Western Barbados covers the parishes of Saint James, Saint Peter and Saint Lucy.
Holetown is the site of the first British settlement in Barbados and the site of the first English landing (in 1625). It was originally Jamestown, so named when Captain Powlett claimed the land for King James the 1st.
Holetown is set on the west coast among the posher hotels and villas. Holetown offers shopping, eating and drinking, but there isn't much of a town centre to speak of. Walk through the numerous alleys down to the beach, and you will see why this is the most expensive coastline of Barbados.
The coastal highway runs north from Bridgetown to Speightstown through Holetown, but doesn't carry much traffic any more so noise is not too much of a problem. Both public buses and private-run mini vans run often between Bridgetown and Speightstown.
There is one road, with barely two lanes, that runs up the coast. Perpetually packed with traffic, it makes for a slow but not unpleasant drive. Watch out for pedestrians (there are practically no sidewalks)!
Buses, both public as well as private, run continuously up and down the west coast road and it is easy to get around without a car. Bus number 12P (about every 20 minutes) connects this area with the airport, albeit slowly.
- Holetown Monument which commemorates the first English landing.
- St. James Parish Church the first church in Barbados, the St. James Parish church has been in continuous operation since 1628. Damaged and rebuilt many times thanks to hurricanes, the present structure dates from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
- The Holetown Festival in February celebrates the arrival of the English in Barbados with parades, dances, games, street fairs, and hymns and prayer at the St. James Parish Church.
- Limegrove Mall in Holetown is full of clothing stores.
- New Town Square in Speightstown is pretty and elegant set in typical Caribbean style and surrounds. Located just above Jordans Supermarket, Le Boutique.. boutique clothing, fresh linen for the men and ladies plus plenty more. Discount Herbs and vitamins by Natures Discount, Cloisters bookstore, Realty by A & B, hair and body needs by Moods and Options, healthy bag store from Ameribag, Angels Paradise kids shop, Roti Den Cafe, IT Store, pamper yourself with Cher Mer.
- Le Boutique, 3 Town Square, Speightstown (Opposite Jordans Supermarket, the new mall). Mens and Ladies Fashion From Paris at affordable prices. Mens linen shirts, shorts and pants, ladies dresses, tops, bags and local hand made shoes
There are plenty of restaurants ranging from beach-front shacks to high-end chef run restaurants. Holetown has the highest concentration of restaurants in this Parish but there are others dotted along the West Coast Road, including a cheap but good Roti place at Paynes Bay. Most of the restaurants on First and Second Street in Holetown are moderate, by Bajan standards, and quite good if you prefer not to venture further afield.
The Super Center at the West Coast Mall in Holetown has almost everything you can possibly need. Jordan's, at Fitt's Village, is good though the choices are more toward the simple life (all cheese is cheddar!). The Exxon gas station at Payne's Bay is open everyday with staples like beer, bread, and baked beans, plus a few meats and veggies, cheese and milk. There is also a small fish market at Payne's Bay where you can pick up fresh flying fish or dolphin fish.
Surprisingly good selection of bars and restaurants in this small town.
- Angry Annie's Restaurant & Bar, 1st Street, ☎ . Daily 6-10PM. Seafood, chicken, rasta pasta, curries, ribs. Colourful decor. Warning, some patrons in 2006 reported nausea & vomiting after drinking bottled "mineral water" that arrived at the table already opened. Hopefully this lapse in food safety has been resolved. Mains US$15-$US$30.
- [dead link] Dazzlers (Dazzlers Sports Bar), 3rd Avenue, Lower Carlton, St James, ☎ , e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy great food & drink while watching Live Sports
- Olives, ☎ . In a traditional Bajan townhouse with seating in a lovely courtyard garden, Olives serves up excellent modern European cuisine with an Italian bent. The bar upstairs is beautiful and a good place for a drink or three accompanied by bar snacks. NOW CLOSED
- Patisserie Flindt, 1st Street Holetown, St. James, ☎ , fax: , e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 7AM - 6PM, Sa 7AM - 2PM, Su 7AM - noon. Imaginative and delicious breakfasts and lunches, featuring sandwiches, salads, quiches, pizzas. Exquisite desserts: cakes, pastries, beautiful handmade chocolates. Delivery and catering services available.
- Ragamuffins, Holetown, St. James, ☎ . Caribbean influenced food: blackened shrimp, curries, and a delicious vegetarian stew. B$50.
- Zaccios Restaurant (was Cocomos), ☎ . Ocean-front dining. Open for Lunch & Dinner. Good value for money. Relaxed atmosphere. Happy Hour from 4 - 6PM. International cuisine - Pizza Take Away.
- The Fisherman's Pub, Speightstown, St. Peter. Reasonable priced pub that is hopping on Wednesday nights with live music but sleepy (and closes early) on other nights.
The Fisherman's Pub Speightstown, St Peter since 1937 on the beach Tel 246-422-2703 email firstname.lastname@example.org hours Mon to Sat 11am to 9pm Wed 11am - 2am hopping for dinner with live music Lunch from U$12 Dinner from U$15 best local food like cou cou and flying fish, cassava, yam, breadfruit etc. Drinks sodas, beers and lots of local rum GOOD food BETTER prices BEST service
- The Cliff, Derricks, St. James (West Coast Road between Fitt's Village and Holetown), ☎ . The gourmand destination in Barbados with excellent food at astronomical, for Barbados, prices, and a fantastic cliff-side setting. B$200.
- Daphne's, Payne's Bay, St. James (West Coast Road between Fitt's Village and Holetown), ☎ . Daphne's is a branch of a London restaurant of the same name. B$150.
- Roti Shop, Payne's Bay, St. James (Across the Exxon gas station). Good roti and curries at this small shop at the turnoff to Harrison's Cave. B$5-10.
- The Fish Pot, Little Good Harbor (A short way west of Speightstown), ☎ , e-mail: email@example.com. Dine above the breaking surf at this fine Barbados restaurant but call ahead for reservations.
PRIVAin Holetown is a more upscale nightclub. Very good on the weekends.
The West Coast tends to be on the expensive side. Anything with a seaside location is likely to be expensive and, if you want budget accommodation, look for rentals in the interior (Risk Road is a good bet).
- [dead link] Gurland House, Sandy Lane Estate, St James, West Coast. A 4/5 Bedroom Luxury villa situated on the old 9 hole Sandy Lane Golf Course. All bedrooms have ensuite, dining area, central courtyard, lounge, pool, fully fitted litchen. Also has its own private cabana located on the Sandy Lane Estate Beach.
- [dead link] Sandy Lane Hotel. Luxury hotel which was a former sugar plantation. This hotel is at the top end of the luxury budget.
- Sunset Blue Villa, 20 Halcyon Heights, St. James. A luxury villa and apartment located near Holetown in the parish of St. James. Ten minute walking distance to beaches, restaurants, and shops. Features wireless broadband internet access.
- [dead link] Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts. Situated on St James Beach and set within beautifully landscaped gardens, Discovery Bay by Rex Resorts offers charming plantation-style houses for a truly unique Barbados vacation experience.
- Studio Apartment at Rockley Golf and Country Club, 619 Bushy Park. This spacious studio sleeps 4, has a fully equipped kitchenette, A/C, 2 double beds, a communal pool and patio with a wonderful view of the golf course. In 10 minutes, walk to beaches, restaurants, shopping, supermarkets and more.
- 1 Bedroom Apartment at Rockley Golf and Country Club, 611 Bushy Park. This 1 bedroom apartment sleeps 4, has a fully equipped kitchen, A/C in bedroom, 1 queen bed in bedroom and double sofabed in the living room, open-concept living/dining area with ceiling fan, a communal pool and a wonderful view of the golf course. In 10 minutes, walk to beaches, restaurants, shopping, supermarkets and more.
Watch out for the traffic on the West Coast Road. Otherwise, the area is very safe!