Exploring the East Coast of Barbados
Away from the crowds lies the wild and rugged East Coast of Barbados. It is a favourite amongst surfers, with the crashing Atlantic waves rolling in bringing a very different feel to the rest of the island’s beaches. You can admire the beautiful scenery with lots of green hillsides and palm trees lining the roads and beaches.
Bathsheba is a local fishing village, with long stretches of golden sandy beaches, lined with palm trees and large rock formations. The sea is rougher here than the rest of the island as large waves and strong currents roll in off the Atlantic making the waters tougher to swim in. If you prefer, the cool breeze makes it the perfect spot for sunbathing.
As the East coast isn’t as popular with tourists, we had the entire beach pretty much to ourselves. We spent the day watching the waves crashing on the rocks, admiring the scenery and enjoying a walk along the beach.
The Soup Bowl
The soup Bowl is the main surf spot on Bathsheba beach. It is famous for producing some of the best waves, with surfers from all over the world coming to ride the waves. If surfing isn’t your thing then you can sit and relax on the beach or in one of the café’s or bars.
Bathsheba beach is well known for its striking rock formations which have been carved by the crashing Atlantic waves. If you are exploring the East coast of Barbados, walk further along the beach and you’ll get to the famous mushroom rock. It is the largest of the rock formations which have been eroded by the waves giving them their shape.
Hike the Coast
There’s no better way to explore the East coast than walking along the rugged beaches. One of the recommended hikes to do starts from Belleplaine and runs through to Martin’s Bay. The whole hike is 20km and although there is a lovely sea breeze, that sounded a bit too long a walk in the heat for us! We decided to cross the bridge over Joes River and walk up Cattlewash beach for a shorter but beautiful walk.
Our last stop of the day exploring the east coast of Barbados was Andromeda Botanic Gardens. It is located further inland up the hill from Bathsheba village. Walk through tropical plants and flowers and explore the six-acres of gardens with birds and monkey playing in the trees. You don’t have to book tickets for the gardens, you pay at the entrance. For adults it’s BD$30 (US$15). The Gardens are open from 10am and the last entrance is 4pm. Try to go later in the day as the monkeys come out to play as the day cools off.
Most people going on a holiday to Barbados will likely hire a car or get a taxi from place to place but seeing as we were doing a big travel trip around the Caribbean we had to cut costs somewhere! To get to the East Coast we used the bus network which, once you’ve got the hang of it, is great to get from place to place! All the locals are super friendly and you can pretty much ask anyone and they will help direct you to which bus you need to get on. Buses run hourly from Bridgetown Fairchild Street Terminal, with one-way tickets costing BD$3.50 per person.
Where to eat?
There are different places along the coast to grab a bite to eat or drink. The main places are near to Bathsheba beach. At one end of the beach is the Round House which is a hotel with a restaurant overlooking the beach so you can enjoy your food whilst taking in the spectacular views. At the other end you’ll find Uncle Joe’s bar and grill which is a colourful and friendly place to stop for a bite to eat. Before heading back we stopped at Dina’s bar for a refreshing (and strong!) rum punch.