Bridgetown, Barbados

April 18, 2018

First thing this morning we called our son, Adam, for his 35th birthday!  We reached him just before he had to go into a meeting and before we were heading out for the day.  Happy Birthday, Adam.  He is the one who set up the blog for me and does troubleshooting when I need it.

Tom and Alice and Norm and I went out to get a driver to take us on a tour of the island. We have been here twice before – one quite a number of years ago and all we remembered was touring the Mount Gay rum factory!  And two years ago we chartered a catamaran with 8 other people for sailing and snorkeling. So this time we wanted to see more of Barbados.

We were in a van for 10 with our driver and guide, Rudolph. He was a great guy and told us a lot about his island as we traveled all through it.

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Barbados facts –

  • The main industry used to be sugar but now only 20,000 tons are produced here.
  • Bridgetown is the capital and largest city.
  • The present location was established by the British in 1628 and is a major tourist destination. There is still a strong British influence here.
  • There are lots of customer service centers located here.
  • It is the only city outside of North America that George Washington visited!
  • Rihianna was born here and still maintains a condo in a VERY upscale location which we passed in our tour.
  • Education and health care are free here in the public hospitals and schools.  All children in both public and private schools wear uniforms.
  • For university studies, the government pays 75% of the tuition.

We visited the house where Rihianna lived.  The street was recently named for her.

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Many of the homes are colorful like this one. And then there are mega mansions that sell for hundreds of millions of dollars.  At some of the resorts it costs $30,000 a night to stay there.

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Our next stop was the St. James Parish Church.  This is a charming place made from the coral limestone that is plentiful on this island.  There is a bell that predates the Liberty Bell by more than half a century. The pipe organ was also very interesting. And those candles on the rafters are electric now.

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Beautiful beach views from many of the sites we passed or visited.

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And gorgeous flowers.

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We visited the old windmill that still operates. It is 350 years old!

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Here are some of the other sites.  The island is quite beautiful once you get out of Bridgetown.

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And of course, there are always signs!

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And some of the historic monuments and buildings.

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