History of Barbados: the best attractions to discover the past of the newest Republic in the world

Despite being the newest Republic in the world, Barbados has a rich historical heritage. The territory, initially inhabited by the native Caribbean Arawak people, was colonized by England from the XNUMXth century onwards. The colonial past was marked by African slavery and the production of sugar on the island, a crop that made the country one of the largest exporters of the product in the world at the time.

Barbadian culture has its roots deeply linked to the country's past, revealing itself as the result of African and English influences, which even gave rise to the country's official language, English with an accent and pidgin expressions, called Bajan.

The country that gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1966 and broke with the English monarchy last year, has memories and heritage that recount its history in various parts of the island. Here are some of the best attractions to enrich your trip with the history of Barbados.

Parish Church St. John in Barbados -photo: Tourism Barbados

Parish Church St. John
Parish Church of St. John is a historic site, full of charm and character. Its location, in the area known as Church Lookout, offers panoramic views of the east coast of Barbados. Many historians speculate that the church was first built in 1645, making it the first church to be built in St. John o and one of the oldest in Barbados. The church we see today was completed in 1836 with some additions forty years later, including beautiful stained glass windows, carvings and a sundial.

The church's denomination is Anglican, and this beautiful Gothic-inspired building is a popular attraction for locals and tourists alike on the island. The parish church of St. John has intriguing discoveries, so next time you venture into the beautiful parish of St. John, be sure to stop by and visit this church with its rich history and breathtaking views of the island's east coast.

Bush Hill House – photo: Tourism Barbados

George Washington House
Bush Hill House, as it is popularly known, is located in the historic UNESCO World Heritage Site of Barbados in St. Michael. The residence was visited by George Washington, the first president of the United States of America, in the year 1751. The property was transformed into a museum and shows details about the structure and assets of Washington's time. In addition, there is also a cafe on the property, where you can have lunch after your tour.
Discovered purely by chance, in June 2011, tunnels were found and revealed to have been built during the 1820s. The tunnels are accessible only through the George Washington house and museum which link at least nine tunnels in the Savannah area with others. The tunnels were supposedly built to provide drainage for the area. However, history indicates that they may have been created as an escape route for military troops should the area be invaded.

The Abbey of St. Nicholas has over 350 years of history – photo: Tourism Barbados

Abbey of St. Nicholas
The Abbey of St. Nicholas, in addition to being a parish, is a farm, museum and rum distillery. Built in 1658 in St. Michael by Benjamin Berringer, is one of Barbados' most important historic sites, with over 350 years of history and countless owners over the centuries. The site has more than 400 acres of sugarcane fields, tropical ravines, mahogany forests and formal gardens, a great spot to learn spices and admire the history of Barbados.

Gun Hill Signal Station - photo: Tourism Barbados

Gun Hill Signal Station
Situated atop the hillside in St.George Parish, the building has a long history and is one of six signal stations erected in Barbados after the slave rebellion of 1816. The stations have been positioned to offer the best views of the entire island. from Barbados. Contains a collection of military memorabilia being known for intrusion warning alarms.

Tyrol Cot Heritage Village
Located in Green Hill, St. Michael, the home of the first Prime Minister of Barbados, Sir Grantley Adams, was built in the late 19th century. Today the four-acre property has been transformed into a lovely village setting that reflects back on Barbados. Some areas have been maintained by the Barbados National Trust and show the era of Sir Grantley Adams and Tom Adams. The setting is a Bajan rum shop that offers a casual setting to enjoy local snacks and a rum punch.

Screw Dock is the historic maritime center of Barbados – photo: Tourism Barbados

Screw Dock
The Screw Dock, as it is popularly named, is in Bridgetown, St. Michael, is the only existing dry dock in the world, built over four years, from 1889 to 1893. Today it is possible to take walks through history in the Maritime Historic Center, with artifacts, exhibits and photos of Barbados from the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries. In addition, you can enjoy a refreshing drink at the bar, Blackwood's Tavern, which also offers local dishes such as fish pies and the traditional flying fish bajan (fried fish typical of the local cuisine), as well as refreshing salads.

These historic sites are great places to visit and begin to understand the island's heritage, revealing Barbados' vibrant history. The culture, people, traditions and past events have made Barbados a fantastic place to visit with the whole family.

The Bureau Mundo platform is a digital meeting point for tourism and brings together online and on-demand content developed for the industry, in addition to events, courses and digital campaigns. Access the site.


Receive the latest news and inspiration straight to your inbox!

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date with exclusive events, exciting content and partnership opportunities at Bureau Mundo.