Barbados Tourist Attractions Inland
When you travel around Barbados, most people will stick to the coastline and take in the tourist attractions within these parishes.
However there is a lot of sightseeing and things to do inland and therefore you should take time to look at the tourist attractions located in the parishes of St. George and St. Thomas.
Inland you will find polo fields, historic churches, potteries, art studios, historical houses, great restaurants, caves, gullies, horse riding centres, signal stations and tropical gardens.
If we start in the parish of St. Thomas you will find sloping hills and winding county roads that are surrounded by woods, caves, gullies and sugar cane fields. It is easy to lose your bearings in St. Thomas as the roads bend back and forth and with no coastline to guide you, you need to pay close attention to your map.
During polo season there are two great polo grounds to visit to take in a game and these are found at Cliffton and Lion Hall. Polo has been played in Barbados for centuries and was imported by the British army. The game is still going strong today with many international teams visiting to play against the various Barbadian teams.
If you are interested in historical churches then you can visit St. Thomas Parish Church, which is an old Anglican church and also there is the Sharon Moravian Church to look around,
If you want to buy gifts to take home or are just interested in art and crafts then there are two great places to visit in St. Thomas.
The first is Earthworks Pottery, which creates vibrant colourful pieces of pottery from plates right through to the kitchen sink – literally! Here you can actually have a wander around the pottery and see the potter at his wheel creating these unique masterpieces. If you are worried about getting these delicate pieces home then Earthworks has special delivery arrangements to ship your items to you.
The second place is within the same complex and that is HP Batik Studio, where there is a lovely art gallery displaying Barbadian and Caribbean works of art for you to appreciate or purchase.
After you have finished wandering the pottery and the art gallery then you can relax in the hillside café which overlooks the valley below of sweeping sugar cane fields.
For a natural tourist attraction then head to Harrison’s Cave, where you will find deep caves, under ground waterfalls, rivers and lakes. In St. Thomas you will also find Welchman Hall Gully, which was created when another cave collapsed. This runs for a whole mile in length and is a natural tropical garden with nutmeg, clove, bamboo and palms trees lining the gully.
If you would like to see the natural beauty of St. Thomas from horseback or on a bicycle then head to the Highland Adventure Centre, where you can organise a horse riding tour or rent a mountain bike.
Finally in the parish of St. Thomas you will find Bagatelle Great House where you can enjoy fine dining and an excellent wine cellar. Another great house in this area that borders on the parish of St. Joseph is Fisherpond Great House, which serves an exceptional Sunday lunch but you must book in advance. Please read the article on tourist attractions in St. Joseph for more information.
As you make your way down into the parish of St. George, you will find the hills are now sloping towards the sea and you will overlook sugar cane fields and stunning views of the south coast.
One of the best tourist attractions in this parish is that of Drax Hall, which is one of the only three remaining Jacobean properties left in the western hemisphere. There is also St. Nicholas Abbey which is located in the parish of St. Peter.
Another interesting property in St. George is Francia Plantation House, which is open to the public and is famous for it’s maps, one of which dates back to 1522. There is also a school now called Providence located within the grounds. The main house is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9am until 4pm.
Just up the road from Francia Plantation House is Gun Hill Signal Station, which makes up a chain of six signal stations that were erected after the slave revolt of 1818, as look out points to alert the military of any uprising from slaves. One of the great tourist attractions about this signal station is that soldiers carved a 10ft high white lion out of the chalk rock back in 1868.
Continuing up the road from Gun Hill will bring you to Orchid World, which has over 20,000 orchids on display and provides an easy garden to wander round in an hour if you are in the area and if you are a big orchid fan. It opens daily from 9am until 5pm.
Finally the last tourist attraction to see while you are in St. George is the parish church, which was built in 1784 and is a delightful old Anglican church. The other two churches in this parish are St. Luke’s and St. Augustine’s.