Barbados Named World's Top Travel Spot for Customer Satisfaction

Miami (also known as Enterprise) Beach is a fine spot on the south side of Barbados. (Jim Byers/TravelPulse Canada)
by Jim Byers
Last updated: 4:35 PM ET, Sun March 11, 2018

Miami Beach, Barbados

Barbados has been named the number one spot in the world for tourism satisfaction. Some 70,000 travellers around the globe rated destinations in 20 categories, including beaches, cuisine and accommodations. Barbados had the highest score in the world, notching a mark of 8.8 out of 10 in the Destination Satisfaction Index (DSI).

No doubt the island nation was helped by having beaches like the one pictured here, Miami (also known as Enterprise) Beach.

Donna Cadogan, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism and International Transport for Barbados, said the island's accommodations have been given significant updates. "Over the last year, 2017, we would have had about 43 different establishments which refurbished, therefore our product is being refreshed. We are making a concerted effort and working on our accommodation and it is bearing results."

East Coast Barbados

Most of the big hotels and resorts are on the south and west side of Barbados. But it's worth taking a tour (try Island Safaris) or driving yourself around the east coast, where you'll find funky, local bars and long, long beaches that are often deserted. The water can be rough on this side, so caution is to be exercised. But it's a beautiful, quiet part of the island. There's even an 18th century windmill you can check out in the hills north of Bathsheba.

North Coast Barbados

The north coast of Barbados near Animal Flower Cave is like another world. The cave is worth exploring, but the views are much more captivating up above, with wild blue waves thundering into massive cliffs. There's also an excellent restaurant on site and old cannons perched on the cliff. Just in case, you know, Blackbeard makes a return.

Lick Rish Food Tours


Lick Rish Food Tours runs a fun tour of dining spots in Bridgetown. You might stop for a bite at the Marina Bar and Restaurant for fine views of the harbour and corned beef fritters with ginger beer. Or stop at the city's bustling market for a sip of sweet sorel juice. Tour guides can fill you in on the island's colourful history, including old slave markets and Jewish settlements.

Crane Beach, Barbados

The beach at The Crane Resort is one of the most beautiful in Barbados. It's reached via a set stairs or an elevator from the resort and features great water for swimming on calm days and for bodysurfing when the waves get big. The resort features sumptuously appointed rooms, fabulous food and acres of gardens and green space. The swimming pools are some of the finest in the Caribbean.

Royal Westmoreland Golf Course

Royal Westmoreland is one of the top golf courses on the island; a lush layout with plenty of interesting and challenging holes. The clubhouse serves great drinks and lovely food. Royal Westmoreland also operates beautiful, spacious villas that are ideal for families or folks who need space to spread out.

Mullins Beach Bar

Mullins Beach Bar is a fantastic, laid-back spot on the west coast of Barbados. Look for good food and a great environment, often with live entertainment. The beach is one of the best on the island, and the sunsets are stunning.

Hunte's Gardens Barbados

Hunte's Gardens is one of my favourite places in Barbados. It's a truly wondrous garden high in the hills, not far from Bathsheba on the east coast. Owner Anthony Hunte is a lovely guy who usually invites guests to his treehouse-like home for a sip of lemonade or some run punch. Not to be missed by anyone who loves gardens. Or a fun conversation with locals.

Rum Punch Barbados

You don't want to leave Barbados without trying some rum punch. The version they serve at Cutters, a great spot for flying fish sandwiches near The Crane Resort, has been voted one of the best in the Caribbean. Rock stars vacationing at The Crane have been to stop in for a bite and a chat with the staff.

St. John's Parish Church

Barbados is home to several lovely churches, including St. John's Parish Church on the lush, eastern side of the island. There's a small graveyard out back and the views out over the east coast are tremendous.

Top-rated beaches, updated accommodations and classic cuisine propel Barbados to the top of the Destination Satisfaction Index

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Jim Byers

Senior Editorial Director

Jim Byers was travel editor for five years at the Toronto Star, which has the largest travel section in North America. He has...

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