BBD: Barbadian dollar
If you’re looking to escape the more commercial hub of Barbados life when choosing where to holiday on the island, then the smart money suggests setting your coordinates for the south-east side, as opposed to the north-west. While the latter is decidedly upmarket in appeal, in terms of what typical Caribbean destinations offer the discerning holidaymaker, the south-east is significantly more chillaxed, to coin modern lingo. The laid-back vibes associated with the area spread to the touristic perspective too, with those visiting this area often from the surfing communities and/or independent travellers who aren’t necessarily concerned with pinpointing the picture perfect beaches. Which incidentally, are just a short drive up the coast anyway, if you’re that way inclined.
Right at the heart of life and times on this side of the island of Barbados is the parish known as Christ Church, and if any one area defines the town’s stripped back approach and attitude then it’s the much-hyped St Lawrence Gap. To the uninitiated, this 1.3 kilometre stretch of road comprises of a raft of fine eateries, lively nightlife, good shopping opportunities and an eclectic choice of accommodation. And those who stay in Christ Church get to see the best of St. Lawrence Gap from the best seats in the house, so to speak. This trendy neighbourhood has more funky bars and top-tier restaurants than just about any other destination on the entire island. 'The Gap', as it is commonly referred to as, is a place where various cultures meet and merge, and it’s a unique experience that tourists are actively encouraged to sample for themselves whether staying here as part of their summer 2020 Barbados holiday or simply passing through.
Christchurch at a glance
Discover the best beaches
Barbados's beautiful beaches can be found in Christchurch, including white fine sands and the clearest of waters
Amazing all inclusive resorts
Top off your holiday in Christchurch with a stay at one of the area's best all inclusive hotels
Families love the all inclusive resorts and family-friendly beaches here
Hit the nightlife & bar scene
Head to St. Lawrence Gap to experience a true Bajan party
Sample the local food
Oistins Friday Night Fish Fry is all the rage... Mix the party vibes with drinks and great-tasting food for the perfect night out!
Explore the city
Check out the nearby capital of Bridgetown which is home to some of the best restaurants and shopping boutiques
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Things to do in Christchurch
Bridgetown is where much of the seaborne action is for kids, primarily thanks to the Atlantis III submarine which routinely sails from the shore here. Capable of diving to depths of 150feet, the 48 seater sub scours the ocean bed affording passengers the opportunity to peep through the portholes and observe the crystal clear Caribbean waters; an out-of-this-world experience which proves fascinating to kids time after time. But the Atlantis III is not just the preserve of kids, as adults – more especially those aren’t into diving or snorkelling - find this a very worthwhile pursuit to immerse themselves in too. Other maritime-based pursuits located hereabouts include a cruise on the traditional tall-ship called ‘Harbour Master’, while closer to the Gap, Ocean Park sightseers will be privy to a cross-section of marine exhibits.
Remaining in historic Bridgetown for a while longer, and the Barbadian capital is home to some rather splendid British Colonial era architecture which shouldn’t be missed, while the duty free shopping is another aspect of Bridgetown which shouldn’t be overlooked either. Drop in at the nearby Pelican Craft Centre and those enjoying a Christ Church holiday will come face to face with some incredible local art, pottery, woodwork and glass crafts, while the colourful and somewhat larger-than-life presence of the fruit and veg market at Cheapside is highly recommended too. The former Jacobian plantation house, namely St Nicholas Abbey – complete with rum distillery in situ (not to mention an interesting back story all of its own) – is definitely worth a pit stop too while you’re in the area, whilst Oistins Fish Market will be expanded on a little later, but worth highlighting I in this bite-size list of must-see Barbadian places of interest.
The beaches around Christ Church – although not quite as appealing as those discovered further north - are among the predominant reasons why this part of Barbados acknowledges such a high number of holiday makers and tourists each year in more recent times. But rather than simply lying back on them and thinking of England, they are more suited – or at least the waters which lap up against them are – to holidaymakers keen to delve a little deeper into the great blue yonder. Or the sea, between you, us and, well, the audience of thousands who’ll read this at some point. Indeed, the beaches which make-up Barbados’ south coast are recognized as centres for endless snorkelling, surfing and windsurfing opportunities, with Dover Beach being amongst the busiest in the parish. They also present perfect conditions for those tourists who enjoy body boarding too, according to experts in this particular field. Another popular coastal spot to run the rule over is Rockley Beach, where tropical palm trees and comfortable sun loungers all add to the holiday experience.
Other impressive beaches in this area – for those of a more sun-worshipping disposition - include those around Silver Sands and Bottom Bay. On the hot topic of Rockley Beach, did we mention that the south coast boardwalk begins to take shape around here? Nope? Well, this mile-long, wide wooden boardwalk zigzags along the shore from Rockley Beach to Hastings, and represents the ideal platform in which to engage in either a genteel stroll or a jog. You can even catch your breath at points and partake in some tapas, should you choose (probably more agreeable to those out for a leisurely walk, as opposed to any more physical endeavours). Oh, and a clutch of huts at one end of Rockley Beach sells beer and burgers.
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