ULTIMATE Coconut Bay St Lucia Review – the good and the bad!

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We’ve just returned from a five night stay at the Coconut Bay Beach Resort in beautiful St. Lucia. We had a lovely holiday there enjoying the pools and beaches at this all-inclusive resort, with a big family group, ranging in age from 7 to 70. So was Coconut Bay worth it? Here are all the best (and worst) things about the resort!

Coconut Bay Resort in St Lucia

With Florida as our home base, we’ve spent more than our fair share of vacation time in the Caribbean islands. But St. Lucia has somehow evaded us until now! And I’m so glad we finally discovered this beautiful island. 

We opted to stay at Coconut Bay Beach Resort, an all-inclusive resort that sits on 85 acres of land, including a mile long private beach alongside the Atlantic Ocean!

I apologize in advance for the length of this article- because this may just be the longest article ever written about Coconut Bay Resort. But I promise it’s also the most thorough. And if you’re going to spend your hard earned vacation money there, you want all the details, right? 

Booking Tip: If you do decide to book a stay at Coconut Bay Beach Resort, I recommend checking out the rates at Booking.com. We prefer to book our hotels through them whenever possible, because they tend to have competitive rates and very generous cancellation policies.

Coconut Bay Resort Location & Resort Map

So first of all, where exactly is Coconut Bay Resort? It’s located on the Atlantic side of St. Lucia, on the southeast edge of the island, near the town of Vieux Fort. It is a pretty good distance from the main towns of Soufriere (1 hour), Castries (1 1/2 hours), and Rodney Bay (2 hours) – so it is a bit isolated in that way. here’s a map of the area surrounding the hotel.

map of st lucia with Coconut Bay resort and major towns

Whether the location is a pro or con really depends on what you plan to do in St. Lucia. If you want to spend a lot of time in the main towns or enjoy a lot of nightlife outside of the resorts, this is probably not the area you would want to stay in.

The Atlantic beaches on the East side of the island are also much windier and with rougher water than those on the western side of the island, which is on the Caribbean Sea. The windier side is great for activities like kitesurfing, and less great for floating and snorkeling.

However, Coconut Bay is also just a few minutes ride from the main airport (Hewanorra International Airport) with easy access to a beach, beautiful oceanfront pools, and an incredible amount of family friendly amenities. And it’s simple to book excursions and day trips to other parts of the island. We found the location worked well for us – venturing out to explore for two days and enjoying the many resort amenities the rest of the time.

The resort itself is pretty large as well. There are three distinct hotel areas (more on those below), including five pools and a water park! Here’s a map of the property from our most recent visit. 

map of Coconut Bay Beach Resort in St Lucia

Getting to Coconut Bay

Coconut Bay is just a five minute drive from Hewanorra International Airport (UVF), and has a free shuttle service from the airport to the hotel. It doesn’t get more convenient than that! 

When you arrive, you’ll pick up your bags and head to the Coconut Bay kiosk by the taxi line. The staff there will tag your luggage with your room number and get you on a shuttle. Easy peasy! You’ll even be met with a cooling towel and a fresh welcome cocktail when you arrive at the resort. The warm greeting reminded me of our honeymoon in Thailand!

Pro Tip: When you exit baggage claim, there will be porters in pink shirts looking to help with your bags. These guys are not from the resort. So if you don’t want assistance, pass them by and make your way to that Coconut Bay kiosk. Or if you want some help (we did!), tip them a few bucks and they’ll take your bags over to the kiosk for you.

And when it’s time to head back to the airport for departure, you can hop on a free shuttle back as well. Just let the front desk know your flight time, and they will advise you of the shuttle departure time.

Three Hotels in One – Coconut Bay’s Splash vs Harmony vs Serenity

As I mentioned, there are three distinct properties within Coconut Bay, almost like three resorts in one! (Take a look back at the map above for a visual!) Here are the three hotel areas you can choose from: 

Splash at Coconut Bay

Splash is the family friendly side of the resort, and is where most of the action can be found. There are two large pools, including the main Splash pool where most activities and entertainment are hosted. It’s also where you’ll find the lazy river and water slides.

If you are traveling as a family with kids – this is your only option. But don’t worry, Splash actually is the majority of the resort (take a look at the map above) and is where your kids will want to be anyway. Adult (18+) guests staying at Splash can also access the amenities on the adults-only Harmony side of the resort. So if you can convince your kids to go to the kids’ club for a bit, you can check out both areas.

Check Rates: You can check out the all-inclusive rates here. Just select one of the rooms types labeled “Splash”!

Harmony at Coconut Bay

Harmony is the adults only side of the resort, and is only for guests 18+ years of age. The rooms at Splash and Harmony are essentially the same style, design, and layouts. So the main difference between the two areas is really just the adults only designation.

Harmony has two picturesque adults only pools and a hot tub, which are smaller and quieter than the pools found on the Splash side. But of course, guests staying at Harmony can also enjoy the amenities over on the Splash side, so you have access to the best of both worlds.

Check Rates: You can check out the all-inclusive rates here. Just select one of the rooms types labeled “Harmony”!

Serenity at Coconut Bay

Serenity is tucked away from the other two area of the resort and is a luxury hotel exclusively for adult couples (19+ years of age). The 36 rooms are all suite style with private plunge pools and butler service. Very fancy! 

It has it’s own Serenity pool and includes meals at The Greathouse restaurant. Guests staying at Serenity have access to all of the other areas of the resort as well – but guests from Splash and Harmony can not access the amenities at Serenity. If I was going on a honeymoon – this is totally what I would pick.

Check Rates: You can check out the all-inclusive rates at Serenity here!

Is the Concierge upgrade worth it? 

Both Harmony and Splash offer a concierge package at an additional cost. It includes a few things: 

4th Floor Room – The concierge rooms are on the 4th (top) floor of the resort. So, in theory you will have a better view. But in reality, there’s not much of a difference between the view on the third and fourth floors. They’re both great.

Advance Dinner Reservations – There are a few specialty restaurants available in addition to the dinner buffet (see more on dining below!) and they do have limited seating. Normally, these restaurants can not be reserved until you arrive on property but the concierge package gets you advance reservations. If you are really keen on trying all the restaurants and not having to wait in line to make restaurant reservations on site, this can be a very nice perk.

Bottles of Alcohol in the Room – The concierge will arrange for a couple bottles of liquor to be sent to your room for in-room drinks. Nice, for sure. But you’re already in an all-inclusive resort where drinks are free. And all of the rooms have water, soft drinks, and beer in the fridge already. So I personally wouldn’t pay an upcharge just for this. Plus, you could easily pack along a bottle of booze for much less!

Afternoon Snacks – The concierge rooms get some afternoon treats dropped off each day. Things like fruit and cheese or cookies. Again, that can be a fun surprise, but you’re at an all inclusive where you can grab food any time anyway so…

So personally, I don’t think the concierge upgrade is worthwhile here unless you are really set on eating in all of the specialty restaurants. I recommend saving the money for excursions instead!

However, if you do want the Concierge package, be sure to choose a “Concierge Premium Oceanview Room” when you make your booking.

Our Room at Coconut Bay Resort (Splash)

Splash hotel rooms at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

We stayed on the family-friendly Splash side of the resort (check out the rates here), as we were travelling with our eight year old. However, the rooms on the Harmony side have the same layouts and style as the Splash side. So most of these room details apply to either section of the resort.

The thing I loved most about the rooms is that all of them have a nice view! You enter the rooms from the back side of the hotel building and the balconies all face out towards the resort grounds – facing the pools and ocean beyond. There are no parking lot view rooms here!

balcony in our room at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

Of course, the rooms on the first floor can’t see much ocean beyond the pool, but they can walk directly out of their sliding doors and into the resort, which is a pretty nice feature too. We were on the third floor (out of four), and I thought the view was very pretty and relaxing.

Our balcony overlooked the pool, lazy river, and ocean. It had two chairs and a small table. It’s not very large, but big enough for two adults to sit out there and enjoy a drink in the evening.

Our room at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

Our room was very comfortable! We are a family of three and had a king size bed plus a trundle bed. The trundle was a twin size bed with another twin size bed that could be folded out from the bottom for a fourth person. Some of the rooms have two double beds instead of the trundle situation, so be sure to let them know if you have a preference.

Twin size bed with trundle in our room at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

One thing the hotel doesn’t have is any suite style rooms with separate bedrooms. So if you have older teens that need their own space, your best bet would be to book two adjoining rooms.

The beds were comfortable with very firm mattresses. Although the pillows were weirdly small and there is only one thin blanket, so we did have to ask for extra blankets. 

The bathroom was simple and a bit outdated, but very functional and clean. There is a wall mounted hair dryer, and there was a second regular hair dryer in one of the nightstand drawers. Toiletries were provided and were actually pretty good – totally usable.

The room had a mini fridge which was kept stocked with water, sodas, and two beers each day by housekeeping. Nice touch! The bottled waters came in handy when leaving the resort for excursions. There was also a small coffee machine and electric tea kettle, which were great for early morning coffee without having to get dressed and go downstairs to the breakfast area. 

this is all the power outlets in the room

There was definitely a lack of power outlets in the room. There was one US style outlet and one European style outlet next to the bed, which I used for power blocks (see picture) with multiple plugs and USB ports. That became our charging station! But it would have been more convenient to have power on both nightstands at least.

Note that St. Lucia does use European style power outlets (with the exception of that single US outlet in the picture above), so you will need a Type G adapter for your trip. I bought this two-pack of adapters and they worked well and had multiple ports.

I loved that there was a ton of storage space in the room as well. Two large closets with plenty of coat hangers and multiple sets of drawers. Plenty of room to tuck everything out of the way. There was also a safe for locking up cash/passports. And a full size iron and ironing board.

Only real complaint here is noise. One the theme nights there is outdoor entertainment until late hours, and it is loud. Like so loud that you can’t sit on the balcony and have a conversation. We were able to sleep through it fine, but maybe bring earplugs (like these) if you’re a light sleeper.

Tips for Booking Your Room!

We personally like to book our hotel stays through Booking.com when possible, because they have reliable customer service and very generous cancellation policies. So I recommend checking out the rates for Coconut Bay here. You will see a few room types to choose from. Here’s what they mean:

  • Splash vs Harmony – Choose Harmony for the adults only side of the resort and Splash for the family friendly side.
  • Deluxe Gardenview – Rooms will be on the first floor.
  • Deluxe Oceanview – Rooms will be on the second floor.
  • Premium Oceanview – Rooms will be on the third or fourth floor.
  • Concierge Premium Oceanview – Rooms will be on the fourth floor and have the concierge package add-on (read more on that above).

All the Resort Amenities (the best part!)

The Pools

view of the Splash pool and lazy river at Coconut Bay

The pools are really the highlight of Coconut Bay resort and where all the action is. On the Splash side of the resort, there are two large pools, both adjacent to the beach and ocean! The Splash pool is the most happening spot. It has some fun water features, lots of nooks and crannies to hang out, and (most importantly) a swim up bar! You can even find hammocks and cornhole boards here to play.

Splash pool at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

Next there’s the Activity pool, which features a volleyball net and is adjacent to the hot tub which has an amazing view of the ocean.

Activity pool at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

Scattered around the pool area, you can find some fun activities like cornhole (bean bag toss), pool tables, hammocks, and some family friendly games like giant Jenga blocks.

On the Harmony (adults only) side of the hotel, you’ll find two more pools and another hot tub. This area is of course much quieter and is a good spot to relax if you’re not traveling with kids.

One thing I noticed is that the pool areas never seemed crowded. The chairs didn’t really seem to fill up until close to 10am each day, and we could always find a spot to sit when we needed one. And we travelled during Thanksgiving week – one of the biggest travel holidays of the year!

Lazy River

I love a good lazy river, and this one did not disappoint. This is a true lazy river, not like the Rapid River we found at Atlantis Aquaventure. (Although, that was fun too!) This one is slow moving and perfect for a relaxing float around in a tube. You can even bring a cocktail with you. There were plenty of tubes available every day – no need to bring your own.

Cocoland Water Park

Cocoland Water Park at Coconut Bay Beach Resort

The water park was the highlight for my kid and his cousins too, although calling it a “water park” is a bit of a stretch. It’s more a collection of three water slides. But they were definitely a hit. There were two larger slides – one open and one enclosed – and a smaller slide suitable for younger kids. 

my son on the waterslides

I think my eight year old went down the slides a few hundred times in our five day stay. The rules said that kids under 12 need an adult on the slides. But they didn’t seem to be enforcing that too much except for kids that were obviously much younger or that needed help in the water. I did take a few turns though!!

The Beach

Beach at Coconut Bay Resort in St Lucia

So I will say that the beach was a bit of a let down compared to many of other Caribbean beaches we’ve visited. But we are also from Florida, just a few minutes from the famous Clearwater Beach, so I am a bit spoiled when it comes to beaches. 

Coconut Bay is on the Atlantic side of the island, so it’s very windy and the water can be very rough. There is also a fair amount of seaweed that washes up on this side of the island, which can be unpleasant at times. The resort does a great job of raking up the seaweed each morning, but there’s only so much that can be done. That’s nature.

Paradise Beach at Coconut Bay Beach Resort
Paradise Beach – a short walk from the hotel.

If you walk down a ways from the hotel, there is an area called Paradise Beach. Over there, it’s a bit more picturesque and there’s less seaweed in the water here as well (but it’s still on the beach until they come around and rake it up). So that would be an ideal place to hang out for a beach day. There’s even a burger shack there where you can grab some lunch. This area is still part of the all-inclusive resort.

But in total transparency, the best beaches in St. Lucia are over on the Caribbean side of the island. We knew that going in, and still chose Coconut Bay for all of the family friendly features. But it’s worth taking a boat trip or excursion to check out some of the other beaches on the island during your stay. (See more on excursion at the end of this article!)

Petting Zoo

petting zoo at Coconut Bay

One thing I was not expecting to find at a Caribbean resort was a petting zoo! And yet, they have one. You can stop by the little barn anytime to visit the goats, ducks, and roosters. And I will say the goats were crazy happy to see us, coming right up to the fence for some pets and back scratches.

baby goats in the petting zoo

Some of the animals looked a bit worse for wear, but I was told they take in rescues that need care, so I imagine these goats are much better off at the resort than roaming the island.

Paintball Course

Yes, you read that right. Coconut Bay has their very own paintball course. This activity does come at an extra fee ($20/person during our stay) and it includes everything you need from paintballs toa set of overalls to protect your clothes. My son wasn’t into the idea, so we didn’t get to try it, but it sure looked fun! Maybe we will have to get back there when he’s a bit older. 

Fitness Center & Sports

There is a small fitness center available for guests, which I most certainly did not use at all. ;) And there were also tennis and basketball courts available, free of charge.

Other Conveniences

Shopping – There is a small convenience shop on the first floor of the resort, which had things like snacks, sunscreen, and pool toys. Handy if you forget something at home or need snacks for your plane ride back. There are also two small boutique shops on the second floor, and a couple times a week there is a market held outdoors with local vendors. My son did his souvenir shopping there!

Laundry Room – There is also a guest laundry room where you can do your laundry for free! Pretty great. You just need to bring your own detergent. These laundry sheets are perfect for packing.

Ice Machines – I found an ice machine on the ground floor of the Splash hotel room block, by the staircase. Very convenient for filling up water bottles or coolers.

WiFi – We had complimentary wifi access for up to two devices at a time, and it worked perfectly fine for us in the room. But there was no signal elsewhere in the hotel. So not ideal if you need WiFi to keep in touch with your group. It was not a big deal for us.

The Kids Club

If you need a parenting break or some time to check out the adults only amenities, there is a great kids club at the resort. You’ll need to get your child registered when you arrive (they do registrations from 9-10:30am each day), and then you can sign them in and out of the kids club any time. 

There is a big playground with some great climbing structures and a splash pad at the kids club. And they also have a full docket of activities that they do with the kids there and around the resort. One night they even had a movie on the lawn. 

movie on the lawn at Coconut Bay

We didn’t use the kids club much – especially because it was Thanksgiving week and we wanted to spend time as a family. But it looked fun and the staff were very friendly when I stopped by to check it out. Here is a sample schedule of activities for our week at Coconut Bay:

The Food & Restaurants

Overall, I was pretty impressed with the quality and selection of the food throughout the resort. I haven’t done many other all inclusive resorts, and my expectations were honestly low. But I found there to be good variety and mostly good quality. Here are the highlights!

list of restaurant hours at coconut bay resort in st lucia
Restaurant availability and hours from our stay.

Coconut Walk Buffet

The main buffet area is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and is where you will find the widest selection of food. The only exception is on the theme nights (see more about that below), when they serve the buffet poolside with entertainment on the outdoor stage.

coconut Walk buffet
Coconut Walk Buffet

For breakfast, they had all the typical things you would expect a breakfast buffet. Eggs, hash browns, bacon and sausage, pancakes, pastries, a smoothie station. You get the idea. There is a small “coffee shop” (more like a coffee desk) where you could order fancier coffee drinks if you like.

At lunch, there were a variety of hot dishes plus salad, soup, and a pasta station. Dinner had varying options each night but there was always a pasta station, a stir fry station, and a pizza station. So plenty of choices. I eat nearly all vegetarian (with a little fish on occasion), and was able to find decent options every night.

cotton candy at the buffet

If you’re traveling with kids, note that there is also a “Kids Corner” at lunch and dinner with a few kid friendly selections (like chicken nuggets or peanut butter sandwiches). It was off to the side, so I didn’t notice it until the second day!

There were frozen slushies and ice cream available at lunch and dinner – which the kids loved. And they even had cotton candy a couple times!

Quick Service Options

Jerk Treehouse

Jerk Treehouse at Coconut Bay
Jerk Treehouse

Next to the Splash pool, you’ll find the Jerk Treehouse with grab-and-go options from 12-5. They had a few kinds of jerk-seasoned entrees (like chicken and fish), and sides like fried plantains.

Flip Flops

Flip Flops menu at Coconut Bay resort
Menu from Flip Flops, by the main pool.

Behind the swim-up bar of the Splash pool, you can find another grab-and-go option that is open from 11-6. This is where we ended up grabbing lunch most days, as it was super convenient and they had the most kid friendly choices. The big star here is the made-to-order pizza, but they also had burgers, quesadillas, salads, and a few other choices.

There were a few other self serve snacks out in this area at times such as nachos and popcorn. And there’s also a drink station over here where you can grab your own water and soft drinks.

But warning – despite the hours going until 6pm, they closed up much earlier on at least two days of our trip, as early as 5:30 one day. So don’t wait until the last minute if you have hungry kids. Once it closes – there is no where to grab food until the buffet opens again for dinner.

Specialty Restaurants

In addition to the buffet and quick service options, there are several specialty restaurants that can be booked, most of which are included at no extra charge. However, seating for those restaurants is very limited, and can’t be booked until you are at the resort. Each morning beginning at 8AM, they take reservations for up to 2 days in advance. You have to go in person to wait in line and make your reservation. So plan accordingly! 

I will say that if you don’t manage to get into any of these restaurants, you are still going to have a perfectly nice time and good meals. And you definitely won’t get into all of them. So if you’re interested, swing by the reservation desk and grab a spot at one or two. And then relax and enjoy the buffet the other nights!

I will also say that dinner at these restaurants is a time commitment – you should expect it to take at least two hours for your meal. Service was slow. Not necessarily in a bad service kind of way – it’s just meant to be a drawn out experience. Kind of like eating dinner our a cruise ship.


Silk is an Asian-inspired restaurant, and is the first specialty restaurant that we dined at on our trip. The food there was pretty great. I had the Tuna Poke appetizer and the Teriyaki Salmon, which was very good, and I am very particular about seafood. (I thought the seafood in the buffet was inedible by comparison.) The appetizer portions were really tiny. So don’t order apps thinking you will share – they are only a couple bites each. Entree portions were much more generous.

The service here was just alright for us – our server definitely seemed like she didn’t want to be there and things like drink refills just didn’t happen. So that was a little disappointing. Dinner here took two hours from start to finish. 


We also had a chance to try Calabash, which was a Caribbean themed restaurant and supposedly the fanciest of the included specialty options. Food here was top notch. Really everything was great. I had a vegetarian Chickpea-Potato Curry that was perfectly spiced and really delicious. Again, the appetizers are only a few bites each, so have everyone order their own instead of trying to share with the table.

The kids menu wasn’t as good as Silk, with only two options, but they were still ok choices. My son had a cilantro chicken, and despite complaining that he doesn’t like cilantro, he ate the whole thing. ;) And the service here was great – super friendly and helpful lady. But dinner here was even longer – taking us 2 1/2 hours to finish.


Veranda at Coconut Bay

Veranda is an adults-only restaurant, which is essentially the balcony of the upstairs adult lounge. It is outdoor dining, so there is weather to consider, but the view is very beautiful. This is a great one to try out for a couples trip!


Trattoria Restaurant menu at Coconut Bay Resort

This one is Italian themed, and while the menu looked great, the location wasn’t so amazing. It’s located next to Flip Flops down by the pool and is open air. So it feels very casual without much ambiance. We didn’t get an opportunity to dine here, as no reservations were available.

La Luna (extra fee) 

For a really fancy private dining experience, you can book La Luna for an extra fee. Dinner is served right next to the ocean in a wooden cabana type structure. It’s essentially a beach cabana where you can be served dinner. It’s very beautiful for sure.

But I will say that if you’ve ever eaten by the ocean, you know it’s also windy and sometimes kind of… wet. We didn’t try this. But this would be a fun thing to do for honeymooners or a romantic getaway!

The Greathouse (extra fee)

The Greathouse is located over at Serenity, which is a premium adults-only area of the hotel, exclusive only to Serenity guests. But you can book dinner there even if you are staying in the Splash or Harmony sections, for an added cost. However, the restaurant is also adults only (19+ years of age).

Dress Code for Dinner

Another thing I’ve been asked about a ton is what to wear for dinner. So here’s the scoop. If you’re eating at the Coconut Walk buffet (either inside or poolside for theme nights), just about anything goes aside from bathing suits or other obvious swimwear. Shorts and t-shirts are perfectly fine. And yes, your kid can even wear their stretchy shorts. No one cares.

For the specialty restaurants, there is a bit more of an expectation to dress up. But it’s still fairly relaxed. Most of the specialty restaurants have a “resort casual” dress code – so thinks smart shorts and collared shirts for men and dresses/skirts or slacks/blouse for women. 

Two restaurants (Calabash and Greathouse) have a more formal dress code, requiring long pants for men. Although jeans are fine, so it’s still not that dressy. Yes, they will actually turn away men that show up in shorts and it applies to kids over the age of 12 as well.

The Drink Situation

my personalized drink mug!

Now that we’ve covered the food – let’s get to the really important stuff. The drinks. You are going on vacation after all, right? 

As an all-inclusive resort, all of your drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) are also included at no additional charge. And as far as we could tell, it really did include everything and there was a good selection of cocktails and good quality brands of liquor too. 

There are plenty of bars scattered around the property, so it was never hard to find a cocktail. The pool bars had a great selection of frozen drinks and kiddie mocktails. They had every kind of liquor and brand names like Tito’s and Grey Goose.

The only beer you’ll find on site though is the local brand, Piton, which is a basic lager. It reminded me of Kalik, a local beer in the Bahamas. The wine choices were limited and not very good, but I wouldn’t really expect to find a great wine selection at a Caribbean hotel anyway. I thought the sparkling wine was perfectly fine though and we had it at dinner most nights.

There were bottles of wine available for purchase in the restaurants, but we opted to just stick with the free stuff after taking a peek at the wine list. There wasn’t anything that inspired an upgrade.

The Service

I found the service to be pretty good overall, with a few misses here and there. The vast majority of staff we encountered were friendly and helpful, but there were definitely some that seemed to hate being there. But frankly that’s the case at just about any hotel, anywhere, or really any type of business these days. 

For me, the biggest misses were the housekeeping staff yelling to each other at 6:30 am in the adjacent room. Way too early to be making that much noise next to guest rooms. And the buffet staff’s attitude about setting up a table for our large group (even when said table was clearly available and just in need of being set with linens). I know it’s probably annoying when a large group shows up, but that’s kind of life.

But ehhh… overall service was fine. 

A Note on Tipping!

As I researched for this trip, one question I saw a ton of people asking was about tipping at the resort. So first of all, I will say that I didn’t feel like anyone actually expected a tip (except perhaps the luggage porters, which is fair), which was actually kind of refreshing. But still, there are some people you may wish to tip, so I’ll share what we did.

We left a tip for housekeeping, which we do at all hotels. In my opinion, $5-10/night is a fair amount. And while it is nice to leave it each day since staff can change daily, it’s also fine to just leave it at the end of your stay. 

We had a couple days that we spent the vast majority of the day at the pool. On each of those days, we tipped the poolside servers who were coming around bringing us drinks at our chairs and in the pool. I feel like if you bring me a Pina Colada without me having to get out of my pool chair, you deserve a tip.

We did not tip with each drink, but just gave one larger tip to our server for the day. I think $10-20/day is fine for a couple ordering simple drinks throughout the afternoon from the same server- maybe more if you have a large group and they take good care of you.

At dinner in the sit down restaurants, we did tip our servers. Of course, since the food is included in your rate, there is no check to pay, so no percentage tip to calculate. We opted to give $15-20, since they were helpful with our very large group and they seemed pleased to get that.

And of course, we tipped the luggage porter that brought our bags up to the room and back down again at the end of our stay. I gave him $5 each time for two bags.

We did not tip each time we ordered drinks at the bar, and I didn’t see many other people doing that either. It just isn’t practical when most of your bar trips will happen by swimming up to the bar in a bathing suit. :-D

I did see tip jars out at one of the “action stations” in the buffet one night, which I found super tacky. No one was tipping there, because who carries cash around a buffet line anyway? And I noticed they were gone the day after, so perhaps someone thought better of that idea.

Theme Nights & Entertainment

country western night at Coconut Bay Resort
Country Western Theme Night

There is some kind of entertainment every evening in the resort, typically live musicians or singers out in The Cove area. There is also an upstairs lounge/nightclub area that is adults only after 9pm if you’re looking for more of a party vibe. But there are a few specific activities and theme nights that you might want to plan for:

Country Western Night

Every Thursday is Country Western Night at the resort! The dinner buffet is served poolside with live country music. And is a lot of fun. Food was mostly barbecue themed, but there were still some good vegetarian choices as well. 

Not many people were dressed up for the theme this night, as I assume most people don’t even know about it until they arrive. But we did bring along some cheap bandanas and these cowboy themed temporary tattoos for the kids. So bring a few accessories if you want to participate!

Caribbean Night

Every Saturday is Caribbean Night! Dinner is again served outside by the pool on this night, with live music and entertainment on the stage. Many more people dressed up for this theme, wearing whatever flowery shirts or dresses they had. I also brought along a pack of cheap flower leis for our crew, which were a hit with the kids.

White Night & Silent Disco

I thought this was going to be the most fun theme night, but I was a little let down by this one. A silent disco is where everyone gets a headset with music piping in, and dances. But the catch is that everyone gets different music! So people are all dancing crazy, but to different songs. And when you take off the headsets, people are just silently jamming. So funny! We’ve done this on many cruises and it’s fun for all ages. 

But I was a little let down on this one. There was a kids version of the silent disco, but it started much too early at 7:30, while most everyone was eating dinner. And then the evening version started at 9, and was adults only, so we couldn’t do that as a family. There were no adults at the lounge when we walked by at 9 either, so it seemed to be a miss all around. But maybe throw a white shirt in your bag just in case!

Poolside Activities

The Splash Pool is the main place to find all the action during the day! Throughout the week they had little activities going on like Caribbean dance lessons, Bingo games, a foam party in the pool, a musical chairs competition, and even a lazy river rubber duck race for charity. (You can bet on a duck for a $10 donation. And you should – it was fun and for a good cause.)

Here is a sample activity schedule from our week at the resort:

Things to Do near Coconut Bay

As I mentioned earlier, it’s a bit of a hike to get to the more popular St. Lucia attractions from Coconut Bay. But we wanted to explore at least the highlights, so we booked ourselves on a couple excursions. 

my husband and son on the catamaran tour

One day, we opted for a private catamaran charter to explore the beaches and snorkeling on the Caribbean side of the island, which we booked with Mystic Man Tours. This was super fun and definitely the highlight of our trip! I recommend you get out on at least one boat excursion while on the island. 

And another day, we booked a car service to take us to the Botanical Garden, Drive-in Volcano, Mud Baths, and Toraille Waterfall. This was also super fun. Frankly, better than I expected! We organized this with Lemon Tours (ask for Steven), and they helped us customize the itinerary to include just the sights we were interested in.

There are options for horseback riding and ATV tours right from the hotel grounds too. And the resort has an excursion desk where they can help you arrange private tours or join an existing group tour. My only caution here is that the group tours from the hotel need a minimum number of guests to run, so there is a chance your tour gets cancelled if they don’t have enough people sign up. I prefer to book on my own for this reason.

What We Liked Best & Least about Coconut Bay

Overall, we really enjoyed our stay at Coconut Bay but there were some definite highlights and a few misses throughout the week. Here are the things we loved most, and the things we weren’t crazy about.

The Best Things about Coconut Bay: The Worst Things about Coconut Bay: 
– The water slides and lazy river!
– Beautiful oceanside pools.
– Easy all inclusive experience.
– Relaxed and not crowded at all.
– Very family friendly!!
– Location is far from activities outside the resort.
– Beach is not the greatest – much better elsewhere in St. Lucia.
– Dinner reservation system for specialty restaurants is inconvenient and doesn’t let you plan ahead.

Is Coconut Bay worth it?

For my family, Coconut Bay was absolutely worth it. I thought the rates were very reasonable for an all inclusive experience, and were in fact much cheaper than comparable all-inclusive properties in Mexico or elsewhere in the Caribbean. So I felt it was really good value. We also really loved how family-friendly the resort felt, with lots of activities to keep the kids entertained all week long. I think we will definitely be back to visit again someday! 

Ready to book a stay at Coconut Bay Beach Resort? I recommend checking out the rates at Booking.com. We prefer to book our hotels through them when possible, because they have competitive rates and very generous cancellation policies.

13 thoughts on “ULTIMATE Coconut Bay St Lucia Review – the good and the bad!”

  1. Thank you so much for such a thorough review! We’re booking a trip to Coconut Bay for our honeymoon, and this told me everything I wanted to know. Looking forward to it!

  2. Best review of a resort I have ever seen, great job! Did you happen to find any other hotel resorts on the island that you want to try out the next time you come to St. Lucia and why?

    1. Thanks so much! Yes, on our boat excursion we stopped at Anse Chastanet Beach, and it was one of the prettiest beaches I’ve ever been to. There is a resort there called Anse Chastanet Resort, that I would love to visit sometime. Jade Mountain Resort is also there, but is way out of my price range!

      Sugar Beach is another really popular place. It was lovely, but I didn’t think the beach was nearly as nice there. And it was a bit crowded for my taste.

  3. Thank you taking time out to write this. I have took notes for our trip in May with me and my daughter. I was wondering how customs was how long of a wait. Thank you

    1. We didn’t have any real wait at customs – just a few minutes. But I’m sure that can vary quite a bit depending on how many flights come in at the same time. Might be worth checking the scheduled arrivals to plan accordingly.

  4. Hi – thinking about coming to CB this August from UK with Grandkids so 9 hour flights each way. Is a week too short do you think?

  5. Hey thank you for this superb report! Couple of questions if I may – the ocean temperature – do you know whether it was as warm as the caribbean side ? Also, I get it was wavy, but could an 8 year old child mess about in it close to the waters edge and swim say up to 50 yards out? And finally, if we go it would have to be August. I know you went in November but do you have any knowledge about the humidity in the summer period ( I know it can rain etc ), ditto mosquitoes?


    1. I didn’t notice any real water temperature difference on the two sides of the island, and we swam in both places. My son and his cousins (ages 7-12) had no trouble swimming and playing in the water by the resort. They had fun jumping the waves! Of course, it depends on your kid and the water conditions on any given day, so always good to be cautious. The weather doesn’t really vary all that much throughout the year – the humidity was a bit more than Florida and there were definitely mosquitoes out at night! I pack bug spray wipes when we travel.

  6. Your writeup is better than the Coconut Bay website for getting the full picot of what the resort is about. We have been to Coconut Bay 4 times. Our young grandson lives on the island and CB is the only place we have found that is truly kid friendly with significant kid focused activities. We like the food selection and options as well as the location. After renting cars and houses on St Lucia over the years we think CB works best for us. thanks for this great post.

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