Soufriere


The town of Soufriere lies on the West coast of St.Licia. Its history dates back to the 17th century and is home to the world famous twin peaks of The Pitons, which were declared a World Heritage Site on 14th February 2005.

The Amerindians were the first to settle in Soufrie thousands of years ago. Evidence of their settlements can be found in petroglyphs at Stonefield Estate, Belfond and Jalouise. The French named the town after the Sulphur Springs that they found there.

in 1713 a 2,000 acre grant was made to the Devaux family by King Louis XVI, and Soufriere became the first town in St.Lucia. By then the estate which is known as Soufriere Estate was producing cotton, tobacco, coffee and cocoa. Then sugar became the islands major cash crop and the town of Soufriere prospered.

After the French Revolution, a number of slaves who had been set free, joined forces with deserted soldiers to form a group known as Brigands. This group spread carnage throughout Soufriere until they were subdued five years later. Their leader being beheaded at the Soufriere square.

In about 1815 after a series of wars with the French, the Island became British territory although the french influence still remained strong. Many family names and places in Soufriere still bears that influence.

Sulphur Springs, Diamond Falls, mineral baths and the Botanical gardens are major tourist attractions for the town of Soufriere. The mineral baths were built in 1784 by Baron de Laborie and restored by Andre du Boulay from the ruins caused by wars and disasters. Sulphur Springs are often referred to as the world's only drive in Volcano.

Soufriere has suffered many disasters. There was the great hurricane of 1780, followed by others in 1817, 1831, 1898, 1980 1994, 1999 and the most recent in 2010, Hurricane Thomas which also caused severe damage and loss of life. Through all these disasters the people of Soufriere have stood tall and still stand tall today.