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Beach at Sandals

Newton Abbot, Devon
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Beach at Sandals

We are thinking of going to the newly renovated Sandals next June 2015, can anyone tell me what the beach is like in that area, is swimming safe and is snorkelling any good. Not been to Barbados before so keen to get as much info before we choose and the beach area is very important for us. Many thanks Peter, UK.

Palm Beach Condos...
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1. Re: Beach at Sandals

The Island of Barbados lies outside the usual "hurricane belt", as it is too far south and too far east, so the chances of experiencing one is considerably less than on many other Caribbean Islands. The last big one to hit the island was Janet in 1955, though there have been some tropical storms which have brushed by the island since, nothing that has caused significant damage.

Barbados, apparently, actually lies about 63 miles inside the Atlantic ocean, (how one works that out we don't know) ,but the island's west coast benefits from the Caribbean Sea,( and has been called the Platinum Coast as many of the large west coast properties and the more expensive hotels are located there). However, despite what some posters will tell you, there are also less expensive choices on this coast,

The south coast has more of the "less expensive" options and also more night clubs, so if one wants late-night nightlife, that would probably suit one best. The sea there is the Atlantic ocean, and therefore more likely to be a bit rougher, with more red flag days - not always, as some beaches do have protected areas for swimming in calmer waters. South coast beaches are also usually wider..

For surfing or windsurfing, go to the east coast, where the big Atlantic rollers roar in. The World Surfing Championships have an event in Barbados, usually in November I believe

Barbados is hot, with white puffy clouds, and the occasional short showers, and an average daily temperature of between 28 C and 30-31 C. which most people tend to find pleasantly hot. The island is only 22 miles long by 14 miles wide, but it abounds with such huge selection of choices from places to visit, things to do, foods to sample, that it is never case of "nothing to do" - there is always something new to discover on every trip. There are some excellent malls for shopping - especially the new upmarket Lime Grove lifestyle centre in Holetown on the west coast, plus a variety of other plazas.

Without knowing the budget - it is hard to provide some recommendations -however, we would suggest Barbados is not known for it's AI Hotels as there are hundreds of self catering establishments ranging from guest houses to apartments,condos and large villas. Good locations to research would be either around the Holetown area on the west coast by the Caribbean Sea , or the St Lawrence Gap area on the South coast bordering the Atlantic,.

Check Trip Advisor which shows reviews of hundreds of self catering condos, apartments, villas etc plus the many apartment style hotels, and also regular full service hotels, which will give you some idea of what is available, both beachfront or within easy walking distance. And, for those who prefer it - the All Inclusive choice is also available, however these are not the same size and type as those vast and palatial resorts to be found on some other islands such as the DR,Jamaica, Cuba, etc.

.As regard to Sandals at present it is rather a construction site - but we are informed it will be ready for occupancy in 2015. Sandals is on the south coast at Dover Beach -known as where the Atlantic meets the Caribbean Sea.

That said, many visitors find self catering the best way to enjoy the major benefits which the Island has to offer rather than AI Hotels .-but as previously mentioned - those are available too.

Barbados has a wide choice of restaurants and bars in all price ranges and types, from eating fresh food from one of the food vans /stands at the side of the road, -to fine gourmet dining, bistros and family type restaurants, or shopping for groceries to cook yourself. Many posters find prices similar to those in the UK, with some things being more expensive and other things cheaper -(we wouldn't know as we live in N America)

The local bus system is very comprehensive and inexpensive and because Barbados is generally regarded as a safe country (provided one takes normal sensible precautions ) , nowhere is very far to travel.- Driving, especially for UK visitors, is specially easy, as Bajans also drive on the left.

To compare prices, Bajan dollars are divided.by 3 for GBP or by 2 for USD$

We are biased, as having had a winter home in Holetown for 26 years, we have never lived anywhere more convenient!

Have fund researching your options - there are so very many!

Edited: 19 July 2014, 12:42
Holetown, Barbados
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2. Re: Beach at Sandals

According to the reviews from Sandals when it was still open, many guests found the sea to be more rough than they expected, which made some of the Sea Sport activities they were expecting, impossible. The beach however is lovely.

United Kingdom
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3. Re: Beach at Sandals

The hotel is on Dover beach and you can view a video of it at beachesofbarbados.com/videos/…dover.mp4. It is a lovely beach on the south coast but probably not best suited to snorkelling.

Sheffield, England
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4. Re: Beach at Sandals

Agree it's certainly not the best beach for snorkelling. Nice beach and fun type waves but rarely calm water.

United Kingdom
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5. Re: Beach at Sandals

The link I posted above does not work. Instead, please go to http://www.beachesofbarbados.com and then choose Dover beach.

London, United...
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6. Re: Beach at Sandals

I have stayed at various hotels along this coast including turtle beach which is next door to what will be sandals in 2015. The sea is way to rough there for snorkelling, with beach waves of 3-4 feet high. To be honest the diving and snorkelling is not that great in barbados generally. The best i have come across in the Caribbean was trip down to union island in a light aircraft, day trip or a couple of days, very good.. However as others have mentioned the south has a much better nightlife, the west has a better stock of hotels and beaches are much calmer. AI is not really the Barbados way, its is a walk around place. I have also found the AI hotels what they do have are quite expensive. We have found its probably slightly less in cost to go room only in a hotel and pay as you go,,,

You also get the freedom to move around to different places that way. All the hotels in barbados also seem smaller than a lot of the major resorts in the Caribbean ie... Cancun, Jamaica, DR, Bahamas etc...

Holetown, Barbados
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7. Re: Beach at Sandals

The snorkelling on the West coast is great, especially at the protected Marine Park at Folkstone in Holetown although there are many Reefs all up the coast.

All the Catamaran Cruises come up the West coast to enable visitors to snorkel and swim with the Turtles, so If snorkelling is your thing, I would look at the Hotels or SC properties on the West coast.

Vancouver, Canada
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8. Re: Beach at Sandals

As I said in a previous posting, Dover is not the best for snorkeling. However, in my opinion, Sandals beach will be on Maxwell Beach, not Dover and is definitely not for snorkeling.

Palm Beach Condos...
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9. Re: Beach at Sandals

@randr - that is interesting - we had imagined that since Sandals had purchased Couples, (and Couples advertised that it was on Dover beach ) - that Sandals would use the same beach - so how come is it going to be on Maxwell beach? - or was the old Couples misleading people a bit? (not in any way doubting you - I'm sure you must know - just curious please!)

United Kingdom
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10. Re: Beach at Sandals

I always understood Bougainvillea to be the last hotel on Maxwell beach when heading towards what was the Casuarina (and is now Sandals) and the latter was the first hotel on Dover beach.

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