Barbados

When the sun goes down, Bajans "lime"—which can mean anything from getting together for a drink and casual chat to enjoying a full-blown "jump-up" or street party. Most resorts have nightly entertainment in season, and nightclubs often have live bands for listening and dancing. The busiest bars and dance clubs rage until 3 am. On Saturday nights, some clubs—especially those with live music—charge a cover of $20 or more. Many bars and nightspots feature happy hours.

Barbados supports the rum industry with more than 1,600 "rum shops," simple bars where (mostly) men congregate to discuss the world or life in general, drink rum, and eat a cutter (sandwich). In more sophisticated establishments, you can find upscale rum cocktails made with the island's renowned Mount Gay and Cockspur brands—and no shortage of Barbados's own Banks Beer.

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  • 1. Copacabana Beach Club

    This lively, family-friendly club—complete with beach chairs, bars, good food, and shower facilities—is on a beautiful, calm beach with excellent snorkeling spots. Lounge under an umbrella on the sand, cocktail in hand, or enjoy fresh fish tacos while watching a sports match on an indoor screen. This is also a venue for concerts and outdoor movie screenings during the Barbados Independent Film Festival. Day passes include use of amenities and act as credit that guests can redeem at the bar and restaurant.

    Bay St., Bridgetown, St. Michael, Barbados
    246-622–1910
  • 2. Oistins Fish Fry

    This is the place to be on Friday evening, when this south-coast fishing village becomes a lively and convivial outdoor street party suitable for the whole family. Barbecued chicken and a variety of fish, along with all the traditional sides, are served fresh from the grill and consumed at roadside picnic tables. Servings are huge, and prices are inexpensive—about $10–$15 per plate. Recommendations include lionfish, plantain, and breadfruit. Drinks, music, and dancing add to the fun. To avoid the crowds, come any day but Friday for lunch or dinner.

    Oistins Main Rd., Oistins, Christ Church, Barbados
  • 3. Bubba's Sports Bar

    During the day, this is a family-friendly restaurant. At night, merrymakers and sports lovers find live action on three 10-foot video screens and nearly two-dozen TVs, along with bar food and local Banks beer on tap.

    Rockley Main Rd., Worthing, Christ Church, BB15150, Barbados
    246-435–8731

    Nightlife Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Mon. and Tues.
  • 4. Dis Ole House Kitchen and Beer Garden

    This is a quaint, unexpected spot for great food, live music, brunch, and delicious cocktails. Enjoy juicy ribs with a beer (or a full flight) in the tropical back garden, which has been designed with coziness in mind. It's cash only!

    Long Bay, Sunbury, St. Philip, Barbados
    246-571–0502
  • 5. Harbour Lights

    This open-air, beachfront club claims to be the "home of the party animal." Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday nights (during high season) are the hottest, with dancing under the stars to reggae and soca music. On Monday and Wednesday evening, there's a family-friendly "cultural" dinner show on the beach, along with three live bands and a Bajan barbecue dinner, with drinks.

    Bay St., Bridgetown, St. Michael, Barbados
    246-436–7225
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  • 6. Red Door Lounge

    The Red Door is located inside Mango Bay Hotel but open to the public. Cocktails, DJs, and live music —this local hot spot is the place to be on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights after 10 pm. 

    2nd St., Holetown, St. James, Barbados
    246-620–3761
  • 7. The Boatyard

    There's never a dull moment at this popular beachside bar—day or night. From happy hour until the wee hours, you can enjoy refreshing cocktails, beautiful sunsets, and lively music. There are also several offerings for children, including a rope swing into the sea and a trampoline in the water. Buy a day pass and redeem half of the cost towards food and drink at Sharkey's Bar.  Your day pass includes use of the rope swing, trampoline, and a free boat tour and turtle swim experience. 

    Bay St., Bridgetown, St. Michael, Barbados
    246-436–2622
  • 8. West Bar

    Restaurant by day, trendy outdoor bar in the Limegrove Lifestyle Centre courtyard by night, this is a good place to meet friends for a drink and chill. Expect good vibes, good dancing, and a good party atmosphere on Friday and Saturday nights starting at 10 pm.

    Holetown, St. James, Barbados
    246-571–7300
  • 9. Lexy Piano Bar

    Closed Permanently

    This cool, trendy club is named for owner Alex Santoriello, a transplanted Broadway singer and actor. A changing roster of singer-pianists play sing-along standards, classic rock, R&B, and Broadway tunes—and you can also enjoy a treat from the sushi bar. While it's open earlier, the fun really starts at 10 or 11 pm. And most any night you'll find Santoriello there.

    2nd St., Holetown, St. James, Barbados
    246-826–5399

    Nightlife Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Mon.
  • 10. Jumbie's

    Closed Permanently

    Jumbie's has an open-air party room with either a DJ or live music Wednesday through Sunday from 4:30 pm to 4:30 am. Happy hours run from 5 pm to 7 pm and again from 10 pm to 1 am and all day Sunday! Obviously, it's a very happy place to congregate starting in the late afternoon or early evening.

    Hwy. 1, Sunset Crest, St. James, Barbados
    246-434–3434
  • 11. Plantation Garden Theatre

    Closed Permanently

    On Thursday evenings, the Celebrations of Rhythm Ole Time Bajan Lime, Show & Street Party is a West Indian cultural extravaganza that the whole family will enjoy. The night begins at 6:30 in a Bajan Village setting, featuring food, drinks, and a craft market. The Celebrations of Rhythm show, which starts at 8:00, presents the colorful history of Barbados through the spellbinding rhythm of song and dance. Directly after the show, a local DJ, carnival revelers, and moko jumbies are highlights of the Street Party.

    Maxwell Main Rd., Dover, Christ Church, Barbados
    246-826–4001
  • 12. Reggae Lounge

    Closed Permanently

    This is a popular nightspot in the Gap, where live bands or DJs play the latest R&B hits and old and new reggae favorites every night until the wee hours.

    St. Lawrence Gap, Dover, Christ Church, Barbados
    246-435–6462
  • 13. Ship Inn

    Closed Permanently

    The Ship Inn is a large, friendly pub with local band music every night for dancing.

    St. Lawrence Gap, Dover, Christ Church, Barbados
    246-420–7447
  • 14. Sugar Ultra Lounge

    Closed Permanently

    This chic, upscale, techno nightspot—complete with light show wall—attracts international talent in addition to the usual DJ and occasional local band. Groove to dance hall, soca, hip hop, and Top 40 music from 10 pm to 3 or 4 am on Thursday and Saturday. Dress "club chic": no shorts, sleeveless shirts, or hats allowed.

    St. Lawrence Gap, Dover, Christ Church, Barbados
    246-420–7662

    Nightlife Details

    Rate Includes: $12.50 (sometimes more) on Thurs. and Sat. nights
  • 15. Upstairs at Olives

    Closed Permanently

    Upstairs at Olives is a sophisticated watering hole. Enjoy cocktails and conversation seated amid potted palms and cooled by ceiling fans—either before or after dinner downstairs.

    2nd St., Holetown, St. James, Barbados
    246-432–2112
  • 16. Waterfront Cafe

    Closed Permanently

    From November through April, there’s live jazz Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings. The location alongside the wharf and small dance floor are also draws.

    Bay St., Bridgetown, St. Michael, Barbados
    246-427–0093

    Nightlife Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Sun.–Wed.

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