Beaches, boat trips and beautiful hotels: why Barbados makes for the ultimate couples getaway

From outdoor adventures to natural wonders and delicious cuisine, discover why Barbados is the perfect destination for a romantic holiday

Beaches, boat trips and beautiful hotels: why Barbados makes for the ultimate couples getaway

It feels like love is permanently in the air in Barbados; just inhaling the warm, tropical, flower-scented air is enough to fire up those passions and stimulate the senses... And why wouldn’t it? From coast to coast, Barbados is one of the most beautiful places in the world: a paradise on earth with stunning scenery, golden beaches, lush forests and remote bays.

Whether you’re here for the ultimate wedding experience, a special honeymoon, or an alluring escape with your significant other, this is the perfect place to ignite your passions. From exciting activities you can enjoy together, to the best locations for a divine dîner à deux, here’s why you’ll be seduced by this magical destination.

Discover natural wonders

Enjoy a swim with a difference in the crystal clear waters of Animal Flower Cave

Enjoy a swim with a difference in the crystal clear waters of Animal Flower Cave (Visit Barbados)

Elevate your break by dipping a toe (quite literally) into Barbados’ most romantic natural wonders. What could be better than settling down on a gorgeous beach and spending the day sunbathing, snorkelling, or surfing, depending on your vibe. Carlisle Bay in southern Bridgetown is the perfect spot to splash around, with six different shipwrecks scattered throughout its waters, in which you can spot tropical fish, turtles and rock lobsters. For a different way to explore, opt for a clear kayak trip together – with see-through glass bottoms, these vessels make for a unique way to tour the wrecks and meet the sealife. You can also enjoy a romantic horse ride along the shore.

For another coastal treat, head to Paynes Bay on the west coast, about 20 minutes from Bridgetown, to go paddleboarding. The calm, crystal-clear waters of this pretty bay are ideal for for a laidback, easy board, and also boast a fantastic, creature-packed coral reef close to shore. You can then head out in the lively beachside town, which has a wealth of restaurants, perfect for enjoying a romantic dinner as the sun sets.

Further along, towards the southernmost point of the island, is Miami Beach – also known as Enterprise Beach – where the regular waves mean you can try your hand at surfing; alternatively, just sink into a deck chair and order a rum punch. On the very north side is the Animal Flower Cave, the only accessible sea cave on the island, where you can swim in the crystal clear waters or chill out in its seafront restaurant. And you can’t miss a romantic catamaran cruise. Seaduces Luxury Charters, Cool Runnings IV Luxury and The Cat and the Fiddle all offer luxury private charters touring the island’s stunning coastline, with reef and wreck snorkelling, swimming with turtles and drinks and dinner included. Sipping champagne onboard as you watch the sun sink into the sea? Utter bliss.

Finally, explore terra firma in style with a visit to the Flower Forest Botanical Garden, a veritable Eden whose 53 acres are carpeted with exotic blooms and tropical plants that attract brightly coloured birds and butterflies. Not far from here you’ll find Hunte’s Gardens, another lush, green paradise home to a vibrant arrangement of trees, flowers and foliage. Lose yourself in its maze of meandering pathways, and breathe in the beautiful fragrances for a romantic wander to remember.

Enjoy a special spa date

Of course, relaxation is the name of the game on a romantic holiday, so make sure to unwind together with some luxurious pampering at one of Barbados many stunning spas and wellness retreats.

On the west coast, just a 15-minute walk from historic Holetown, the elegant Coral Reef Barbados Spa offers a truly special ambiance with classic island style set within 12 acres of tropical garden paradise. Exotic vegetation and waterfalls are woven throughout the meticulously landscaped grounds, from the four multipurpose treatment rooms, each with its own private patio and garden, to the Outdoor Pavilion for couples. Here you can unwind within unparalleled natural beauty and tranquility, with facilities including a luxurious ‘open sided’ relaxation room, an outdoor hydro-pool with shaded cabanas to relax in post-treatment leisure, a thermal suite with a serene crystal steam room and experience shower and a spa lounge offering secluded relaxation.

On the south coast, Acqua Spa Barbados, part of the O2 Beach Club and Spa, features the only Hammam treatment room in Barbados, as well as breathtaking panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea. Their signature treatments are inspired by creating wellness through water, and are exclusively curated with oSea products, which combine nutrient-rich, Patagonian seaweed with the purest organic botanical ingredients, to help you feel relaxed, refreshed and rejuvenated.

Finally, for the perfect offgrid escape, head to Coco Hill Forest in the centre of the island. This stunning 66-acre tropical forest of lush and hilly terrain is the best place to take in Barbados’ beautiful natural flora, from royal palms, to bamboo groves and primordial tree ferns, and coconut, cacao, banana and ginger trees and plants (don’t forget to sample their delicious ginger liqueur made from ginger grown on-site and aged rum from Foursquare Rum Distillery). Here you can enjoy 5km of walking trails, practice outdoor yoga, and go forest bathing for a truly unforgettable wellness experience.

The food (and drink) of love

From incredible seafood to must-try local dishes, you can enjoy a flavoursome foodventure together

From incredible seafood to must-try local dishes, you can enjoy a flavoursome foodventure together (Visit Barbados/13 Degrees )

One of the best things about any holiday with your partner is sharing food and drink together – although the cuisine in Barbados is so good that you might want to keep your dishes to yourself. The local produce is fresh and bountiful, with plenty of fresh fish and seafood straight from the ocean to your plate, as well as exotic fruits and vegetables.

Couples have plenty of different options for romantic meals; the island has everything from Michelin-starred fine dining to traditional local restaurants, street food stalls and beachside bars. Toast your love by the sea at Champers, a well-loved institution occupying a picturesque, cliff-top setting overlooking the ocean, or The Sea Shed, located on a scenic stretch of Mullins Beach. And for good vibes as well as good food, check out QP Bistro, nestled along the idyllic Platinum Coast – sit out on the deck and clink glasses as the sun goes down.

For a more casual culinary experience, head to the famed weekly fish-fry in Oistins, a charming village in the south of the island where, every Friday, stallholders gather by the fish market and serve up a storm. Choose from the likes of freshly-grilled lobster, mahi-mahi, tuna or swordfish and soak up the lively atmosphere.

Head to a tour of one of Barbados’ rum distilleries and enjoy a perfectly-crafted tipple

Head to a tour of one of Barbados’ rum distilleries and enjoy a perfectly-crafted tipple (13 Degrees )

And don’t forget to try the island’s most famous drink: rum. Barbados is the Birthplace of Rum, so take a trip to one of the fascinating distilleries, from St Nicholas Abbey to Mount Gay, where you can learn all about how this epic spirit was first created (and treat yourselves to a few tastings, of course). Then party the night away together in St Lawrence Gap, the best area for nightlife with a range of cocktails bars, restaurants, and clubs offering everything from R&B to reggae and calypso.

The big day

Barbados’ stunning hotels – such as beachside retreat The Crane – make the perfect wedding location

Barbados’ stunning hotels – such as beachside retreat The Crane – make the perfect wedding location (Visit Barbados)

What could be more romantic than getting married in one of the most beautiful places on earth? If you choose to exchange your vows in Barbados, you can choose anything from a beachside ceremony at sunset, to a tropical garden wedding surrounded by a sea of colourful blooms. Those wedding photos will be treasured for a lifetime, thanks to the backdrop of beautiful scenery.

Then, of course, you don’t have far to go for the honeymoon. Choose from one of the island’s most fabulous hotels which all offer indulgent rooms for romance. Cobblers Cove in Saint Peter is a magnificent grande dame that started life in the 1940s as a private mansion. Interiors aficionados will love its effortless elegance; the 40 suites draw inspiration from the building’s history, the island itself, and the flora and fauna of its lush, tropical gardens. Located on the famous Crane Beach and overlooking the ocean, the Crane hotel is another stunning resort, popular for weddings and honeymoons. First opened in 1887, this unique property combines old-world charm, with an incredible sense of natural beauty, and features everything from cliff-top private pools to rooftop terraces amid its gorgeous grounds.

Alternatively check into the Colony Club in Saint James; this stunning hotel features the island’s first Rum Vault, an atmospheric space home to over 150 rum varieties from all over the world (obviously, the best are Bajan). They also do rum and chocolate pairings, tasting flights, and rum-paired multi-course dinners. So come, and fall in love with Barbados!

For more Barbados travel information and inspiration, head to Visit Barbados