A hypnotic calypso isle, Barbados is the ultimate Caribbean dream. And at just 21 miles by 14 miles, the island really is your oyster. Of course, it’s most famous for its palm-fringed beaches, but there’s more than talcum powder sands here. We’re talking a duty-free shopping scene and sights that are second to none. In a coconut shell, it’s the small island with a big fan base! Here are five shore excursions you should definitely be doing on your next adventure here…

Visit Shark Hole Beach

Well off the beaten track, the pint-sized Shark Hole is one of those special places for which your selfie will just not do it justice. Down a short flight of steps, a small stretch of delicate white sand is totally enclosed by rocks that wrap around 300 degrees, forming a perfect secluded cove. A reef just offshore calms the water, creating a perfect natural saltwater swimming pool. Local kids like to perform backflips off the rocks – emulate at your own risk. If you’re lucky to dock in Barbados during the week you might get the whole place to yourself – magical!

St Nicholas Abbey

St Nicholas Abbey is a Jacobean-style mansion that’s one of the oldest plantation houses in the Caribbean – making it a must-see stop on any island itinerary. The grounds include the Great House, various gardens and a very traditional rum distillery. An on-site cafe serves light lunches on a platform overlooking a lush valley full of trees. Make sure to visit the worthwhile gift shop for a bottle of single-cask rum made on-site with sugarcane from the estate’s own plantations.

Brighton Farmers Market

Early on Saturdays, foodies, chefs, artisans and many more people converge on the Brighton Farmers Market in the heart of the fertile St George Valley. It’s a festival of the finest produce, prepared foods and home-made crafts – it’s the perfect place to get off the traveler trail and mingle with the locals. Grab a cup of coffee, enjoy some local gab and see what treasures you root out.

Lime Party

A party is known as a ‘lime’ to Bajan people – and the best place to experience one is at Oistin’s Fish Fry, held every Friday and Saturday. This fish market in Christchurch is where fishermen bring in the local catch by day, and where a party atmosphere emerges by night. There’s Calypso music and dancing on stage, stalls selling arts and crafts and traditional Bajan BBQ food. Locals often then head to nearby St Lawrence Gap afterwards, home to plenty of clubs and bars – you’ll have a whale of a time!

Barbados Bike Tour

Barbados isn’t short on natural beauty or historical landmarks, and this two-wheel trip offers a bit of both. After meeting your guide at the port of Bridgetown, you’ll cycle inland, gliding past colourfully painted bungalows and sugarcane plantations. Next, you’ll ride along the west coast to Sandy Bay, where the beach is lined with luxury villas and upmarket restaurants. A little further south is Paynes Bay, where the curve of white sand is framed by palm trees and turquoise seas. Pull up a sunbed or enjoy a swim before retracing your route back to Bridgetown. Once in the capital, there’s time to scout around, checking out sights like the arched Parliament building and the impressive Chamberlain Bridge which spans the Constitution River.

Time to sail to Barbados?

If you’re yet to book your next cruise to Barbados, take a look at our latest deals – you’re sure to find that sailing you’ve been dreaming of! Or simply call our friendly team of cruise experts on 0800 027 8302 – they’ll have you heading off to this idyllic island in no time!

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