• Lisa Marie

Is Barbados the Island for You?

So many people say if you've been to one Caribbean island you have been to them all. That statement is the furthest from the truth and it is usually said by people that have not been to many Caribbean islands. Each island offers its own unique flare and you may appreciate one island more than another because of your personal interest or specific style. Take a look at the reasons I listed that will help you to decide if Barbados is the right island for you.

6 Reasons To Go to Barbados

1. Barbados is a beautiful island full of rich history. Did you know that Barbados is one of the first islands in the Caribbean where the slaves received a formal education? Did you know the slaves in Barbados played a significant role in the history of sugar for Europe? Did you know that Barbados is known as the birthplace for rum? If you're a history buff, Barbados has centuries of interesting information to offer.

2. Barbados has festivals year round. The locals dance, sing, and enjoy each other for days on end. It's almost hard to miss a festival because you can attend the Mount Gay Round the Island Regatta Festival (January), Holetown Festival (February), Sandy Lane Gold Cup (March), Oistins Fish Festival (Easter Weekend), Barbados Reggae Festival (April), Barbados Gospelfest (May), Celtic Festival of Barbados (May), Rally Barbados Festival (June), Crop Over Festival (July to August), Festival of Speed (October), Independence Surf Festival (November), Food & Rum Festival (November), and Run Barbados Festival (December).

3. Barbados knows how to do a fish fry! Every Friday night, you can find a fish fry in Barbados. People come from all over the island to Oistins Bay Gardens to sample the fish, chicken, and lobster grilled on outdoor barbecue grills. It's a festival that promotes Bajan culture and community. Locals are eagerly welcome to join the food and fun.

4. Barbados is known for having luxurious hotels and resorts. Celebrities from all over the world have chosen Barbados as their wedding or vacation destination of choice. Sandals Barbados has created an incredible adult only, all-inclusive resort on the island of Barbados. It's innovative, modern, and has a touch of British class. It has become one of my favorite Sandals resorts.

5. Barbados is the home of Rihanna. Rihanna is a famous singer that has her roots in Barbados. She has given hope to so many singers and entertainers in Barbados that dreams do come true. In honor of Rihanna's legacy, her childhood home has become a Barbados landmark and the country has placed a memorial sign on the street in her honor. In July of 2018, my husband and I had the opportunity to visit her childhood home and truly understand the impact that she has on the Barbados culture.

6. The people in Barbados are so welcoming! They are generally very friendly and eager to help tourist find there way and enjoy their island. I was blown away by the constant smiles, pleasant conversations, and great attitude of everyone that I came in contact with during my trip.

3 Reasons To Consider if Barbados is for You

1. The Beaches - Barbados has 60 beaches and all of them are open to the public. Usually, Barbados boast some of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. When I visited Barbados in 2013, I was blown away by its clear waters and white sand. However, 2018 has been a rough year for Barbados' beaches. Every few years, due to the location of the island, Barbados falls into a current of seaweed. There is so much seaweed in the beach this year that the guests and locals cannot swim at the beach in certain parts of the island. In July of 2018, my husband and I stayed at Sandals Barbados and the resort had to bus us to another beach to allow us to have an opportunity to swim.

2. Many islands have authentic dishes that are served throughout the day. However, in Barbados the national dish is flying fish and cou cou. The flying fish is seasoned with traditional Bajan spices. It is usually fried or steamed, and served with cou cou. Cou cou is similar to polenta or grits, but it is made with cornmeal and okra. As tasty as those national dishes are, I must admit that I was disappointed when I went to breakfast and I saw "American" dishes on the menu. My husband and I travel all over the Caribbean, so we are used to indulging in something unique from that particular culture at every meal. Unfortunately, unless you're having flying fish, cou coo, or Bajan style lasagna there are no other dishes that are unique to Barbados.

3. Barbados is a very small island. You can literally drive through the entire island in half of a day. So, if you have planned an extended trip, you might run out of things to do and sights to see.

As you can see, the pros of the island definitely outweigh the cons. However, everyone knows what they're looking for when they decide to visit an island in the Caribbean. If you would like more specific answers about an upcoming or prospective trip to Barbados, feel free to email me at contactus@thefloridapalate.com.

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