Home DestinationsCaribbean BARBADOS | The dreamiest 10 days in Caribbean paradise

BARBADOS | The dreamiest 10 days in Caribbean paradise

by kimberley

The small Caribbean island of Barbados is one of those places where we made the painful mistake of following the hotel on social media after we returned from our holiday. Painful in the sense that our online feed was a constant reminder of how beautiful this country was (and how grey London is!). Our reaction to each new post would be a flurry of sad face/wailing emojis, followed by numerous variations of ‘can we go back?’


We chose to visit in May, since we wanted to avoid both hurricane and peak season. This was a spectacular time to go to the Caribbean as we found that the resort and island in general was relatively quiet; on occasions, we would find ourselves at a beach and be the only ones in sight – true bliss!


We booked our holiday as a package (flight and hotel) directly through British Airways. We chose to stay at the Bougainvillea Resort which is based on the South Coast, near Oistins and St.Lawrence Gap. It is located directly on the beach and is surrounded by lush gardens, tropical plants and of course, bougainvillea.

Whilst I would not clasify it as a ’boutique hotel’, it certainly gave off that feel. It oozes charm and is incredibly homely; after speaking to several of the guests throughout our stay, it came apparent that many of them return here on a yearly basis.

Our favourite part of the hotel was their swim up pool bar. This is where you would regularly find us in the late afternoon, especially during their daily happy hour . That is unless we had been knocked sideways from one too many rum punches – they were LETHAL but delicious!

The hotel also put on a variety of weekly entertainment, ranging from an evening Manager party, to steel pan musicians, to Caribbean buffet nights (the food here was excellent!)


After we spent our first few days winding down and getting seriously sun burnt, we rented a car for 4 days which allowed us to leave the hotel and explore the island. We headed to the west coast as we heard this was was where we could find the island’s most idyllic beaches.

However, in order to get there we first had to navigate our way through the capital, Bridgetown. Whilst by no means large, there was a tricky one way system which no-one seemed to abide by and we never knew which lane we were supposed to be in; this was met by lots of honking and almost a break up.. joke.

One afternoon, we parked up and took the opportunity to have a little wander through the streets. It had such a relaxed and sleepy atmosphere which was so refreshing; nobody was in a rush to be anywhere and people were napping under trees. Unfortunately, it takes alot longer than an afternoon to take the hasty Londoner out of us, so before long, we were back in the car to resume our beach mission!



I had done alot of research about where we could find the best beach. One that kept popping up was Gibbs Bay and once we eventually found it, it did not disappoint! It is worth mentioning that all of the beaches in Barbados are free and open to the public. However, we discovered that this meant many of the luxury resorts which are dotted along the west coast, will do their absolute best to make it incredibly difficult for passer bys to access their beaches (unless by boat).

After several laps and finally realising that it is acceptable to just park your car anywhere, tucked away behind palm trees and shrubbery, we found a small pathway to what led us to this perfect stretch of shore; we felt as if we had found paradise. There was absolutely nobody in sight, just the warm breeze, the gentle lapping of waves and the tweeting of birds.

In close second, we found ourselves at Mullins Beach and Paynes Bay; two equally as beautiful beaches which were perfect for swimming. These are notably busier, with sun lounges to rent and a few small amenities. On Paynes Bay there is also coral as you enter the sea and we were lucky enough to swim with a little turtle who made his way towards us.

This was not our only chance in Barbados to swim with turtles; we had the most amazing boat day where we got to get up and personal with them!

We had been recommended to have lunch at the Lone Star which is situated between Mullins Beach and Paynes Bay. Since we had heard that it was a pretty fancy place, we decided to book a table on a day when we were not going to the beach so that we could scrub up well. A wise choice since we soon discovered that this restaurant attracted a certain clientele – good thing we persuaded the boys to wear shirts!

Jokes aside, this was probably the most gorgeous place I have ever had the pleasure of eating. It is perfectly positioned on the beach and is designed so elegantly, we never wanted to leave. I can only imagine how amazing and romantic it would be for dinner during sunset; maybe next time!

Harrison’s Cave

After a delicious lunch at Lone Star, we ventured into the centre of the island to find one of its fascinating natural treasures. Harrison’s Cave is basically an underground network of caves, complete with waterfalls, flowing water, stalagmites and stalactites which have been forming over thousands of years.

You are given a hard hat and then taken through the network of caves on a tram with a tour guide. There are also moments where you are able to get off the tram and have a closer look at the formations. It was pretty cool and certainly a great thing to do when you want to take a break from soaking up the sun all day!

Oistins Fish Fry

Since we arrived in Barbados, we had been told that we must visit Oistins on a Friday night. Our hotel offered complimentary shuttle buses to and from the fish fry so we thought, why not! It is basically a food market in the evening, where tourists and locals go to enjoy all of the best local food (e.g. fried fish, jerk chicken, macaroni pie etc) from various vendors. Whilst you are tucking into some good grub, there is music blaring out and entertainers/dancers performing; it is voted one of the must do’s in Barbados.

Unfortunately, I did not enjoy myself. I believe Friday nights are specifically tailored towards tourists, and consequently, I think this is why I felt this way. It felt abit like a forced spectacle with over priced food and I couldn’t wait to leave. It was very busy and the queues for the food were incredibly long, not to mention how difficult it was to even find a table for all of us. Maybe if I return, I will give it another go!

Bajan Sunset

Our holiday to Barbados would not be complete if we did not experience a Bajan sunset and this is exactly what we did. We went to Carlisle Bay since this was recommended to us by a member of staff from our hotel.

After a stressful start, we raced to the beach to witness this stunning phenomenon just on time. And of course we had to try and capture it as best we could on camera. We could have easily spent another week in Barbados and we were certainly devastated to leave this beautiful country. There is so much more to do here than we ever imagined, and I cannot wait to return one day.

But until then, I will continue to follow Bougainvillea resort on Instagram and pine away at their magnificent photos! 

We could have easily spent another week in Barbados and we were certainly devastated to leave this beautiful country. There is so much more to do here than we ever imagined, and I cannot wait to return one day.

But until then, I will continue to follow Bougainvillea resort on Instagram and pine away at their magnificent photos! 

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