a proper bite to eat. I got the daily special, King Fish, served grilled in a typical Caribbean style. It was excellent and fun to fend off the birds who wanted to share my lunch with me with the water guns on the dining tables.


After enjoying my in-room pool for a bit, I headed back to the bar at Dasheene Restaurant to watch the sunset. Ladera has a prime location for sunset viewing and the best tables in the bar are held for in-house guests. I chatted a bit with the other locals while enjoying the spectacular sunset and cloud action. The restaurant was hopping– with a live band playing everything from reggae to 70s soft rock classics which made it a very pleasant place to spend the night.


Then I returned to my room to check out the stars with the in-room binoculars. I’m not sure I figured out what all the constellations were, despite having a night sky chart, but that is probably because I felt the need to have another rum punch before heading back to my room for the night.

Glamping in St. Lucia: Arrival and First Night at Ladera Resort

My husband and I had been on St. Lucia for a few days and arrived at Ladera around noon. Since 3 pm is the check in time, the staff was very helpful with contacting housekeeping to make sure our room got prioritized by so we could get access to it as soon as possible. We headed to the lovely bar area to get some lunch and found the food both better than what we had at other hotels on the island, and less expensive.


With a glorious view of the Pitons, we kicked back with a rum punch and coco martini and enjoyed the live music from the local musicians playing in the bar area. We even bumped into a honeymooning couple we met at the last resort where we stayed. Ladera Resort is definitely a romantic destination, and the layout isn’t particularly child friendly. This place is pure couples glamping. No surprise it’s a favorite among honeymooners!


Ladera isn’t a beach front property– it’s set clinging to the ridge between the Piton mountains. The resort offers complementary shuttles to nearby Sugar Beach three times a day, but I’m not sure I’ll even go there. I just spent a few days at the beach and between the property’s gorgeous main pool, the room’s in-room pool, and all the activities I’d like to try, I’m not sure beach time is in the cards for me.


Our butler came to get us at the bar about an hour later to drive us to our room, Paradise Ridge #3. When your room is missing a wall, it definitely qualifies as glamping! The room also has it’s own pool (complete with a swing over it) and waterfall. There are fun and stylish madras accents which feel like a nice West Indies touch. The indoor/outdoor layout is very unique. Birds fly in and out, and when there is a touch of rain– the locals call sprinkles “liquid sunshine” here on St. Lucia, you can see the raindrops in your in-room pool. This is definitely rainforest glamping. The room layout seemed to protect well from the wind and rain but you’re definitely one with nature here. It’s fun!


The bedroom is undeniably sexy– the mosquito netting isn’t just for effect! While I’ve had minimal impact with bugs, St. Lucia is indeed a tropical island and you’re one with the elements here. The hotel has citronella burners in the rooms so guests remain comfortable. It’s cooler here than it is at the beach, and the fan keeps the room at a nice temperature. After enjoying our rum punch, a nap was in order. The bed is island chic and comfy. Pack your own eyeshades if you need darkness to nap– with the fourth wall missing, there are (obviously) no blackout curtains.


Paradise Ridge #3 is very unique, with colorful tile, a brightly tiled rain shower in the bathroom, which also has side by side sinks, a separate toilet area and plenty of storage. There is a large closet, and outlets for both US and UK plugs. There is wifi on the property (free).  There is a comfy seating area, a dining table, a desk, wifi, and phone provided so you can contact your butler for service or a shuttle ride.


After our nap, we decided to head into the nearby town of Soufriere to watch the sunset and get some dinner. We ate at the local and charming Petit Peak restaurant and bar, which caters to locals as well as tourists. The view of the sunset was spectacular and paired nicely with local Piton beer. For dinner we ate coconut shrimp and outstanding creole chicken. We returned back to Ladera for a little stargazing. Among the in-room amenities with binoculars & a map of the night sky so you can enjoy the view of the stars. It was a bit cloudy, but still a lovely way to end the first, fabulous day at Ladera. Then we climbed underneath the mosquito netting and fell quickly asleep.