It’s National Cruise Month, so we’re taking you on a 14-day virtual cruise to our top destinations, giving you the lowdown on everything you can do. Whether you’re an outdoor adventurer, a history buff or a cocktail-enthusiast, we’ve got it covered. Today’s port of call is Barbados…
Although technically it’s perched at the western edge of the Atlantic, the balmy island of Barbados is all Caribbean cool when it comes to culture. Learn to lime, the Barbadian way of chilling in good company, with these five must-do activities that make the most of this tropical treasure’s turquoise waters, inventive cuisine, silky-soft beaches, and Bajan hospitality. An unbelievably enjoyable holiday is a #ShoreThing in Barbados.
Enjoy a relaxing ride along the lovely coast on the Spirit of Bridgetown, and stop at a quiet cove where hawksbill and green sea turtles swim sedately in the clear waters. After being threatened by overfishing, protected status and conservation have helped populations of these gentle giants rebound. Dive in and snorkel alongside the calming creatures, admiring their elegant waving strokes that propel them gracefully through a luminous underwater world. Top it off with a serene stint of sunbathing on deck.
Seize the day with a whirlwind tour of the island’s highlights, hitting both Orchid World and Sunbury House in a few incredible hours. At the lush park 800 feet above the ocean, thrill to the bright, velvet-soft petals of 30,000 orchids fluttering in the sea breeze. Luxuriate in a meandering stroll through intricate rock gardens, sparkling waterfalls, and a kaleidoscopic coral grotto. At Sunbury House, step back in time to the island’s colonial heritage as you explore the sprawling plantation dating back to 1650. At the end, you’ll unlock the secrets of pillowy fishcakes and smooth Bajan Rum Punch.
Beyond the beautiful beaches lies the natural subterranean cathedral that is Harrison’s Cave. Delicate tapering stalactites drip gold in the fiery lighting, creating the feeling of journeying into the heart of a volcano. Ride a cute electric tram past rippling limestone columns, glass-like pools, and an underground waterfall.
Take advantage of the rare opportunity to experience an undersea voyage in a submarine lined with large portholes that offer vivid views – almost like an inside-out aquarium. Marine life abounds in the coral reef, with sponge gardens and colourful, flashy schools of tropical fish swirling about. Plunge down 130 feet to glide around a shipwreck, and use handy pictorial guides to identify everything you’re spotting.
Why stick to one beach when you could be escorted in an open-air bus to several of the top sandy spots on the island? The popular beach hop first takes you to Dover Beach, an expansive ivory stretch of fine sand adjacent to the renowned St Lawrence Gap. In addition to soaking up sunshine and swimming in crystalline waves, you can sample local rum at your choice of laid-back bars dotting the shore. Along with a few other beaches, revel in Accra Beach, a south-coast stunner where you can snorkel, windsurf, or simply lounge languidly in the chalk-white softness of the sand.
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Author: Thomson Holidays
Published: September 19, 2015
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