Perhaps you’ve heard of Barbados… a tropical paradise where around every corner a friendly face is welcoming you to share in the magnificence of the island. An island surrounded by pristine, golden beaches and glistening turquoise waters. It’s a peaceful haven where you can lounge on the beaches and relax while sampling coconut water, cocktails and the country’s finest cuisine. But, for the more adventurous, thrill-seeking visitor, Barbados also has much more to offer!
Along with its beaches, there are caves, hills and valleys (locally known as gullies) scattered across the country. Thanks, in part, to all of these natural attractions, there is a wide array of activities, both on land and on the sea, to satisfy the thirst of the adrenaline junkies among us who are desirous of an adventure holiday.
Harrison’s Cave is one of the natural wonders of Barbados. Many visitors speak of the extraordinary beauty that is seen on the tram tours of this most popular attraction. A relaxing drive on a paved road displays the spectacle of coral stone stalactites and stalagmites sparkling in the calming, orange glow of the cave’s lights, while you are serenaded by the music of the underground waterfalls and streams.
However, if you are more of a spelunker at heart and want to experience the network of caves as the first explorers did, then the Eco-Adventure Tour will be more your speed. This extreme adventure begins with a leisurely walk through the surrounding beauty of the natural gully before entering the cave, where the level of difficulty drastically increases. Once inside, you are guaranteed the hike of a lifetime, with climbing, crawling and maybe even a little swimming through the area’s otherwise unseen and undeveloped caverns, using nothing but your headlamps to light your way. This tour lasts for approximately three and a half hours and is not for the faint of heart – it is a guaranteed thrill!
Land Lubber Adventures
If you prefer over-ground activities, then check out the Barbados Hiking Association and the Barbados National Trust’s historical hikes. You can participate in their weekly early morning treks, or perhaps you would rather join their afternoon or full moon hikes. These expert-led trails are a fantastic way to take in the picturesque, untouched beauty of the island, with walks that cover the length and breadth of Barbados. If you’ve never hiked before, don’t worry – there are varying levels of difficulty ranging from easy to more advanced treks. You can take a cool stroll along the path of the old railroad line; venture through the gardens of Jack in the Box Gully; explore the terrain around historic forts and plantation houses; discover the nature reserve and thick forestry at Graeme Hall swamp; climb the jagged edges of Chalky Mount; enjoy the east coast view after ascending Hackleton’s Cliff and maybe even go rappelling to get to the base of a cliff. Whether you are a beginner or an expert hiker, you will find a trail that suits your fancy.
Some visitors may enjoy the thrill of exploration and hiking in Barbados, others not so much...If that’s not you, don’t worry – you won’t be left out of the fun in Barbados!
Tour companies like Island Safari Barbados promise visitors an unforgettably rough (and sometimes muddy) off-road trip in the back of a 4x4 vehicle, making their way through cane fields, bushes and along many paths off the beaten track. This tour will combine the excitement of off-roading with the history of Barbados as tour guides provide an engaging, immersive experience that will be one to remember. Spoiler alert – you might be able to spot some abandoned colonial buildings and even an eggshell bridge depending on your route! Island Safari Barbados offers a range of tour options, including a customisable or Tailor-Made Barbados Safari and a Land and Sea Safari for those who may want to incorporate snorkelling in their activities. Whatever option you choose, you are guaranteed three to six hours of exhilarating fun and, as a bonus, there will be drinks and a complimentary lunch along the way.
Snorkelling with the turtles could prove to be too tranquil for the thrill-seeker. So for more extreme water adventure sports, you can visit any of the beaches on the south and west coasts. There you will find a range of adventurous water sports on offer. Jet ski operators line the shores waiting to train the novices and, on occasion, speedily bop across the waves with the experts. Should you want to merge your love of the ocean with the euphoria of flying higher than a jet ski can take you? You are likely to be stimulated by Jetblade Barbados’ Hydroflight where you will feel your body hovering with water-powered jetpacks over the cool waters of the Caribbean Sea. Alternatively, if you would rather have more control over your watercraft, windsurfing, kayaking and paddleboarding are also available along the outstretched coasts. The surfers are not to be forgotten! There are always waves to be conquered in Barbados. However, if you will be on the island during the winter months, surf lovers can head over to the world-famous Soup Bowl to battle with some impressive giants!
Finally, as above and so too below, and for the more aquatically skilled among us, you can also treat yourself to deep-sea diving to view the enchanting reefs and dive sites along the south and west coasts with certified divers as your guides.
Whatever your fancy and whatever your level of skill, there is an activity to meet your needs in Barbados. Our sun, sea and sand will always be there, but remember to check out these exhilarating thrills that are available year-round. Trust us, after indulging in all that excitement; you will probably want to go back to the beaches and relax with a signature island cocktail in-hand while watching the sunset and planning the next day’s adventures. So, if any of these adrenaline-pumping activities sound like a fun-filled vacation, then remember this – Barbados is calling you!