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  • Writer's picturepinderworld

Barbados 🇧🇧…

Situated farthest east of all the Caribbean islands hence the very first of them all to be kissed by the sun as its rays rises for a new dawn each morning. Barbados is also the birthplace of my parents and the place where I spent the first nine years of my life. I was actually born in the UK, but was sent to the island as a toddler to live with an aunt as life in the UK back in the sixties wasn’t exactly the kindest to people of colour and accommodation for such people, especially those with children, wasn’t the easiest to obtain.

I came back to the UK around age nine and wouldn’t travel back to the island until I was an adult, 1990, in fact.

Every time I’ve returned, Barbados has brought back the most amazing memories of my childhood and this latest trip has been no exception. This trip also had a special significance for me and my family as we were all returning to bury my mother’s cremated remains.

Disembarking the plane at Grantley Adams international airport is such a thing. Stepping onto the top step of the stairs you’re greeted instantly by that harsh Caribbean heat which you’ll either love or hate during your time on the island. It’s like, BAM,💥💥 in your face and you wonder what’s just hit you. For some of you, beads of sweat will be trickling down the small of your back even before you hit the confines of the arrivals hall, it’s no joke! 😁 It’s in that hall where the bliss of the air conditioning 🥶🥶 will be your salvation. Luckily for my wife and I, we were one of the first off the plane which in turn meant our transition thru customs to the baggage claim was pretty quick, by airport standards. Before we knew it, we were outside the airport relishing in the fact that we were now officially in beautiful Barbados awaiting our pick up. First thing that always catches my eye is the Chefette fast food outlet over by the departures side of the airport. Despite being fully fed on our flight in, I was ready for one of their famous beef and potato roti’s, but I controlled my urge as I knew they’d be plenty of time for that, plus I already knew that I wanted my first outing to cheffette to be in my fave outlet on the island, Accra. I have fond memories of that particular one from previous visits over the years.

Anyway, I was itching for my first beach walk, so before I get into this blog, let's hit Brandons beach to show you the beauty of being on the island of Barbados.

We were here for eighteen nights this time round and staying with our cousin, Penny in the famous pink house over in Husbands Heights on the lush west coast of the island in Saint James for the most part of our trip. We’d go on to spend a few days also on the hustle and bustle side down in the south on Rockley, we were looking forward to that.

It’s a beautiful feeling as you settle into your first couple of days on any vacation, Barbados though, has an extra special feel. Going to bed with the sound of the crickets singing into the very dark nights and waking to a chorus of cocka-doodle-doo from the various Cockerels dotted around the neighbouring homes. It’s magical! I always use to think this was an early morning ritual by these birds, but I’ve come to realise that this symphony can actually go on all day.

With nothing better to do, what else but hit the beach for the most delightful laziest of days. A real sun worshippers paradise. Every beach on the island is a public one and with the use of a hired car, you can just choose somewhere new every day to explore. A car isn’t a must, but definitely allows you to roam free at a leisure which is suitable to you. An average saloon car could set you back a cool $350usd per week. Yes, it’s not cheap on the island, you’re not even safe in the supermarkets, for example, a litre carton of oat milk will cost you a staggering $12.00bds which equates to around £5.00uk. It’s pretty much like this throughout the supermarkets. One amazing upside though is the purchase of proper prepared local meals, you can pick these up for as little as $10.00bds and they’d consist of jerk chicken, rice and peas and macaroni pie, or many other combinations. Decent servings too. You can’t go wrong. We loved it, nothing better than eating the local cuisine of the country you’re visiting. Fish dishes are especially nice here also, though flying fish, which was once widely associated with Barbados, is rather scarce on the island now. Something to do with the politics of the fishing waters I believe. 🤦🏾🙈 Eating out on the island was one of our absolute fave things to do, from high end fine dining to the local eateries which are situated all over the island, just like anywhere, really.

We were really excited to try out a place called Worthing Square which host an array of food stands representing some of the other islands of the Caribbean and their local dishes. Unfortunately for us though, it wasn’t fully trading during our time on the island because of the lack of trade due to the quietness, but that didn’t stop us from venturing into the square for a look at its set up. As you can imagine, it was very vibrant inside with the food trucks all painted in the national colours of the islands they were there to promote. Right in the heart of the square is the most beautiful, amazing, giant tree with its huge branches drooping down to give the area a much needed shade from the intense sun rays. The tree, to our surprise, is known as the bearded fig tree and is the national tree of Barbados 🇧🇧. Shut up…I didn’t even know Barbados had a national tree. Despite not being able to try any of the culinary dishes which would’ve been on offer, the walk through alone was very nice indeed with seating dotted all around and a DJ station pumping out the latest tunes. In one corner there’s a large red tented bar area with a large television screen showing sports and music videos. I could only imagine the atmosphere in the square had it been open fully. Never mind, maybe next time.

One place on the island which is guaranteed to be open though is, Oistins. The actual place to be on a Friday night on the south of the island. In all my time visiting Barbados, I’d never been to Oistins in the day time to have lunch, I’ve always thought it was just exclusive to Friday nights, how wrong was I!! 🙈 Oistins has a thriving fish market open six days a week where some of the finest fish in the Caribbean is brought, dissected, cleaned and distributed all over the island. They’re food tents permanently pitched on the beach side serving up the most delicious street like local cuisine you will ever taste right down to the ever moorish to die for heavenly fish cakes and mouth watering macaroni pie that just tastes the same no matter what food tent you choose to sit at. Mahi Mahi is a fish dish I personally highly recommend if you find yourself stuck for choice. Remember, all this can be washed down too with some delicious fruit and rum punches, beers, or cold, cold soda drinks. You can’t fail with an ice 🧊 cold ginger ale. So, all this is served up on the Friday night too, but this time the area is also soaked up with revellers enjoying the live music and exciting atmosphere. If you can close your eyes and imagine the delightful smells of barbecued fish 🐟 🐠 and the sounds of beautiful music in the air, you have Oistins on a Friday night. The Barbados police 👮🏿‍♀️ are constantly patrolling the area so you can be rest assured of your safety while concentrating on your large tray of food before you. 😋😋😁

One of our highlights during our visit here was our stay at the Accra Beach Hotel and Spa. We actually loved staying with my family as that was just as good as staying in a nice swanky hotel, but we wanted a just us two romantic long weekend getaway, so we chose Accra before we left London because of the not so bad online reviews, and mostly the hotel’s superb location to the beach and surrounding areas where we enjoyed some fabulous off site breakfast at beach front establishments and superb cocktails/mocktails at pretty much of the same.

Accra is a cool walking distance from night life, restaurants and bars. Although we were given complimentary breakfast for two mornings of our stay, we found it much nicer to venture out to grab a good local something, something. You can never fail to find something delicious to eat in Barbados especially when dressed with a little pepper sauce. 😋

We had booked an ocean front view room, but although promised to us when we popped into the reception a few days prior just to make sure, they tried to fob us off with an inferior room with pool and side ocean view claiming that all the ocean front rooms were experiencing terrace balcony jacuzzi failures. We made it clear that we weren’t having it and would be happy to look elsewhere. With that, they managed to locate a couple of rooms we could choose from in their five star suites on the west side of the complex, not quite ocean front, but not far off at all. For what they deemed an inconvenience to us, they upgraded us free of charge, offered us breakfast for two of the days we were there, and a nice bottle of bubbly which we saved for my cuz as it would’ve been pointless opening it as wifey is tea total. Our room was situated on the top floor with an awesome diagonal view of the ocean and delightful views of the hotel grounds below. We couldn’t fault it really. The room itself was nice. Beautifully air conditioned and spacious with a large jacuzzi tub in the bathroom which could easily fit four people. We were staying in Wimbledon {tennis} week, so I was excited to find that I could tune into the live matches being beamed from the uk 🇬🇧, I was in my element!👏🏾 All in all, despite the initial hiccup, we would definitely recommend a stay at the The staff there really went out of their way to accommodate us and I’m sure they would afford you the same great service too.

Barbados is truly a tourist paradise. Expensive, but this is something you have to expect from a small island with so much to offer. I couldn’t end this blog though without mentioning the island’s main fast food outlet, Chefette. Yes, We all know of the usual suspects when it comes to fast food, no names, 😁😁 but this place, in my opinion, far outweighs them all. You can go in and order a full on local meal consisting of any type of meat or fish along with the island’s knockout macaroni pie and vegetables 🥦 🥕 or salads. Their chicken, fish or beef burgers are definitely on par if not better than the others we’re usually accustomed to, and their piece la resistance are their mouth watering roti’s. My absolute fave is their beef and potato. They look small, but if you can consume two in the same sitting, then I take my hat off to you!! So, If you have never in your life tried a chefette roti, then it’s an absolute must that you do before you leave the island. Remember I told you, and you’re welcome!! 😜😜

So, time to leave this epic destination, and like I said at the top, one of the best and easiest ways to explore Barbados, is by a hired car. That said car is now what’s going to take you to the airport. No ridiculous taxi prices, just an easy, stress free self transfer over to Grantley Adams international airport, crack the window, not literally 🤪, and drop the keys 🔑 in. You’ve done your bit, so now it’s time to check in and say a very happy goodbye to those ferocious mosquitoes 🦟 that have plagued your stay. For my wifey and I personally, it was a pleasure to bid them farewell. Hasta La vista, baby! Home, here we come. 🤩🤩

Oh, one last thing before I close this blog, the south coast of Barbados is experiencing a sea weed infestation which is almost becoming unmanageable. I know this is the same for many of the other caribbean islands. Mother Nature playing her hand!! I shot the following video to give you a first hand look at its menace. Hope you find it interesting.

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1 comentario

ellie belle
ellie belle
13 nov 2022

Absolutely wonderful in-depth blog on Barbados, and your trip 🇧🇧. You have captured your visit beautifully. Your stories and photos are amazing, and transported me right back to beautiful Bim. A really lovely well written, descriptive blog. It was a real pleasure to read. Your blog has made me remember what I am missing and I need to go back pronto! Thank you.

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