St Lucia Fact File
Location: St Lucia is an island in the Caribbean Sea. It is one of the Windward Islands and part of the chain of islands called the Lesser Antilles.
Population: Approximately 170,000
Area: 617 sq km
Currency: East Caribbean Dollar
Official Language: English (although Saint Lucian Creole is spoken by most people)
The St Lucian Flag
The St Lucian flag was designed by Dunstan St Omer, an artist from St Lucia. The blue represents the sky and the sea and the arrow shape represents the Pitons, the two large peaks which rise from the island. The flag has been used since 1967.
Other Facts About St Lucia
- Afro-Caribbean people make up about 3 quarters of the population.
- Saint Lucia was named after Saint Lucy of Syracuse. The French gave St Lucia its name and they were the first Europeans to colonise the island in the 1660s.
- The control of St Lucia switched from the French to English many times in the 17th and 18th centuries. In 1814, Britain took control of the island.
- The British set up a legal system based on the one used in England.
- St Lucia became an independent state on 22nd February 1979. This day is a public holiday in St Lucia.
- In the late 18th century there were serious conflicts between Afro-Caribbean slaves and ex-slaves, and the British army and the white slave-owners.
- One of St Lucia’s main export is bananas, but they also export beer and petroleum oils.
- The biggest St Lucian festival is the Saint Lucia Jazz Festival in May. Musicians come from all over the world to take part in this celebration.
- Cricket is massively popular in St Lucia.
- All children have to go to school between the ages of 5 and 15.
- Tourism is very important to the St Lucian economy. Many people come to St Lucia every year to see the peaks of The Pitons or to visit the drive-in volcano at Sulphur Springs (Soufriere). Many tourists come to St Lucia as part of a Caribbean cruise.