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Barbados Anyone? #17222
08/07/2012 03:41 PM
08/07/2012 03:41 PM
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 290
Sugar Land, Tx
I
IslandBoi Offline OP
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IslandBoi  Offline OP
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Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 290
Sugar Land, Tx
we've been to SXM many times ,and obviously love it, but in November we will be spending several days on Barbados for the first time...have any of you been there?...if so, how would you compare it to SXM?

the 2 areas we are considering staying in are St. James (quieter, more upscale?) and Christ Church/St. Lawrence Gap (party central)...we do like some nightlife, so will most likely spend time in the "Gap", but we're not sure if we want to sleep there...we will have a car...if we decide to stay in the quieter St. James area, would it be much of a drive to the Gap?


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Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17223
08/07/2012 04:29 PM
08/07/2012 04:29 PM
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 5,884
St. Thomas, USVI
Nutmeg Offline
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Nutmeg  Offline
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St. Thomas, USVI
I am not an expert, having been there only for a day on a cruise, AND I tend to like places that are different from St Thomas, but I thought the Holetown area was dreadful. You drive down the street and you can't see a thing for the high rise hotels one after another. We really liked Bathsheba and the east coast. It was away from the crowds, seemed to have a lot of vacation cottages with small, local restaurants around. Of course, there isn't the great food you get on St Martin, but it's an English island, so what do you expect? We hired a car and our driver was a woman who spent her weekends on the race track, so nothing seemed far away!! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Hairy.gif" alt="" />


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Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17224
08/07/2012 04:58 PM
08/07/2012 04:58 PM
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 667
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phillygirl7 Offline
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We stayed in Barbados for a week a few years back and it was lovely, I do believe we were in the quiet St. James area. I would call it a little more refined than SXM, you have to wear long slacks (for males) and no shorts (for men or women) when dining out. I did see some people in nice jeans when dining out, but it was definitely more upscale dress. The food was really delicious everywhere we went, we found the people to be wholesome and healthy. Lots of people walking to work, whistling and jovial. No nudity allowed here, and you do drive on the other side of the road (than US). I would go back anytime, not a beach person but I do recall they looked very nice and not all that busy. Car was necessary IMHO.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17225
08/07/2012 06:53 PM
08/07/2012 06:53 PM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 35
Toronto
GrahamJ Offline
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GrahamJ  Offline
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Posts: 35
Toronto
We have been to SXM 4 times and love it. We spent 2 weeks in Barbados last January and really enjoyed it. As has been said, I would say it is a bit more sophisticated than SXM, larger with more of a government presence in keeping with it's British heritage.

We stayed near the Gap but would not do so again. The noise is just too much at night. We had to shut up the apartment with the a/c on to be able to sleep. Next time we will stay near Accra beach or Oistins. Accra is just north of the gap, about a 5 minute drive but no night noise and the beach is beautiful. Oistins is south of the gap about 15 minute drive, again with a great beach.

Most beaches in Barbados have clean public washrooms and lifeguards, which is something you don't find in SXM at most of the beaches.

St. James would be about a 1/2 hour drive to the gap, you have to drive through or around Bridgetown, which is very busy.

Have fun.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: GrahamJ] #17226
08/07/2012 08:40 PM
08/07/2012 08:40 PM
Joined: Mar 2001
Posts: 393
US
Pete Offline
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Pete  Offline
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Posts: 393
US
The food on Barbados is wonderful. Also, the Bajan people are warm and welcoming. Beaches are as good or better than SXM.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17227
08/08/2012 08:58 AM
08/08/2012 08:58 AM
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 290
Sugar Land, Tx
I
IslandBoi Offline OP
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IslandBoi  Offline OP
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Sugar Land, Tx
thanks all for the comments...it looks like we will try to stay closer to the Gap...the 30+ minute drive to the Gap from St. James sounds a bit much...as i mentioned, we will have a car, so we will be able to explore the island during the day, then come "home" to the Gap in the evenings...we will try to find a place without major noise issues <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Wink.gif" alt="" />

another question, generally, how hard is it to find free parking on the island?...what about specifically in the Gap area?


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Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17228
08/08/2012 09:38 AM
08/08/2012 09:38 AM
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 35
Toronto
GrahamJ Offline
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GrahamJ  Offline
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Toronto
Parking shouldn't be a problem in November. There is a small parking lot at the beach right in the Gap and there is usually parking along the street.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: GrahamJ] #17229
08/12/2012 12:45 PM
08/12/2012 12:45 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,979
Alaska
AKEduktr Offline
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AKEduktr  Offline
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Posts: 1,979
Alaska
We stayed at Sandpiper Resort, a short walk away from Holetown. We were there in June (quiet season), but loved the access to so many things. Loved the area!

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: AKEduktr] #17230
08/12/2012 05:36 PM
08/12/2012 05:36 PM
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 302
stevemac Offline
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stevemac  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 302
We stayed at Bouganvillia on the south coast (Surfs up!)in 2010 and loved it. Weat coast has gentle surf. Get a rental car and be sure to drive all over the island. Up the northeast coast was beautiful - just be sure to start with a full tank of gas because stations are few and far between outside of the tourist areas.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17231
08/13/2012 01:37 PM
08/13/2012 01:37 PM
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 290
Sugar Land, Tx
I
IslandBoi Offline OP
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IslandBoi  Offline OP
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Posts: 290
Sugar Land, Tx
we're booked at a place just outside the Gap, so we'll be close to home after the evening festivities in the Gap...will have a car for the duration of our trip, so we will be definitely checking out the entire island <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/Thumbsup.gif" alt="" />


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Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: IslandBoi] #17232
08/13/2012 04:41 PM
08/13/2012 04:41 PM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 12,435
Staten Island
Bobcat Offline
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Bobcat  Offline
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Posts: 12,435
Staten Island
For those of you staying in the Gap, the Plantation Show is well worth a night out. Dinner (optional), dancing, live show, open bar and transport for those outside the area is included in this eventfilled evening of entertainment.
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The Plantation Theater
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Located directly across the street from the (Divi) Southwinds Hotel.


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Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: Bobcat] #17233
08/15/2012 02:03 PM
08/15/2012 02:03 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 31
Concord, Ontario
sandyjoy Offline
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Posts: 31
Concord, Ontario
Try to get in a drive to the East coast and have lunch or a drink near Bathsheba -- it is a wonderful change from the rest of the island.

Re: Barbados Anyone? [Re: sandyjoy] #17234
08/17/2012 06:47 AM
08/17/2012 06:47 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 12,757
Brookfield, CT.
pat Offline
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pat  Offline
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Posts: 12,757
Brookfield, CT.
I couldn't agree more about Barbados as a great destination with all the typical Caribbean vacation goals - great food, nice resorts, beautiful beaches and the typical gamut of vacation activities people look for.

The thing that still stands out as being among our best Barbados trip memories was the ability to get in the car and explore it freely.

The people couldn't have been any nicer or more helpful and OMGoodness, the places we saw and the things we experienced.

I don't know how many can say they've done this, but we were given a tour of one of the local sugar refineries that we happened to stumble across, even being invited to climb the ladders and walk the catwalks over the thrashers. Okay, so that part was a little more than I needed to see, but the guys loved every minute of the tour.

We explored a beautiful Church or Monastery in the same area as well as the coastal and cliff views of that area. Absolutely incredible!!


Respectfully,

pat



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