Winter Sun Island Paradise

The Caribbean has always been a popular choice among holiday-makers that love sun and sea jaunts away. Constant sunshine, cocktails, gentle waves of a stunningly clear blue sea lapping against the sand, and an occasional cooling breeze is an appealing holiday option.

So when friends of my wife, whose work in yachting had led them to regularly visit the Caribbean, suggested we consider it for our November break we investigated further.  As this fell at the latter end of the Hurricane season, they recommended somewhere in the South Caribbean which would be less likely to be troubled by storms.

Why choose Barbados?

One of our reasons for choosing Barbados was that it is a direct flight from the UK (Thomas Cook Airlines offer return flights from £399.99) – and surprisingly only seven and three quarters hours away. British visitors will also appreciate that they drive on the same side of the road as us (left side) – which makes hiring a car a fairly comfortable experience.

You get a sense of Barbados’ laid back attitude the moment you arrive and it is sometimes easy to mistake this for diffidence, but don’t be fooled, the chances are that your request has been noted and will be dealt with.

Bajans are generally a warm and friendly bunch but they tend to do things at a relaxed pace, which is fine as soon as you get into their way of thinking – relaxation seems to be the name of the game in Barbados. One early morning call came at 11.20am instead of 10am. When I asked why it came so late I got a shrug of the shoulder and ‘that’s a Bajan early morning call’.

The island certainly has everything you would expect of a tropical paradise – coconut trees, humming birds, a rain forest, blue coral-reefed seas and miles of sandy beaches.

If, however, you expect to find a deserted stretch of sand you are likely to be disappointed, as all of Barbados’ beaches are public. Beach-side hotels, however, will have their own sun loungers which are for hotel patrons only and are guarded by hotel security – which means that you can sunbathe pretty-much undisturbed even by the beach vendors (who tend to be very mild mannered in comparison to those in some places).

The climate is pretty even with average temperatures varying between the high sixties and low eighties – however, make no mistake, when the sun comes out it is HOT and humidty can reach 75% especially between July-December period which means you need to be well protected against mosquitos.