Barbados is a stunning jewel of natural beauty. Sitting between the Caribbean and the Atlantic, this tiny coral island immediately conjures up an image of pure, unadulterated paradise. Its picture-perfect beaches feature powder-white sands and foam-crested azure waves, which give way to everything from leisurely afternoons sipping on the finest rum drinks to adrenaline-pumping surfing adventures. Although Barbados is a relatively small island, the lush interior is just as diverse as its coastline with large plantations, botanical gardens and an abundance of wildlife.
Boasting the most luxury properties per square mile in the Caribbean, this tropical paradise is also a bastion of the good life, rounded out with oceanfront resorts and some of the region’s most exquisite open-air restaurants. The cherry on top is the rich culture and history, which comes to life in the form of colorful Bajan festivals, lively nightlife and jovial people – and our Barbados Destination Guide lays out how to properly enjoy this vibrant island.
Where to Stay
Located in the prestigious St. Lawrence Gap, one of the most spirited districts on the island, Sandals Royal Barbados is the refined adults-only resort that offers a brand of luxury that few spots can match. All 272 suites were designed with romance in mind, ranging from one-bedroom swim-up rooms with a view to private villas on the beachfront. Cool shades of white, grey and ocean blue nicely complement the maritime artworks and full-height windows, whereas king-size beds, lounge areas and bathtubs for two ensure top-notch comfort. 24/7 personalized butler service is included in the top-level suites and takes pampering to the next level.
Around the resort, guests can get the royal treatment at the spectacular 15,000 square-foot spa, indulge at one of six restaurants, or relax by one of the astounding 34 pools, highlighted by a rooftop pool with panoramic views and a glass-fronted infinity pool that overlooks the ocean. The resort is stretched along the pristine shores of Maxwell Beach, a stunning coastline of white-washed sands and crystalline waters, whereas tropical gardens and hidden grotto pools fill in the gaps.
Our Barbados Destination Guide also includes a Luxury Hotel Guide, which lays out the island’s finest resorts.
Where to Dine
Distinguished as one of the top 50 restaurants in the world, The Cliff is the most famous eatery on the island. The setting is deeply theatrical with torch-lit decks and white-cloth tables, while the cliffside location is perched just above an idyllic cove and overlooks the calm Caribbean waters.
The superb dishes are equally memorable with intricate flavors and presentation. Some of the most popular main courses include the chargrilled swordfish, Mahi Mahi and cajun salmon, complemented nicely with the perfect bottle of wine. The Cliff is located in St. James, which is ideal for arrival by yacht, and draws the rich and famous with its unparalleled cliffside fine dining experience.
Part of our Barbados Destination Guide includes the Restaurant Guide with an expanded list of fine dining establishments on the island.
What to Do
When ranking the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean, Barbados is always among the top. Take your pick of intoxicating sugar sand beaches and pristine blue waters across the island, while deep caverns and lush forests populated by monkeys await on the interior. The diverse landscapes provide the perfect setting for a number of pleasant diversions and activities. The beaches along the west and south coasts are normally calm and tranquil for those looking for some secluded comfort, while the world’s top surfers head to Bathsheba Beach on the east coast.
Venture further out and you can explore a handful of thrilling dive wrecks and vibrant reefs in pristine conditions, or simply opt for a round of championship golf at one half a dozen courses. Barbados is steeped in tales of piracy and English colonialism, and its capital city of Bridgetown is renowned for the marvelous architecture that has earned it the distinction as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lined with shops, sights and cafes, the streets are abuzz with local culture and vivid life.
What to Pack
Boasting crystal blue waters, white sands and a spirited lifestyle, Barbados is an island that has everything to offer. Whether you’re indulging in mouthwatering cuisine, swimming amongst turtles or dancing the night away in St. Lawrence Gap, Barbados boasts a fruitful superyacht lifestyle that’s desired worldwide. Beach days are made simple withthis Inès Bressand Leather-Trimmed Straw Shoulder Bag. Defined by its top handle that’s designed for a convenient carry, the bag is a stylish option for trotting around the tropical island, whereas the extra-wide open top is more than convenient for your belongings.
These Alexander McQueen Round-Frame Acetate Sunglasses are skillfully crafted in an oversized silhouette for a charming vintage look while simultaneously shielding your eyes from the harsh rays of the sun. For the guys, these Givenchy Logo Swim Trunks are crafted from a loose-fitting fabric to allow for maximum movement when enjoying the turquoise waters or the resort pool.