Barbados: An Overview of a Caribbean Gem
Your best travel guide to the islands of the Caribbean and more.
Barbados: An Overview of a Caribbean GemPosted on August 11. 2016
The name Barbados brings to mind several things: beautiful beaches, teal blue seas, coral reefs, and … afternoon teas? Yes, that’s right, this beautiful island is stocked with both classically Caribbean scenes and unexpected British twists, making a trip to Barbados a truly unique Caribbean island experience.
What Makes Barbados Special?
The island’s one-of-a-kind atmosphere is rooted in its Britishness, as the island’s unique heritage is fully embraced. Expect to see churches that look more ‘English countryside’ than ‘Caribbean’, and meet a friendly population that breathes cricket and speaks with a British accent. When you combine this with two distinctly different coasts – the west coast is populated with calm and paradisaical beaches, while the east coast is the domain of rugged waves and adventurous surfers – you have a dynamic unlike anywhere else in the area.
Barbados’ Best Beaches
Payne’s Bay – This gem on Barbados’ west coast is home to soft white sand, calm surf, and plenty of space. The beach stretches seemingly forever and there’s always a space you can claim for yourself.
Crane Beach – Arguably the signature beach of Barbados, Crane Beach is famous for its sands brushed with soft accents of pink. The popular Crane Beach sits on the southeast coast of Barbados, so expect lively waves and a lively atmosphere.
Gibbes Beach – A laid back strip of sand on the west coast that feels forgotten about compared to its popular neighbor Mullins Bay, this is the one you go to to get away from it all. And don’t be surprised if a celebrity or two joins you.
Sandy Lane Beach – A teal blue-fringed beauty on the west coast, Sandy Lane Beach takes its name from the eponymous resort located on its shores. You don’t have to be a guest, though, to swim in its ultra-calm waters or admire its gorgeous coral reefs.
Best Things To Do In Barbados
Go Surfing – The island has become a downright mecca for the sport, with the east coast being populated with surfers and beach shack bars catering to them after a day hitting the waves. Why not join them and hang ten?
See Big City Barbados – The capital of Barbados, Bridgetown, has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a walk among its historical streets shows you another side of the island. Duty-free shopping is especially good in the capital.
Tour St. Nicholas Abbey – One of only three Jacobean mansions in the Western Hemisphere, this former sugarcane plantation offers fascinating free tours and bottles fine aged rum.
What To Eat & Drink in Barbados
While rum is associated with many Caribbean islands, Barbados and rum go way back – all the way back to the first commercial rum distillery in the entire Caribbean. That distillery is Mount Gay, and you simply can’t leave Barbados without sipping some of their rum. The island is also full of smaller producers you can’t find in the stores back home, we recommend sipping some of their rum too, just to compare of course.
Seafood is served up all over the island – Flying Fish is the island’s favorite, often served with cou-cou (okra and cornmeal mixed together) – but it’s where you get your fish that makes all the difference. The fish fry at Oistins on Friday nights is legendary for its fresh flavors and fun atmosphere, with St. Lawrence Gap and resorts home to sumptuous fine dining options.
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