The Vermont Nature Trail takes you through lush rainforest with an amazing variety of tropical flora, ending up with beautiful scenery and a chance to see the famous St. Vincent Parrot in its natural habitat. Majestic cliffs reach for the sky, giving way to sweeping valleys. Ambient temperatures and abundant rainfall give rise to profusion in the growth of vegetation. The trail is in the picturesque Buccament valley within the St. Vincent Parrot Reserve and the more encompassing proposed Central Forest Reserve.
Vermont Nature TrailThe trail is approximately 2 miles (3.5 km) long, and winds through lush primary and secondary rainforest and plantations, offering visitors breath-taking panoramic views of the surrounding landscape and close-ups of the country’s endemic flora and fauna. The trail ascends to the lookout and offers great hiking for all ages and abilities.
Opening hours: 7am – 5pm (facilities open 9am – 5pm)
Fees: $5 EC
Distance from Kingstown: 9 miles (14 km) - approximately 30 minutes
Facilities: Kiosk, gift shop, washrooms, visitors centre and benches along the trail
Sightings of the rare St. Vincent Parrot are practically guaranteed. Listen for their unmistakable calls and then look out from the view point as they fly above the forest canopy in front of you. The Vermont Nature Trails are awash with a wide array of plants, birdlife and other fauna. Floral species of note include the Santinay Sloanea caribeae, Gommier Dacroydes excelsa, Pigeon berry Byrsonima trinitensis, and the endemics: Gri-gri Palm Aiphanes vincentii, Begonia rotundifolia, the epiphytic Peperomia cuneata and P. vincentinum and the Giant Tree fern Cyathea tenera. Blue mahoe Hibiscus elatus, Caribbean Pine Pinus caribae var. hondurensis and Galba caloyphyllum antilannum are the main plantation species.
Designated by BirdLife International as an Important Bird Area (IBA) in the Caribbean, the Trail supports populations of rainforest bird species including the vulnerable St. Vincent Parrot Amazona giuldingii, thethreatened Whistling warbler Cathropeza bishop, the threatened endemic race of House Wren Troglodytes aedon musica, the Purple-throated Carib Eulampis juglaris, Common Black hawk buteogallus anthracinus, and the Mountain dove Geotrygon Montana. Reptilian species include the endemic lizard Anolis griseus and the regionally endemic congo snake Mastigodyryas brusei. The Agouti Dasyproctor agouti and Oppossum Marsupialis insularis are among the mammalian species in the reserve.
The site is managed by the Buccament Development Organisation. Download the site rules.
The La Soufriere Cross Country Trail winds its way from sea level up to the top of the majestic La Soufriere Volcano (4048ft/ 1178m). Granite cliffs reach for the sky, giving way to sweeping valleys and deep gorges and eventually the immense volcanic crater. The walk to the crater is moderately difficult, and takes about two hours uphill from the windward side.
The La Soufriere Cross Country Trail snakes across the width of St Vincent, and can be walked from either the leeward or windward coast. The total trail is approximately 9 miles (15 km) long and offers visitors breath-taking panoramic views of the surrounding land and seascape and close encounters with fauna.
The easiest and most popular walk is a return trip to the crater from the windward (east) side, which begins at the Rabacca trail head near Georgetown - this takes about two hours to get to the summit, and is about 4 miles (6 km) long. The walk is moderately difficult, and a guide is mandatory for visitors. Visitors should be careful at the summit, it is often covered in thick cloud which makes it cold, and the edge of the crater difficult to see. It is recommended that hikers begin in the morning, to give enough time to appreciate the views and get back down before dark.
The leeward approach is longer and more difficult and the trail is more overgrown. Keen hikers can walk the whole trail from coast to coast – about a 6 hour walk. At the summit, there is a small and difficult trail down into the crater which will add an extra two hours to the hike. Please note that the trails do not begin at towns or villages, so it is important to organise transport before you hike.
Opening hours: 7.30am – 3.30pm
Distance from Kingstown:
Facilities: At the start of the trail on the windward side, there is a visitor’s centre, gazebos, payphone, restrooms and parking. There are no facilities or services on the trail, or on the leeward trail.
Guides: All foreign visitors not in the company of Vincentian nationals must be accompanied onto the trail by a certified tour guide. Guides can be organised through the NPA.
It is important to prepare for your hike – take enough food and water, and extra layers of clothes because it is often cold and windy at the summit. Download the site rules and site brochure.
The La Soufriere Cross Country Trail is awash with a wide diversity of plants, birdlife and other fauna. Rugged and enchanting landscapes, mild temperatures, fertile volcanic soils and abundant rainfall give rise to a profusion of growth of Coastal Scrub, Montane Forest, Palm Brake and Elfin
Woodland. Floral species of note include the abundant Spanish Ash (Inga vera), Gunstock (Freizera hursuta), Sweetwood (Lauraceae sp.), and the endemics: Begonia rotundifolia, the Melastome Tibouchina cistoides, the epiphytic Peperomia cuneata and P. vincentinum and the Giant Tree fern (Cyathea tenera).
Designated by BirdLife International as an Important Bird Area in the Caribbean, the volcano’s slopes support populations of forest bird species including rare sightings of the St. Vincent Parrot (Amazona giuldingii), theWhistling warbler (Cathropeza bishop), the endemic race of House Wren (Troglodytes aedon musicaI), Rufous-throated Solitaire (Myadestes genibarbis), Purple-throated Carib (Eulampis juglaris), Broad-wing hawk (Buteo playtiptirus), and the Mountain dove (Geotrygon Montana). Reptilian species include the endemic lizards (Anolis griseus and A. vincentiana)and the endemic Red-legged Tree Frog (Eleutherodactylus shrevei. The Agouti (Dasyproctor agouti)and Oppossum (Marsupialis insularis)are among the mammals that can be seen from the trail.
The Falls of Baleine is open to the public.
Persons visiting the Falls of Baleine should exercise caution on the Jetty and pathway to the Falls.
Do not visit the falls during periods of heavy rainfall as the area can become prone to flowing and rock fall.
Children should be supervisor by an adult at all times.
Visitors to the Falls of Baleine are encouraged to take away their garbage and dispose of it responsibly.
No glass bottles are permitted on site.
Nude bathing is prohibited.
Dark View Falls are two spectacular waterfalls, one above the other, cascading down high cliff faces and plunging into natural pools. There is a short and easy hike to the falls through rainforest and across the Richmond River via either a bamboo bridge or conventional bridge. You pass through a clearing in the middle of a pretty bamboo grove before reaching the first tall waterfall. Another short, but more difficult walk will take you up to the second waterfall, directly above the first. The waterfalls flow all year from a tributary of the Richmond River.
Opening hours: 9am – 5pm
Fees: $5 EC
Distance from Kingstown: 24 miles (38 km) – 1 hour 30 minutes drive
Facilities: At the start of the trail there is a welcome centre and ticket booth, food kiosk and parking. At the falls there are gazebos, a change room, picnic area and a viewing platform, as well as the bathing pools.
Dark View Falls are co-managed by the North Leeward Tourism Association.
The Cumberland Nature Trail winds its way through beautiful rainforest including the Cumberland Forest Reserve, home of many unique flora and fauna.
There are many species of birds along the trail including the St. Vincent Parrot, Whistling Warbler, Short Tail Swift, Brown Trembler, Lesser Antillean Tanager, and Grenada Fly Catcher. The trail is 1.6 miles (2.5km) long, about 1.5-2 hours walking. Bird watching booths are scattered along the trail, and guides are available for hire.
The trail is currently open to visitors, however some sections of the trail are overgrown, steep and dangerous (particularly if it rains). Visitors should take sensible precautions when hiking the trail.
Opening hours: 7am – 5pm
Fees: $5 EC
Distance from Kingstown: 25 miles (40 km) - 1 hour 20 minutes drive
Facilities: Visitor centre with at the start of the trail and a ticket booth, parking and restrooms
The trail is co-managed by the Cumberland Valley Ecotourism Organisation.
The Cumberland Nature Trail is closed to the Public effective Monday 30th January 2017.