Why Barbados makes a great off-season destination

Fewer tourists

From the months of May to September, its a natural instinct for superyachts to head to the sandy, sun-drenched shores of the Mediterranean to sip Champagne and lap up the buzzing atmosphere of the top nightspots.

However, if overcrowded marinas and month-long restaurant waiting lists isn’t your thing, then we have just the solution – jump on a flight to Barbados instead. While it may not be the obvious choice as it is technically the Caribbean low season, it is perfect for those wishing to switch off from chaotic reality and switch on to ‘island-time’ – here's why:

1. Fewer tourists

Admittedly, you may not be able to escape the odd tropical shower that comes with it being Barbados’ rainy season, but you will be able to escape the hoards of tourists that you are guaranteed to find on the Côte d'Azur and other Med hotspots at this time of year.

With fewer tourists travelling to the West Indies you get secluded palm-lined beaches and private patches of paradise. You can also simply walk into some of the best restaurants on the island, such as Champers near Bridgetown, and enjoy the best table in the house. Want a spot that directly overlooks the crystal clear Caribbean Sea and its abundant marine life? No problem.

Superyacht vacations are the ideal choice for achieving true privacy but there are also plenty of options on land, such as luxury resort Port Ferdinand. Here you will be able to enjoy having most of its modern facilities to yourself, plus your own berth in its marina (up to 27.4 metres) for when you decide to venture back out onto the beautiful blue Barbadian waters.

Colourful carnivals

Embrace the full Bajan spirit and experience the six-week Crop Over Festival from June 24th to August 6th , which was made internationally famous by Rihanna, aka the ‘Queen of Barbados’, and her bejewelled bikini. However, it isn’t just about the wild costumes and energetic dancing, it is a 200-year-old tradition that celebrates the harvest of the locally-grown sugar cane plant. Sugar cane just so happens to be one of the key ingredients in the legendary Bajan rum, so as you can expect, this celebration is a particularly joyous and rum-fuelled occasion.

The gorgeous weather

As Barbados is the most easterly of the Caribbean islands, it thankfully avoids the majority of hurricanes that pass through the region during the off season. Wet and steaming roads are occasionally apparent upon stepping outside, but the showers tend to be short lived. Ten minutes of rain a day in exchange for a heavenly, peaceful vacation? Not a bad deal.

Temperatures are on average a balmy 30°C during the day throughout the summer months, which makes for the perfect excuse to spend the whole day lounging in a hammock with a page-turner or a freshly shaken daiquiri (preferably both) in between plenty of plunges in the bath-like sea. It only dips to around 27°C at night, but you can trust the sea breeze to keep you cool after sunset.

The preserved natural environment

The peak season for hawksbill and leatherback turtles to nest and hatch just so happens to be the low season for tourists – from mid-May through to late October. This is brilliant news for the hatchlings, as there are far less tourists to dodge as they make their way from egg to sea. It’s also fantastic for those wishing to travel in the low season, as they get front row seats for this awe-inspiring act of mother nature.

While the once-endangered turtles are the main draw for tourists, the natural spectacles do not stop there. You don't have to be a botanist to be blown away by Hunte’s Gardens. Created by legendary horticulturist Anthony Hunte in what was once a sinkhole, these extraordinary gardens have over 400 different species of plants, several hidden spaces, as well as plenty of monkeys and exotic birds making the most of this true Caribbean jungle. If the trek around this manmade rainforest leaves you thirsty, all visitors can enjoy a freshly poured glass of rum punch and a colourful chat with Hunte himself on his open and airy terrace, while taking in the stunning view.

Scuba diving, wake-boarding, surfing, caving and fishing can also be added to the agenda for the adventurous amongst you – the list of activities on offer is much like the list of reasons to visit Barbados – endless...

British Airways flies from Gatwick to Barbados daily during the summer and 12 times a week during the winter. Return flights start from £571.

Picture courtesy of Shutterstock.com

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