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What is it about Barbados?

Hampshire UK
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What is it about Barbados?

Before we "discovered" BDS we had travelled quite a bit ,never found anywhere that "hit the spot" but from the very first day we felt at home - right - know what I mean? People often say why go back time after time? I suppose they are basically right, other places to see so little time etc. but when you find somewhere you just fall for, well you just gotta go for it .

We were lucky too, we went to the now defunct Kings beach ,on the nicest (to me) part of the island truly beautiful & quiet, nowhere is that far from anywhere so one can venture out to explore wherever you stay.

One thing that does worry me, none of my business, but the development of the West is surely going to ruin it ,the part between say Sixmens & Holetown is about all there is left now & they are building on some of that at Sandridge also Kings beach eventually.

So back to my original point - what is about the place that does it for you??

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: What is it about Barbados?

On our first visit to BGI, about 12 years ago, we went to the Edgewater Hotel for lunch. Leaving the hotel, we drove up the hill to the stop sign and the car took it literally. It stopped and wouldn't start again. My friend and I lifted the hood and did all the things mechanically useless people do at a time like this, but this disembodied voice kept saying, in a loud Bajan voice "outta gas, mon". Some locals came out and looked under the hood and all agreed with the disembodied voice. I went back to the Edgewater and a staff member who was just going off duty drove me to the nearest gas station (which was a long way away), got some gas and drove me back to the car. He refused to take anything for this exceptional kindness. (I've since learned that it is NOT exceptional in Barbados). The gas gauge turned out to be useless but the experience is one my wife and I value very highly.

A couple of years ago, we were driving in St. Philip and saw a woman at a bus stop, who had been there when we passed going in the other direction some time before. We stopped and offered her a lift, dropping her at the market in Bridgetown. On the way, she very shyly invited us to her home for lunch a couple of days hence. We went and she had prepared a delicious meal featuring several Bajan dishes. As we were leaving, several hours later, she went to her fridge and presented us with a casserole dish of pudd'n and souse for our dinner.

We dropped the dish off a couple of days later and she gave us six loaves of coconut sweet bread to take home with us. She very shyly accepted the small gift we gave her, but it was evident that she wanted nothing except to get to know us and talk about our different lives in our home countries.

These are only two of the many examples of the extreme sweetness and kindness of the Barbadian people that we have seen and I apologise for going on so long about it.

But, JTD, I'm delighted that you asked this question and I'm quite certain that many others have had similar experiences. Lots of islands are beautiful but only one is populated by the Bajans!!!

I can't wait for next March when I can meet many more of them.

Brian

CHESHIRE
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2. Re: What is it about Barbados?

Dont know how to put it into words but the minute that plane heads over the west coast I get a 'buzz' it is the only place that we return to time after time. I think it is the people, the friendliness they show and the love of their island which they transmit to us. We love the diversity of the scenery and the lovely beaches, superb restaurants, everything about the island in fact.

We have travelled extensively and throughout the Caribbean region, this is the only island we feel 'at home' in, true there are prettier places but nothing compares with the warmth of this lovely island.

It is sad as JTD say that it is getting so built up but that is the way of the world.

northampton
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3. Re: What is it about Barbados?

For me, like Finiston, it has to be the people.

But also the diversity of the different coasts; the beautiful, but different beaches; the variety of eating and drinking options, from road-side vendors and beach vendors to top-class restaurants, nice beach-bars and rum shops; the number of different things to do, suiting all tastes; the water sports; the views from the heights inland and various places on the coast; the slightly ramshackle appearance of many of the houses and their assorted colours; driving on the correct side of the road. All of these and, I'm sure, many more that I have yet to think of.

Oh yes, and the people!!!

Southampton, United...
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4. Re: What is it about Barbados?

Brian,

What a lovely, humbling story.....it had me glued and I could so vividly imagine this kind lady, her home and her baking away! It's uplifitng to know there are still genuine and good people in this world!

Lisa xx

Rochester, New York
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5. Re: What is it about Barbados?

Barbados was one of the islands my daughter and son-in-law visited while on their honeymoon cruise a couple of years back. She still has not stopped urging her Dad and I to go. Well, after reading this forum about the island and the Bajan people and all the wonderful things people have said, we'll be visiting this coming February! I have to say, this forum has been so helpful (and at times, VERY entertaining!) Barbados sounds like a place that I will probably not want to leave once I get there. I'm hoping I feel just like JTD, Brian, Coryna and so may others on this forum.

London
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6. Re: What is it about Barbados?

We first went to Barbados for Xmas 97 and loved it but it is expensive then so the next year we went to the Canaries again but found that we were not happy . For the millenium we tried St Lucia , nice but got fed up with not being able to leave the hotel without someone asking for money . So it was Barbados for Xmas/New year 2000/2001 and it has been that way ever since . Like a previous mailer we also had a problem with a hire car out in the middle of nowhere - a puncture - we asked a man sitting on his porch if we could park on his drive which was level so that we could fix it and as it turned out the jack did not fit the car but this lovely man found a way around it and done all the work for us and would not take anything for it . He had worked in London and retired back to Barbados . We have also been invited to peoples houses on Xmas day just because we stopped while walking on the beach to wish them a happy xmas . The people are so friendly if you bother to speak to them and once they find out that we come from London nine times out of ten they once worked there or worked on ships that stopped in the docks . As everyone says once you are hooked you do not want to go to anywhere else it is like going home to us .

Ontario
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7. Re: What is it about Barbados?

I'm such a sap! Reading all of your amazing stories of how much you love the island is making my eyes well with tears. It's true, BDS is such a magical place that I don't know can ever be explained. I haven't travelled all that extensively, but like a lot of people, choose to go to a new place every year. Since going to Barbados for only 4 short days in June, this place has touched my heart, and I'm looking forward to the next time I can visit! I've recommended to all my friends " you just have to go there to know what I'm talking about". It truly is a wonder of the world and I'm so glad that I am able to experience it as much as my wallet can handle!

West Malling...
Destination Expert
for Barbados
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8. Re: What is it about Barbados?

My first visit to Barbados was in 1976 - things were way different then!

25 years later in 2001 I was lucky enough to win a competition which took me back to Barbados. Fate I guess!

Although I have travelled alot during those 25 years and lived in South Africa for a while I had never thought of returning to Barbados.

Well since that lucky win took me back there I have absolutely fallen in love with this island and have been fortunate enough to return about twice a year.

I also can never quite put my finger on what its all about, its just a combination of everything ... but above all I just feel like I am going home every time I go back!

Lesley

PMP
Cambridge, United...
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9. Re: What is it about Barbados?

We first went when Virgin Holidays did a special offer in 2000. Have been 8 times since then. Have tried other places in the meantime but still want to return for "another bloody day in paradise".

I keep looking at the different places but nothing, so far, can compare to Barbados.

Cannot put finger on exactly why, people, locations, weather - everything.

Only downfall when we go next time is that a really wonderful Bajan man we met (and got to know really well) died a couple of months ago and we will miss him terribly.

Atlantic Shores...
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10. Re: What is it about Barbados?

"We have also been invited to peoples houses on Xmas day just because we stopped while walking on the beach to wish them a happy xmas ."

This is actually part of a tradition by old-school Bajan families. Our friends there tell tales of walking home from church on Christmas day and stopping at all the houses along the way, sampling food at each. Then they get home and open their house up. A lovely tradition, but apparently it is dying out among the younger Bajans.