Sunday, 16 August 2015 13:47

St. Lucia's Volcano

The Caribbean's only drive-in volcano

The well-known Sulphur Springs in Saint Lucia is the hottest and most active geothermal area in the Lesser Antilles. The park is approximately 45 hectares and is billed as the Caribbean’s only drive-in volcano. A walk through the crater takes you past pools and hot springs bubbling and belching with sulphur-laden steam. Just outside the Springs, you can bathe in the warm sulphuric pools, reputed for its soothing effects. The Sulphur Springs forms part of the story of the creation of the entire Caribbean basin.

The main area of Sulphur Springs comprises numerous hot springs, bubbling mud pools and fumaroles (steam vents) in an area of strongly hydrothermally altered clay-rich rock approximately 200 m x 100 m in size. Many fumaroles have temperatures 100°C or hotter, and temperatures of up to 172°C have been recorded

Geothermal systems such as Sulphur Springs form when rainwater seeps into the ground where it is heated by hot rock. The hot water becomes buoyant, and rises back to the surface along cracks. In some places the water is heated so much that it rises as steam. The heat source for the Sulphur Springs geothermal system is probably the cooling magma body responsible for the young volcanism of the Soufrière Volcanic Centre.

However upon arrival, administration has tried their best to make this place very informative and as visitor friendly as possible. There are a few major attractions here including a mini picnic park where one can enjoy a snack and a drink while basking in the aura of caribbean history. On site are also a total of four mineral pools where one can enjoy the hot, mineral rich water from either the black mineral pool or the love pool. The sulphur springs park is also known for it works class interpretation center.

A tour is available daily at the park and lasts between 20 to 30 minutes. On this tour there is a very well done 5 minute animation that shows you the history of the park. You are guaranteed to leave this place satisfied and well informed.