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The Guide to Barbados

Michaela Atiae, Staff Writer

Sandy Lane Barbados Loddy

A country that is the birthplace of rum can’t be all that bad. In fact, some may argue that they even have their priorities in order. So, when you’re sitting around and want to pull the ripcord and disappear for the weekend, Barbados may be a good idea. There’s just enough scene, but not too much, that you may even get some proper R&R. This is the guide to Barbados, for where to stay and where to eat now.

Time to Celebrate

Black history month is coming to an end and women’s month is just beginning. What better time than now to visit a beautiful country whose cultural upcoming celebrates both? Barbados has deep roots in colonialism, attached to the British for hundreds of years. Sugarcane production turned into enslaved West Africans falling victim. Despite slavery’s end, and the victory of independence in the 60’s, Barbados was still a constitutional monarchy. 

Fast Forward to 2020, Barbados became a parliamentary republic and a year later a true Bajan woman, Dame Sandra Mason, became president. The Caribbean Island is home to plenty of good food, luxury hotels, and many beaches. There’s a reason why most people on isle are repeat guests. Barbados has rich culture, history, plenty of beautiful beaches and turquoise water. This is the guide to Barbados. You’ll need more than one visit to make a dent on the restaurant scene alone. 

The Nutshell Lists

Hotels:

Coral Reef Club
The Lone Star
02 Beach Club + Spa
The Sandpiper
Sandy Lane

Restaurants:

Upscale Dining

L’Acajou
Bajan Blue
The Tides
Lone Star
The Cliff
Q.P. Bistro
Fusion Rooftop
Paul Owens at The Beach House
Champers
Baia Barbados
Cala Roca

Casual Dining

The Club House
Seashed
Nishi
La Cabane
The Local & Co
The Mews
Pier One at Port St. Charles
Lobster Alive
Cariba
Atlantis Restaurant
The Round House
Buzo
Primo
The Bearded Rose

 

Where to Stay

There are more hotels than we could possibly list in Barbados, but these three stand out. Additionally there is a Fairmont if you’re not up for the coin of Sandy Lane, the fanciest hotel on the island.

Sandy Lane Hotel

Sandy Lane Barbados. Courtesy of Sandy Lane and Harding’s International Real Estate Facebook.

 

Sandy Lane is the Grand Dame of hotels, and by most accounts, the top hotel in Barbados. The hotel has an elegant royal feel with 113 rooms and suites set right on a coral sand beach.  The compound has private homes, including one owned reportedly by Rihanna. There are also nine bars and restaurants, so options will never run out for a good meal and drink to pair.

The Lone Star

Lone Star. Courtesy of Lone Star and Harding’s International Real Estate on Facebook.

 

Bright and beachy, Lone Star is a breath of fresh air with a relaxed vibe while still providing luxury. The boutique hotel was once one of the Islands first gas stations and the rooms are named after iconic cars as a nod to its history. Lone Star is first a restaurant though, where you are guaranteed to mingle with chic locals and expats on isle. 

O2 Beach Club + Spa

O2 Beach Club and Spa, Sun Terrace. Courtesy of O2 Beach Club and Spa Website.

 

We normally don’t go for all-inclusive resorts, but O2 Beach Club may be one to consider in Barbados. Eight eatery options, the most sought after spa in Barbados and lots of personality, yes please. O2 Beach Club is full of vibrant colors and a great option for the ultimate pampering.

What to Do in Barbados

Hunte’s Garden

Hunte’s Garden. Courtesy of Hunte’s Garden website.

Home to many vibrant tropical species of animals and plants, Hunte’s Garden has plenty see. A network of smaller gardens create little pockets of tranquility where lounge furniture can be found for relaxing. Enjoy some rum punch and learn about its history.

The Arlington House Museum

Arlington House Museum, Barbados. Courtesy of Barbados National Trust website.

The three story building is full of interactive experiences for all ages. You’l learn about colonization, listen to audio clips, and find out all about Barbados roots from the 18th to 20th century.

St. Nicholas Abbey

The Heritage Railway. Courtesy of St. Nicholas Abbey website.

If you’re looking for a second rum option, we’ve got it. St. Nicholas Abbey is over 350 years old and continues to make rum from their current day plantation. The property also has an authentic Victorian steam railway for picturesque train tours.

Harrison’s Cave Eco – Adventure Park

Harrison’s Cove Eco- Adventure Park. Courtesy of Expedia Website.

 

Take a tram ride through underground waterfalls and stalactite formations. You’ll even get to wear hard hats, (for safety of course) but who can resist a fun prop. After you have to check out the nature walk and bird aviary to get friendly with the island birds.

Where to Eat

We’re going to call out a few of the favorites of Galavante Tastemaker Alex K, who lived in Barbados during the pandemic. She and her family and friend Jen hunkered down in paradise and got up close and personal with the island haunts.

The Cliff

The Cliff. Courtesy of The Cliff website.

 

An Al a Carte and sushi menu prepared by Michelin- Starred Chef, Matt Worswick, overlooking the sea – it doesn’t get better than that. Their delicious pastries are an added bonus.

Sea Shed

Sea Shed. Courtesy of Sea Shed Instagram.

The menu is always changing with a heavy seafood focus. There’s a good assortment for the vegetarians and the vibes are Pinterest worthy. Weekends are for live entertainment, so enjoy a cocktail and sit inside or on the beach.

Cafe Carizma

Cafe Carizma. Courtesy of Cafe Carizma website.

This is the spot for your morning latte and breakfast. Dinner is definitely a viable option too, with Taco Tuesdays plus live music and Thursday quiz nights. All the traditional cafe fixings are also on the menu.

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