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North America > Caribbean > Lesser Antilles > Barbados > Southern Barbados

Southern Barbados

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Southern Barbados is one of the main tourist bases of Barbados. Starting just beyond the Garrison Savannah district of Bridgetown, the parish of Christ Church is a strip of hotels, bars and restaurants along Highway 7, one long traffic jam honking its way through Hastings, Worthing, Rockley, Saint Lawrence (the main party zone), Oistins and Silver Sands. This south-facing section of coast is good both for water-based activities and family bathing. East of the airport is Saint Philip parish: this has fewer hotels and amenities, the coast trends north-east and becomes rugged and the seas are stronger.

Get in[edit]

The airport is in this area, so travellers staying in Southern Barbados have short transfer rides.

Highway 7 is the main road along which all public transport runs. Runs? - more often crawls, especially around commuter times, though they fly like hellbats whenever they get a clear stretch. Buses westbound are all going to Bridgetown with some continuing up the west coast as far as Speightstown. Buses eastbound are all going to Oistins with some continuing to Silver Sands and the airport, and a few beyond into Saint Philip.

Get around[edit]

And see Barbados#Get around for the different types of bus & minibus; it's a flat fare of B$2. Almost every third vehicle on Highway 7 is a minibus plying between Bridgetown and Oistins; they stop anywhere, even if you weren't hailing them to stop, with a tirra-lirra-lirra of horn to get your attention. (They will succeed in this whenever you try to sleep in your hotel.) Services beyond, north to Speightstown and east to the airport, are every ten minutes.

Private taxis start at B$2/km. These are the better option at night, and for anywhere off the main drag.

See[edit]

  • See Bridgetown for Garrison Savannah, the historic district a mile south of city centre. This was the 18th- & 19th-century military base, centred on the "Savannah", once the parade ground and sports fields, now the island's racetrack. Its chief attractions are the George Washington House, the Barbados Museum, and St Ann's Fort.
  • Mallalieu Motor Collection: a private enthusiast's collection of mostly mid-20th century classic motors, B$20.
  • 1 Foul Bay. is a large and beautiful bay, beach and local community on the South East Coast of Barbados. It is one of the more unspoiled beaches on the Island, named its lack of suitability as a harbour in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. It is a suitable place to moor and store small boats. Foul Bay, Barbados (Q5474139) on Wikidata Foul Bay, Barbados on Wikipedia
  • 2 Conset Bay. A bay and small fishing village on the East Coast of Barbados that is used as a harbour. It is about 5.5 km north west of Kitridge Point, the mostly easterly land point on the island. Conset Bay (Q5163170) on Wikidata Conset Bay on Wikipedia
  • Sam Lord's Castle is nowadays just a ruin; you may be able to peek through the fence. Sam Lord (1778-1844) amassed a pirate fortune by pillaging local shipping, and built a mansion in Long Bay, Saint Philip. This was later turned into a swanky hotel, which went bust, and the money to redevelop it couldn't be raised. (Mid-20th century bankers actually forbade piracy and pillage.) It was gutted by fire in 2010 and has remained a ruin since.

Do[edit]

  • Surfing: The southern coast is the best part of the island for surfing, wind surfing or kite surfing. West towards Maxwell is better for beginners whereas east towards Silver Sands suits those with more experience.
  • Charles Watersports, Dover Beach, Christ Church, +1 246-254-2175, . Daily. Various water sports offered. Windsurfing US$30/hr US$115/day, snorkeling $7.50/hr US$20/day, sailing US$35/hr US$150/day, ship wreck snorkel tour US$30, swim with turtles US$60/day, jet ski US$60/30min, surf boards US$25/hr US$80/day, double kayak US$25/30min US$100/day, boogie board $7.50/hr US$30/day. Does not take credit cards, larger lunch/drink included turtle snorkeling tours are better value for money.
  • Scuba diving: the nearest dive shacks are clustered around Bridgetown but they pick up from the south-side hotels.
  • Foursquare Rum Distillery offer free self-guided tours. They're at Four Roads, Saint Philip, and open M-F.
  • Banks Brewery conduct tours daily at 10AM, noon and 2PM. They're on Newton Road Industrial Estate, off Tom Adams Highway 3 miles west of the airport.

Eat[edit]

  • Oistins is a small fishing town on the south coast. Fish straight off the boats is prepared and cooked by the beach. Friday night is the Oistins Fish Fry, with a carnival atmosphere and beach huts selling fish dinners.
  • Bert's, Rockley, Christ Church (on Hwy 7), +1 246-435-7924, . Closed. Canadian sports bar at Canadian prices. It is closed for renovation as of Feb 2019.
  • Zen is a Japanese/Thai restaurant within the Crane Resort, Saint Philip (see "Sleep"). Menu features sushi, sashimi and Thai curries among others. It's open W-M 6PM-9.30PM.

Drink[edit]

Astronomical numbers of bars along the main drag, no standout. More rum, anyone?

Sleep[edit]

Highway 7 along the south coast is lined with mid-scale to upmarket accommodation.

  • Bajan Breeze Guest House, Hart's Gap, Christ Church (near Garrison Savannah), +1 246 429 9608, . Guesthouse rooms with private bath, AC optional, in a renovated traditional Bajan family home. Doubles Apr-Dec B$100, Xmas-Mar B$130.
  • 1 Courtyard by Marriott Bridgetown, +1 246 625 0000. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Decent chain 3-star a block back from the beach.
  • Pommarine Hotel, a couple of blocks back from Rockley Beach, is a 20-bedded hotel run as a training institute for the hospitality industry.
  • 2 Accra Beach Hotel, +1 246 435 8920. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: noon. Good mid-range 4-star on beach, good location & restaurant, housekeeping erratic.
  • 3 Rockley Golf and Country Club, Golf Club Rd, Bushy Park. The club has spacious, upmarket self-catering apartments.
  • Sea Breeze Hotel. Excellent mid range (price wise) four star hotel which has a swimming pool and beautiful beach front. Close to the airport on the Maxwell Coast Road and specialises in weddings and afternoon tea.
  • Long Breeze Villa, Inch Marlow, Christ Church, . Villa close to Long Beach and Silver Sands beach.
  • 4 The Crane Resort (just north of Foul Bay), +1 243 423 6220, fax: +1 246 423 5343, . Upscale place perched on cliffs near Foul Bay.


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