Its rich cultural heritage and global influences have earned Barbados the title of culinary capital of the Caribbean.
For those seeking world-class Caribbean cuisine, rich cultural experiences and picture-perfect beaches, Barbados is hard to beat as a tropical holiday destination.
It has accommodation to suit every budget, from simple beach guesthouses to upscale platinum resorts and, when you’ve had your fill of sun, sea and sand, you can get out and explore the island’s many attractions, including Harrison’s Cave or the capital, Bridgetown, and its historic Garrison area – a UNESCO World Heritage site.
With coasts on both the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, Barbados boasts both idyllic beaches for sunbathing and windswept rugged coastlines that are perfect for any explorer or if you dare surfing.
You could say that Barbados is an island of contrasts, shaped by both West African and prominent British cultures, and illustrated by the sight of fields of sugar cane lying next to cricket greens, or laid-back beach shacks sitting alongside high-end restaurants.
This eclectic mix is particularly evident in Bajan cuisine, which sees influences from America, Europe, India, Asia and Africa in dishes that make the most of the island’s abundance of fresh seafood.
Visitors can enjoy exquisite seafood dishes overlooking the turquoise-blue sea at cliff top restaurants on the fashionable west coast, at some of the best restaurants in Barbados, such as The Cliff and The Tides, or, on the northern tip of the island, at Animal Flower Cave Restaurant, home to the island’s only accessible sea cave.
At the other end of the scale, but offering a culinary experience that’s anything but inferior, are beachfront cafes including Bombas, Bo’s Plaice and JuJus, as well as the Zagat-rated Cuz’s Fish Stand.
The friendly locals are understandably proud or their foodie credentials, which they celebrate in a number of significant annual food festivals that attract visitors from all over the world.
From 15 January to 15 April 2018, visitors to Barbados can celebrate the island’s rich heritage in sugar and rum production during Barbados Sugar and Rum Season. Home to the globally renowned Mount Gay Rum, and with a history of sugar production that dates back to the 1640s, Barbados is inextricably linked to sugar and rum, and this is being marked with a number of special events, including rum distillery and cane factory tours and sugar and Barbados rum cooking classes.
The island’s culinary diversity, meanwhile, is celebrated at the Barbados Food & Rum Festival, which takes place every November and includes cooking demonstrations, rum and wine tastings and gourmet dinners from local and international chefs, including, in 2017, acclaimed Michelin-starred chef Tom Aikens.
If you’re not fortunate enough to visit during one of these festivals, there’s always the opportunity to sample some of the island’s most delicious delicacies every Friday night at the legendary Oistins Fish Fry in Oistin Bay, home to some of the finest street food in the world. Here you’ll find music, dancing and food vendors galore, frying up a delectable array of seafood including mahi-mahi, swordfish, marlin, tuna and Bajan speciality flying fish, and giving you a taste of what this paradisiacal island has to offer.
For more information, please go to: visitbarbados.org