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Whether you seek soft beaches, powerful surf, refined sophistication or the up-tempo, festive feel, Barbados has something for everyone. It is the easternmost of the Lesser Antilles islands and, as such, enjoys the graces of two oceans -- the Caribbean Sea on its west side and the Atlantic Ocean at its eastern end. The two bodies of water converge on the island's southern shores, where smaller hotels -- and legions of windsurfers -- await.
The local Bajans, as they are known, display a brawn inherited from both 3 1 ⁄2 centuries of British rule and the faith and endurance of the former slaves who populated the island to cultivate sugarcane. A wealth of traditions have influenced every facet of life, from music and dance to cuisine and herbal "bush" medicine.
AIRPORTS/GATEWAYS/FLYING TIMES: Airport: Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI) is 30 minutes drive from Bridgetown, the capital. Gateways/Flying Times: Houston (via Miami) - 7 hours. Miami -- 3.5 hours. Montreal - 5 hours. New York -- 4.5 hours. San Francisco -- 9.5 hours. Toronto -- 5 hours. San Juan - 1 hour. Learn more about how to get to Barbados.
CLIMATE: Stable year-round climate 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Average relative humidity 57-74%, constant trade winds 7-8 miles per hour.
DINING: Restaurants available - Local. Fast food. Gourmet. International. 10% service charge is often added to bill; if not, tipping is at your discretion (usually 10%). Dress code is casual although some restaurants may require suits and ties.
NIGHTLIFE: Entertainment available includes - Discos. Theaters. Dinner Theaters. Nightclubs. Cinemas. Live music. Pubs. Boat Cruises.
SIGHTSEEING: Gun Hill Signal Station. Andromeda Gardens. Farley Hill National Park. Barbados Wildlife Reserve. Grenade Hall Signal Station.