Offering glitz and glamour, complete with posh resorts and Michelin-starred dining, Barbados is a sun-seekers dream. Add to that a landscape that is equal parts perfect beaches and wild coasts, and you've got a destination with depth. Rich in British heritage with a healthy helping of Caribbean charm, this acclaimed holiday destination offers upscale experiences, luxurious indulgences and gracious welcomes – it's no wonder so many people return year after year, Barbados offers absolutely everything you could want or hope for in a Caribbean escape.
With its two coasts, you get two very different experiences. The Atlantic side, or East Coast, provides ideal conditions for premium surfing. Bathsheba Beach, and particularly its famed breaker known as the Soup Bowl, is a haven for surfers, with Barclays Park and Bath being other popular beaches on this coast. The Caribbean side, or West Coast, is where you will find the calmer waters of such world-famous beaches as Brighton Beach and Miami Beach, as well as many of the island's most notable luxury hotels, resorts and villas, and high-end restaurants. And in between it all? Lush vegetation, historical landmarks, deep caves and a whole lot of fun! Hire a driver and take a day to experience what Barbados has to offer.
Once you glide to the ocean floor, you'll be treated to the sights of a wondrous aquatic universe. You'll be served a selection of fine champagne and hors d'oeuvres. What better way to enjoy the sunken ship wrecks and this marvelous marine universe?
Flying schools on the island take pride in their world-class training facilities and fleet of aircraft. Students of every age, from around the world take advantage of the quality flight education and beautiful island vistas in which they soar above.
The influence of the English on Barbados is quite noticeable, with a good example being found in the island's national sport: cricket. Polo is also played here, and golf of course, with many fantastic courses dotting the island, but Barbados also offers a day at the races at Garrison Savannah. Even if you are not particularly into horse-racing, the atmosphere here is quite unique – sipping coconut water, indulging on Bajan cuisine, basking in the Caribbean sun and cheering on the competitors as they close in on the finish line.
If you're planning a special celebration with friends such as a bachelorette, bachelor, stag party or birthday bash you definitely should focus your party on the South Coast where all the best nightlife (and some rollicking parties) go down. For more demure affairs, the West Coast offers luxury event venues that provide calming Caribbean vistas to complement your special event. Whether it's a wedding, milestone birthday, or just some well-deserved fun it will be perfect here.
Whether it's a super-romantic splurge you're after, or something casual and fun, Barbados' famed St. Lawrence Gap is a 1.3 kilometre stretch of road that delivers it all. Famous for its fine dining, good shopping and lively nightlife, 'The Gap', as it is commonly known, is home to the best rum shops, chic cocktail bars and day-till-dawn nightclubs and it is a place that should not be missed. Hop in a cab or rent a limo and experience it all! If you're lucky you could stumble upon one of the regular street parties that have become commonplace on this part of the island.
The South Coast is known for its interesting markets and the best nightclubs - perfect for nights on the town. Swimming is also a treat off the southern coast beaches of Browne's, Pebbles, Rockley and Dover. The south eastern coast offers the Silver Sands and Crane Beaches for calming waters as well. During the winter months (December to April) the increased trade winds provide excellent conditions for windsurfing off of the Silver Sands Beach.
Rum connoisseurs will enjoy a stop at the world-famous Mount Gay Distillery. Established in 1703, the distillery welcomes guests from around the world to discover Barbados' most celebrated spirit.
Located in the very heart of the island, is a definite must-see for any visitor. One of Barbados' greatest wonders, this place is breathtakingly beautiful and truly unique.
Barbados is known as one of the leading tourist destinations in the Caribbean. The chic atmosphere, hot weather and tropical vistas are second to none. Its capital city Bridgetown, is an active metropolitan area with several personalities adding to its charm. The historical colonial buildings offer old world charm as you take advantage of cosmopolitan amenities such as the great shopping, dining and nightlife options that Bridgetown offers.
Barbados goes into full celebration mode come summer with its two-month Crop Over Festival, held in June and July each year. Easily rivalling any other carnival celebration in the Caribbean, it features festivities that go all day and well into the night, including lively calypso band competitions and delicious food fairs. At the end of it all, it wraps up with the Grand Kandooment, a massive street parade with more calypso, colourful costumes and spirited dancing.