Barbados – Any tips or pointers?

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  • Barbados – Any tips or pointers?
  • Based on a trip 20 yrs ago…

    Mount Gay Rum cocktails
    Snorkeling off the west coast beaches during the day
    Eat curry roti for lunch, followed by a snow-cone.
    Try to go see/dance to a local reggae/calypso group
    Explore the wilder/quiet Atlantic coast on a bike
    Chill out under a coconut tree

    Well, it looks like a little sunshine break in Barbados this year. Which is nice. Would usually go with Neilson somewhere in the Med, but other events mean that summer hols this year will be in Autumn, and Barbados has been picked.

    Anyone been? Any pointers of must-do and/or must avoid things?

    Bridgetown worth a wander round, visit Carlisle Bay & have a swim if you do. Cricket ground at Hastings. Friday night fish fry in Oistins. Visit Speightstown & experience life in slow motion. Another place well worth a swim. Wildlife place just up the road, green monkeys amongst other things. NE of island there’s a tropical gardens, worth a look around just for the unusual stuff (I’m not into plants etc) & experience humidity under tree canopy. There’s a road on may to Bathsheba with huge teak trees lining the way. Bathsheba has big atlantic breakers & is a surfer spot. Try fresh coconut juice (if you like coconuts), apple banana’s, dorado (also called dolphin on menu’s), rum punch & Mount Gay rum. Take a cataraman ride to snorkel over the reefs. Beware of taxi’s, beach sellers offering drugs and high food prices! West coast offers pick of beaches, east side of island highly, quiet & worth a look around – old colonial mansions & sugar & banana plantations.
    Later into the autumn the better for the weather – summer is same temp – pretty much 88degrees every day, but more humid & more rain…and when it rains you certainly know about it!

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    Ah, now if you’d picked St Lucia, I cooduv sorted you right out, Flashy. Mate of mine’s got family out there, and they know folk who do all sorts of scuba diving water skiing fishing type stuff.

    Ah well.

    Stb, thanks! Will be staying on the west coast, so a good start!

    Rum is very much on my list!

    Fred, I don’t water ski…. wake board is where it’s at.

    Pricing? All covered. ๐Ÿ™‚

    b r
    Member

    Beware of taxi’s, beach sellers offering drugs and high food prices

    Taxi’s are ace, never a problem.
    Beach sellers offer lots of things, but take a simple no – and you then don’t get hassled by any of them.
    And as for high food prices – its a small island and 99% of stuff is imported – but food is very, very variable…

    We’ve been a fair few times, and love it.
    And when you go snorkling, choose a boat with only a dozen or so seats – otherwise you’re swimming with a hundred people.

    Premier Icon Blurboy
    Subscriber

    Been several times – locals are fantastic. Not seen mentioned the submarine trips out of Bridge town – well worth it if you’ve not done it before. Stayed at 2 of the Elegant hotel groups properties, package organised through Virgin. Not cheap but first class service. Don’t forget to visit the East coast – bit like Cornwall or Devon. Love it – going back next year.

    off the pace
    Member

    Despite living next door (Grenada) I don’t know Bim too well and not at all as a tourist but I can tell you that, like most of the Caribbean, it is expensive for what you get and the Bajans will see you as a walking, talking wallet.

    I can also tell you that Sept 10th is the statistical peak of the hurricane season and you really don’t want to meet one of those. That season runs from June to Dec with a quite a big centre. The first serious effort of this year is brewing as I write – about 500 miles east of Barbados and tracking a little north of west so should miss by enough. June-Dec is aka the wet season which is more about inches of rainfall than it is about days without sunshine.

    Sept is also the time when temperatures tip over onto the too hot side of ‘phew, what a scorcher’ and I’m quite serious about that.

    Oct tends to have calmer seas and less ‘breeze’… between the hurricanes!

    Don’t let me put you off though. The islands need your money! When are you planning to go?

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    Singletrackbiker, has it pretty much covered. Disagree about the taxis as well tho. we had no problems at all.

    Stayed at the south of the island at Turtle beach resort, the sea breeze was most welcome. 8)

    We did a cataraman trip with http://www.calabazasailingcruises.com/ really good only a max of 12 guests and Gina and the crew were 1st class. Other cruises take a about 40 punters.

    Not really bothered with the beach vendors, a polite no and they moved on and after a few days they knew not to bother us.

    Elfinsafety
    Member

    Fred, I don’t water ski…. wake board is where it’s at.

    What’s the bloody difference? You still get towed behind a speedboat don’t you? Except ‘wakeboarding’ is on an ironing board rather than two planks. ๐Ÿ™„

    I can arrange some waterboarding for you if you like…

    Dibbs
    Member

    We went there a few years ago for the wife’s 40th. We had a self catering apartment right on the beach near Fitts. We did the Friday night fish thing and also went on a Sunday bus trip/picnic tour around the island from Bridgetown, about 15 bus loads of locals and only a handful of white faces but it was well worth doing to see how the locals really live.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    I can also tell you that Sept 10th is the statistical peak of the hurricane season and you really don’t want to meet one of those. That season runs from June to Dec with a quite a big centre.

    This ^^

    Thanks all. Off in Oct and well aware of hurricane risk. If one hits, time to just hunker down in the bar for a while! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Using up some BA miles on a holiday and got a cracking deal, all inclusive as well!

    Thanks for all the tips. Like the look of that cat trip!

    bullheart
    Member

    I loved Barbados. North east part of the island, up near Cuckold Point, to watch the sun come up and paddle in the rock pools. Absolutely fantastic…

    ski
    Member

    Does the Jolly Rodger still do its thing? Lost two days of my life after that trip ๐Ÿ˜‰

    If you are into Cricket the Oval a must, remember Bridgetown at night being quite a livly place, might be safer now mind.

    Playing cricket on the road next to the beach with the locals and being bowled medium paced balls that were that fast you could not see them! Good times ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Hire a car and drive down the East coast, used to be able to get a windy beech to yourself there ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Local bus service used to be good to get about on.

    The further North you go the quieter it used to be, but ever year I go back it seems to change so much, the great beachshack bar in Holetown had gone las time I went, used to serve great fish, never been back after that, the magic of the place had changed.

    crispy bacon
    Member

    Barbados great island but as said above it’s expensive.

    We had a bus ride with a bus driver who thought he was Ayrton Senna & we exited the bus station leaving two black lines :o( he then played chicken with anything coming the other way. I’ve never been so glad to get off a bus in my life.

    It’s a great place & the East coast is windy if you’re after watersports. The Weat coast is tranquil with clear blue water & white sandy beaches.

    Sorry to hijack the thread, but has anyone any comments on living in Nassau? My daughter has just accepted a job out there on a 3 year contract. It sounds like hell on earth to me but I’m just a grumpy older fecker.

    I hope you are not staying at the Edgewater hotel?

    If you are into surfing the west coast is pretty good but, dangerous when it gets big.

    Crane beach is good for snorkeling. The Crane hotel is a good place to stay/eat/drink rum punch as well.

    UncleFred
    Member

    I lived in the Caribbean for a few year and went to Barbados a couple of times.

    Ignore the all-inclusive food at the hotel, and support some of the local restaurants, try a proper Roti, Goat Curry is good, Stew and Dumplings and the old favourite Chicken & Rice.

    For Diving – Rogers Scuba Shack on the South Side of Bridgetown. There’s some pretty good shore diving out in the bay, 5 or 6 wrecks deliberately sunk to make a marine park, all of them shallow. If you’re qualified there’s also a big wreck that’s well worth a visit. The Stavros Nikita.

    Oistins Fish Fry on Friday night is a must do. Don’t bother with a taxi, hop on the Dollar Bus, normally a Mistubishi van or similar with a big sound system.

    Also based on 20 years ago, but still should be good…

    By law, all beaches are public. This means that although staying somewhere else, you can rock up at Sandy Lane in a tatty rented mini moke, amble through reception, and plonk yourself on the beach in front.

    As above, public transport is a good alternative to car hire or taxi. There is official public transport which is fine, and there are also reggae buses which are cheaper, more crowded, and … louder. I know which I prefer.

    Hurricane season. Well, it is a risk. But most years, and most weeks in even the worst years, Barbados is not hit by a hurricane. However, it is likely that it will rain sometimes. When it does, the sky really does fall in. 20 minutes after is stops there is no sign it ever rained.

    Food. As almost everything has to be imported, self-catering is expensive and a pain. As above, much better to use the local restaurants.

    It is quite possible to find ‘deserted’ beaches, if you have transport. If someone appears and offers you a fresh coconut, he’ll want paying. Agree the price first.

    It is a very chilled place.

    Reign_Man
    Member

    go to the Ship Inn for a few drinks and an plate of fishcakes, then after a few more drinks go to the rasta chef with the food trolley outside on the street and have a kingfish sandwich

    Premier Icon bruneep
    Subscriber

    Ignore the all-inclusive food at the hotel

    Kinda hard when I have 2 teenage boys to feed. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ All inclusive is way better value for us.

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