Barbados again: location for touring?

Old May 15th, 2007, 05:32 PM
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leavingsoon
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Barbados again: location for touring?

We have booked a mini escape to St. Lucia plop in the middle of Barbados, meaning we're splitting our time. Not for everyone, I know.

Which place would you suggest as a smart, convenient option to drop our bags, tour Bridgetown on foot (we will have a car), clean up for dinner, then the next day take off for a round the island tour and the third morning just relax a little.

We don't want something so cheap that it will be depressing, but neither one of us will want to leave the resort if it is too nice, and we do want to leave the resort.

Lastly, part two of our trip will be at a luxe place on the West Coast...do we want to stay in/ near the Gap for convenience during the first part, or is it easy to drive in and park for dinner, or is it awful and to be avoided? No offense, but every review of the less expensive properties are from UK holiday makers, and it's hard to get perspective.

Can anyone make a comparison between The Gap and somewhere else? Is it like Waikiki? Or South Beach, Miami? If so, which of the above are best located for strolling to dinner? Or are any? I have seen maps, but I don't follow where the shops/ restaurants are.

We are wondering about these properties, not knowing driving times or distances, or the conditions of their beaches or the rooms.:

1. Bougainvillea (approx $200/night)
2. Coral Mist ($100)
3. Southern Palms ($140)
4. The Crane ($170ish)
5. The Hilton ($220ish)

Thanks very very much. Any lodging info greatly appreciated.

I feel like I have scrutinized every conceivable photo on line and now I would like a push in the right direction.

Thank you all again. Sorry to go on and on.

 
Old May 16th, 2007, 05:55 AM
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Our 25th trip to Barbados is coming up next month, so I think I know the island well.

Bougainvillea Beach is on the Maxwell Coast road -- water a bit rough there and you will need to drive everywhere.

Southern Palms is a good hotel on a nice beach -- walkable into the Gap for nice restaurants and nightlife.

Coral Mist is on a nice beach but gets lots of road noise.

The Crane (new residences part only) is a gorgeous property, but the water, although gorgeous, has a very strong undertow (it's on the Atlantic side). Also, it's very far away from everything even with a car.

The Hilton is new, beach is ok but not my favorite. It's convenient to get either to the Gap (15 min. ride) or into Bridgetown (about the same), or to the West Coast restaurants -- probably 30 min. drive. The other places will take longer to get to the West Coast restaurants.

The Gap has lots of bars with young kids all drinking a lot. Not that sophisticated.

In the Gap is The Restaurant at Southsea -- this rivals The Cliff in everyway. Strolling through the Gap is done, but it's just one street with food carts, restaurants, and sometimes unwanted people selling things.

If you write me directly, I can send along (free) my Barbados Insider Tips. You can e-mail me at:
[email protected]

Hope you enjoy your trip. Be sure to contact Stoutes Cars mentioned in my tips and use my name for a good discount.

Lois
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Old May 16th, 2007, 07:39 AM
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leavingsoon
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That is extremely helpful. Thank you.

Have you heard of Sea Breeze?

 
Old May 16th, 2007, 09:25 AM
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Sea Breeze is located in the same area as Bougainvillea Beach. A smaller property. Beach is nice but has waves. People from the UK seem to enjoy this hotel.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 10:01 AM
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St Lawrence Gap on the South Coast offers a number of nightclubs and karaoke bars, but the Gap is not like either Waikiki or South Beach. You're thinking of it in too big of terms.
We stayed at the Hilton in February and loved their beach. Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados, is a sophisticated downtown area that was about a 10 minute drive from the hotel.
Whichever beach you end up on, do be careful since the cooling tradewinds are constantly blowing - you won't even know you're burnt!
Harbour Lights on the Western Coast is another great hangout spot. The nightlife is big in Barbados!
Barbados is great for doing nothing at all and relaxing or doing the tourist thing in every sense of the word, if that's what you desire.
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Old May 16th, 2007, 11:48 AM
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leavingsoon
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Well, you have been totally helpful and I am now confident that I will make the right decision location-wise for this first part.

Thanks to you Fodors people, again!
 
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