One of the top excursions in Barbados today is a tour around Barbados with Glory Tours. We reached out to Sarah Taylor, the owner of Glory Tours, who comes from one of the oldest families in Barbados to ask for her advice to which tour we should experience. Glory Tours started back in 2001 and have 15 full day tours to choose from as well as 10 half-day tours. We settled on their popular Best of Barbados Tour.
Chatting with Sarah we also found out more about her history on the island. Her great grandfather was one of the first photographers on the island and had been commissioned to take photos of the Royal Family whilst they were holidaying on the island of Barbados. There is a great article on Sarah and her family history from The Nation News. She may even be a descendant of the pirate Red Leg Greaves!
Glory Tour’s goal is “to put a smile on your face and to keep you smiling as we share the beauty, culture and history of Barbados”. Our driver and guide for the day Quammie had the biggest smile, the biggest laugh and certainly kept us smiling whilst we learnt about the island of Barbados.
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- 1 Our Tour Around Barbados with Glory Tours
- 2 Map of Barbados
- 3 Where To Stay in Barbados
- 4 Where To Eat in Barbados
Our Tour Around Barbados with Glory Tours
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Our day started early with Quammie collecting us from the Crystal Cove Hotel in St James. As we drove to other hotels to collect the rest of the guests Quammie showed us the many Barbados points of interest such as the famous Sandy Lane Hotel and the Coral Reef Club where many celebrities stay when visiting the island. The West Coast of Barbados is famous for its tranquil silvery sand beaches and crystal clear water as well as its many luxury hotels.
On our way to our first stop Harrison’s Cave, we learnt about the history and geography of Barbados. Quammie definitely knew his ‘stuff’ and presented the facts in an entertaining manner.
One of the top things to do in Barbados is to visit the unique Harrison’s Cave. Harrison’s Cave is located in the central part of the island in the highlands. On arrival, we were taken to the lift that took us down to the tramway that will take us underground.
Our driver was David for the duration of the tour and we also had a local guide that explained what we would see along the way. We will travel 2.5km through the cave where at certain points along the way the cave will be over 100 feet high and 150 feet wide. There are still 2 miles of underdeveloped areas in the cave. The caves are formed by water running through the limestone rock.
We passed by what is called ‘The Village’ – the formation looked like people clustered together. The Great Hall, another impressive structure, reaches to a height of 50 feet. The stalactites and stalagmites were formed over thousands of years ago. As the tram travelled deeper we passed by other formations such as The Cavern and the Altar and experienced ‘cave showers’ as we reached the deepest point of 160 feet. We were amazed that it takes 120 years to grow 1 inch of stalactite and stalagmite. At certain spots along the way, we were able to leave the tram to view the structures at close range. What seemed like only minutes we were heading back to the entrance. One enthralling experience was had by all, no wonder it is one of the best things to do in Barbados.
Welchman Hall Gully
Our next stop was Welchman Hall Gully where we walked down the shaded pathway through the tropical trees and plants and viewed the wild green monkeys of Barbados feeding. We arrived just as feeding time was taking place and hundreds of green monkeys were enjoying their bananas on their specially built platform. Just don’t get too close to them whilst they are eating, staying about 5 metres from them is recommended. If you time it right as you walk back up the path you can view the hundreds of green monkeys making their way to their habitats deep in the gully, swinging and chatting as they swing from tree to tree. It was such a great sight to see them in their own natural habitat. The Green Monkeys were introduced to Barbados as pets with the early settlers to the island.
The smallest snake in the world can be found in Welchman Hall Gully and it is about 3 1/2 inches in length and harmless.
Welchman Hall Gully is also famous for its grapefruit grown from a sweet orange and a pomelo. As you wander down the pathway you will see many plants and trees such as the impressive Bearded Fig Tree which legend states was the tree that Barbados was named after. Los Barbados (the bearded one) refers to the beard like roots that hang down from this tree.
On arrival at the entrance to Welchman Hall Gully you will be given a guide – the guide has numbers that correspond with the different trees and plants that you will see along the pathway.
Bathsheba Barbados – East Coast Photo Opportunity
On the rugged East Coast of Barbados in the parish of Saint Joseph lies Bathsheba the main fishing village on this coastline.
There is a legend about Bathsheba. The legend states that the wife of King David, Bathsheba, used to bathe in milk to keep her skin supple and youthful. The waves in this area are likened to Bathsheba’s milk bath, the water is rich in minerals and can assist in health benefits.
Bathsheba is also known as the ‘soup bowl’ where local and international surfing competitions are held.
Pirates Cove at Carlisle Bay
Close to the capital of Barbados, Bridgetown is Pirates Cove Beach Bar and Grill at Carlisle Bay. Our tour stopped here for lunch. For lunch there was a choice of either fish or meat and included is a Rum Punch. The restaurant is located right on the beach.
After lunch, there is a boat tour to Carlisle Bay to snorkel with the turtles. The tour lasts between 45 minutes and 1 hour. Snorkelling in Barbados is an experience in itself, the water is clear and warm and there are plenty of sea life and turtles to swim with.
There are changing facilities available at the restaurant. After the tour, time is allowed to relax on one of the beach chairs in front of the restaurant before we were driven back to our meeting points.
Did we enjoy our tour around Barbados with Glory Tours?
Yes, we certainly did. The tour was just long enough to really experience Harrison’s Cave, Welchman Hall Gully and to have lunch and to snorkel with the turtles without being rushed. Quammie was an experienced driver and guide and we felt we were in good hands throughout the day. Glory Tours is a well run professional organisation headed by Sarah Taylor who is very passionate about her home Barbados. There are a variety of tours to suit all tastes and budgets.
Map of Barbados
Glory Tours also offer speciality trips e.g. Cricket, Brewery Tours, Historic Garrison Tours, and others click here for the full list.
Telephone: 246 231-2932
Website: Glory Tours
Our thanks to Sarah for our complimentary Best of Barbados tour and to Quammie for being our driver and tour guide for the day on our excellent tour.
Tripadvisor has many reviews on all of the tours offered by Glory Tours Barbados.
Where To Stay in Barbados
For a luxury stay in Barbados, we would recommend the Sandy Lane Hotel with its own private beach, outdoor pool and sauna.
For a couples-only hotel that is all-inclusive we can recommend Sandals Barbados at St. Lawrence Gap on the Maxwell Coast. The 5-star hotel offers an outdoor pool, sundeck terrace and their in-house restaurant offer Indian-inspired meals served on their outdoor terrace.
For families we can recommend the Mango Bay Hotel at 2nd Street in Holetown. This 4-star hotel is all-inclusive with free WiFi, outdoor pool and all rooms have a private terrace.
For more hotel options:
Airbnb in Barbados has a range of accommodation to suit all types of travellers and budgets.
Where To Eat in Barbados
During our 3 month stay in Barbados, we enjoyed eating out on the West Coast of the Island. Here are two of our recommendations:
We have put together an extensive guide on What to do in Barbados read it here.
To Travel Too Tip: You can visit Barbados all year round. There is a busy tourist season between November and April, so e highly recommend that you make your reservations in advance so you are not disappointed.
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We enjoyed this tour as a guest of Glory Tours but received no further remuneration to write this post. We were not expected to write a positive review – all views are our own and we retain full editorial control.
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