Barbados may be one of the Caribbean’s smaller islands, encompassing only 169 square miles, but it’s more than just beautiful beaches. This sun-splashed tropical getaway offers all manner of breathtaking vacation activities.
A Cave Apart
Animal Flower Cave is Barbados’s only accessible sea cave. The cavern features natural rock pools that visitors can swim into on calm days, plus several openings featuring magnificent views of Atlantic Ocean swells pounding against limestone cliffs. Swimmers can also glimpse the sea anemones from which the cave takes its name and spot passing whales during February and March. There is an admission fee to enter the cave but access to facilities is free.
An Intimate Escape
Travelers in search of an intimate and shady spot with fantastic natural scenery need travel no further than Bathsheba Park in the seaside town of the same name. Situated on Barbados’s rugged east coast, the park’s beautifully manicured lawns often feature local cricket matches and lie adjacent to the picturesque beachfront. Visitors can partake in a leisurely picnic lunch under the shade of a tree or opt for delicious local fare from one of several small, nearby eateries.
A Heavenly View
Located in a clearing atop a lush peak 850 feet above sea level, Cherry Tree Hill offers visitors panoramic, Instagrammable views of the Atlantic coast and the island’s eastern and northern regions. Mahogany trees have since replaced the cherry trees that once ringed the hill, but the natural beauty still shines.
The erosion of limestone foundations in Barbados’s northeast Scotland District created a system of caves and gullies highlighted by Harrison’s Cave, a stunning natural showcase of underground waterfalls, streams, and multi-hued, crystalline stalactites and stalagmites framed by towering columns. Visitors don hard hats and board electric trams to journey through the cave system, where tour guides provide historical information.
A Glorious Garden
A magical horticultural experience awaits visitors at Hunte’s Gardens in Saint Joseph parish, where a naturally formed gully is the centerpiece of a stunning display of tropical flowers, trees, and foliage. Exotic statues, antiques, and decorative accessories complete the verdant presentation.
Welchman Hall Gully offers a lovely natural setting featuring tropical trees, plants, and flowers set along a mile-long trail, dotted with benches perfect for sitting down and enjoying the splendid natural environment. You can also take self-guided walks through the exotic orchard to find a nutmeg grove, as well as clove, citrus, and palm trees.
Barbados’ manageable size puts nearly every activity within close proximity of the Hilton Barbados, located in the Needham’s Point district of Bridgetown, the capital. Guests can take a short taxi ride to any of the activities highlighted here or opt for an excursion arranged by hotel staff.