Polar bear at the Toronto Zoo, Canada.
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Reuniting with Max in Germany on October 1st.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Not everything in Barbados is beautiful...

Yesterday's blog post was late because our host Eric was going out to do some shopping and wanted to get there early. We went with him so that he could drop us off at the big Saturday market in Bridgetown and we would walk back to the apartment.

He was headed to the big PriceSmart (the Caribbean Costco) store so we went there first to check out prices since he has a membership card.

We got there right at 9:00am. Apparently that's the best time to shop there because if you wait until later the place is a zoo.

We picked up a few things. Prices seemed better on both meat and chicken so we stocked up on some of that to do us for the next two weeks.

Divide by two for the U.S. dollar price.

As with any store, you need to know your prices because not everything is a good deal. Although for the first time we did see wine at under $20 BBD ($13.20 CAD, $10 USD), but that's still not cheap enough for us!

Eric dropped us off at the main market and he headed back home.

Inside the Cheapside Market.

The prices at the big market aren't much better than the grocery stores. We did shop around for some carrots, cucumber, broccoli, and onions. Prices do vary... some stalls wanted up to $4 BBD per pound for carrots, while we managed to get them for $3 BBD per pound.

From there, we did some more exploring of Bridgetown.

The Mutual Building, built in 1895.

 Wall mural.

Scenery along the way.

We sat in the shade and people watched for an hour at a downtown park. Kind of run down, like a lot of things here are. Beautiful fountain, not working of course. That could be due to a water shortage that they've been experiencing the last few years, but more than likely it was just not maintained. The roads and sidewalks remind us of the infrastructure in Chisinau, Moldova.

As in any country, the people who live here aren't very happy with their government or the amount of taxes they pay. Whenever it rains a lot (as it did the week before we got here) the sewers back up and raw sewage flows out of the manhole covers onto the streets. Not everywhere of course, but in certain areas of the island. We walked by one the other day that was flowing out, and boy did it stink. Not everything in Barbados is beautiful!

We were talking to one local about it, and he was just shaking his head. But don't worry... the government says they'll fix it in time for the main tourist season! 

We walked over to the old Cathedral. First built in 1660, it had been destroyed by hurricanes in both 1780 and 1831 and subsequently rebuilt.

Old graves.

The Cathedral Church of St. Michael's and All Angels.
There is no maintenance done on the graveyard at all.

The interior though, appears to be well looked after.

An interesting plant growing on the side of this tree!

Still wandering, we came across Queen's Park... the first official public park on the island, opened in 1909. There was a big political rally going on for the Barbados Labour Party who are the official opposition. They hold 14 of the 30 seats on the island, so apparently political ideologies are split pretty evenly here as they are in some other countries!

This politician has a fancy ride!

Queen's Park has one of two huge Boabab trees on the island.

We had seen another little take out restaurant that was on our way back home and we thought they had reasonable prices. The chicken curry plate looked a little pricey at $18 BBD ($11.90 CAD, $9 USD) but we figured we would split it, and so we only ordered one, and good thing we did. Just enough for lunch for the two of us...

Enough chicken and rice for two!

Curry in a hurry! Too funny.

After lunch, we detoured down to Needham's Point where the big Hilton Hotel is. We walked around the resort just for fun, and used their washrooms. Always go to a nice hotel to use nice washrooms! Also made our way to the 8th floor for a bit of a view...

Hilton Hotel. Not busy season.

View from the 8th floor.

We walked back home and figured we had done about 7 kms (4.5 miles) again. 

We have air conditioning in our bedrooms here at the apartment, but the main living space is open air. Eric had told us that we could walk down the road to the Courtyard Marriot and sit in their nice lobby, so we packed up the laptops and that's where we went! They have a really nice lobby and lots of seats. He said you could sit there for hours and nobody would bother you. Sure enough, it was pretty comfortable and they had great wifi!

Today, we're off to meet blog readers at the Southern Palms Beach Club for rum punch and music!

The Instant Pot Mini has dropped in price for the first time ever!

And in Canada... winter is coming...


  1. Wish we were there. Still stuck in Canada for a few more weeks. Cool and rain here .

    1. You will be heading south soon! How is work going? It sounds like you are staying a little longer than you had hoped too.

  2. We always explore the resort hotels, meandering around as if we belonged there ! This looks like a few caribbean areas we've seen - lack of infrastructure and the hope that someday it will get better!

    1. Yep, that is exactly what we did, plus they have nice bathrooms to use! ;-)

      For a country that is expensive we would have thought that the infrastructure would have been better than Mexico's but it seems to be on par with it.

  3. I reread one of my comments and just about died. I didn't mean to write Barcelona....I meant Barbados. Good grief, getting old is awful!

    I think Bridgetown looks like a cute little town. If a politician road around in that car in the US, he/she would get a ton of attention and probably some sort of investigation would begin.

    1. I guess that we must have missed that error ourselves because I hadn't noticed it. ;-)

      We can't be sure that it was a politician's car but it is a pretty good bet that it was and no doubt there have probably been many questions asked about it!

  4. Another cheap meal, you two could write a guide about eating cheaply in Barbadoes and get a zillion web its :) Just saying you have a nose for that

    1. It was cheaper only because we split it between us and yeah, we probably could write a guide about cheap eating in Barbados. I doubt it would get a zillion hits though because I think most people that come to Barbados have money to eat and the nicer restaurants.

  5. Isn't it great to find good street food? Looks like you guys are having a good time, despite the prices...

    1. This wasn't actually street food because it wasn't from a food truck or a cart, just a small little restaurant/take away place but it was still delicious and not a bad price either.

      Yes, we are having a great time even with the high prices, we just learn how to adapt ourselves to it. :-)

  6. Nothing quite like deal with the locals and the street vendors for reasonable prices and good food.

    1. Well you know us, we like to find the deals and they are usually where the locals are. :-)

  7. So far I'm not impressed with Barbados...no offense. Pricey food/goods and sewer backing up is not fun vacation. However, I do like the beaches, the strange trees and shrubs. I'm somewhat surprised there are no exotic flowers and birds like you see in magazines. Is the water okay to drink or are you buying bottle water? We bought bottled water while in Mexico and drank bottled beers/soda also. Even in some US cities, I recommend drinking bottle water. I guess the islands (all) took their toll from hurricanes and some did not fully recover before another hurricane hits. How are the picture match up coming along?

    1. No offense taken! However it is a nice place to come for a short holiday just to enjoy the sand, sea and sun if that is what people are looking for. Yes, prices are high but we learn how to adapt ourselves to that and the sewage backup isn't an everyday occurrence, that can sometimes happen in Canada and the US at times when there is heavy rainfall.

      There are definitely lots of beautiful and exotic flowers here, we just have taken any pictures of them. We will try to remember to do this.

      Yes, the water is safe to drink, they serve it at the restaurants but they also drink bottled water. We have done both and haven't gotten sick yet.

      Barbados wasn't hit with any of the hurricanes this year. The last one that they had was back in 2012 and even then there was minimal damage. The last one to really have any impact on the island was Oct. 30th 2010 and even then it wasn't devastating although it did do some damage to housing and brought down power lines.

  8. Your pics brought back memories of some places we visited.....the Church of Angels has VERY interesting history! A fellow traveler had problem with his bill on beach...he called police. No fuss, after local police arrive; bill was instantly corrected, no problem! When are you going to enjoy the water?

    1. Glad we could bring back some nice memories for you. Yes, the old church has some very interesting history.

      We aren't really beach people so we don't normally go sit at the beach or play in the water very much but I am sure we will before the holiday is over. We have been in the pool at the apartment a few times though. Felt nice and refreshing after a hot, steamy walk back to our accommodation. :-)


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