Castries /ˈkæstriːz/ (listen), population 20,000, aggl. 53,639, is the capital and largest city of Saint Lucia, an island country in the Caribbean. The quarter with the same name had a population of 70,000 on 22 May 2013 and stretches over an area of 80 km2 (31 sq mi).

Castries is in a flood gut and is built on reclaimed land. It houses the seat of government and the head offices of many of foreign and local businesses. The city's design is in a grid pattern. Its sheltered harbour receives cargo vessels, ferry boats, and cruise ships. It houses duty-free shopping facilities such as Point Seraphine and La Place Carenage. Many restaurants offer menus from local to Chinese. Supermarkets and other shopping facilities provide goods. The city is well served by a bus system and taxi service.

St Lucia's main post office is in Castries. Because most parts of the country do not use standard street addresses, mail is largely sent to P.O. boxes. Any mail sent without a town name ends up in the Castries post office.

Castries is the birthplace of Arthur Lewis, winner of the 1979 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics, as well as of Derek Walcott, winner of the 1992 Nobel Prize for Literature.

Statio Haud Malefida Carinis  ("A Safe Harbour for Ships")[1]
The Quarter of Castries, showing Castries city (red dot)
The Quarter of Castries, showing Castries city (red dot)
Coordinates: 14°01′N 60°59′W / 14.017°N 60.983°WCoordinates: 14°01′N 60°59′W / 14.017°N 60.983°W
Country Saint Lucia
QuarterCastries Quarter
Founded1650 as "Carenage"
Renamed1756 as "Castries"
Founded bythe French
Named forCharles Eugène Gabriel de La Croix, marquis de Castries
 • Governing bodyCastries City Council
 • Total79 km2 (30.5 sq mi)
Elevation2 m (6.56 ft)
 • Total70,000
 • Density890/km2 (2,300/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC-4 (Eastern Caribbean Time Zone (ECT))
Area code(s)758
HDI (2006)0.814 – high


In 1650, the fort aupres du Petit Cul-de-Sac et de la riviere du Carénage was founded by a group of 40 Frenchmen led by de Rousselan, when St. Lucia was purchased by Capt. du Parquet and Monsieur Houel from the French West India Company. The capital was moved to the south side of the harbor in 1769 by Gov. Baron de Micoud. In 1785, the village of Carénage was renamed Castries, after Charles Eugène Gabriel de La Croix, marquis de Castries, the French Minister of the Navy and Colonies.[4]

In 1835, the British built the western wharf in preparation for the coaling trade and the first steamship arrived in 1841, the RMS Solway.[4]:163,243–244

During World War II on 9 March 1942, the German U-161 sailed into Castries harbor at night and sank two allied ships,[4]:275[5] including the Canadian ocean liner RMS Lady Nelson, which was subsequently refloated in the harbour and taken to Canada to be converted to a hospital ship.

Castries has been rebuilt many times, following major fires on 15 Oct. 1805, 6 April 1813, and most notably on 19 June 1948.[4]:124–125,289



One of the major tourist areas in St. Lucia, Castries is a port of call for cruise ships. They dock at Pointe Seraphine, to the north of the harbour.

Castries has landmarks, such as the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Derek Walcott Square (renamed from Columbus Square to honor the island's Nobel Prize-winning poet, Derek Walcott), the City Library, the Government House, and Fort Charlotte, at the top of Morne Fortune (an 845-foot or 258 m hill). Beaches include Vigie Beach, Malabar Beach, Choc Beach, and La Toc Beach.


Fire Station Castries

Castries is served by George F. L. Charles Airport, also known as Vigie Airport. Passengers on longer flights arrive at Hewanorra International Airport, near Vieux-Fort. The drive between Hewanorra and Castries can take an hour and a half. Helicopter service between the airports shortens travel time.

Ferries run between Castries and Fort-de-France, Martinique. Yachts may dock in Castries, though they must clear customs first. When the customs area is full, yachts must anchor at the quarantine dock to wait; those that do not are fined. Afterward, yachts may anchor in front of Castries Town or Vigie Creek.

Standard bus routes run from Castries to all outlying districts on the island. The buses are private (not subsidized by government) bearing green license plates with numbers that start with an M—for example, M456. The buses line up in designated areas to pick up passengers. The bus fronts displays a route band, a luminescent sign that indicates which part of the island the bus is traveling to. To get to other areas, one can use the buses or the taxi service, which have blue license plates. Private minivan buses offer transportation from bus stops and can be flagged down on the roadside. Buses are the most affordable, local way of getting around st Lucia and great way to experience island life, although many attractions and parts of the island are not serviced by public transportation. Privately owned and operated 14–seater minivans with green “M” license plates run individual routes between major communities. There is no schedule, simply wave them down along the main road and pay when you get off, unless the driver collects the fare before leaving. Within larger communities, there are specific bus stops, and buses will not depart until they are full. You may have to wait up to 30 minutes, and in most places public transportation stops after 6 pm.

Political institutions

As well as being the capital city of Saint Lucia, Castries hosts the secretariat of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States. Castries also hosts the headquarters of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.

In October 2008, the American Chamber of Commerce, Saint Lucia, was established. The establishment of a chamber was encouraged by the U.S. Embassy, Barbados. Hugh W. Jones was elected and installed as its first president.

A number of international embassies and consulates keep their headquarters in Castries. They include the Organization of American States, British High Commission, Mexican Embassy, embassy of the Republic of China (Taiwan) (in Rodney Bay), Dominican Republic Consulate, French Embassy, Italian Vice Consulate, Jamaican Consulate, Netherlands Consulate, Norwegian Consulate, Brazilian Embassy and Venezuelan Embassy.

Panorama of the Port of Castries from Morne Fortune
Port of Castries
Panorama of the Port of Castries

See also


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2009-07-29.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Weather in Castries. Current weather |". Retrieved 2016-08-10.
  3. ^ "St Lucia Travel Guide and Travel Information". Archived from the original on 2010-06-08. Retrieved 2016-08-10.
  4. ^ a b c d Harmsen, Jolien; Ellis, Guy; Devaux, Robert (2014). A History of St Lucia. Vieux Fort: Lighthouse Road. p. 23,43–44,52,163. ISBN 9789769534001.
  5. ^ Hubbard, Vincent (2002). A History of St. Kitts. Macmillan Caribbean. p. 117. ISBN 9780333747605.

External links

Adolphe Thiers

Marie Joseph Louis Adolphe Thiers (French: [lwi adɔlf tjɛʁ]; 15 April 1797 – 3 September 1877) was a French statesman and historian. He was the second elected President of France, and the first President of the French Third Republic.

Thiers was a key figure in the July Revolution of 1830, which overthrew the Bourbon monarchy, and the French Revolution of 1848, which established the Second French Republic. He served as a prime minister in 1836, 1840 and 1848, dedicated the Arc de Triomphe, and arranged the return to France of the ashes of Napoleon from Saint-Helena. He was first a supporter, then a vocal opponent of Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte (who served from 1848 to 1852 as President of the Second Republic and as Emperor Napoleon III, reigning from 1852 to 1871). When Napoleon III seized power, Thiers was arrested and briefly expelled from France. He then returned and became an opponent of the government.

Following the defeat of France in the Franco-German War, which Thiers opposed, he was elected chief executive of the new French government and negotiated the end of the war. When the Paris Commune seized power in March 1871, Thiers gave the orders to the army for its suppression. At the age of seventy-four, he was named President of the Republic by the French National Assembly in August 1871. His chief accomplishment as president was to achieve the departure of German soldiers from most of French territory two years ahead of schedule. Opposed by the monarchists in the French assembly and the left wing of the Republicans, he resigned on 24 May 1873, and was replaced as President by Patrice de Mac-Mahon, Duke of Magenta. When he died in 1877, his funeral became a major political event; the procession was led by two of the leaders of the republican movement, Victor Hugo and Leon Gambetta, who, at the time of his death, were his allies against the conservative monarchists.

He was also a notable literary figure, the author of a very successful ten-volume history of the French Revolution, and a twenty-volume history of the Consulate and Empire of Napoleon Bonaparte. In 1834 he was elected to the Académie Française.

Castries, Hérault

Castries (Occitan: Càstias) is a commune in the Hérault department in southern France.

Castries Quarter

Castries Quarter is one of eleven Quarters on the Caribbean island nation of Saint Lucia. According to the 2012 census, the population of the Quarter was 80,573, having shown a slow but steady increase over the past ten years.[1] The capital of Saint Lucia, the city of Castries, is located in this Quarter. During the Saint Lucia Jazz Festival, the city of Castries plays host to several stages.

Castries is a port city. Shoppers flock to the city's dozens of stores and to Castries Market for fruits, vegetables and handicrafts. Sightseers admire murals painted by a local artist inside Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, and relax in Derek Walcott Square, named for the St. Lucian Nobel Prize–winning poet. Atop Morne Fortune (Hill of Good Luck) – where the French and English battled over control of the island – visitors take in panoramic vistas.

Castries is home to some of the most popular resorts on island, including The BodyHoliday LeSport, Rendezvous Couples Resort, Windjammer Landing, Sandals Resorts, and more.

Charles Eugène Gabriel de La Croix

Charles Eugène Gabriel de La Croix de Castries, marquis de Castries, baron des États de Languedoc, comte de Charlus, baron de Castelnau et de Montjouvent, seigneur de Puylaurens et de Lézignan (25 February 1727, Paris – 11 January 1801, Wolfenbüttel) was a French marshal. He was the son of Joseph François de La Croix de Castries, marquis de Castries, and his second wife, Marie-Françoise de Lévis de Charlus.

Christian de Castries

Christian Marie Ferdinand de la Croix de Castries (11 August 1902 – 29 July 1991) was the French commander at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu in 1954.


Fort-Liberté (Haitian Creole: Fòlibète) is a commune and administrative capital of the Nord-Est department of Haiti. It is close to the border of the Dominican Republic and is one of the oldest cities in the country. Haiti's independence was proclaimed here on November 29, 1803.The area around Fort-Liberté was originally inhabited by Indigenous peoples of the Americas, and later by Spanish colonists, who founded the city of Bayaja in 1578, but abandoned it in 1605. The site was reoccupied by the French in 1732 as Fort-Dauphin; it was captured by Spanish forces in 1794, restored to the French in 1801 and then surrendered to the British on 8 September 1803, shortly before the declaration of independence. The city has undergone a succession of name changes: Bayaja (1578), Fort-Dauphin (1732), Fort St. Joseph (1804), Fort-Royal (1811) and finally Fort-Liberté (1820). The town is the see city of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Fort-Liberté.

Henri de Castries

Henri de La Croix de Castries (born 15 August 1954) is a French businessman. He was chairman and CEO of AXA until retiring from both roles on 1 September 2016.

Hewanorra International Airport

Hewanorra International Airport (IATA: UVF, ICAO: TLPL), located near Vieux Fort Quarter, Saint Lucia, in the Caribbean, is the larger of Saint Lucia's two airports and is managed by the Saint Lucia Air and Seaports Authority (SLASPA). It is on the southern cape of the island, about 53.4 km (33.2 mi) from the capital city, Castries.

The airport is a Fire Category 9 facility that handles 500,000 passengers a year and can accommodate Boeing 747, Airbus A330, Airbus A340, Boeing 777, and other long-range intercontinental aircraft. Aircraft maintenance is carried out by Caribbean Dispatch Services. The country's smaller airport, George F. L. Charles Airport, is located in Castries and handles inter-Caribbean passenger flights, which are operated with turboprop and prop aircraft.

House of Assembly of Saint Lucia

The Parliament of Saint Lucia has two chambers. The House of Assembly is the popular elected chamber of the Legislature. It has 17 or 18 members: 17 members elected for a five-year term in single-seat constituencies, and a speaker elected by the 17 members, who may be one of their number or a person chosen from outside the House.

Joy-Ann Biscette

Joy-Ann Biscette is a beauty queen that has represented St. Lucia at several regional and international pageants from 2005 to 2013.

After winning a local pageant in St. Lucia in 2005, she represented the country at Miss World 2008 in South Africa and Miss Jamzone 2010 held in Guyana where she was first runner up. Having worked in the sales and service sector of the tourism industry and as an Associate degree holder from Arthur Lewis Community College she entered the Miss St Lucia Universe pageant and won. As Miss St. Lucia Universe, she went to Miss Universe 2011 held in São Paulo, Brazil. In 2013 she also participated as Miss St. Lucia in the Caribbean Miss World pageant, placing as the 3rd runner up.

Kelvin Felix

Kelvin Edward Cardinal Felix (born 15 February 1933) is the Roman Catholic Archbishop emeritus of Castries. He was born in Roseau, Dominica, on 15 February 1933. He became a cardinal at the papal consistory held on 22 February 2014.

La Vacquerie-et-Saint-Martin-de-Castries

La Vacquerie-et-Saint-Martin-de-Castries is a commune in the Hérault department in the Occitanie region

in southern France.

List of ambassadors of Saint Lucia to China

The Saint Lucianese ambassador in Taipei is the official representative of the Government in Castries to the Government of Taiwan.

Mindoo Phillip Park

Mindoo Phillip Park is a multipurpose stadium located in Marchand, Castries, Saint Lucia. It is a training and competition venue for cricket, football, rugby and track and field, among other sports. It was formerly a home venue for the Windward Islands cricket team.

The ground hosted two One Day Internationals, in 1978 and 1984. Both matches involved West Indies and Australia. On 12 April 1978, Australia beat West Indies by two wickets. On 19 April 1984, West Indies returned the favour, winning by seven wickets.

First-class cricket has not been played at Mindoo Phillip Park since 2001 due to the construction of Beausejour Stadium.

The venue had previously been known as Victoria Park, but in 1979 was renamed in honour of Francis Mindoo Phillip, widely acclaimed as the island's greatest cricketer.

Miss St. Lucia

Miss St. Lucia is a national competition pageant that selects St. Lucia's representative to the Miss Universe pageant. This pageant has officially become national for Miss Universe, Miss World

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Castries

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Castries (Latin: Archidioecesis Castriensis) is an archdiocese of the Latin Rite of the Roman Catholic Church in the Caribbean. The archdiocese consists of the entirety of the former British dependency of Saint Lucia and is a metropolitan see, the suffragans of the Castries Province being the Dioceses of Roseau, Saint George's in Grenada, St. John's-Basseterre and Kingstown. The archdiocese is a member of the Antilles Episcopal Conference.

Erected as the Diocese of Castries in 1956 from its then-metropolitan see of Port of Spain, it was elevated as an archdiocese in November 1974.

The current archbishop is Robert Rivas, O.P.. The cathedral is the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, a minor basilica located in Derek Walcott Square, Castries.

SLFA First Division

The SLFA First Division (previously known as the Gold Division) is the top division of the Saint Lucia Football Association.

Saint Lucia

Saint Lucia ( (listen); French: Sainte-Lucie) is a sovereign island country in the West Indies in the eastern Caribbean Sea on the boundary with the Atlantic Ocean. The island was previously called Iyonola, the name given to the island by the native Amerindians and later, Hewanorra, the name given by the native Caribs. Part of the Lesser Antilles, it is located north/northeast of the island of Saint Vincent, northwest of Barbados and south of Martinique. It covers a land area of 617 km2 (238 square miles) and reported a population of 165,595 in the 2010 census. Its capital is Castries.

The French were the island's first European settlers. They signed a treaty with the native Island Caribs in 1660. England took control of the island from 1663 to 1667. In ensuing years, it was at war with France fourteen times, and the rule of the island changed frequently (it was ruled seven times each by the French and British). In 1814, the British took definitive control of the island. Because it switched so often between British and French control, Saint Lucia was also known as the "Helen of the West Indies" after the Greek mythology "Helen of Troy".

Representative government came about in 1840 (universal suffrage was established in 1953). From 1958 to 1962, the island was a member of the West Indies Federation. On 22 February 1979, Saint Lucia became an independent state and a member of the Commonwealth of Nations. Saint Lucia is a mixed jurisdiction, meaning that it has a legal system based in part on both the civil law and English common law. The Civil Code of St. Lucia of 1867 was based on the Quebec Civil Code of 1866, as supplemented by English common law-style legislation. It is also a member of Organisation internationale de la Francophonie.

Saint Lucia Red Cross

The Saint Lucia Red Cross ("SLRC") was founded in 1949 as a branch of the British Red Cross and became a society of its own in 1983. It has its headquarters in Castries, Saint Lucia.

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