Caribbean Port of Departure - Bridgetown, Barbados
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1 Introducing Barbados

The Caribbean island of Barbados has more than its fair share of stunning beaches, swaying palm trees and warm azure waters. Add in the friendliness and generosity of the locals, and it's no suprise you have a hard-to-better Caribbean destination.

During the 18 and early 19th centuries the island was operated as a sugar cane economy under British management, and you can still see a few original sugar plantations reborn as museums showing the daily lives of the slave work force working on the plantation.

Nowadays the inhabitants of Barbados are termed Bajans, and the descendants born out of the original plantation system live in general harmony under a representative government.

Barbados is the easternmost island in the Caribbean and is often spared the terrible effects of the area's tropical hurricanes due to the fact that the island lies outside the main storm zone. Statistic show that a hurricane only hits the island about once every 27 years.
These advantages make Barbados a very popular cruise ship port, and lately, partly thanks to the well served closeby Grantley Adams airport, it has become a busy starting port for cruiselines.

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2 The Port of Bridgetown

Bridgetown Port (also known as the Deep Water Harbour) is located on the south-west coast of the island of Barbados. Bridgetown port handles all of the country's bulk ships, plus a large number cruiseships. Built in 1961, the Deep Water Harbour was created by an artificial isthmus. In 2002 the main channel and the docks were deepened to allow larger ships to berth.}

Since the dredging project the port has experienced a large amount of growth in goods and cruise ship volumes.
There are 4 deepwater (draft over 11meters) quays suitable for larger cruiseships These cater for 5 larger sized cruiseships. The breakwater (522m long), the sugar berth (307m long), berths 2,3 and 4 (total length 550m) plus the Esso Jetty (244 meters), located outside the breakwater. The Esso terminal is only occupied when the others are full.

Next to the quays lies the new cruise terminal, officially opened in 1994. It acts as the centre for services for cruise passengers and crew arriving at Barbados. The cruise terminal houses the normal functions to handle passengers, such as Immigration, Customs, Health Center, Animal Quarantine, Barbados Tourist Center and Post Office. Plus restaurants and bars, a business center, and an internet cafe. The cruise terminl has a lot of floor space devoted to shopping, with more than 20 duty free outlets stocking beautiful jewellery, attractive china, electronic goods, and locally-sourced craft outlets.

Taxi services and rental cars are available for passengers just outside the cruise terminal entrance. Alternatively the fit amongst you can walk to Bridgetown's central bus station, the Fairchild Street Terminal, 20 minutes by foot, to make the most of Barbados's efficent and cheap buses.

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3 Out and About in Barbados

Broad Street
The main thoroughfare of Bridgetown, the capital of Barbados. Broad Street is lined with tax free shops, banking offices, large department stores, and restaurants. Also worth a visit is Swan Street which features many cheaper clothing stores

Harrison's Cave
Visit spectacular caves with glittering crystal outcrops, waterfalls, and subterranean lakes with sightless crayfish. An electric train carries you on the journey.

Welchman Hall Gully
A lush tropical garden maintained by Barbados's National Trust.
You're also bound to see a wild monkey.

Sunbury Plantation House
A Plantation Great House whose rooms are all available for tours. The 300 year house is steeped in histroy, with old paintings, ancient plantation inventory lists, characterful funiture and a small museum of of horse-drawn coaches.

Mount Gay Rum Distillery and Banks Beer Tour
If you like your alcohol go on a guided tour and tasting at Barbados's top distillery, then travel to the Banks Brewery to enjoy the local |beer.

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4 Beaches
Barbados beaches are open to the public. Just a mile from the port are the beaches of the Gold Coast. Payne's bay is great for snorkelling. Next to Paynes bay lies Fresh Water Bay, with a beautiful threesome of beaches, Paradise Beach, Brighton Beach and Brandon's Beach .

5 Cruises Leaving From Barbados
Thanks to its location at the middle of the Southern Caribbean, Barbados makes a brilliant choice as a departure point.
Itineraries available include the Greater Antilles (Jamaica), the Windward Isles (Dominica, Martinique, St Lucia, St Vincent), the Leeward Isles(St Barts, St Martin, St Kitts, Nevis, Guadeloupe, Trinidad, Tobago), the Netherland Antilles off the north coast of Venezuela (Aruba, Curacao and Bonaire) or even the Brazilian Amazon.
An example of cruises available from the cruiselines would be
Southern Caribbean (Carnival) Bridgetown, St Lucia, St kitts, St Maarten, San Juan, St Thomas, Dominica, Bridgetown
Caribbean and Amazon (PO Cruises) Bridgetown, Grenada, Santarem, Parintins, Manaus, Tobago, St Lucia, Bridgetown
Grand Caribbean Adventurer (Princess Cruises) Bridgetown, St Vincent, St Georges, Bonaire, WIllemstad, Grand Cayman, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, St Thomas, St Kitts, St Johns, Dominica, Bridgetown
Barbados to Barbados (Windstar Cruises) Bridgetown, St Kitts, Nevis, St Maarten, St Barts, St Kitts, Guadeloupe, St Lucia, Bridgetown
Jewels of the Caribbean (Fred Olsen) Bridgetown, Trinidad, Tobago, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, British Virgin Islands, St Kitts, St Johns, Dominica, Bridgetown
Bridgetown to Bridgetown (SIlversea) Bridgetown, St Lucia, St Johns, St Barts, British Virgin Islands, Grenadines, Bridgetown
Caribbean (PO Cruises) Bridgetown, Bonaire, Aruba, Jamaica, Grand Turk, St Maarten, St Johns, Dominica, St Lucia, Bridgetown

6 Getting to Bridgetown Port from the Airport
Grantley Adams is 13 miles from the cruise terminal at Bridgetown port. The airport is flown to by airlines from North America, Europe and other islands in the Caribbean. The transfer from airport to the cruise terminal is easiest by taxi, and takes around 25 minutes. The cost is around 50 Barbadian dollars.

7 Other Information
The Barbadian dollar is fixed to the US$ and a Barbadian dollar is always worth 50 US cents, with the rate being US$1 = Bds $2..
Each passenger visitng Barbados has to pay a tourist tax of US$6.
Official language is English, but Bajan (a local English-derived dialect, and generally hard to understand) is widely spoken.

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