While many Caribbean islands are limping towards recovery from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria, Barbados’ tourism is having a moment. With an increased visitor rate, new flight routes, hotel expansion and a packed calendar of festivals and events, the eastern Caribbean island is definitely “on.”
Barbados is characterized by over 60 public beaches that range from pristine and calm west coast and south coast waters, to rugged surf spots in the East of the island, but more so by its fly fish, Mt. Gay rum, luxury accommodations and, of course, Rihanna. What many don’t know is that the island, although petite in size, packs a punch when it comes to events, festivals and tourist attractions that seamlessly blend culture, heritage, adventure and gastronomy.
This year, Barbados is also celebrating the Year of Culinary Experiences which reflects the breath of gastronomic fare available on the island. Kicking off with the Barbados Sugar and Rum Season, honoring the island’s rich history of sugar production, the year will delight visitors with a myriad of food-centric activities such as mixology road shows, dinners and educational lectures. The Oistins Fish Festival (held over Easter weekend) and the acclaimed the Barbados Food and Rum Festival in the fall, which brings together some of the top local, regional and international Chef and mixology talent are also highlights of what the island has to offer for foodies from all over the world. Also in the culinary front, Barbados will celebrate the second installment of the Barbados Beach and Wellness Festival, a program catering foodies looking for health conscious offerings.