Splashing time – fun on the beach in Barbados
This awe-inspiring destination really has the wow factor with its spellbinding scenery, thrilling activities and wonderful attractions which are guaranteed to create an unforgettable family holiday experience.
You’ll also discover golden sands, crystal-clear waters, fabulous food and vibrant nightlife in this enchanting getaway which enjoys incredible weather all year round.
There’s never a dull moment for families in the island’s luxury hotels - with many offering superb all-inclusive packages - and there’s a myriad of things to see and do when they set out to discover the delights of sun-kissed Barbados.
Have a ball on the beach
The beach is always a winner with families and Barbados has more than 80 pristine white sandy expanses to choose from – these inviting palm-tree fringed stretches often boast shallow and calm waters which are perfect for young children.
Sun, sea and sand – a glorious beach in Barbados
There’s an opportunity to enjoy a range of thrilling water sports or don a snorkel and flippers to gaze in awe at the mesmerising marine life on the island’s amazing coral reefs beneath the waves.
Families can climb aboard a banana boat for a white-knuckle ride which will certainly get the energy levels flowing, and if they have younger children a ride in a trusty pedalo or glass-bottomed boat is a fantastic experience.
There’s also the chance to enjoy the old favourites such as traditional sandcastle-building with buckets and spades or blowing up a trusty beach ball for some fun on the sand.
Many of the island’s beaches have excellent cafés, beach bars and restaurants for enjoying some tasty traditional fare, a delicious ice cream or refreshing cocktail.
The top child-friendly sandy gems on the island include Mullins Beach, Miami Beach, Brownes Beach and Rockley Beach.
Opting for an all-inclusive getaway is a great idea as it means you don’t need to worry about getting out your cash or credit card in the hotel during your stay, as everything is already paid for in advance.
Going all-inclusive lets you get on with having a bundle of fun with your family - packages often include ice-creams, soft drinks, sweets and snacks which are sure to bring smiles to the faces of young boys and girls during their holiday in the sun.
Many hotels have kids and teens clubs which offer a packed programme of daytime and evening entertainment and activities to keep young guests occupied while their parents relax in the bar or catch some rays beside the pool.
Some all-inclusive packages also feature unlimited access to gym or spa facilities and free use of non-motorised water sports equipment, beach loungers and parasols.
Barbados boasts a plethora of fantastic key attractions and activities which have proved firm favourites with families visiting this jaw-dropping destination.
Enjoy close encounters with turtles on the Turtle Swim and Shipwreck Tour
Harrison’s Cave in Allen View is a captivating attraction where your family will travel through an enthralling underground network of caverns in a tram, encountering waterfalls, stalactites and stalagmites along the way.
The combined Turtle Swim and Shipwreck Tour is another winner where families can snorkel beneath the waves and swim with turtles, followed by the chance to explore a fish-filled shipwreck in Carlisle Bay.
Caiman, green monkeys, pelicans, armadillos and flamingos are among the creatures you’ll encounter during a day out at Barbados Wildlife Reserve, a wonderful attraction which is set in a beautiful mahogany forest.
An island safari tour is another great idea for some family thrills - this involves travelling in a fleet of 4x4 jeeps through gullies, bays, forests and other challenging terrain to see areas of the island that standard vehicles just can’t reach and tourists don’t normally get to see.
Barbados loves to host festivals - if there’s one going on during your holiday, you’ll be treated to a magnificent pageant of colours and sounds. These lively music and dance spectacles are magical affairs, with the Barbados Crop-Over Festival, the Holetown Festival and Barbados Reggae Festival among the key annual events.
Making a song and dance - festival fun in the magical island of Barbados
Bridgetown, the island's capital and a World UNESCO Heritage Site, is definitely worth a visit, with plenty of interesting attractions - Queen's Park, for example, is home to an excellent playground and a 1,000-year-old giant baobab tree with an incredible 18-meter circumference.
Another option in Bridgetown is the Atlantis Submarine Adventure where you'll dive deep underwater in a real submarine to view the island's amazing marine life.
Food glorious food
Barbados doesn’t disappoint when it comes to scrumptious food to satisfy the palates of all family members. The island’s hotels usually offer extensive buffet dining and some even have special kids-only menus to give the little ones their own favourite meals.
Frying tonight - the legendary Oistins Fish Fry
When you venture outside your hotel you’ll discover plenty of charming beachfront cafes and restaurants serving mouth-watering local dishes and snacks, including West Indian curries, rotis and fresh seafood specialities.
Street food is everywhere in Barbados and you’ll find countless stalls and vans selling a varied choice of delicious local offerings including fish cakes, roasted breadfruit, macaroni pie and the Saturday favourite…Pudding & Souse.
Oistins’ Fish Fry is a famous family-friendly dining extravaganza on the beach which features an exciting evening of music, dancing and dining on swordfish, lobster, tuna, marlin and other seafood delights which are grilled to your liking.
Many of the family-friendly pubs and bars in this splendid Caribbean retreat also serve flavoursome meals and often feature quiz nights, tribute acts, steel bands, karaoke and other activities to keep everyone entertained. You’ll also find refreshing cocktails for parents and delicious smoothies and milkshakes for children.
Barbados has something for everyone when it comes to shopping, with everything from gift shops and souvenir stalls to high-end stores and glitzy boutiques.
The island also boasts some excellent shopping malls, selling a huge range of duty-free merchandise including jewellery, watches, clothing, designer goods and electronics.
A trip to a bustling outdoor market provides the perfect opportunity to barter for a few bargains - kids can buy some play things for the beach and the pool, while mum and dad can track down some holiday souvenirs and gifts to take back home.
Barbados really is a great choice for families craving a sunshine adventure in a blissful destination, surrounded by stunning natural beauty, brilliant attractions and unrivalled hospitality.