The most eastern of the Caribbean islands, Barbados is a relatively flat island with sloping plains, sporadic rolling hills and even areas of marshes and mangroves. With 60 miles of coastline, the island is an ideal place to enjoy the seaside. The highest point on the island is Mount Hillaby, which peaks 340 meters above sea level.
Historical traces can be found throughout Barbados, from 18th century homes to the residual presence of colonial and Christian influences. Social activities center around the western and southern coasts, where tourists can enjoy waterfront pubs, nightclubs and more. To see more of the map, widen your browser.
In the area encompassing Bridgetown and the surrounding southwest coast, tourists will find engaging attractions like the Tyrol Cot House and Heritage Village. This site provides excellent insight into Barbados’ history, complete with the Chattel House Museum, a slave hut replica, an operational blacksmith’s shop and more. Likewise, at the George Washington House, guests can take a peak into the house where the famous Washington spent his time on the island.
On the west coast of the island, known as the “Platinum Coast,” guests will be enticed by crystal clear water that gently crashes onto pristine stretches of sand. There are countless beaches to choose from in this area, including Paynes Bay, Sandy Lane, Batts Rock and more.
Other recommended beaches include Cattlewash Beach on the east coast, Carlisle Bay located near Bridgetown, and the southern coast destinations of Crane Beach and Accra Beach.
The interior of Barbados is equally attractive, with stunning sites like the Flower Forest. Located directly in the center of the map, this former plantation features numerous paths that traverse extensive gardens, which are home to flora from around the globe. At the Farley Hill National Park in the northern interior of the island, patrons will be enchanted by ruins of the former Farley Hill house, which was become a retreat for picnickers and nature enthusiasts. Likewise, the Barbados Wildlife Reserve located directly across from Farley Hill, and offers a marvelous glimpse into the natural wonder of Barbados. For a great day of hiking, check out the Welchman Hall Gully, which sits a bit south of Flower Forest.
Additional attractions include the St. Nicholas Abbey, located west of Boscobelle. The Abbey houses one of only three remaining Jacobean mansions in the western hemisphere. The property has undergone extensive renovations, and provides an excellent way to soak up some of Barbados’ history. Alternatively, the Andromeda Botanic Gardens on the eastern coast is a six-acre collection of exotic plants, and also features a gift shop and charming café.
Holetown and the entire western coast of Barbados from Speightstown south toward Bridgetown is a lively area that serves as the center of tourism in Barbados. Travelers can enjoy a wide variety of dining options, plentiful shopping, banks, markets and more. This town is the site of its annual namesake celebration, the Holetown Festival, which celebrates local culture with arts, music and parades. If you find yourself feeling homesick, load up on fast food comforts like hamburgers and fries at one of the many drive-thru chains found in this bustling town.
Sandy Lane is one of the most luxurious places in the Caribbean. This resort and several others in the general area are famous for attracting celebrities to the island's most glamorous digs. Those seeking glitzy surroundings will also enjoy St. James and St. Peters, but if you are seeking a more humble experience, you can check out some of the nearby fishing villages.
On the eastern coast of Barbados, travelers will find an area of smaller populations, alluring beaches and a handful of modest lodging facilities. Charming towns like Bathsheba offer a drastically different vibe than the busy west coast; here you'll find a haven for surfers and those looking to avoid the touristy areas of Barbados. Popular beaches along the western part of the map include Cove Bay, Cattlewash, Bath Bay, Tents Bay and The Crane, which is rated as one of the top ten beaches in the world.
The southern coast of Barbados offers a fairly large collection of hotels and eateries, stretched from Bridgetown to the southern tip of Long Bay. Some of the island's more popular, and less glamorous, hotels are housed in this area. The lively coastlines in this area offer a great combination of relaxing sunbathing, calm reefs ideal for snorkeling and thrilling water-sport activities.
If you’re flying into Barbados, you’ll be landing at the Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI), southeast of Bridgetown. The airport serves flights arriving from the United States, Canada, other Caribbean destinations and select locations in Europe.
The major point of arrival by water is the Bridgetown Port, located just minutes from the capital city. The port is also frequently referred to as the “Deep Water Harbour.” It accommodates both cruise ships and cargo vessels. If your cruise originates in Barbados, the airport is nearby, and it's easy to arrange for transfers.
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