Whether as a participant or spectator, Barbados offers a wide range of sports and recreational activities to keep you entertained during your time here. From intense competition to idle pastime, there are many opportunities to either take part in a sport in which you are already a top player or to learn something new as a raw beginner.
Barbados has a rich history in cricket which began while we were still under British rule. Cricket is our national sport and the island has produced many international legends such as Sir Garfield Sobers, Sir Everton Weekes and Malcolm Marshall.
Cricket in Barbados is not just a game but an experience. Visit Kensington Oval for any of our regional or international tournaments and join a vibrant group of spectators celebrating in true West Indian style. From cheerleaders to food, to music and dancing, cricket in Barbados is the party you never knew you were missing.
For those who like to play cricket, there are several clubs across the island where you can become a member. At most secondary and primary schools students also learn and play cricket competitively.
For more information about cricket in Barbados, click here (https://www.bcacricket.org/).
Horse racing in Barbados dates back to the 1800 and also enjoys a rich tradition on the island. There are three main seasons of the year with the Sandy Lane Gold Cup being the most prestigious event of the year filled with parades and international jockeys and horses. A favourite amongst locals and visitors alike, horse racing in Barbados is a family event that is filled with food, fun and excitement. If you fancy a little risk, there are also opportunities to bet on the races.
Learn more about horse racing in Barbados here (https://www.barbadosturfclub.org/).
Also steeped in our British heritage, polo is a spectator sport that is played in Barbados each year from January to May. International teams, royalty included, travel to Barbados to play to a small crowd of supporters who are locally and internationally based. With four polo fields in Barbados, the game is quickly becoming a favourite Sunday afternoon pastime for unwinding with light snacks, beverages and good company.
Click here (https://www.facebook.com/BarbadosPoloClub/) for more information about polo in Barbados.
Road tennis is a game that is indigenous to Barbados and arose in the 1930s as an alternative for persons who could not afford to play lawn tennis. Very similar to table tennis, the game is played on the road or on a court instead of a table and uses a tennis ball and large wooden paddles. Road tennis tournaments are played throughout the year and courts can be found all over the island. The sport is taught at some schools on the island and is becoming increasingly featured as an activity at hotels where guests can get lessons from local top players. Road tennis matches are a great way to rub shoulders with the citizens.
For more information about road tennis in Barbados, click here (https://www.facebook.com/roadtennis/).
Barbados is home to several world class golf courses which have hosted international series such as the World Golf Championships World Cup in 2006 and is an official destination for PGA Tours. From a range of courses to a cadre of professional instructors, the island caters to the veteran golfer or the beginner. With our year round beautiful tropical weather, our manicured greens are the perfect place to practice that drive and score that ace!
Click here (https://barbadosgolfassociation.com/) for more information about golf in Barbados.
If you are looking to ride that perfect wave, Barbados is the place for surfing action. With the moderate waves of the west and south coasts and the rugged surf of the Atlantic on the east, there are lots of surfing experiences for persons to choose from. The “Soup Bowl” in Bathsheba is located on the East Coast is world renowned for its waves. In fact, in a New York Times article Kelly Slater, 11-time World Surfing Champion, has been quoted as rating the Soup Bowl as one of the top three waves globally. Don’t know how to surf? There are several instructors on the island ready to prepare you to catch your first glassy blue wave.
Curious about what lies beneath our sparkling, clear waters? Grab your snorkeling gear or arrange a guided tour of our lovely beaches. With visibility generally between 40 - 70 ft deep, you can take in breathtaking views of our marine life and coral reefs. For a closer look, consider scuba diving and get the opportunity to explore many of our shipwrecks across the island. You can also get a better view of our smaller coral formations and sea creatures such as eels, angel fish, sea horses and thousands of colourful reef fish.
Find out more about snorkelling and scuba diving here at the Barbados Divers Association(http://www.badassn.com/).
Hiking is a great way to explore the natural beauty of diverse Barbados landscapes. Some of the best hikes are through the tropical rain forests, rolling hills and coastal trails of the eastern part of the island. Most of the trails are quite easy, although there are some steeper and longer trails that are more challenging. If you hike without a guide, remember to take plenty of water, research the route thoroughly, and start early in the day to avoid getting too much exposure to the sun.
For a guided group hiking experience get in touch with the Barbados Hiking Association. They hike on Sundays and their morning hikes start at 6:00am, their evening hikes start at 3:30pm, and their moonlight hikes start at 5:30pm. All of their hikes last for about 3 hours. They publish their annual schedule on their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/hikebarbados/announcements.
They divide their morning hikes into groups so that every fitness and skill level will have fun. Depending on the steepness of the terrain, the “Stop ‘n Stare” group will hike at an easy pace for about 10 km, giving participants ample time to take pictures and chat with fellow hikers. The leader will know about the history, geology, and flora of the island and will try to answer questions that hikers have.
For those who want a faster pace the “Medium” group will cover between 10 and 15 km with few stops or pauses. The “Brisk Medium” group kicks it up a notch to cover 15 to 20 km and provide exercise for people who are fit and accustomed to strenuous exercise for 3 hours in tropical conditions of heat and humidity. The “Grin ‘n Bear” group is for very experienced hikers who already know the terrain and the trails because they will cover 20 km or more at an intense pace while running up and down hills. Unless you are an athlete who has acclimatised yourself in Barbados and familiarised yourself with the particular trail, the Grin ‘n Bear group will not be an appropriate choice.
The evening hikes are in a single group which moves somewhat faster than the "Stop ‘n Stare". They last well beyond sunset at many times of the year so you need to be equipped with a good flashlight or headlamp as you will need to negotiate forests and gullies in the dark. You also need to carry some snacks and at least a litre of water no matter which hike or which group you choose, because the trails do not often pass by sources of potable water.