Barbados is the easternmost of all Caribbean islands and arguably has the nicest beaches. With 70 miles (112 km) of spectacular coastline, this tiny island country has more than 80 exquisite beaches. You could be forgiven for thinking that Barbados’ beaches are all the same – an incredible sun-kissed landscape of dazzling sand, shimmering waters and gorgeous palm trees. But there are some differences between the coasts.
The ocean is calmer on the island’s western side along the Caribbean Sea. While on the beaches on the Atlantic side, by contrast, they are wilder, less inhabited and known for their larger swell. The northern beaches are rarely visited by tourists, while the southern coastline is ideal for water-based activities like surfing, kayaking and kiteboarding. Whatever beach you are into, the island has something to suit. Here are the best beaches in Barbados.
- Barbados Beaches
- 20 Best Beaches In Barbados
- St Lucy Beaches
- St Peter Beaches
- St James Beaches
- St Joseph Beaches
- St John’s Beaches
- St Michael Beaches
- St Phillip Beaches
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- 20 Best Beaches In Barbados
20 Best Beaches In Barbados
St Lucy Beaches
1- Archers Bay Beach
Nestled on the island’s north coast, Archers Bay is a fantastic beach for those who want to get away from civilisation.
A beach that few tourists venture to, or locals for that matter, there are no lifeguards here or anything in the way of facilities and amenities.
In fact, there is not even a signpost to advise that you have arrived.
You will find breathtaking views that will blow you away, especially at low tide when its small cove reveals itself in all its glory.
Don’t forget to bring your camera as you’ll want to snap loads of photos for your social feeds.
St Peter Beaches
2- Mullins Beach
If you’re after an idyllic beach in Barbados to chill out and relax, then head to Mullin’s Beach.
This laid-back and picturesque beach is the perfect place to spend a lazy day reading, listening to tunes and lounging on a sunbed.
Should you fancy a dip, the water is usually pretty calm, and there is a roped-off area to keep you safe from passing sailboats.
It is also a decent spot to go snorkelling, as you will spot plenty of colourful fish.
3- Gibbs Beach
It might only run for 985 ft (300 m) on Barbados’ west coast, but Gibbs Beach is still a little slice of paradise.
The idyllic beach has a slow-paced and tranquil atmosphere free from industrial or commercial development, making it a lovely place to immerse yourself in the tropical Caribbean vibe.
Pack some snacks, a good book and make sure your phone is fully charged for Spotify – to enjoy a lovely afternoon in the sun.
If you fancy trying some local fare, visit the nearby villages of Holetown and Speightstown to check out some lovely cafes, restaurants and bars.
St James Beaches
4- Paynes Bay Beach
Referred to by locals as the Platinum Coast, Paynes Bay Beach is one of the best beaches in Barbados.
The West Coast jewel is a gorgeous spot with golden sand, shimmering water and stately palm trees.
The water is excellent for swimming and kayaking, while it also is home to many sea turtles that you may encounter while snorkelling.
This bay is an excellent location to watch the sunset and the seafood at the Paynes Bay Fishing Complex is legendary.
5- Folkestone Marine Park and Beach
While all the beaches on this list are well-worth visiting, you should try and make an extra effort to get to the Folkestone Marine Park and Beach – especially if you love diving.
It’s one of the best diving beaches in Barbados as 2624 ft (800 m) off the shore lies a deliberately sunken ship called the Stavronikita, which is now home to an incredible range of marine life.
Submerged 120 ft (36.5 m) beneath the ocean, it’s a wonderful dive site to explore and will be a highlight of any vacation in Barbados.
If you would rather stay on dry land, the golden sandy beach is excellent for sunbathing and there is a children’s play area and seafront boardwalk to stroll along.
6- Alleynes Bay
An alluring, palm tree-lined stretch of golden sand, Alleynes Bay has clear turquoise waters perfect for swimming and snorkelling.
Although there are no facilities, its quiet nature makes it a fabulous place to spend the afternoon chilling out.
However, another reason to come here is that it’s a terrific spot for a round of golf at the world-famous Royal Westmoreland Golf Course nearby.
Bookings at the course are essential and a round is not cheap but if you love the golf as much as the beach, a visit to this part of the island will provide you with a truly magical day out.
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St Joseph Beaches
7- Bathsheba Bay Beach
Bathsheba Bay Beach is a mecca for photographers and surfers on the island’s east coast.
The scenery will captivate you for hours with an incredible terrain of scenic rock formations that complement the pristine sand and swaying palms.
Surfers revel in the world-class swells of the iconic Soup Bowl, which provides a challenge and a rush.
The beach is also a terrific spot to fly kites, walk and enjoy a picnic, but swimming is not recommended because of the choppy waters and jagged rocks.
8- Cattlewash Beach
Tucked neatly in between Barclays Park and Bathsheba village, Cattlewash Beach is the perfect beach to go for a long walk on.
Cooled by the fresh breezes of the Atlantic, the flat sand stretches for miles against a gorgeous backdrop of rocky outcrops and lush foliage.
While the ocean currents are a bit too strong to swim in, there are natural rock pools that are safe for a paddle.
The beach is a perfect spot for a picnic, but you will have to bring your own food as there are no restaurants.
St John’s Beaches
9- Bath Beach
If it’s a swimming beach in Barbados you’re after, look no further than Bath Beach.
Nestled on the Atlantic Coast, Bath Beach is one of the few beaches on the island’s east coast where there are calm waters and patrolled lifeguard towers.
Check out the waterfall and stream at its northern end and explore the old railway.
The beach also has food stalls and plenty of tables perfect for family picnics.
10- Martins Bay
Martins Bay is another traditional Barbados beach gem on the island’s east coast.
Centred around a traditional fishing village, the beach is an isolated haven where shallow reefs act as wave breakers.
This beach has lots of small pools that are excellent for relaxing in.
Towards the bay’s northern end, you will find spectacular rock formations that offer fantastic views and brilliant photo opportunities.
At the southern end, you can climb the cliffs that overlook the coast for more fabulous views and hike along an old train line to Bath Beach.
St Michael Beaches
11- Brownes Beach
Although it’s only a 10-minute stroll from downtown Bridgetown, Brownes Beach feels much further away.
With silky soft sand and shimmering blue waters, this beach rarely gets crowded.
It’s a lovely beach for kids as the water is calm and lifeguards patrol the beach.
There are also several shipwrecks just offshore that provide great spots for snorkelling.
As Bahamas beaches go, this is also one of the best for picnics and photography.
12- Pebbles Beach
Don’t let its name fool you; Pebbles Beach is an idyllic white-sand beach with coconut trees to the south of Bridgetown.
A patrolled beach that is virtually free from rips is a family-friendly beach in the Bahamas with picnic tables and bathroom facilities.
It is also an excellent beach for water sports, with a wide range of equipment available to hire right on the sand, including kayaks and paddleboards.
When the hunger pangs hit, there are food vans on the fringes of the beach that dish up delicious barbecued treats and fish cutters.
13- Brandons Beach
On the outer edge of Bridgetown, a stone’s throw from the harbour lies Brandons Beach.
This beach is the quintessential Caribbean paradise with soft sands, clear water, and sensational sunsets.
There are few better beaches in Barbados to sunbathe on loungers, chairs or beneath umbrellas, all of which you can hire on the sand.
It’s the kind of beach where any stresses you might have will instantly ebb away.
The area is where you will find the popular Rascal’s restaurant.
St Phillip Beaches
14- Crane Beach
You’ll find one of Barbados’ most dramatic beach settings at Crane Beach tucked away on the island’s southeast coast.
A popular place for surfing and boarding, it has imposing cliffs and coves with sheltered swimming areas close to the harbour.
Crane Beach is best viewed at sunrise when the colours are sensational and at low tide when the beach tends to be a bit more scenic and much wider.
15- Bottom Bay Beach
Not far from Crane Beach, you’ll find Bottom Bay Beach, a picturesque tropical cove.
Framed by jagged cliffs and gently swaying palm trees, this beautiful beach is spacious and rarely crowded.
Thus, allowing you to enjoy a peaceful and relaxing afternoon soaking up the sun and the sound of the breaking waves.
Once you have had your fill of vitamin D, the huge cave at the beach’s northern end is well-worth checking out.
16- Silver Sands Beach
Are you the type of beachgoer who likes a bit of adventure? Then Silver Sands Beach is where you should go.
Along the island’s southern coastline, this beach has consistent winds and protected reefs that provide ideal conditions for kitesurfing and windsurfing.
Since 1989, the beach has hosted the annual Waterman Festival, a world-famous windsurfing competition that attracts the elite in the sport.
The South Point Lighthouse was built in the 1800s and is a photo waiting to be taken.
17- Miami Beach
Also known as Enterprise Beach, Miami Beach sits on the island’s south coast in relative seclusion.
Despite sharing its name with Florida’s beach party hub, the beach in Barbados is a tranquil cove that showcases sugar-white sand and sparkling azure waters.
A very relaxed and low-key destination, this is the perfect spot to clear your mind and reinvigorate your soul.
If you come here on a Friday, visit the nearby town of Oistins for its weekly Friday Fish Fry.
18- Accra Beach
Accra Beach is a photographer’s dream and a picture of silky sand, turquoise water and lush flora.
It’s one of the best beaches in Barbados for swimming as it has sheltered areas and the waves are also suitable for windsurfing and bodyboarding.
The Barbados Boardwalk has eateries, from fast-food to fancier restaurants and there are numerous places to admire the incredible coastal views.
19- Dover Beach
In Oistins, Dover Beach is an excellent beach for surfers and a haven for other activities like jet skiing, windsurfing and sailing.
So, if you love aquatic recreational activities, this beach in Barbados is perfect for you.
Near the beach is a cricket field where you can watch a game and there’s a clutch of bars, restaurants and live music venues to head to for a drink and a dance.
20- Drill Hall Beach
Needham’s Point sits on spectacular Carlisle Bay and while it may be associated with the luxury Hilton Barbados Resort, it also has a fabulous collection of public beaches, which is free for everyone to use.
One of the best is Drill Hall Beach, located in an isolated cove.
This beach is a Caribbean utopia with a long stretch of golden sand and shady palm trees.