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Cruises to Barbados

4 Awards
Barbados (Photo:Filip Fuxa/Shutterstock)

About Barbados

Barbados -- or B'dos, as the locals abbreviate the name -- was a British territory until 1966 and remains greatly influenced by the United Kingdom. Brits on holiday make up the largest number of visitors to the island. Driving is on the left-hand side of the road, and afternoon tea is a respected ritual. Anglican churches are the anchor of all 11 parishes, although, in recent years, more evangelical churches have become the choice of many Bajuns.

But those of all nationalities will feel at ease there. The Bajuns are open, friendly people, proud to share their home with visitors. There's little crime and a general sense of safety and well-being.

The easternmost of the Caribbean islands, Barbados is technically in the Atlantic Ocean. An excursion to Bathsheba on the rugged eastern shore leaves no doubt about the vast forces of the Atlantic, unchecked for nearly 3,000 miles between there and the coast of Cape Verde, Africa. Some say the freshest air on the planet blows there. The surf looks gentle, but don't be fooled -- the undertow is something to be wary of, even for the best swimmers.

Despite heavy development along the western and southern coasts, the rest of the island is full of sweeping natural vistas, from rippling fields of sugar cane in the interior to the Atlantic surf pounding against the cliffs at the island's northernmost tip. The island rewards independent exploration; rent a car or hire a driver to see its unspoiled side.

Though today the sugarcane fields speak more to the island's past than its present (tourism, not agriculture, now drives the Barbadian economy), visitors can still experience the island's heritage at a number of plantation houses and rum distilleries. If you'd rather skip the history lesson, there are plenty of places to just get away from it all, from Bridgetown's duty-free department stores to the soft, white beaches of the south coast.

  • Why go to Barbados?

  • Barbados Cruise Port Facilities?

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Norwegian Getaway
Norwegian Getaway

12 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

3,007 Reviews
Leaving:New York
Cruise Line:Norwegian Cruise Line
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Emerald Princess
Emerald Princess (Photo: Princess Cruises)

14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Cruise Line:Princess Cruises
Mar 3, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Queen Mary 2 (QM2)
Queen Mary 2 (QM2)

28 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Southampton
Cruise Line:Cunard Line
Jan 14, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Britannia
Britannia (Photo: P&O Cruises)

14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
Feb 25, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Royal Caribbean

16 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Southampton
Cruise Line:Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines
Dec 6, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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21 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Cruise Line:Holland America Line
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Southampton
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
Oct 21, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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21 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:New York
Cruise Line:Cunard Line
Mar 27, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:Royal Caribbean International
Feb 12, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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28 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Southampton
Cruise Line:Cunard Line
Feb 15, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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7 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:San Juan
Cruise Line:Royal Caribbean International
Dec 19, 2021
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Cruise Critic Favorite

9 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Miami
Cruise Line:Royal Caribbean International
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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20 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Cruise Line:Princess Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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28 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Southampton
Cruise Line:Cunard Line
Dec 13, 2021
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Cruise Critic Favorite

14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Cruise Line:Princess Cruises
Apr 2, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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17 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

134 Reviews
Leaving:Barcelona
Cruise Line:MSC Cruises
Nov 17, 2021
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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13 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Martinique
Cruise Line:MSC Cruises
Mar 26, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:P&O Cruises
Dec 24, 2021
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Cruise Line:Princess Cruises
Jan 27, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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8 Night
Cruise to BarbadosDetails

Leaving:Barbados
Cruise Line:Royal Caribbean International
Dec 26, 2022
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Why go to Barbados?

Pros:

Between its friendly locals and general affordability, it's easy to explore Barbados independently

Cons:

Beware of the toxic Manchineel trees found on most Barbados beaches

Bottom Line:

This cruise port showcases its culture well, amid all the trappings of a modern Caribbean destination

Barbados Cruise Port Facilities?

The cruise terminal has the usual duty-free shopping options, complete with jewelry, clothing, souvenirs and crafts. There's also a tourist information desk and a telecommunications center with phone, Internet and postal services.

About two blocks down the road are the bright pink shops of Pelican Village (Princess Alice Highway), housing artisan boutiques, a working cigar factory and a few restaurants. It's closed on Sundays.

The Bridgetown Public Fish Market is just across the street. No, you'll not be buying fish to bring back to the ship, but it's an energetic place to watch while local chefs and heads of household haggle and bargain over the freshest catch.

The route from the cruise terminal into downtown traverses through a lovely park with a stone seawall, a great place to just relax and get some fresh air off the boat without getting into the commotion of downtown.

Good to Know?

Manchineel trees, found on many Barbados beaches, are beautiful and leafy green, appearing to be a great place to escape from the sun or the occasional rain shower. Don't do it. The leaves and fruit are both toxic and can create a serious rash on your skin. Most of the trees in public areas are marked with warning signs or red X's painted on the trunks.

Also, note that, in Barbados, honking car horns do not convey a negative message as they do in many parts of the world. The Bajuns tap their horns dozens of times a day in greeting to other drivers, whether or not they are acquainted. It's just the friendly way of life there.

Getting Around?

On Foot: The capital city of Bridgetown is a one-mile stroll from the cruise port, and its downtown area is pedestrian-friendly.

By Taxi: Cabs line up outside the port terminal. You can arrange informal driving tours of the island with a cab driver, giving you a local's insight without having to do your own driving. Negotiate the rate before you start, and be sure you know which currency is being quoted.

By Rental Car: Stoutes Car Rental (246-416-4456) offers free drop-off and pick-up from the cruise terminal. Remember that Bajans, like the Brits, drive on the left. If you choose to rent a vehicle, consider the fun Kia Mini Moke found all over the island. Note that these have no doors and a small trunk, but they're a lot of fun for a day.

By Bus: The bus terminal is about two blocks from the cruise terminal, just behind the Pelican Village. From there you can hop a bus to Holetown, Bathsheba, St. Lawrence Gap and elsewhere on the island all for the same price. Note that you must have exact change or purchase tokens in advance at the terminal. Barbados has two bus systems -- the blue government-owned and -operated buses and the bright yellow "reggae" buses, which are known for playing loud music and not always paying attention to maximum capacity signs. The good news is that both systems are known to run on time.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The currency is the Barbadian dollar. Check the most current exchange rates at www.xe.com or www.oanda.com. American bills (but not coins) are commonly accepted, though you may get change in local currency. ATM's are plentiful in Bridgetown, the capital city, and in other smaller towns throughout the island.

Language?

English is the official language of Barbados, and everyone speaks it. The locals have their own dialect, but you'll have no trouble understanding conversations.

Where You're Docked?

Ships dock at the Bridgetown Cruise Terminal, about a mile west of downtown Bridgetown.


Barbados Cruise Reviews
Cruise line. Safety left from Barbados instead of south Florida... Read More
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bjkrlk
Barbados in not really attractive for a Caribbean Island--flat, industrial and agricultural. Skip it and go on an excursion to a more attractive island such as Curacao... Read More
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bhagen1953
We were in Bridgetown on a Saturday and unfortunately several attractions were closed. In particular we wanted to visit the Garrison and Kingston cricket oval. Since these tours were not available on a Saturday we... Read More
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OG57
It rained cats and dogs the day we were in port and we chose not to do an excursion. We did go to the terminal which had tons of shopping. The port is around a mile from town . We have been in Barbados before and... Read More
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seasandsuntravel

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