Barbados has huge appeal for beach-lovers. Expect sugar-soft sand, impossibly clear waters (that are also beautifully warm) and plenty of palm trees to complete the paradise picture. Exploring beaches on all sides of the island is one of the top things to do in Barbados to get a range of experiences. The west side is lapped by the calm, shallow waters of the Caribbean Sea while the Atlantic-facing east side boasts a rugged coastline and epic waves that are ideal for surfing. In short, Barbados has a beach for just about everyone. Here are our pick of the 10 best beaches in Barbados.
Best for natural beauty: Crane Beach
On the southeast of Barbados, you’ll find Crane Beach, a cove that gets endless mentions in top travel magazines – because it’s just so beautiful. This spectacular crescent of pink-hued sand is flanked by coconut trees, 80-foot cliffs and crashing Atlantic waves. Approach the water with caution, but if you’re into bodyboarding, you’ll be in your element. Our Bembe villa is located right by this beach, with use of the prestigious Crane Hotel facilities included.
Best for getting away from it all: Cattlewash Beach
Up the coast from Bathsheba, Cattlewash Beach is a biscuit-coloured strip of sand that’s blessed by rugged scenery, fizzing waves and marvellous rocky cliffs such as the ‘sleeping giant’. This is a great stop-off point for escaping the crowds – the perfect place for long, meditative walks.
Best for scuba-diving: Carlisle Bay
It’s no wonder so many scuba-divers come to Carlisle Bay. With enchanting shipwrecks and a bounty of marine life, this beach offers you access to some of the most spectacular diving experiences in the Caribbean. Diving groups often stop at Carlisle Bay and you can expect to see everything from seahorses and frog fish to moray eels and manta rays. After your dive, head to Cuz’s fish shack in the car park for a Bajan fish cutter – the tastiest fish sarnie on the island.
Best for celeb-spotting: Sandy Lane Beach
Occupying the upmarket ‘Platinum Coast,’ Sandy Lane Beach is the coveted playground for guests staying at the eponymous hotel. Public access isn’t always easy, but if you’re staying in one of our glorious villas that occupy this enclave, you’ll be just steps away from this VIP cove. Palm-fringed, peaceful and boasting lovely sunsets, it’s no wonder celebs like to holiday here.
Best for surfing: Bathsheba Beach
This isn’t a beach you’d come to for a relaxing swim, but it is a beach that promises epic surfing opportunities and out-of-this-world scenery. Rolling Atlantic waves froth and foam against otherworldly rocks that poke out of the water and verdant cliffs provide a striking backdrop. Home to the famed Soup Bowl reef break, this is surfer’s paradise but is equally worth a visit for breezy walks and gorgeous snaps.
Best for a lively atmosphere: Alleynes Bay
A favourite sunset spot and home of the renowned Ju Ju’s beach bar, Alleynes Bay is a great place for couples and groups to while away an afternoon. With Banks beer on tap, reasonably-priced Bajan bites and friendly locals – and an array of other restaurants nearby – you won’t want to leave. End the day watching the crimson skies with friendly company and a pina colada.
Best for families: Rockley Beach
Rockley Beach – or Accra Beach as it’s often known – can’t be beaten for family-friendly beaches in Barbados. Little ones can safely play in the calm waters on the southern end and older children can boogie board the livelier waves further up the cove. The casuarina trees provide much-needed shade and parasols and beach loungers are available to hire. Search for crabs in the rockpools, take a stroll along the boardwalk and stop by a beach shack for a cooling ice-lolly.
Best for watersports: Silver Sands Beach
Thanks to trade winds and protected lagoons, Silver Sands Beach in Christ Church is a haven for watersports. And from around November to July, you’re bound to find thrill-seekers enjoying surfing, kiteboarding and Stand Up Paddle-boarding around here. Out of watersports season, this, and the nearby Long Bay are great spots to enjoy a walk. So pack your picnic and enjoy the views.
Best for a castaway feel: Bottom Bay Beach
Hugged by cliffs and shaded by towering palms, Bottom Bay is one of the most secluded beaches you’ll find in Barbados. Less crowded than other beaches, it’s not the best for swimming (the waves can be quite unpredictable), but it’s a lovely spot for a romantic picnic or spot of sunbathing. To top off the castaway vibe, look out for the vendor selling fresh coconuts.
Hidden Gem: Shark Hole Beach
Not many people know about this hidden beach on the southeast of the island, accessed via a narrow path in between Bottom Bay and Beach Head Bay. But since it’s so dinky, those that are in-the-know fill-up the sands pretty quickly. Ask a local for directions, arrive early (avoid weekends) and enjoy the unique rocky scenery and hidden-away feel.
We’ve got a huge selection of gorgeous villas in Barbados, from ones near the beach, ones on the beach and others just a short distance from a beach. But no matter where you are on the island, you’ll not be far from some soft sand and some warm turquoise water!