Ecotourism in Barbados. Barbados is one of those jewels in the Caribbean where every postcard looks idyllic, and every activity yields adventure. With its endless coastlines, imaginative beaches, and vibrant coral reefs, ecotourism in Barbados is dominated by water activities. Adventurers looking to dry off a little will find that the Bajan food and culture scenes make life on land just as exciting as in the water.
There are plenty of scuba diving outfitters in Barbados, but Barbados Blue appears to be the most eco-conscious of the group. Barbados Blue is dedicated to the conservation and preservation of the marine ecosystem they operate in, and employ two full time Marine Biologists that work in teaching diving, conserving and resorting the reefs, and educating people on the reefs and associated ecosystems.
Barbados Blue is active in the community, and is a PADI Project AWARE Coral Watch Dive Operator, as well as a participant in the educational program, Junior Coral Reef Ambassador Program, which works by educating local youths in student run conservation programmes.
In addition to their eco-friendly operators, Barbados Blue’s diving programs are diverse and popular with all levels of divers. Beginners can get a taste of diving in a pool orientation session before moving out into the open water, and more advanced divers can get PADI certified for a number of different levels. Courses last from half-day to four or more days, and are a great way to explore one of the most popular ecotourism activities in Barbados.
Renown for some of the best surfing spots in the Caribbean, Barbados is a great place to grab a board and head out to catch some waves. The Soup Bowl, near Bathsheba, on the east coast of the island, is meant to have some of the best and most challenging surfs in the whole of the Caribbean, and world-class surfers flock here for an adventure. Other popular spots are Cattlewash Beach and Bottom Bay Beach, the latter of which is famed for its dramatic scenery of cliffs and coconut trees.
One of the most popular surf schools and rental shops in Barbados is Zed’s Surfing Adventures, who’ve been teaching people how to ‘hang ten’ for nearly ten years now. Located on Surfer’s Point Beach, Zed’s offers group lessons and rentals, as well as stand-up paddleboading lessons and rentals, and accommodation packages at a nearby lodge. Gnarly.
Food and Drink
Famous for its rum, Barbados does many other things as well as its prized drink. Mount Gay is the oldest brand of rum on the island, and travellers would do best to enjoy it in a cocktail every chance they get. Daily tours of rum distilleries are available at Mount Gay and Malibu, but if the ecotourist in you is more interested in small local craft batch production, check out St. Nicholas Abbey.
Other national specialties include seafood dishes, like cutters, which are large flying fish sandwiches often accompanied by cou cou, a cornmeal and okra dish typically considered to be the national dish of Barbados. The cuisine of Barbados is distinct and flavourful, and is often thoroughly enjoyed by travellers looking for some local influence.
Ecotourism in Barbados
Ecotourism in Barbados can be exciting, adventurous, and fulfilling. The islands charms are best displayed through its distinct culture and cuisine, and its scintillating waters and beaches. Barbados is the type of island where anything goes, and you can enjoy a water activity one day, and lounge on the beach with a locally distilled rum cocktail the next day. Be sure to explore all of the local opportunities available in Barbados, and tread consciously as you do it. Barbados deserves to remain the pristine Caribbean jewel that it is.
Photo Credit: jaycantroot; ladyfrances