Local Bajans will tell you that Barbados is 21 miles long and a ‘smile’ wide. Although the island is in fact somewhat wider, it is easy to see where the saying comes from. The population, some 270 000, always has a smile and a friendly greeting for visitors and neighbours alike.
The island has a distinctly British influence about it which is reflected in structures like the defense force garrison buildings which oddly enough surround the island’s race course. The capital of Barbados is Bridgetown, a busy hub of activity where sports fishing boats and charter sailing vessels nestle alongside waterfront restaurants, and duty free shops.
Barbados Blue is located at the Hilton Hotel on Needham’s Point St. Michael, on the south-western tip of Barbados just south of Bridgetown.
Average temperatures range from 75 ˚F to 85 ˚F (24 ˚C to 30 ˚C), made comfortable by the steady and cooling trade winds. The lowest temperatures occur between November and February. The driest season is between January and May. Even during the rainy season, from June to December, it rarely rains for more than an hour at a time and generally not everyday.
The Island currency is Barbados dollars, although United States dollars are accepted almost everywhere.
The electrical current on Barbados is 110 v 50-60 Hz. Please make sure you use some form of surge protector for delicate electrical items, as the island is prone to power spikes.
In Barbados, vehicles drive on the left. Small buses are an easy and inexpensive way to get around. Car hire is easily arranged locally, you will be required to produce a valid driving license.
Generally speaking Barbadians are traditional with respect to shopping hours and personal attire. Shops are open Monday – Friday ~ 9-5, Saturdays closing early afternoon and closed Sundays. Beach wear is generally not worn in town, and taxis do not transport wet sandy passengers. Please note that camouflage print clothing and accessories cannot be worn in Barbados as these patterns are restricted for military use only.
Tap water is potable and rich in calcium as a result of its natural filtration through the limestone cap (ancient coral reef) that makes up %85 of Barbados. The geological history of Barbados and some great pictures of the reef that surrounds us on land and in the sea is presented in the recently released coffee table book ‘Barbados. A Coral Paradise” by Angélique Brathwaite, Hazel Oxenford and Ramon Roach.