There are a great amount restaurants offering both international
and traditional Bajan cuisine at a variety of prices.
Local specialities include lobster, flying fish and crane chubb.
The sea urchin (sea eggor oursin) is a particular speciality. Other
local foods include breadfruit, sweet potatoes,
plantains, yams and such fruits as avocados, soursops, pears, pawpaws,
bananas, figs and coconuts. An exchange ‘Dine Around’
system is operated between some hotels of the same class and guests
are allowed to eat at other hotels for no extra cost.
Local drink specialities include all types of rum
based cocktails, rum punch, planters punch, sangria and pina coladas.
The local beer in Barbados is Banks. The 2 most famous rums are
Cockspur’s Five Star and, for the connoisseur, Mount Gay (the
oldest rum blend on the island). There are several bars which emulate
the British pub and serve genuine British bitter and stout.
Nightclubs, discos and bars provide entertainment
including limbo dancing, steel bands, fire eaters and dance bands.
There is a small cover charge. As in all Caribbean countries, swinging
nightspots tend to come and go according to seasons. Coastal boat
trips with live entertainment are very popular,
most sail 2 times a day and run buffets, bars and live music. Calypso
and reggae will always be in the air, ready to inject the night
atmosphere with that lively West Indian ambience.
shows are always popular. The Harbour Lights Extravaganza
Dinner Show offers a truly tropical evening of dancing, with a barbeque
serving food and free drinks until 3.00 am. The Bajan Roots &
Rhythms at the Plantation Theatre is highly interactive with a party
atmosphere which is family friendly, dishing up a traditional buffet
for those who have exhausted themselves dancing.
Shopping is a pleasure in Barbados and there is a wide range of
goods with visitors being able to take some purchases home duty
free on production of their passport and air ticket.
Cigarettes and liquor are sent to the airport or port for collection
on departure, whilst other items can be taken away at point of purchase.
Prices tend to be on the high side, however
for such things as jewellery, clothing and ceramics, the high quality
often makes the expense worthwhile. Special purchases include straw
goods, rum, coral and shell jewellery, prints (batik) and woodcraft.
General shopping hours are Monday to
Friday from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm, Saturday 8.30 am to 4.00 pm (supermarkets
are open longer on Saturdays).
Social attitudes, like architecture and administration, tend to
echo the British provincial market town. However,
the optimistic attitude, laid back manner and wonderful sense of
humour of the Bajans is well appreciated by several tourists. Casual
wear is acceptable in the majority of places. Dressing
for dinner in hotels and restaurants is advised. Smoking is usually
Topless bathing is glared upon. Particular homosexual acts are illegal.
In restaurants or nightclubs, tips are usually 10 %
to 15 %. Porters’ tips are at the customer’s