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  • History & Culture
Experience Our History & Culture. Interesting Facts About Barbados.

History & Culture

The history of Barbados is unique, and we Bajans (the familiar term for Barbadians) are at ease with our past and proud architects of our future.

Start your Caribbean cultural holiday here with some interesting facts about Barbados:

  • Our island was colonised by the English early in the 17th century
  • Before then, Barbados was inhabited by Carib and Arawak Native Americans
  • Transformed by the plantation system and slavery, we were the world's number one sugar producer by 1650
  • Barbados is the oldest continuing parliamentary democracy outside England
  • We achieved universal voting rights in 1943 and opted for full independence from the UK in 1966
  • Our cultural roots are in the plantation slavery economy, a unique blend of West African and European
  • We speak English with a distinct accent, spiced with words in West African-English pidgin called Bajan

Enrich your Barbados experience by visiting some of our amazing historical places, including Gun Hill Signal Station, George Washington House and our Parliament Buildings in historic Bridgetown. Take time to look back in time.

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Codrington College

Codrington College

Patterned after an Oxford college, the Codrington College is the oldest Anglican theological college in the Western Hemisphere.
St. John
 | Website
Cotton Tower Signal Station

Cotton Tower Signal Station

One in a chain of stations set up by the British Army, this 19th century signalling station if now maintained by the Barbados National Trust as a historic site.
St. Joseph
| Email
Frangipani Art Gallery

Frangipani Art Gallery

Located in the serene Sugar Cane Club Hotel and Spa, this gallery features the work of Venezeulan-born Marilda Weatherhead.
St. Peter
 | Website
Gallery of Caribbean Art

Gallery of Caribbean Art

The largest art gallery in Barbados in operation for the last 15years.
St. Peter
 | Website | Email
George Washington House & Museum

George Washington House & Museum

The young George Washington and his ailing brother Lawrence resided in this historic plantation house, also known as Bush Hill House, for two months in 1751. Barbados was the only country ever visited by the future “First Father” of his country and Bush Hill House the only house he ever lived...
St. Michael
 | Website | Email
Gun Hill Signal Station & Fusiliers Cafe

Gun Hill Signal Station & Fusiliers Cafe

These stations sighted ships approaching Barbados and signaled to each other in warning of the approaching vessel. To facilitate communication in the days before telephones, signal station sites were chosen for their long, clear views of other hilltop stations.
St. George
| Email
Highland Pottery

Highland Pottery

Highland Pottery is located in the Scotland District, where red 'terra cotta' clay abounds. Many of the items in the store are hand crafted and moulded on site.
St. Andrew
 | Website
Historic Speightstown Experience

Historic Speightstown Experience

An enlightening and entertaining walking tour of Barbados' second largest town, founded in 1653. Rich in history with many picture points.
St. Peter
| Email
Ilaro Court

Ilaro Court

Official residence of the Prime Minister of Barbados
St. Michael
Manipura Art Gallery

Manipura Art Gallery

An idyllic location on a 300-year-old dairy farm. Residents and tourists can interact while enjoying healthy local food and beautiful Caribbean Art at the twice monthly Manipura Mixers.
St. George
 | Website | Email

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