Barbados is an island state within the Commonwealth, ruled by Great Britain. This means that the official head of Barbados is the British Queen, and the real head of state — the Governor General — is considered her representative on the island. This country is often called «little England» — British traditions are honored and cherished here almost more than in Britain itself.

General information

Barbados is located in the east of the Lesser Antilles archipelago; from the east it is washed by the Atlantic Ocean, and from the west by the Caribbean Sea. The popularity of holidays in Barbados is due both to its climatic features and untouched corners of the wild nature, and to «pirate romance» and the sights that have survived since that time.

Capital of Barbados Bridgetown is the largest city on the island. It received the status of the capital only in 1966, although it was the “main” city of the island from the moment of its foundation, and indeed was the center of the slave trade throughout the West Indies.

Population. The island is home to about 290,000 people who call themselves «bajans». Most of the population of Barbados are blacks, who are the descendants of slaves brought to the island to work on sugar cane plantations. About 67% of the inhabitants profess Anglicanism. Approximately 4% of the inhabitants are Catholics, 17% are atheists. The remaining 12% profess Hinduism, Islam and Judaism. The official language of Barbados is English, but in fact the local dialect is spoken on the island, which is a mixture of English, Creole and Spanish.

Currency of Barbados — Barbados dollar (BBD). It is related to the US dollar in a ratio of 2:1, that is, two Barbados dollars are equal to 1 US dollar. Currency exchange can be performed both in special exchange offices and commercial banks, as well as in hotels. In the capital and resort areas, you can pay with credit cards, but in the provinces it is still problematic.

Currency of Barbados

Climatic features

Barbados has a tropical humid climate, strongly influenced by sea breezes. The air temperature changes little throughout the year; daytime temperature fluctuates between + 28 ° … + 31 ° С, at night the thermometer rises to + 21 ° … + 26 ° С. The hottest months are August and September, when the temperature rises to + 30 ° С during the day and up to + 26 ° With night, and the coldest — January and February (the air warms up to + 27 ° C during the day and up to + 22 ° C at night). At the same time, the heat does not exhaust due to the influence of stable northeast trade winds blowing from the Atlantic.

The weather in Barbados is predominantly sunny — it is believed that the number of sunny hours on the island exceeds 3,000. From January to June, the weather is relatively dry, with an average monthly rainfall of no more than 60 mm. «Rainy period» — from July to December, the rainfall is about 200 mm, but prolonged showers are extremely rare. Due to its geographical position, the island of Barbados is protected from hurricanes, and serious storms around its coast are infrequent.

Climate of Barbados

Spa vacation

The most popular resorts in Barbados are located on the south and west coasts. Beaches of white coral sand are surrounded by palm groves. The most popular of the «family» beaches are Brandons, Butts Rock, Fitts Village near the capital, Mullins near Speightstown and beaches related to Folkestone Park in the vicinity of Holetown. «Party» beaches are located on the south coast, St. Lawrence Gap is considered the best resort for youth recreation, the best beaches here are Dover Beach, Long Bay and Crane Beach.

All beaches in Barbados are municipal, that is, anyone can use them absolutely free of charge.

For lovers of outdoor activities on the island of Barbados, the west coast, popular with divers and snorkelers, is more suitable, as well as the east and southeast, which, thanks to the trade winds blowing here, are popular with surfers. The island also attracts fishing enthusiasts: barracuda, tuna, dorado, blue marlin are caught here.

Crane Beach Dover Beach

Attractions of the island

There are many attractions in Barbados that are worth seeing even if you came to the island for a beach holiday. First of all, this is Harrison’s cave — a complex of underground caves, lakes and waterfalls. There are other caves on the island, but access is less civilized. Almost as popular with tourists are rum factories, of which there are many near Bridgetown; the most famous of them is the Mount Gay Rum Factory, which houses a museum. Not far from the capital is also the Tyrol Kot estate, which belonged to two important political figures — father and son Adams, and around it there is a historical village where you will definitely be offered an excursion if you stay at a hotel that provides for an excursion program.

It is also interesting to see the Square of National Heroes (formerly called Trafalgar), the Fire Tower dating from 1818 (it houses a small military museum), the Houses of Parliament, St. Michael’s Cathedral and the Barbados Museum, the Flower Forest Botanical Garden, St. John’s Church , Sugar Factory and Museum at Morgan Lewis, St. Nicholas Wildlife Sanctuary and Abbey in St. Peter’s County, Bathsheba Flower Reserve, Andromeda Gardens, Pottery House and Lazaretto Gardens at St. James.

Where to settle?

There are hotels of different classes in Barbados, the most prestigious are located on the west coast, hotels with more affordable prices, which are chosen by young people who come to rest, are mainly located in the south of the island. Windsurfers often stop off on the southeast coast, where big waves prevent the usual beach experience.

The best hotels in Barbados are 3* Coral Sands Beach Resort and 5* Hilton Barbados Resort in Bridgetown, 4* Ocean Two Resort & Residences and 3* Yellow Bird Hotel in St. Lawrence, 3* Sugar Cane Club Hotel & Spa and 5* Cobblers Cove in Speightstown, Tropical Sunset Beach Apartment Hote in Holetown. And the Sandy Lane Resort of the same name is considered the most upscale. Celebrities often stay there.

Yellow Bird Hotel Little Arches Boutique Hotel

National cuisine

The culinary traditions of Barbados represent a bizarre combination of African, Indian, Creole and British national cuisines. Local residents are characterized by extensive use of seafood (in particular, flying fish). You should definitely try the traditional dessert — rum cake.

Among the best restaurants on the island are Fisherpond Great House in St. Thomas, where you can get a «planter style» lunch, Bajan Blue at Sandy Lane in St. James, Wispers On The Bay in Bridgetown, Bliss-Café on Dover Beach, Nishi Restaurant in Holetown, Island Plates in Speightstown.

Fish Pot Barbados The basis of national cuisine is seafood

Festivals and other events

The main holiday of Barbados is considered to be Crop Over — a festival dedicated to the harvest of sugar cane. It is celebrated on a grand scale in July for three weeks. In addition to it, other festivals take place on the island, for example, the jazz festival in January and the fishing fair in Oistins in February.

Classical music and art festivals take place in March, May is marked by the Celtic festival and the Carnival of the Assembly, in November there is a folklore festival. In addition to festivals, competitions are also held in Barbados: horse racing for the Sandy Lane Cup, the International Triathlon Tournament, and the Caribbean Sea Surfing Championship.

The main festival of Barbados Horse racing in Barbados


The main «souvenir goods» of Barbados are rum and mahogany products. In addition, tourists buy fabrics, metal and glass products, souvenirs made of paper and shells, as well as jewelry. You can buy them in a souvenir shop at any of the resorts or by going to a specialty store in Bridgetown, where the choice is much larger.

The island has a very interesting tax-free system: the cost of the tax is returned not at the airport, but directly in the store — upon presentation of a passport.

Pelican Craft Center Souvenir shop

Security in the country

Barbados is a country with a fairly low crime rate. However, it is better to leave valuables and large sums of money at the hotel — in a special safe. The safety of hotels is monitored by security services, and no one suspicious enters their territory. But for your things in crowded places (airports, train stations, etc.) you need to monitor carefully — pickpockets can “work”. You can visit night bars, restaurants and discos completely fearlessly, but it is better not to walk along wild beaches at night.

To avoid some natural hazards, you need to follow a number of simple rules:

  1. Going to the island, get vaccinated against hepatitis and tetanus.
  2. Drink bottled water and wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly.
  3. People suffering from allergic diseases should refrain from visiting the island during the sugarcane season.
  4. Don’t forget to use sunscreen and stock up on mosquito repellent beforehand.
  5. Swimming in the open sea is dangerous due to strong currents and coastal rocks, so relax only in specially designated areas.

Emergency phone numbers:

  • ambulance — 115;
  • fire protection — 113;
  • police — 112;
  • unified rescue service — 119.

Be careful with rocks

It’s important to know

  1. You cannot take local currency out of Barbados.
  2. The mains voltage is 110V, American-style sockets and plugs are used. If you stay in a 4 * or 5 * hotel, you will be given an adapter for free, in a lower-class hotel you will have to pay extra for it.
  3. There are no meters in taxis. The cost of the trip must be agreed with the driver in advance.
  4. There are no nude beaches on the island — sunbathing in the nude is prohibited by law.
  5. Tipping in a restaurant is usually included in the bill. If not, it is better to leave about 10% -15% of the order amount.
  6. In a hotel, a «surcharge» for service is also often included in the bill, but if it is not issued, then it is better to leave a tip for the maids at the rate of 1 USD per day.
  7. Driving on the island is on the left.

Left side traffic

How to get to Barbados?

You can get to the island by plane. There is only one airport in Barbados, it is located 14 km from the center of Bridgetown and bears the name of Grantley Adams. The airport receives flights from the USA and many European countries. Without taking into account the time of docking, the flight to the island takes about 14-15 hours.

To visit Barbados, a visa is required, but if you are going to stay in the country for no longer than 28 days, you can get it under a simplified scheme — right at the airport. To do this, you must have a passport, the validity of which will expire in at least six months, an invitation (private, official or tourist), confirmation of hotel reservation and solvency, return ticket.

Transport links within the country

Transportation on the island is carried out by buses. There are 3 varieties of them: public, private and fixed-route taxis. State buses are painted blue and run on schedule. Private buses are yellow. Most of them run from 6-00 to 21-00.

Renting a car on the island is expensive and troublesome: in addition to international rights, you will also need to get Barbados ones. This will cost approximately 10 Barbados dollars. Renting a yacht is rather a pleasure for the rich, but still this service is popular here.

Barbados airport Blue buses - public