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KNOW BEFORE YOU GO - STAY SAFE & HEALTHY ABROAD (foreign office travel advice)

Bridgetown

Bridgetown Holidays

Bridgetown is Barbados' largest city and the concentration of locals has resulted in a vibrant culture of music, food, drink, plus a handful of interesting historical sites. Tourists flock to Bridgetown every year to become part of the lively atmosphere, visit its nearby beaches and shop at its many markets.

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The vibrant capital and commercial centre of Barbados

Bridgetown is overflowing with opportunities to shop, drink in its culture or enjoy some local and international cuisine. In fact, visitors come from all over the island to stock up on the Barbadian produce. Fresh fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, are piled up on the rows of stalls, with people haggling all throughout the day.

Give that bartering game a try and see what hand crafted souvenirs you could walk away with. There are beautifully-carved wooden children's toys, leather footwear, local bottles of spirits and hot sauce, plus woven wicker baskets in all shapes and sizes. Make sure you save enough room in your suitcase because there's no way you'll be going home empty handed after a trip around the Bridgetown markets.

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A rich history

Barbados has a strong historical culture, evidenced by the colonial architecture which lines street after street of Bridgetown. Built in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, choose Bridgetown for your holiday to the Caribbean and you'll be met with some of the area's most remarkable historical landmarks, including Independence Square, the Parliament Buildings of Barbados, National Heroes Square and the Jubilee Gardens.

The city has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status, making it a protected spot of cultural identity for the island. It's also where you'll find one of the oldest synagogues in the western hemisphere, which is fondly known as one of the 'Seven Wonders of Barbados'. The grand, pink building has fallen into disrepair twice in the past, but is now once again a strong standing testament to the passionate local Jewish culture who kept it running.

Beaches galore

Bridgetown has a handful of beaches within easy reach, each with its own unique personality. For instance, Brighton Beach is a huge desert-island-like stretch of white sand, fronted by clear, shallow water. Ideal for families with small children, this clean coastline is also lined with a handful of restaurants that offer great food and drink under the shelter of magnificent palm trees. The area is also home to some of the best accommodation options for those seeking All Inclusive Barbados holidays.

In addition to Brighton Beach, a visit to Bridgetown isn't complete without a trip to swim at both Brandon's Beach and Browne's Beach. Found either side of the Mount Gay Rum Distillery on the central coast of Bridgetown, both these beaches offer picturesque escapes from the busy city centre. They provide the occasional opportunity to try water-skiing or embark on a sailing trip around the island.

Where the rum comes from

You may or may not know that Bridgetown is the home to the Mount Gay Rum Distillery, which produces bottle after bottle of one of the world's most loved spirits. A tour around this famous facility is not something to miss, with the 'Signature' package starting at just €10, and a Cocktail Tour reaching €50.

There's even the opportunity to take part in their Bajan Buffet, which includes lunch, at 12 noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It's €62 per ticket for the buffet tour and the distillery welcomes children at half price to this event in particular. You could come back an expert on rum after just a short trip to Bridgetown.

Off the beaten track

The Island Safari tour is an absolute must, particularly for families on holiday in Barbados. This popular wildlife resort offers both 4x4 and powerboat tours, allowing you to see all the weird and wonderful animals from land or water. You'll be taken to see magnificent views over the island, be dazzled by shipwrecks and can even swim with turtles, starting at just €40 per child.