With a tantalising combination of white and pink sand beaches, a bustling UNESCO World Heritage capital city and a whole host of culinary and cultural delights, it’s little wonder that Barbados was crowned Best Destination in the World by the Destination Satisfaction Index! The island has an intriguing history and retains its unique blend of colonial English with the legendary Bajan hospitality. Chill with the locals at the legendary Friday night fish fry at Oistins to the sounds of soca, stroll through historic Bridgetown and its Garrison or take a dip in Barbados’ own thermal bath- the Hot Pot!
Known as the culinary capital of the Caribbean, Barbados indulges its love for good food with the annual Barbados Food and Rum Festival; a wonderful showcase of the islands top chefs and mixologists! Another festival not to be missed is the Crop Over Festival; which celebrates the end of the sugar harvest season! Imagine five weeks filled with everything from craft markets, high energy fetes and colourful costumes on parade. You will be spoilt for choice to when looking for the right place to stay, from the historic plantation house brought into modern day luxury to a charming beachside boutique hotel and everything in between; there is something for everyone.
Airports / Gateways / Flying times
Airport: Grantley Adams International Airport, (BGI) is a 30 minute drive from Bridgetown, the capital.
Gateways/Flying Times: British Airways and Virgin Atlantic fly daily from London Gatwick, Virgin Atlantic twice weekly from Manchester. During the winter season Thomas Cook flies from Manchester three times weekly and once weekly from London Gatwick while Virgin Atlantic adds a twice weekly service from London Heathrow and British Airways bumps up their Gatwick service to 12 per week. Average flight time London: 8 – 8.5 hours. Manchester: 8.5 – 9 hours.
Barbados enjoys a stable year-round climate with an average temperature of 28 °C. Average relative humidity 57-74%, constant trade winds 7-8 miles per hour.
You’ll never be short of dining inspiration on the island! Traditional Bajan delights include coucou and flying fish, Bajan soup with dumplings, roasted breadfruit, conkies, sweet bread and sugar cake. One of the best ways to indulge in Bajan food is at a local rum shop. Mix it up with an exquisite fine dining experience right down on the water’s edge. Get ready for a fusion of African, Caribbean, West Indian and European dishes.
English is widely spoken in Barbados.
Like with everything else in Barbados, there’s a huge amount of choice when it comes to nightlife, from dinner shows and nightclubs to live music and pubs. One of the best ways to experience the nightlife in Barbados though is to do it like the Bajans do! St. Lawrence Gap, affectionately known as “The Gap”, is where you can start the night with a meal and then just follow the music- from reggae and calypso in The Cove to jazz and soca at the Old Jamm Inn. Then maybe a Caribbean dinner show at Harbour Lights, and of course Oistins for Friday nights!
One of just three remaining Jacobean mansions in the western hemisphere, St. Nicholas Abbey sits in 400 acres- visit the sugar cane fields and its new steam train! For natural wonders, venture deep into the limestone formations within Harrison’s Cave. And to see some of Barbados’ most famous residents- the green monkey- close up, take a trip to the Barbados Wildlife Reserve. Of course, no visit to Barbados would be complete without a visit to its UNESCO World Heritage capital Bridgetown, where history sits alongside a bustling shopping district.