What Is The Deal With Barbados?

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Jul 8th, 2004, 10:29 AM
  #1
al
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What Is The Deal With Barbados?

The time has come to use the AA certificates I received for flying twice to Florida or California by April 15 and I'm seriously looking at Barbados. I've looked at a variety of websites and am a bit confused about a few things:

1. Does Caribbean lobster cost US$47.50 at EVERY restaurant? Are there nice places to eat on the island for less than $100 per meal -- or do I have to resort to KFC for that?
2. Does Barbados have a "Caribbean feel" or is it like Bermuda -- upscale with very little soul?
3. I've heard good things about the Bougainvillea Resort, but some of the photos on their website are awful. Is it really a good place?
4. Is the bus service "tourist friendly"?
5. Does Barbados have a downside?

Any light any of you can shed is appreciated.
al is offline  
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Jul 8th, 2004, 02:19 PM
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I have been to many of the Islands and Bermuda and stayed at the Bougainvilla Resort last June. There are plenty of places to eat close to the Bougainvilla that are nice and affordable as you are staying near the Gap.It is no way near as expensive as Bermuda and some of the other Islands. That said you could easily spend that kind of money on the west coast.

The west coast is very upscale. The Gap area has some soul. Try the community BBQ, which is twice a week and alot of fun.

Bougainvillea was a very nice resort and a very good value. Ask for a nice view. The service was good, they have kitchenettes, beautifully landscaped grounds. Only negative was the small pool bar. Would stay there again in a minute. Good location too. Think lots of Brits and very few Americans.

Can't help you with the bus service as we rented a car somedays and took cabs, which were pretty cheap.

There is alot to do and my husband, who doesn't get excited about alot, loved it as did I.

The only down side I think is some poverty, which is on almost all the islands.
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Jul 8th, 2004, 03:03 PM
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Bus service, in our experience, was extremely tourist friendly. We only used a cab to get from airport to the hotel, other than that, we used local buses and went all over the island. Everyone was quite good about letting us know our stop. We'd use the buses again.
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Jul 9th, 2004, 08:51 PM
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We just returned from 2 weeks in Barbados. It has definitely more of a Caribbean feel than the Bermuda atmosphere, but not like the other islands we've visited. There is that British reserve or something but we were told that during "Crop Over" (the large festival time coming up soon) its quite a wild place!
We stayed on the west coast and found restaurants either expensive or serving authentic Bajan food. Depends on your taste, but we got tired of chicken and rice & peas. Our house came with a cook and this was our lunch nearly every day with fish & some other variations.
Downside for us was the lack of things to do for our teenager - too young for clubs; too old to play in the sand all day. Spent alot on boat trips, land tour, water sports. Most people kept saying how wonderfully peaceful it is there. Quite beautiful.
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Jul 10th, 2004, 09:32 AM
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We just got back from Barbados the 30th of June. We stayed at the Bouganvillea Resort. As I mentioned in a previous post, our tour rated it a 4 star but I think it is more like a 3 if you are rating it by US standards. That said, we felt we got our money's worth since we had such a good package price. It was clean and the room we had was large, with a kitchenette we never used but was handy for us because of the refigerator. I always take empty plastic bottles to fill with water for the beach and some snacks! The pools at the resort are small but at no time did I feel crowded while in them. That might be because the season we are in. My husband likes swim up bars so he was happy. The staff there is very nice and helpful. The atmosphere in Barbados is more "British" if that means you shouldn't go downtown with tank tops on or out to dinner in their better restaurants dressed that way. I noticed that most ladies had on summer dresses for dinner. When we ate at the Bouganvillea, some ladies had shorts and nice blouse on to eat dinner but mostly summer dresses. Men had on slacks or Dockers. When we went to Carambola's on the west coast for dinner we got more dressed up. My husband wore a sport coat. If you stayed in the Gap area to eat you can be more casual some of the places. Josef's would be more dressy but very worth it since our dinner and the atmosphere was wonderful.
Yes, the lobster price is high. I would say that most of the food is not inexpensive. By $100.00 per meal are you talking about US or Barbados dollars-per person or for two? I think you could have a nice meal at the Gap for two around that price if you did not have wine or mixed drinks. The best dinner price was at Oistens fish fry, somewhat near the Bouganvillea. I think my fish dinner was around $13.00 (US money). The fish we ordered was excellent and the atmosphere was very "local". Everyone there was very nice and helpful.
I was told that the local buses are $1.50 (Barbados dollars). There are little white buses that are run privately and the driver gets paid per person. They tend to get very crowded. The bigger (blue?) buses are run by the government and the drivers are paid no matter how many people are about. Taxies are everywhere. We always asked how much it would be to our destination since we were sometimes quoted different prices.
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Jul 12th, 2004, 07:06 AM
  #6
al
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Based on what I've read here it sounds like a nice island. Thanks for the help.
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