The capital of Barbados
When you arrive to Barbados on an MSC cruise ship, you should begin your exploration with the capital, Bridgetown. Among the many attractions in this small Caribbean city, pause to admire its many colonial buildings, the Parliament Building and the statue of Lord Nelson in what today is called the National Heroes Square.
The current St. John's Parish Church is the fifth reconstruction of the oldest local church. It dates to 1836. Its interior hosts a sculpture by an 18th century British artist Richard Westmacott, while its churchyard contains the tomb of Ferdinando Paleologus, a direct descendent of the brother of Constantine XI, the last Byzantine emperor.
The most intriguing neighbourhood to visit is that of St. Andrew. Here you will find Chalky Mount Potteries, an artisan pottery centre, and the Morgan Lewis Sugar Mill, which can serve as a great background for a photograph.
The history of the land can be learned at the Barbados Museum and Historical Society, in the St. Michael neighbourhood.
Go on an excursion to the eastern side of the island to visit the Andromeda Botanical Gardens, a short distance from St. Joseph parish. Born sixty years ago as a private garden, they are now open to the public in all of their tropical splendour. Harrison’s Cave, located in the St. Thomas district, is another triumph of nature with its stalactites, stalagmites, streams, lakes and waterfalls. In one of the caverns, the play of light on the rocks is so intense that it has earned the nickname “The Crystal Room”.
An alternative excursion of a historical nature will take you to Holetown: an essential stop for those who want to learn about the islands traditions. It is the first English settlement. This fact has been honoured in the Holetown Monument, erected in commemoration of the island’s first English landing. St. James Church, which dates to the 17th century, can also be found here.
If you prefer to go to a beach, Accra Beach is the most famous and endowed with all of the Caribbean features: transparent waters, white sand and sea life fit for a snorkelling ad.