10 Reasons to Spend Christmas in Barbados
While white Christmases are something to be relished, there’s more chance of seeing snow on a Christmas card than on the rooftops. More typically, we wake up on Christmas morning to cloudy skies, cold wind and drizzle. It’s perhaps this reason why more and more of us are heading to warmer climes to celebrate the holiday season. If this sounds like you, here are 10 reasons to spend Christmas in Barbados.
1. Barbadians love Christmas too
Though we might want to get away from the miserable weather, most of us still want to enjoy the Christmas festivities. Thankfully, Christmas is a big occasion in Barbados and the islanders will be celebrating along with everyone else. Just like at home, there will be Christmas trees, street lights and lots of seasonal festivities.
2. Last minute shopping
Spending Christmas in Barbados doesn’t mean you need to wrap up presents to take with you. For truly sensational Christmas shopping, head to Holetown where you’ll find the island’s chicest boutiques selling world famous brands. The highlight will be a trip to the Limegrove Lifestyle Centre, where you’ll find over a hundred cafés, restaurants and shops selling every type of gift you’ll need, from jewellery and watches to electronics, clothing and kids’ toys.
3. Dashing through the surf
There won’t be much chance of sledging in Barbados, however, if you fancy burning off some of those Christmas calories, winter is the best time of year to catch the rolling waves. So, head down to the south coast, grab your board and ride the big surf.
4. Winter warmers
If you like a wee tipple over the holiday season, Barbados is the perfect place to go. While it might be a little warm for a hot toddy or a mulled wine, you can certainly summon up the Christmas cheer by sampling some of the famous local rums and the many rum-based cocktails on offer.
Make sure you take a trip to the Mount Gay Visitors Centre in Bridgetown. This 300-year-old rum distillery is the oldest in existence and will serve you up the finest rum you’ll ever taste.
5. Eat, drink and be merry
Feasting is an essential part of Christmas and Barbados promises epicurean delights aplenty. Traditional Barbadian Christmas lunch is a veritable smorgasbord of ingredients including turkey, chicken, roast beef, pork and lamb.
You’ll also find the uniquely Bajan dish, Jug-Jug, a special pudding containing pigeon peas, salt meat, corn, onions, minced pork and herbs. To finish off, indulge yourself with a slice of Great Cake. This is a Bajan version of a Christmas pudding doused not in brandy but in dark Barbadian rum.
6. Dressing for the occasion
Another Bajan custom not to miss is spending Christmas morning at Queen’s Park in Bridgetown. After the morning church service, the locals, dressed in their Sunday best, gather at the park to listen to the Royal Barbados Police Force Band and other musicians as they perform a selection of seasonal favourites. If you’re in Barbados as Christmas, you’re more than welcome to don your glad rags and join the celebrations.
7. Carols and candles
Just because you’re in the tropics doesn’t mean you have to miss out on some of the traditional Christmas activities you are used to at home. One of the highlights of the season is the Carols by Candlelight event which takes place in the beautiful gardens of the Prime Minister’s residence, Ilaro Court. St Nicholas Abbey also hosts Christmas jazz and Christmas carol concerts. Up and down the island, you’ll find events like these taking place in the local churches, many of which are centuries old and offer the perfect setting.
8. Boxing Day Races
The celebratory mood continues on Boxing Day when Barbadians head to the stunning Garrison Savannah racecourse to attend the Barbados Turf Club’s annual Stakes and Trophy horse races. This is one of the island’s biggest racing events and has become a traditional part of the Christmas festivities, much like Boxing Day football matches in the UK. The difference, of course, is that in Barbados, you can ditch the overcoat in exchange for sunglasses.
9. Sleeping it off
As Christmas can be hectic and a time when we overindulge in all the seasonal fayre, come Boxing day, many of us just want to put our feet up and relax. Luckily, Barbados has the perfect solution – just kick back on a comfortable sun lounger on one of our beautiful, sandy beaches and watch the sun glisten over the crystal clear waters.
10. Destress and detox
For the ultimate relaxation, treat yourself to one last present at one of the west coast’s heavenly spa centres. There’s no better way to destress and if you need a detox, there’s plenty of treatments on offer, too. For sheer bliss, head to Holetown which has four of the best pampering centres on the island, each delivering first-class personal service in luxurious surroundings.
When it comes to Christmas, Barbados offers the best of both worlds. You can have all the traditional seasonal experiences that make Christmas such a special time of year, trimmings included, but with the added advantage of being on a beautiful island in a warm climate. In this sense, a Christmas holiday to Barbados is perhaps the best present for you and your loved ones.
For an extra-special Christmas vacation, why not stay in one of our luxury villas or apartments, here at The Royal Westmoreland?