Buying Souvenirs in Barbados
Buying souvenirs is a tradition that lets us take home something to remind us of the places we have been to and the wonderful experiences we had while there. When visiting Barbados, you’ll find there is plenty of opportunity to buy souvenirs as well as gifts for loved ones back home. Here we’ll look at some of the unique, Barbadian-made items you might want to pick up on your holidays.
While you can pick up a bottle of rum quite easily from your local supermarket, taking home a bottle of Barbadian Rum will be the perfect reminder of your time on the island. Rum was invented here and we still have the world’s oldest distilleries in operation. Indeed, unless you are teetotal, the chances are you’ll get to enjoy some of the glorious Bajan cocktails we have created over the centuries.
One of the major attractions on the island is a trip to the Mount Gay Visitor’s Centre, in Bridgetown. Here, you can see how the world’s oldest (and best) rum is made, get to sample it and learn how to mix the perfect cocktails. What better souvenir to take home, therefore, than a bottle of finest rum from this 300-year-old distillery? This way, you’ll be able to remind yourself of your fab time in Barbados by making yourself a genuine Bajan cocktail back home.
If you prefer beer to rum, you’ll find that the very refreshing Bank’s Beer is a real favourite on Barbados. It’s universally available all over the island and is loved by Barbadians and tourists alike. It’s quite a common souvenir and is best-kept ice cold and saved for a gloriously warm day when you’d be wishing you were still dipping your feet in the cool waters of a west coast beach.
The sweet-toothed amongst you may prefer to take something equally tempting home as a souvenir; some delicious Barbadian-made chocolate. Our proximity to the South Americas means we have access to the best coco-beans in the world and these we combine with our delicious home-grown cane sugar to produce chocolate you won’t find anywhere else. You can find out for yourself by taking a ‘Bean to Bar’ tour at the Agapey Chocolate Factory, in Bridgetown. Once you’ve had a tasting, you can choose your favourite bars to take back home – if you don’t eat them first.
It might not seem like the kind of thing you’d normally take home as a souvenir but once you’ve tried some of the fantastic Bajan dishes we have on offer, you’ll certainly be wanting to make some of these for your friends and family back home.
Of course, getting your recipes right means having the right seasoning and this is why so many people make sure they take some home with them. Bajan seasoning is ideal for spicing up chicken, fish or pork dishes and creating a taste that will remind you of your holiday. You’ll be able to find jars of seasoning in most supermarkets and it won’t cost you the earth.
People often buy artworks that depict the places they have been and which mean so much to them. Here in Barbados, we have some exceptional artists who produce highly colourful works that accurately capture life on our island. Perfect for souvenirs that will last a lifetime, there are paintings, prints, sculptures and ceramics you can purchase and which can be shipped home for you.
The ideal place to find these stunning artworks is in the many galleries on the island. One place that you must visit is the Gallery of Caribbean Art, in Speightstown, which is dedicated to promoting local artists. Great pieces can also be found in the Pelican Crafts Centre, the three On The Wall galleries and the Frangipani Gallery. If you are enjoying a meal at the upmarket The Tides restaurant, you’ll also find a first-class gallery there. All the galleries have unique, Barbadian art on sale.
Locally made arts and crafts
Many people like to purchase local arts and crafts items for their souvenirs and the island is home to many creative people who make their living producing these unique gifts. There are a wide variety of items available and the best places to find them are at the market stalls and shacks you’ll find in most towns. Of particular note are the stalls you’ll see at the Friday night Oistins Fish Fry – one of the island’s must-visit, foodie attractions. There you’ll find some wonderful carvings, jewellery, paintings and trinkets made by local artisans.
You’ll love your time in Barbados and will no doubt want to take home a suitable souvenir or two to remind you of the fantastic time you have had. Hopefully, this post will have given you some inspiration in what things to choose and where to find them.
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