Whether you’re here in Barbados on vacation and don’t want to stand out as a tourist, or you’ve just moved to the island and want to ‘do as the Romans do,’ our list of things Bajans enjoy doing on the weekends will guide you to becoming a certified Bajan in no time.
Hint: First of all, you’ll need to stop calling it ‘Barbados’ and use the locally preferred term ‘Bim’ instead :-)
So, you want to do as the locals do? Read through our list below of the top things Bajans enjoy doing on the weekends, and then get out there and enjoy our beautiful island paradise in true Bajan style.
1. Tour Barbados
Whether it’s touring the entire island or just another parish for a change of scenery, Bajans are a notoriously adventurous bunch who like to explore and see the sights. Because the island is small, it’s easy to tour it in just one day.
However, if you want to see all that Barbados offers, we recommend allowing much more time to get to know the island and enjoy the diversity in landscape and things to do.
Tip: If you want to get ‘off the beaten track and explore Barbados like a true Bajan, ask a local for their insider recommendations of places to go and things to see. And, of course, browse through Totally Barbados for our tips and tricks on everything that is Barbados.
2. Go to the beach and enjoy a picnic
Most Bajans love taking a ‘sea bath’ and enjoy having a picnic on the weekends.
Whether you’re an early bird who likes to take a sea bath before the daily crowds, or whether you prefer a stroll and watching the sunset, you’ll be sure to find Bajans enjoying the beautiful beaches of the island at any time of the day, especially on the weekends.
Sundays are generally popular with locals to head to the beach for a beach picnic with the family in tow.
Note: Maximize your sea bath and become an honorary Bajan by using sand as a natural skin exfoliator. You could also try eating a peeled golden apple while you bathe. Bajans say dipping the fruit in the sea between each bite enhances the flavor and makes for a truly local experience.
3. Watch a picture
Any Bajan will tell you how much they love to watch a ‘picture.’ At the weekends, they flock to the cinemas, drive-in, or host movie nights at home to watch the latest films from Hollywood, Bollywood, and our local film industry, as well as documentaries on the environment and other world issues.
4. Go to Oistins Fish Fry
The infamous local Oistins fish fry is the place to be for the best and freshest fish on the island.
Friday nights are the night to head to Oistins, where the music, atmosphere, and food make this one of the most popular ‘limes’ (social gatherings) with Bajans and tourists alike.
Hint: You can enjoy the fish fry most nights of the week with a quieter ambiance.
5. Eat cou-cou and flying fish and pudding and souse
As the national dish of the island, cou-cou with flying fish is a ‘must-have’ on the menu while you’re in Barbados.
Most Bajans are known as ‘pork mouths,’ and as any Bajan will tell you, there’s nothing tastier than “propuh pork.”
Therefore, it’s not surprising that pudding and souse (made with various offcuts of pork meat) is a Bajan favorite and is traditionally served island-wide on a Saturday. Try it for yourself!
6. Shop ’till you drop
On a Saturday, Bridgetown (or ‘town’) usually is busy with both shoppers and window shoppers galore. It’s the one day everyone tries to get all their errands and shopping done, and the city and shopping centers island-wide are always busy.
Remember: Sundays in Barbados, most people are off work as a day of rest. You’ll find most businesses closed, so it’s better to get your weekend shopping done on a Saturday to avoid disappointment.
7. Watch / Play Sports
Bajans love their sports and are spoilt for choice when it comes to sporting activities. We’ve hosted numerous finals and world championships of various sporting events, so it’s safe to say sports love Bajans too.
There are also regular weekend club and international cricket matches, horse racing at the historic Garrison Savannah, surfing at the infamous Bathsheba ‘Soup Bowl,’ and sailing regattas at Carlisle Bay.
And, let’s not forget the local road tennis and football (soccer) matches played regularly over the island for weekend fun and excitement.
8. Travel to another island – Island Hopping
Bajans love to travel, and on Friday evenings, Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA) is bursting with people leaving the island for a short weekend getaway to a neighboring Caribbean island.
Whether to relax, shop, or take in other islands’ festivities, you’ll be sure the Bajans will enjoy their mini-vacation to the maximum.
9. Go to Church
Bajans love to put on their ‘Sunday best’ and go to church. It’s an opportunity to give thanks for another week in paradise, with time to socialize among friends and family.
10. Host a Sunday lunch and lime
Want to do things Bajan style? After church, a traditional Bajan Sunday lunch of large servings of macaroni pie, beef stew, coleslaw, and baked chicken is the way to go.
The lime generally involves ‘slamming a dom’ (playing dominoes) and ‘making sport’ (joking around), followed by an afternoon nap.
11. Enjoy a Gourmet Coffee
A perfect choice for breakfast, lunch, or simply caffeine hit with friends or colleagues on the weekend. Totally Barbados recommends you enjoy the relaxed air-conditioned indoor or the breezy outdoor settings at The Barbados Coffee Bean.
Until next weekend
Bajans and honorary Bajans always visit Totally Barbados to stay on top of all the action happening on the island. We look forward to seeing you next weekend when we can do all our top things all over again.
By: Brett Callaghan