Top 10 Things To Do In Barbados

See arti­cle below reposted from www​.travel​.usnews​.com:

One of the high­lights of vis­it­ing the Bar­ba­dos Wildlife Reserve in Speight­stown, St. Peter’s parish is get­ting to inter­act with ani­mals up close. The park is the home of numer­ous trop­i­cal birds, brocket deer and igua­nas, but its most notable res­i­dents are the red-​footed tor­toises that freely wan­der down the reserve paths, as well as the sticky-​fingered green mon­keys (pre­vi­ous guests have men­tioned the mon­keys’ ten­dency to grab what­ever is in your hands and make a run for it).

Vis­it­ing the Gun Hill Sig­nal Sta­tion is only worth an hour of your time at most, but it’s an hour well spent. The 360-​degree view is mind­blow­ing, stretch­ing over the parish of St. George, but you might be stymied by the entry fee. Though it’s less than $5 USD, some trav­el­ers feel this is too much to pay for such a short sight­see­ing trip. There is a small snack bar and gift shop inside, if you want to stretch out your trip even longer.

#8 Ani­mal Flower Cave (Rated 3.4)


Named for its sea anemones, Ani­mal Flower Cave is the island’s only acces­si­ble sea cave, located under the North Point cliffs in the parish of St. Lucy. Although it’s not as pop­u­lar as Harrison’s Cave or beaches like Foul or Bot­tom Bay, you might want to make the jaunt from your hotel area to spend at least an hour explor­ing the caves and pos­si­bly swim­ming in its rock pools.

A writer tells: “The scenery around the Ani­mal Flower Caves is spec­tac­u­lar. It makes a nice place for a pic­nic lunch on a warm day.” A pre­vi­ous vis­i­tor writes into with: “Be sure to check out the views once leav­ing the caves — they are spec­tac­u­lar. We would have missed them if not for the taxi dri­ver show­ing us where to go.” In other words, bring­ing your cam­era is a must. You should also wear com­fort­able, sturdy shoes to bet­ter nav­i­gate the rocks. And pos­si­bly tote a few (Bar­ba­dian) dol­lars — there are a hand­ful of craft stalls sell­ing sou­venirs near the cliffs.

You can visit the cave any­time, but its best to go when the sun’s shin­ing. Climb­ing or swim­ming in the area can be dan­ger­ous at night.

#7 Mount Gay Rum Tour (Rated 3.5)


Duty-​free shops are a dime a dozen in the Caribbean, but sur­pris­ingly, inter­ac­tive rum tours aren’t. So why not really learn “where de rum come from” while stay­ing in Bar­ba­dos? The Mount Gay Rum Com­pany of Bridgetown, Bar­ba­dos offers tours of its facil­i­ties and the chance to wit­ness how the island’s first-​class drink is made.

Some trav­el­ers say the tour is infor­ma­tive, but bor­ing, so you should have a keen inter­est in rum-​making (not just rum-​drinking) to attend. To make the most of the expe­ri­ence, con­sider splurg­ing for the lunch tour (which also includes trans­porta­tion to and from your hotel). You can take the Mount Gay Rum Tour on week­days from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Stop by the gift shop before you head back to the hotel and pick up a few duty-​free bot­tles to cart home. Mount Gay Rum’s offi­cial offers fur­ther details.

#6 Foul Bay (Rated 3.8)


Get over the name, pack a beach bag, and pre­pare to be amazed — many trav­el­ers say Foul Bay is one of the most panoramic beaches in Bar­ba­dos. This largely undis­turbed shore is pop­u­lar with Bajans but receives lit­tle traf­fic from tourists. As such, you shouldn’t expect many of the usual crea­ture com­forts of vaca­tion — chang­ing rooms, beach bars and shops are nonex­is­tent — but there’s plenty of undis­turbed blanched sand for relaxing.

A opines, “This beach on the south-​east coast of Bar­ba­dos is one of the most beau­ti­ful I have seen in my life, and was almost deserted. It’s a lit­tle tricky to find (we went as part of an island tour), but I promise you, it’s worth the effort.” Mean­while, a user states, “It doesn’t have any hotels on it, and it was a great roman­tic beach. … The surf was a lit­tle bit heavy, and to go in the water here you’d bet­ter be an OK swim­mer (it’s not as calm as the west­ern side of the island).”

#4 Crop Over Fes­ti­val (Rated 4.2)


Slaves work­ing on Bar­ba­dos’ sugar plan­ta­tions in the 1600s used to cel­e­brate the end of the har­vest with singing and danc­ing. Present day Bajans still com­mem­o­rate that the “Crop’s Over” with a sum­mer party to rival the Caribbean car­ni­vals of Trinidad & Tobago or the U.S. Vir­gin Islands. Pre­vi­ous trav­el­ers say that a spe­cial trip to Bar­ba­dos’ Crop Over Fes­ti­val isn’t nec­es­sary, because if you’re vis­it­ing the island in sum­mer there’s no way to miss the two-​month event.

The real activ­ity picks up in July, when island res­i­dents and vis­i­tors lime through the Bridgetown streets to Queens Park. All day (and night) par­ties con­tinue through­out the month, as do calypso band com­pe­ti­tions and food fairs. Crop Over ends with the Grand Kan­doo­ment, a colos­sus street parade with lively calypso, col­or­ful cos­tumes and spir­ited dancing.

All this spir­ited rev­elry is free to enjoy, but you’ll want to bring spend­ing money for the food fairs.

#3 Oistins Fish Fry (Rated 4.3)


Lots of trav­el­ers rec­om­mend you for­get about the swanky white-​tablecloth eater­ies come the week­end, when the smells of bar­be­cued chicken and fly­ing fish waft from south­ern Bar­ba­dos and the Oistins Fish Fry. The out­door street fair fea­tures plenty of good reg­gae and flow­ing rum, and the food help­ings are large and inexpensive.

#2 Bot­tom Bay (Rated 4.3)

The sweet shore­line of Bot­tom Bay is prob­a­bly the best on Bar­ba­dos, and unfor­tu­nately, one of the most crowded. Like other east­ern Bar­ba­dos beaches, Bot­tom Bay’s waves can some­times be too large and foamy for weak swim­mers or chil­dren. And if you want to expe­ri­ence the beach at its best, trav­el­ers sug­gest you visit in the morn­ing before the area cliffs hide Bot­tom Bay in the shadows.

#1 Soup Bowl (Rated 4.9)

It’s Bar­ba­dos’ rel­a­tive iso­la­tion in the Atlantic Ocean that cre­ates its awe­some surf­ing waves. They says, “A wave can travel nearly three thou­sand miles in the open ocean, undis­turbed by sand­bars, reefs or land, before it breaks here — on an unlikely lit­tle island shaped like a teardrop, off the radar of all but the most devoted surfers.” The Soup Bowl, one of the island’s most famous break­ers, is a phe­nom­e­non that occurs on Bar­ba­dos’ east coast at Bathsheba Beach. Labeled one of the best waves in the world, Soup Bowl reg­u­larly lures hard-​core surfers to the island.

You shouldn’t tackle the enor­mous swells at Bathsheba unless you’re a truly pro­fi­cient swim­mer and surfer. But a day trip to wit­ness the Soup Bowl in all its glory could still be worth it. A vaca­tioner tells that he and his party “watched about a dozen expe­ri­enced surfers take turns rid­ing waves, some­times two at a time, just off the coast… Just across the park­ing access, there is the Surf Bowl Café. Great place to watch and have a beer even if the weather is bad.” It’s also a very scenic spot with sev­eral mushroom-​like rocks jut­ting out of the sand and water, so bring your camera.

RELATED ARTI­CLES
All Things Ocean
Bar­ba­dos Nightlife
Sight­see­ing
Shop­ping & Ser­vices
Cur­rent Edi­tion of Caribbean Dreams Magazine

Arti­cle sourced from US News Travel


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