Our Barbados holiday (Apr 23 - May 1, 1999)

Off we go Vancouver-Toronto-Barbados
Arrive in the evening to the sounds of a steel drum band and frogs chirping.

Day 1   Boogie boarding in the surf

Day 2  Poetry reading, Dinner at Bellini

Day 3  Bridgetown visit, Beach party

Day 4  Snorkeling at Folfstone Marine Park, hotel nature walk, telescope on the beach

Day 5  Scuba diving, dinner at Blakey's (best meal/service we had)

Day 6  Catamaran, swim with turtles, evening pool dip

Day 7  Found the monkey's, tried our cell phone, the long, long way home

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On the Casuarina beach
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Another view of the beach

Last Word

Barbados was a beautiful, relaxing place to visit. Beach sand was never hot, water was clear and warm . Cab drivers helpful and friendly, excursion/tour operators excellent, island life generally idealic. Local population friendly, well educated, little visible poverty (only 4% unemployment). Island felt safe with police and security very visible were ever we went. Technologically up to date with cell phones, computers and internet access (ISDN very prevalent) widely available. The only down side was meals being very expensive and restaurant service in most place we went being extremely poor (described by some as "bad attitude" - it really gets to you).

Every room and suite at the Casuarina Beach Club includes a full kitchen, with fridge, stove, sink, and all the dishes etc. that you would need. Although they had a percolator style coffee pot, they did not have an electric coffee maker. Luckily, we had brought our own filters and filter cones. There are several small grocery stores nearby, and we found this really convenient for getting supplies for breakfast and light lunches. Oddly, for a tropical paradise, good fruit was hard to come by. Bananas and apples were readily available, but I was looking forward to papayas, pineapples, etc. It was rare in restaurants to see indigenous vegetables such as breadfruit. They mostly relied on mushy peas, etc. The British influence was pervasive.

Casuarina Beach Club room was fine, but the air-conditioner didnt't quite cut it. But their lush property (their gardens of plants and trees was spectacular, like a manicured jungle setting) and secluded, uncrowded beach front (Casuarina beach was never excessively hot with always refreshing breeze) more than compensated. It was a joy to take part in the hotel promoted activities that were priced to match or better outside prices. Now if they could only break away from the island norm and improve their restaurant service.

Without a doubt, we would recommend Barbado's as an excellent place to vacation, and the Casuarina Beach Club as the place to stay in Barbados.

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