Barbados has become something of a sanctuary to me in recent years. There’s something about this tiny, yet vibrant island that makes me feel at home. From stepping off the aircraft into the glorious heat that envelops you like a lost friend, to watching the sun set whilst walking along the white sandy beaches, island time is so precious to me. Although I visit Barbados fairly frequently, I only have a short amount of time to play with. Luckily, the island is small enough to get around with ease so I’ve put together some things to do that don’t require much motivation, and fall into my idea of having a relaxing time with no stress at all.
Flights to Barbados from the UK average around 8 hours, which is one of the shorter length long haul flights that I’ve experienced. Fly throughout the year with BA and Virgin from London, and Thomas Cook out of Manchester from November throughout March. Arriving into Barbados on that first day gives me an instant surge of happiness. I immediately feel relaxed and ready for the next few days ahead. Staying in luxury at the Hilton Barbados in the parish of Saint Michael, my room looks out over the sea at Needhams Point. There is no feeling in the world that equates to how I feel when I open my curtains in the morning and look out to the azure blue sea and white beaches, with the sun rising slowly and bouncing off the crashing waves.
The beaches at the Hilton Barbados have spectacular views, and there is no lack of sun loungers. The beaches are private to the hotel, with staff members patrolling to take drink orders. The local beer, Banks is one of my personal favourites, as is the legendary Rum Punch. One is enough, as two can be lethal.
Heading out of the hotel brings a truly local experience, with many places to grab a bite to eat. Dave’s Shack is a must, and is found just at the base of Dippers Cruising Club. Dave’s Shack makes the best flying fish burgers; a meaty piece of marlin in a sweet bread roll with salad and the local Bajan Hot Pepper Sauce. It’s easy to say that you only want one, when in fact you need two. At just 9 Bajan for a fish and salad, it’s worth every penny. Dippers Cruising Club is also a great place to eat of an evening, with reasonably priced food and an extensive menu. I order the Fish Cutter sandwich with coleslaw and sweet potato fries every single time I go.
I love taking a long walk up Brownes Beach towards Bridgetown, and a stop off at The Boatyard in Carlisle Bay is definitely one to do. A beautiful part of the beach with cabanas and beds, activity play area in the sea and a stunningly beautiful setting to watch the sun go down, all whilst sipping on mango daiquiris and rum punch. It’s open every day of the year and attracts local residents, holidaymakers and it’s a stop off for the cruise ship passengers. The music is playing, there are several happy hours throughout the day and it’s one of those places that has such an infectious atmosphere, that you can’t help but want to stay all day.
Barbados has a great deal of history surrounding it, and although it is an independent Island, it was once part of the British Colony. The Island still has ties with the British Monarchy and only a few weeks ago, Prince Harry visited the Island, staying at the Hilton Barbados. I have found a great little coffee shop that does beautiful food that is surrounded by history. The George Washington house in the Garrison area was the house in which future President George Washington stayed in on his only trip outside of the USA. In 2011, the house became a UNESCO protected property and I’ve added it to my bucket list to do a full tour when I’m there for a little bit longer. In the gardens of the George Washington House is Coffee Barbados Cafe. An idyllic setting for coffee and breakfast, the service is quite slow but worth the wait. The waffles are a sight to behold. I don’t think that I’ve had a coffee as good as the one served at the coffee shop throughout my whole time spent in Barbados.
Each time I leave Barbados, I get a pang of sadness. It truly is one of my most loved places in the world. Sitting in my snuggle seat, with my laptop on my knee, thinking of ideas to share with you on the blog brings so much creativity. As I don’t tend to talk too much about travel, and prefer to share my images on Instagram, I’m hoping that some regular travel posts will get me that little bit more motivated as I tour around places of interest so I can share them with you. Please do leave me your comments on my new travel section and let me know what you think. So long Barbados, see you at the weekend!
*Photos of Prince Harry kindly taken by Luci Walton