A small island with a big personality

Top 50 Places to Go Before You Die – BBC’s Holiday ProgrammeSteeped in history, culture and tradition the island exudes a natural charm which is uniquely Bajan. Many visitors are often pleasantly surprised to see the ease with which the new fits almost effortlessly with the old – modern facilities seem at home in sleepy villages.

Each of Barbados’ eleven parishes has a different trait to offer. From the picturesque, limestone hills in St. Andrew to the action packed night life in Christ Church, vacationers can find something to satisfy their desires. What’s more, Barbados is one of the most developed islands in the region and easily caters to business travellers.

Caribbean islands are known for the sea, sun and sand, but what Barbados offers goes way beyond the physical – it is an experience that touches the heart and soul. Barbados is an island filled with friendly smiles, pulsating rhythmic vibes, contrasting coasts and of course, world-famous rums.

For more information on all that Barbados has to offer email visit www.visitbarbados.org, the official website of the Barbados Tourism Authority.

Quick facts about Barbados

Size & Location:
Barbados is 166 square miles, divided into 11 parishes.

Climate:
With over 3,000 hours of sunshine yearly, the weather is almost always sunny and warm, cooled by the constant northeast trade winds. The average daytime temperature ranges between 84-88 degrees Fahrenheit (29-31 degrees Celsius). Summer temperatures rarely exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius).

Language:
English, although the Bajan dialect can be heard all around the island.

Time Difference:
Four (4) hours behind GMT in the winter and five (5) hours in the summer. One (1) hour ahead of US and Canada Eastern Standard Time (EST) in the winter and the same during US Daylight Saving Time.

Electricity:
115/230 volts 50 cycle. Many hotels provide converters for European or Asian appliances. North American appliances will not need converters.

Dress Code:
Outfit yourself for the warm tropical climate: shorts, t-shirts, wraps and sundresses would be your best bet for daytime wear and “elegantly casual” wear for evenings. Bear in mind that swimwear should be kept for the beach and suitable attire should be worn when going shopping or dining out.

Business Hours:
Shops in Bridgetown are open Monday to Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm and 8:30am-1:00pm on Saturdays. Malls, out-of-town shops and boutiques usually open from 9:00am-5:00pm (Mon-Fri) and 9:00am-2:00pm on Saturdays. Most shops are closed on Sundays, although some supermarkets and convenience stores remain open.

Telecommunications:
Barbados has a modern telecommunications infrastructure with the latest in digital technology and fiber optics systems including international direct dialing, facsimile transfer and satellite telecommunications which allows for the efficient transmission of electronic data. Internet and e-mail services, as well as express mail and courier delivery, are also available. The International direct distance dialing code for Barbados is (1-246), followed by a seven digit local number.

Getting Around:
Driving in Barbados is on the left side of the road and the majority of vehicles are “right hand drive.” The island has an extensive road network of about 1,475 km of paved roads. A highway links the north and the south of the island. There are a number of ways to get around the island by hired car, taxis and buses; all are safe, reliable and convenient.

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