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20 Sep 2011Blog

The 10 best beaches in Barbados!

by Monique

Although Barbados is adorned with many beautiful beaches, these are my picks for the 10 best beaches in Barbados!

1. Crane Beach

The Crane beachCrane Beach is located on the South East coast of Barbados, in the parish of St. Philip, and is ideal for picnicking with friends and family.

Alongside the loungers reserved for The Crane Hotel’s guests, there is a local vendor who can provide lounge chairs and umbrellas for a reasonable fee ($10 – $15 BBD per chair and roughly the same for an umbrella). Although situated on the Atlantic Ocean, Crane beach is perfect for swimming or wading in the shore, and also provides fun waves and breakers for the body surfer and boogie boarder. The waves can be a little dangerous for really small children so parental caution is advised.

Easy access is provided for The Crane Hotel guests in the form of a cliff-face elevator, otherwise, if you’re not staying at The Crane Hotel, you can access the beach via stepping stones which are located on the Northern access. Be prepared for a somewhat precarious hike over these stepping stones, especially if traveling with a picnic cooler. If you’re feeling cheeky you could try your luck at the hotel gates, if you say your visiting guests or stopping for lunch, you may just get waved in. But don’t tell them we told you. ;)

Breathtaking views await you along its white sandy beach, blue waters and cliff faces backed by coconut trees and vegetation.

Read more about Crane beach here.

2. Ju Ju’s Beach

Ju Ju's beach at sunsetJu Ju’s Beach, as we at BPL refer to it, is located on the West coast of Barbados and stretches along The Garden, St. James past the Royal Pavilion hotel to the South.

Ju Ju’s is perfect for swimming and there’s a reef close to shore where you can easily swim with turtles – just look for the catamarans parked to the north of the beach and bring a snorkel and mask. Of course, on this expanse of beach you’ll also find Ju Ju’s Beach Bar which makes the great grilled fish and the best homemade fries in Barbados! You can rent umbrellas and loungers from this little beach-side rum shop and spend the entire day kicking-back and relaxing.

For the more adventurous, there is an array of water sports on offer, which you can hire from the guys on the beach, just ask at Ju Ju’s and one of the girls will hook-you-up. Another word of advice, Ju Ju’s is a local favourite as well as a hit with the tourists so it can get very busy during lunch times and at sundown, when every seat is packed for the breathtaking sunsets.

Read more about Ju Ju’s beach here.

3. Accra Beach

Accra beachAccra Beach is easily the most popular beach on the South Coast of the island for locals and visitors alike.

Having grown up on the South coast myself, I’ve spent a lot of time on this beach, and it’s easy to understand why people tend to spend the whole day here. At one end, this beach has a small bay created by a manmade groyne ideal for small children to wade and search for small fish amongst the rocks. From here this stunning white sandy beach stretches quite a way and abuts the newly built South coast boardwalk.

Accra beach is perfect for swimming and its location gives you a chance to visit an array of shops, restaurants and bars lying behind the beach in Coconut Walk and all along the bustling South coast.

4. Sandy Lane Beach

Sandy Lane beach offers great swimming conditions and an array of water sports which can be booked with vendors on the beach.

Public access is not ideal and is located South of the hotel between a row of Sandy Lane privately owned houses and a grand apartment block called One Sandy Lane. From the beach access, walk North for 5 minutes along the sand and then you’ll stumble upon the bright pink umbrellas and loungers that are now signature to Sandy Lane Hotel.

Besides its clear blue waters, white sandy beach and vibrant reefs, Sandy Lane beach is also the place to spot the very famous who often stay at the hotel during the Winter season. Take your camera, you might snap an A-lister.

5. Miami Beach

Miami beachMiami beach is only 2 minutes away from Oistins on the South coast of the island.

Miami beach is a great spot to soak in the rays, with local vendors on site who will rent you beach chairs, large umbrellas and boogie boards, as well as snacks and drinks. In particular the converted bus food stall sells particularly delicious fish cakes and Flying Fish sandwiches.

There are also several picnic benches shaded by trees where you can enjoy your meal and cool off in the shade. For the surf enthusiast, Miami beach is very close to surf spots such as Freights Bay and South Point.

6. Cattlewash Beach

Cattlewash beachCattlewash Beach is located on the East coast of the island, impossible to miss when driving along the East coast road.

Cattlewash is a huge stretch (several miles long) of sandy beach ideal for taking long walks on a Sunday afternoon. It’s particularly beautiful because of the lack of hotels, resorts and villas on this side of the island.

Cattlewash offers views of the rugged (mountainous by Barbados standards) hillside and the rough breezy Atlantic ocean. Although the view is stunning and the sea may appear to be inviting, swimming is not recommended as there are very dangerous under currents. However, there are a number of natural pools with rock barriers that are safe to cool off in, but be sure to ask a local which pools to venture into.

For the surf enthusiast, Cattlewash offers many surf spots, one of them is Sandbank, which is usually at its best in the late months of summer.

7. Bottom Bay Beach

Bottom BayBottom Bay Beach is a wide stretch of white sand that is lined with coconut palms and shallow reefs at the shoreline.

Bottom Bay is a picture perfect castaway beach, and is located on the South East coast of the island, near to Sam Lord’s Castle.

You can park on the top of a cliff and walk down steps to access the beach. There is an area to wade in the very blue sea, and the bay also produces slightly large waves, ideal for the boogie boarder. As there aren’t too many facilities, this beach is perfect for setting up a picnic with the family under the 100 foot coconut trees. If you find some young local boys on the beach, you may be able to convince them to climb one of the smaller trees and pick and open a coconut for you. Drink the coconut water straight from the fruit and be sure to try the jelly inside.

8. Batts Rock Beach

Batts Rocks adjoins Paradise beach and then Brandons beachBatts Rock Beach marks the beginning of an array of crystal clear waters and white sandy beaches on the West coast of Barbados.

Batts Rock beach runs towards the South and hits Paradise beach and Brighton beach, making it great for long walks.

The vibrant reefs and calm waters are perfect grounds for snorkelling and easy swimming. There’s also a public facility with showers, parking, a drinks machine, benches, lifeguard station and a children’s playground, making this spot ideal for family picnics.

9. Silver Rock Beach

Silver Rock beachSilver Rock Beach is located on the South coast and is a very popular spot for kitesurfers and windsurfers.

This beach features high sand banks and although the water is generally safe for swimming, at certain times of the year when a swell rolls through, the currents can become very strong.

Silver Rock beach is now home to Silver Point Hotel where you can pay a small fee (compared to West coast hotel day access rates) to spend the day by the pool or have some lunch whilst watching kitesurfers launching ariel manoeuvres. This can be quite thrilling from the comfort of the Silver Rock Hotel deck.  Alternatively, you can learn yourself, just enquire at the watersports facility available on the beach itself.

10. Little Bay

LIttle BayLittle Bay is the perfect spot to stop at on an island tour. This bay is set amongst rugged cliff edges and offers a natural pool which is safe for swimming.

Beyond the reef which encases the swimming area, the large Atlantic waves hit the rocks causing amazing spouts of water through small blowholes. The effect can create fantastic photographs, if you’re able to catch the spray in time.

Little Bay is located on the North East coast of the island and can be quite hard to find. If you get lost, stop and ask a local.

More photos of my 10 best Barbados beaches in sequence…

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