Barbados is a West Indian state on one of the Lesser Antilles in the eastern part of the Caribbean Sea. It shares its sea borders with Grenada, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The capital city is Bridgetown.
The climate in Barbados is tropical with trade winds. The temperature does not change significantly during the year. The beach season in Barbados is from December to May. The surfers can come to the country even during a wet season which lasts from June to October.
The official language is English but the local can also speak the Bajan dialect. The major religion in the country is Christianity.
The tourists mainly come to Barbados because of its sea resorts with picturesque beaches and clean water. The youth prefer the southern coast with a well-developed entertainment infrastructure. Here, there are many restaurants, bars and night clubs. The tourists who like active holidays can go for windsurfing, yachting and sailing.
The western coast is mainly for people who are looking for a calm holiday. The beaches here are sloping and the sea is calm. These places are ideal for the tourists with children.
The eastern coast offers secluded beaches and everything one needs for surfing.
The north of Barbados is a great destination for ecological tourism. In the reserve of this sparsely populated area the travelers will see rare animals and exotic birds.
The tourists can have an excursion tour and see the historical and cultural monuments in Bridgetown, Saint James and Speightstown.
You can have good shopping in malls and stores in the capital city.
Virgin Atlantic and British Airways offer direct flights from London to Bridgetown. Condor, FlyBE, Virgin Atlantic, Lufthansa, Austrian, American Airlines and Air Europa offer transit flights from other European countries with a stop in London, Miami, Manchester, Tobago or Brussels.
The tourists from CIS countries will have to make a stop in 1 or 2 places to travel to Barbados by plane. Air Baltic, British Airways, Aeroflot and America Airlines offer flights to Barbados from Russia. The travelers from Ukraine can travel to Barbados with KLM, Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic and Condor. The tourists from Belarus can fly to the country with Austrian and Condor.
You can get to Barbados by cruise ships which often arrive at the port of Bridgetown.
The tourists from CIS countries do not need a visa to travel to Barbados provided that they spend less than 28 days in the country. The same rule applies to the EU tourists but they can stay in Barbados visa-free for 90 days.
When crossing the border, you will need to show your valid international passport, return ticket and confirm your financial sufficiency.
For a longer stay in Barbados, you must obtain a visa in the Embassy or the Consulate.
The customs legislation of Barbados does not restrict import and export of foreign currency but any sum of money must be declared. The tourists can export the money in the amount they stated in the declaration.
The tourists can import in Barbados duty-free:
- personal belongings, clothes and shoes;
- a limited amount of tobacco and alcohol;
- perfume for personal use;
- gifts and souvenirs the total cost of which does not exceed 100 Barbadian dollars (BBD).
It is strictly prohibited to import:
- foreign rum and rum products;
- clothes, bags and other goods having a camouflage pattern;
- some medications;
- meat and fruits;
- pets without a special permit.
The tourists are not allowed to export national currency.
The Barbadian cuisine is a mixture of the Indian, British and African influences with a local twist. The foodies will be pleased by a great choice of fish and seafood. The staple foods in Barbados are yams, manioc, sweet potato, fruits and vegetables, poultry, pork and beef.
We recommend trying beef ragout with okra Pepperpot, beef ribs Jump-up with a spicy sauce, meat in a flatbread Cutter and beef sirloin with wine and lemon juice sauce.
In Barbados, do not miss a chance to try flying fish, fish patties, grilled lobsters, cashew crusted kingfish and a traditional dish with sea urchin Ursin.
Order for a first course a traditional soup Callaloo with crabs, vegetables and herbs and a soup with scallops.
The Barbadians do not eat bread as they make it in Europe. They prefer flatbread Roti. The coconut bread is also popular in Barbados.
Do not leave Barbados without trying trout fillets Buldjol with parsley, tomatoes and belle pepper; mix of grains, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, raisins and coconut Conkies, and pea and grain soup Jag-jag.
The Barbadian cuisine is rich in various sweets and desserts. The locals cannot do without fruits such as bananas, paw paw and mango. Rum puddings, fruit jellies, guava jam, sherbets, fruit cakes and pies are also very popular.
In Barbados, try the national tea and other drinks with coconut water.
You will surely like the local rum and the favorite drink of the locals Mount Gay Rum.
The national currency is Barbadian dollar (BBD) which is equal to 100 cents. In circulation, there are the bank notes from 2 to 100 dollars, 1 dollar coins and coins from 1 to 25 cents. The exchange rate is fixed against the US dollar.
In touristic areas, the travelers can easily pay with the US dollars.
You can exchange the currency in exchange offices, at banks and in hotels. The tourists usually do not face any problems with exchanging the currency but we recommend you having cash if you are a planning a trip outside large cities.
On the resorts, the tourists can pay with international credit cards but in small towns cashless payments are not accepted.
Traveler's checks are accepted in large hotels and you can cash them at any bank. To avoid the costs, it is better to have checks in pound sterlings and US dollars.
The tax-free system is available in Barbados and the tourists can refund VAT by showing their international passport in a shop.
Details of interest
Sightseeing in Barbados
In Barbados, you will see the only UNESCO site. This is the Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison which is a unique example of colonial architecture. The city was being built during the period from the 17th to 19th century and it demonstrates all the power and influence of the British Empire in the Atlantic. This historical monument includes the military settlement which also has a great historical value. Its architecture is different from the Spanish and Dutch style.
In Barbados, there are two UNESCO candidate sites.
- Scotland District of Barbados which extends along the eastern coast. This area is mainly interesting because of its geological characteristics. This is the only piece of land in the Caribbean Sea which consists not of volcanic rocks but it is a mountain range rising above the water.
- In Barbados, there is an excursion program The Industrial Heritage of Barbados – The Story of Sugar and Rum. Among the industrial places of interest are the Saint Nicholas Abbey in Saint Peter Paris and the Morgan Lewis Windmill in Saint Andrew Parish. The industrial heritage of Barbados also includes the Codrington College built in Saint John Parish and the Newton Burial in Christ Church.
The tourist should also visit the Flower Forest Botanical Garden, the Queen's Park in Bridgetown and Gothic Saint John's Parish Church. The Harrison's Cave is open for every tourist as well as the Sunbury Plantation. Visit the Saint James Parish Church and have a look at the Barbados Parliament Buildings.
To learn more about the country, go to the museums in Barbados. The most interesting are the Frank Hutson Sugar Museum, the interactive Arlington House Museum, George Washington House and the Barbados Museum.
Buy these souvenirs and gifts to remember your travel to Barbados:
- glass souvenirs and glass pictures made by the local craftsmen;
- models of ships made of sea shells;
- stone figurines;
- spices and herbs;
- discs and records with national music;
- bright clothes and handmade textile;
- local rum.