When you picture paradise, you’re probably imagining a holiday in Barbados. This lively island is one of the highlights of the Caribbean for so many reasons – its world famous beaches, fresh seafood and dramatic natural wonders being just a few.
Not sure how to get the most out of your Barbados holiday? Take a look at our top tips and recommendations. From lazy beach days to thrill-seeking adventures, there’s something here for every type of holidaymaker.
Beaches in Barbados
When you’re in the star of the Caribbean, you have to visit its beaches. The scenic coastline enjoys sun all year round, and on the golden sands, you’re as likely to find fun, authentic beach bars as you are luxury beachside resorts. Here are some Barbados beach highlights:
- Dover Beach: Situated by St Lawrence Gap, an area well known for its variety of restaurants, bars and entertainment venues, Dover Beach is the place to go for water sports. This could be the holiday you hone your board skills, or finally have a go at kite-surfing.
- Sandy Lane: Those who prefer to relax on a sun lounger should head to Sandy Lane, close to Holetown and Paynes Bay. At this resort the water is crystal clear, the atmosphere is peaceful and the palms are swaying – the perfect spot for couples on an idyllic Barbados honeymoon.
- Bathsheba: Bring your camera along to explore the rugged east coast of Barbados. Bathsheba is a small fishing village that’s a haven for keen surfers.
Luxury resorts in Barbados
Could there possibly be a better time to spoil yourself than on a Barbados holiday? Indulge in a spa treatment, dine on world-class cuisine or simply make use of the facilities at your hotel. These are the top picks for ultimate Bajan luxury:
- The Club Barbados Resort and Spa: Feel your worries melt away as you enjoy a refreshing facial or deeply relaxing massage at this west coast spa.
- Savannah Beach: Exclusive to Virgin Holidays in the UK, with a beautiful Caribbean beach and the Pauline Quirke Academy of Performing Arts (included free) to turn your children into singers, actors and dancers, this is a family friendly option for your all-inclusive Barbados holiday.
- Crystal Cove by Elegant: Lush gardens, pool waterfall and swim-up cave bar complete this beautiful resort, with sailing and watersports included.
Food and drink in Barbados
If that last tip whet your appetite, have a look at the rest of these places to eat and drink on this ever-popular Caribbean island. From traditional favourites to seafood, the Barbados food scene is second to none. We hope you’re hungry.
- The Mount Gay Rum Factory: Rum-lovers rejoice. At the home of this world famous tipple, you’ll have the opportunity to sample some of the finest Bajan rum and learn about the history of sugar cane in Barbados.
- Afternoon Tea at the Sandy Lane Hotel: This quintessentially British tradition is wholly embraced in Barbados, and as a result, there are plenty of luxurious venues to choose from for your afternoon tea. The Sandy Lane Hotel is a favourite among holidaying celebrities, cementing its status as one of the island’s most sought-after spots.
- Fish Pot Restaurant: For some of the freshest seafood on the island, head to the Fish Pot Restaurant in Clinketts. It overlooks the ocean and is very accommodating of children, making it a great choice for families.
- The Cliff: This upscale restaurant is your must-visit night out spot, particularly if you’re on a Barbados honeymoon. It’s a celebrity favourite and serves up fusion cuisine and seafood with a cosy, romantic ambience.
Things to do in Barbados
Take advantage of the island’s small size by hiring a car and hitting the road. You can cover most of the island in one day, and you’ll have plenty of time to stop off and explore. Here are a few scenic spots to check out:
- St Lucy: In the north of the island, you’ll find these secluded caves. The Animal Flower Cave was discovered in 1780 by two English explorers and is the only accessible cave on the island.
- Jeep Safari: Experience the wild side of the island whilst on holiday in Barbados by taking a Jeep through the sugarcane fields and forests. You'll go off-road to explore the lesser-seen parts of the island. Remember to pack your camera, and keep an eye out for rare and exotic wildlife along the way.
- Hunte’s Gardens: You’ll find tropical plants galore in this garden – perfect for green-fingered types. If you’re lucky, you may even get the chance to talk to horticulturist Anthony Hunte over a rum punch or two. The Welchman Hall Gully is nearby, a private and protected forest with ancient stalagmites and stalactites, 2,100 unique species of plants and green monkeys.
Culture in Barbados
There’s so much to learn on this Caribbean island. If you’re looking to soak up some history and culture on your Barbados holiday, here are some top picks for you:
- Bridgetown: Take a walk around the capital of Barbados and discover a number of monuments as well as the Garrison Savannah military base.
- Oistins Fish Fry: Experience true Bajan culture at this open-air party. Listen to traditional calypso music while enjoying fresh BBQ fish.
- Agapey Chocolate Factory: Find out all about the fascinating history of the humble Trinitario cocoa bean at this chocolate factory.
Events and festivals in Barbados
Coordinate your Barbados holiday with one of these exciting events for an unforgettable getaway:
- Barbados Crop Over Festival: The streets come alive with calypso music and colour in August during carnival.
- Sir Garfield Sobers Stadium: You can visit this stadium year-round to watch the cricket team, the Windies, play at the Kensington Oval.
Ready to start planning your holiday to Barbados? Check out the Virgin Holidays range of Barbados hotels now.