A name that will often be heard when inquiring about Barbados is that of the famous Oistins Fish Market.
Oistins, in the parish of Christ Church, is a major fishing community in Barbados with a modern fishing market. Here on any given Friday, the locals and tourists alike converge here, at what may very well be the biggest and most festive fish fry in the world. Good food, good company, live entertainment, no cover charge. It’s no wonder that it’s an island favorite.
Line up for some succulent fish and chips, a seafood platter, a hearty dinner or an old fashioned Bajan meal , but don’t expect to pay an arm and a leg the portions are generous and the price definitely affordable. Traditional fish fryers even prepare some fish on an open flame in coal pots like the ones seen below. Be sure to wash that on down with our finest Cockspur Barbados Rum, or try our bajan Banks Beer.
Food is also available here on other nights of the week, unfortunately not on the same scale as Fridays but it’s just as reasonable and just as tasty! Karaōke is another popular event here especially at Hercules Bar! You don’t want to miss it!
But wait, It still does not end there; a trip to Oistins during the day will reveal a delightful surprise: Beautiful Beaches and a pier just behind the Market where turtles often come to be fed bits of bread or fish by the local fishermen, a completely different experience. The Famed Miami Beach is also here, hidden just behind the Library and Police station.
Oistins has become renown not only for its Friday fish fry but also for its annual, Easter weekend, Fish Festival. This street festival is a festival of celebration, to honor all those individuals who contribute significantly to the livelihood of the local fishing industry. Local Arts, Crafts, Garments & souvenirs, live music local cuisine and entertaining competitions like the “fun, fun Grease Pole Climbing Competition” , Fish Boning tournament, Net Casting and Crab racing and Boat Racing are high on the list of must do activities during this weekend. Did we mention that it’s a wonderful place to get a good deal on authentic Bajan products and games? Try your hand at dominoes or stock up on local souvenirs!
The name Oistins comes from the original land owner Oistins who was an Austin and saw it fit to name the area Oistins. Oistins is the southernmost town in Barbados located in the parish of Christ Church. It is one of the four towns in Barbados and is the site of the islands largest fishing community and it comes alive every weekend with food, music and merriment, the very best of local Bajan cuisine in a comfortable open air environment.
Oistins is the site of several historic events the parliament of Barbados, the second oldest outside Britain, was inaugurated in Oistins in 1639. The Mermaid Tavern in Oistins was the site of the battle between the Royalists and the Roundheads, which resulted in the signing of the Charter of Barbados/Treaty of Oistins/ The Articles of the Rendition of the Island from proprietary rights to the common wealth parliament on January 11th, 1652. This treaty was to ensure that Barbados accepted the authority of the English parliament and also prevented the local taxes from being raised without local consent. This agreement lasted until November 30th 1966 when Barbados gained independence from the Queen.
Article © Caribbean Dreams Magazine
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