Top events in Barbados


When Top Gear Festival Barbados rolls into town in May, petrol heads will be in for a thrilling weekend of high-octane motoring action. As well as...


Football fans shouldn't miss out on this chance to see footballing veterans like Roberto Di Matteo, Gianfranco Zola and Alan Shearer take to the...


Crop Over is Barbados' biggest festival. Dating back to the 1780s when the island was one of the biggest sugar producers in the world, the end of...

Maxwell Beach Barbados
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Maxwell Beach Barbados

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Barbados Travel Guide

Key Facts

430 sq km (166 sq miles).


288,725 (2013).

Population density

671 per sq km.




Constitutional monarchy. Gained independence from the UK in 1966.

Head of state

HM Queen Elizabeth II, represented locally by Governor-General Elliott Belgrave since 2012.

Head of government

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart since 2010.


110-115 volts AC, 50Hz. American-style two-pin plugs are in use.

Fringed by talcum powder-white beaches and azure seas, Barbados fulfils the clichéd image of a tropical Caribbean isle, but peel back the exterior and the island offers far more than a mere beach holiday destination.

Endowed with 113km (70 miles) of beaches, however, first time visitors can be forgiven for heading straight for the sand and surf. Most tourists flock to the island’s legendary Platinum Coast to the west, which is lined with world-class, luxury resorts, spa hotels, sophisticated restaurants and manicured golf courses, all lapped by the limpid Caribbean Sea. The south coast has some of the best beaches while the east coast, pummelled by the Altantic Ocean, is less developed and attracts mainly surfers.

Although Barbados’s interior is unremarkable compared to its Caribbean neighbours, a jeep safari provides the best way to discover crumbling sugar mills, historic plantation houses, traditional churches reminiscent of England and colonial Bridgetown. The capital, and the nearby Garrison site, were granted UNESCO World Heritage status in 2012.

Combine this with Barbados’s indelible laid-back vibe, its passion for rum (over 1,500 rum shops dot the island) and calypso-infused festivals, and it’s no wonder people return here time and time again.

Travel Advice

Last updated: 20 April 2014

The travel advice summary below is provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. 'We' refers to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. For their full travel advice, visit

The hurricane season in Barbados normally runs from June to November.

180,000 British nationals visited Barbados in 2012. Most visits are trouble-free. If you need consular assistance, contact the British High Commission in Barbados.

Most visits are trouble free, but there have been cases of sexual assaults against tourists and a recent increase in muggings and armed robbery, some involving the use of firearms and other weapons.

There is a low threat from terrorism.

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

Edited by Jane Duru
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