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Trip Report Want a quickie? - one day in Barbados trip report

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Decided to report this under Barbados instead of under cruises. We spent one day this August wondering what to do other than a ship excursion so decided to hire a taxi for the day instead of renting a car. Good choice! The driver kept up a continual narration of the culture, chattal houses, car prices, imports, wild monkeys, schools, and so on. You name it, he discussed it. Much better than a do-it-yourself day.

Started at the Bacardi Factory for a tour and rum tasting - (guess what the best part was...) It was like a wine tasting with various bottles lined up and pouring straight rum. We liked seeing the bottling and labelling area of the tour.

Next to Orchid World as the taxi driver recommended that one over Flower Forest. I wouldn't, however, pick that as a 'must do' although there were hundreds of beautiful orchids in all shapes and colors. It's amazing how they are grown suspended on wire fences. We spent about 45 minutes there.

We were told that Harrison's Cave was closed for renovations. We would have gone there for the kids had we rented a car, so were glad once again for the taxi driver's knowledge and were able to spend the time more wisely.

Visited St. John's Church - very pretty with a beautiful view of the water.

Next was the best part of the day. There are wild green monkeys on the island, but of course one never knows if one will appear. Our taxi stopped at the home of a man who raises these monkeys. He appeared when we pulled over to the side of the street, asked for $2 (American) and then we noticed that he had the tiniest monkey clinging to his arm. The cutest little thing! We all took turns holding him when an older monkey appeared, jumped on my son's head, then took off along a tree limb and raced into and through the taxi. It was a hoot! Definitely worth it!

Next to Animal Flower Cave at the far north tip of the island. This was interesting too. We descended some steep stairs down through an opening in the ground and found ourselves in some rocky caves underground overlooking the sea through various openings in the cave walls. (My daughter had flip flops on and had a difficult time navigating these rocks. I recommend sneakers if you go.) We wandered around and saw a few large pools of water in which were growing sea anenomes. One felt a vibration or such and closed up fast. The others stayed open. I was surprised at how delicate they appeared. If you go there, don't expect a lot of the anenomes, but the ones which were there, were interesting. Other posts talked about swimming in the pools, but when we were there, they were very shallow and no one was swimming in them. Be sure to check out the views once leaving the caves - they are spectacular. We would have missed them if not for the taxi driver showing us where to go.

Lastly, a beach on the Caribbean side. (Had wanted to go to Blue Monkey Beach, but the restaurants were closed there so the driver took us to another on the east side) We arrived for a drink in a little restaurant just in time to experience a 10 monute torrential rain, then it all cleared up and we spent an hour in the water. Almost took a jet-ski ride offered there, but left that for another day.

Our 18 year old son took one of the ship's excursions to swim with the turtles and over a shipwreck and had a blast swimming with quite a few large turtles. He loved it! Maybe next time for us!

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