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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sharing Nature; a tour guide’s experience

Article by Christele Albert
Photos © Te-Hsin Tsai

Hi, I am Christele and I have been a tour guide for over 14 years attached to the Forestry Department and I can say it has been a great experience; especially since I have the opportunity of meeting new people every day and interacting with them. Being a tour guide is fun for I have learnt a lot like speaking different languages such as German, French and a little Spanish.

 As a tour guide, walking through the Tropical rainforest makes me feel contented. I have the privilege on enjoying the sounds of the different birds like Bullfinches, Banana quits, Grackles , Zanaida doves and others. Also, the fresh cool breeze is very rejuvenating along with the spectacular fragrances coming from the different  trees such as Gomier, Lansan and  Caribbean pines just to mention a few.

I love my job, it’s the bomb as some would say because it doesn’t just entail walking the forest trail but also the selling of souvenirs to visitors for them to take back home; example bird cards, posters, post cards and lots more. I am happy to think that they are taking a piece of St. Lucia back home with them and attached to these souvenirs are fond memories of which I am a part.

 There is also an interpretation center where one can find good information where also many schools would come to view puppet shows on the many environmental issues we are challenged with today.This includes all types of schools; pre-schools, primary, secondary, and colleges.  There at the Forestry Department you can find a beautiful dry forest along with the Medicinal Garden and amazingly the only zoo found in St Lucia where one has an opportunity to see the national bird of St Lucia (Amazona versicolor) and some exotic animals like the Macaw parrots, green monkeys and more.

I am elated to have shared my experience with you and I hope to continue sharing the beauty of nature with all those who visit. Don’t forget when you visit the forest to take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints and kill nothing but time.