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Castries, St. Lucia

St. Lucia boasts some of the Caribbean’s most idyllic beaches, many near its capital of Castries. This paradise is so seductive that the British and French fought over it for 150 years. The British finally triumphed in 1814. Today, St. Lucia is a sovereign nation, but it is still part of the British Commonwealth. The island has a rich artistic heritage: the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Castries is adorned with lush murals painted by a local artist and batik artisans keep a cherished tradition alive in their shops.