BRIDGETOWN, Barbados -- It’s the people, the places and the ambiance that make Barbados so distinctively charming and that is the point of the new Barbados Tourism Encyclopedia website, Barbados.org. All is captured in a three-minute travel video put together with film and images taken over the last few years.
The video and the new website feature all of the island’s elegance; its world class hotels, resorts and restaurants with their distinctive classic style in a modern age. But it is the people, culture and lifestyle that keep visitors retuning to this island more than any other Caribbean destination. The new website continues the tradition of showcasing local people; from the fisherman to the businessman. Bajans, as Barbadians call themselves, are a distinct people. They have always been this way.
The island has always stood apart from other islands in the Caribbean; geographically, geologically and culturally it is unique. It became the world leader in sugar and rum production, out producing Brazil and other South American countries many times bigger in size.
The Barbados Charter of 1652 was the first charter of its kind to outline the concept of a sovereign nation where local government was not bound by the laws and taxes of England. Its principle of sovereignty is recognized in the Declaration of American Independence.
The United Nations quality of life index ranks Barbados among the 20 best countries in the world. It is ranked fourth in the world in literacy (UNDP 2007/8). The English Daily Telegraph has ranked it in the top ten places to buy property and to live.
As one of the world’s leading vacation destinations, Barbados offers everything, including opulent resort accommodation, luxury homes, golf, polo, tennis, residential resort and marina living, and endless beaches. It also has many small bed and breakfast inns, intimate hotels, self-catering apartments and quaint boutique hotels.
While there are many all inclusive resorts, the island’s wonderful restaurants don’t make eating all your meals in the same hotel the most attractive holiday option. Many visitors prefer to dine out at the island’s gourmet restaurants and open air cafés, or to eat the delicious local street food or rum shop fare.
The local scene is vibrant; a road side shack at Pebbles Beach is listed in Zagat for its fine food. The fish is freshly seasoned, cooked to perfection and served in a Barbados freshly baked salt bread; a pioneer’s bread that does not rely on yeast to rise the flour. Tasting like a blend of French baguette and sourdough and resembling an American hamburger bun, the salt bread is a specialty of the island.
The website does justice to the unique culture and ambiance of the island. It offers original stories of ordinary and extraordinary Barbadians, the vendors, fishermen, rum shops, art, culture, carnival, nightlife, heritage, history, sugar and rum. It is a work in progress with much still to come.