Known as the pearl of the Caribbean, Barbados is the eastern-most Caribbean island which is formed out of a massive coral reef that was formed approximately one million years ago. Barbados offers 340 days of sunshine a year, some of the best beaches in the Caribbean and sparkling clear waters for you to enjoy. Barbados is also lovingly known as the 'Little England' of the Caribbean’ which dates back to colonial days when cane sugar was the main industry on the island. Barbados has retained all of its charm with sugar being replaced by tourism as the main industry. The island's rich history and pulsating traditions come to life in its dynamic Bajan festivals, nightlife, and friendly people. Wherever you stay on the island you will find restaurants, sports bars, clubs and duty-free shopping to please even the most demanding holidaymaker.
Vaccinations and health
There are not many health requirements for travellers to come into the country, but yellow fever immunization for those coming from an infected area is mandatory. Typhoid and Hepatitis A vaccination is optional. The dengue fever mosquito is found all through the islands. Travelers should be conscious that some types of tropical reef fish are poisonous, even when cooked. Health insurance with provision for medical evacuation is strongly suggested, as medical treatment is expensive. We advise that you always check with your local GP regarding to vaccinations. Do not leave it to the last minute. Some vaccinations can take a length of time to start working properly. Allow at the latest 8 weeks before departing.
Barbados enjoys a hot tropical climate with two distinct seasons – wet and dry. The wet season begins in May/June and runs through until November/December. Little rain falls during the rest of the year, especially in the driest period between February and April. Barbados sits in the Atlantic hurricane belt and is at risk during the hurricane season from June till November. However, hurricanes tend to strike the islands further north more frequently. On average Barbados is struck by a hurricane only once every 25 years.
Electricity in Barbados is 110 volts/50 cycles. American-style two and three-pin (blade) plugs are used. You will need an adaptor if looking to charge your computer or phone.
The currency in Barbados is the Barbadian dollar. US$ are also accepted along with debit & credit cards.
The dialling code in Barbados is 00 1 246 from UK.
The time difference is -4 hours (-5 hours in the summer). This means they are behind us by 4 hours.
The official language is English, especially around the main tourist areas. Some parts of Barbados speak Barbadosn Creole.
Visa and passport
Currently British holiday makers do not require a visa but it is always worth checking as rules can change. You must have a passport with at least 6 months validity.
Getting to St. Lucia
There are only two airports within the UK that fly to Barbados. These are London Gatwick and sometimes Manchester. The flight time for direct flights is between 8 and 9 hours.
It's quite easy to get around Barbados by public transport as there is a well-established public transportation system. The standard bus fare in Barbados is BDS$2. This is the equivalent of US$1, but use local currency; no foreign coins are accepted on the Transport Board buses. Taxis are available everywhere with standardised rates. Rates on the island vary but for the most part, are reasonable. There is also a bus service which is very cheap albeit the journey time can vary. You can also hire a car as Barbados has a good network of roads which covers the entire island. Traffic drives on the left. To hire a car you need to be over 25 years of age, been driving longer than 2 years and hold a full license.