Beautiful Barbados is one of the Caribbean’s most iconic destinations, world-famous for its stunning sandy beaches, shimmering ocean waters, intriguing colonial culture and welcoming local population.

6 hours in… Barbados

Barbados’ capital Bridgetown will be your port of call when you arrive on this paradise island, offering the perfect place from which to explore. If it’s your first time in Barbados, you’ll most likely want to head to the beach to enjoy the breathtaking coastal scenery, a number of thrilling water sports and perhaps a spot of sunbathing to top up your tan.

A beautiful beach on the coast of Barbados

A beautiful beach on the coast of Barbados

Barbados’ sandy shorelines are truly inspiring and coastal activities are incredibly popular with visitors. If simply relaxing by the shore is not for you, then you could try your hand at a range of exciting water sports, from scuba diving and snorkelling, to catamaran cruises and swimming with sea turtles. Barbados is also renowned for its perfect kite-surfing conditions, so if you’ve ever wanted to have a go, make sure to seize the opportunity.

While many tourists flock to the coast, you could also discover natural beauty and exciting activities further inland. The island’s amazing tropical scenery is a joy to explore, and you could even enjoy an aerial zip-lining adventure, gliding through the canopy for a bird’s eye view of the island.

Been before?

The island of Barbados is brimming with stunning natural beauty, alongside a host of fascinating landmarks. Harrison’s Cave is located not far from Bridgetown in St Thomas and is one of the island’s most popular attractions. Here an underground tram can take you to explore this wonderful cavern’s magnificent chambers, where you’ll find a wealth of stalactites, stalagmites, cascading waterfalls and glistening pools.

The dramatic interior of Harrison's Cave

The dramatic interior of Harrison’s Cave

You’ll also discover a number of beautiful botanical gardens across Barbados, including Flower Forest and Andromeda gardens, where you’ll not only uncover a host of stunning tropical plant life, but also many captivating species of local wildlife, including colourful birds of paradise.

Within the port of Bridgetown is the famous Mount Gay Rum Distillery. Here you can take a tour of the facilities, offering an insight into the island’s long history of rum production. You’ll also have chance to taste the products of the distillery, offering the perfect opportunity to try some delicious local rum-based cocktails.

Can’t keep away?

The abundant opportunities for duty-free shopping are also a huge draw for tourists arriving on the island of Barbados. You’ll find a wide range of retailers across Bridgetown selling jewellery, leather goods, cosmetics, spirits and more, all at low duty-free prices.

The Main Guard's stunning clock tower in the Garrison Historic Area of Bridgetown

The Main Guard’s stunning clock tower in the Garrison Historic Area of Bridgetown

The shops in Bridgetown are open until late on most days, apart from Sundays when many will stay closed. If you’re a shopaholic looking for a serious bargain, or an intrigued travellers hoping for a memento of your time on the island, a shopping trip in Bridgetown is a fantastic way to pick up the perfect Bajan souvenir.

Don’t even bother!

Located just 13 degrees from the equator, the sun’s rays can be dangerous in Barbados if you’re not properly protected – especially for pale Brits! Make sure to apply a high factor sun cream if you plan on spend a long time outdoors, and drink plenty of water to stay well hydrated. Mosquitoes can also sometimes be an annoyance in Barbados, so it might be a good idea to bring some bug repellent spray ashore with you when you arrive on the island.

Emma Smith
Emma has more than seven years' experience as a writer and has been in the travel industry for nearly five years. She loves learning about new places and cruise ships coming to market, as well as discovering fun and exciting activities to do while you sail. She has cruised with Princess Cruises, Cunard, Celebrity Cruises, Virgin Voyages, Avalon Waterways and Royal Caribbean and is looking to get something in her diary for 2024! Her favourite things to see on a ship include excellent entertainment, a delicious cocktail menu and extraordinary dining venues.

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