Barbados really captures the classic Caribbean island vibe with good kitesurfing opportunities while being within easy access of the US East Coast. The kiting is consistent and convenient at Silver Sands, with waves on the outside and flatter water on the inside. The water is beautiful tones of aquamarine and the beaches shine with brilliant white sands, great nightlife and everything in between. With a little bit of luck, the surf can offer some of the best breaks in all of the Caribbean, and when there isn’t a big swell in the water you can still score amazing beginner and longboard waves that break nearly every single day.
CLOSEST AIRPORT: Grantley Adams International (BGI).
DISTANCE TO LOCATION: 10 minutes to Silver Sands.
TRANSPORT TO LOCATION: The public transportation on the island is very accessible with tons of public buses. There are public and private bus routes that run from Bridgetown, the capital in the south of the island, to Silver Sands. If you are staying in any of the nice villas along the west coast of the island, there is a separate bus line down from Bridgetown. While the island is small and the bus system works great and is very cheap (even with a kite and board in hand) they are slow and make many stops and can easily take 1-2 hour or more to get to where you need to go even if it is only 10-15 miles away. Cars can be rented at the airport as well or you can hire a taxi but you will burn a hole in your wallet fast if you are relying on cabs. It is easy to stay near the main kite spot as well if you want to limit driving time and expense.
BEST SEASON: December-June is the windy season.
WIND RANGE: 15-20 knots.
WATER TEMPERATURE: 82°F year round which doesn’t require a wetsuit, just sun protection.
LOCAL RULES/SAFETY HAZARDS: Don’t end up downwind of Rescue Beach as the island bends there and it is your last good downwind exit from Silver Sands.
LODGING RECOMMENDATIONS AND COSTS: For more budget-minded rentals, look a few blocks back from the beach houses. You can stay relatively close to the water and save a bit of money with Airbnb and other local listings for options from $30-$80/night range. There are good waterfront apartment and villa rental options in the Silver Sands/Silver Rock area that are all within walking distance of each other and a quick Google search will reveal most of the options. Many of these are waterfront, some with a pool and most have some form of food service as well if you do not want to venture out to eat. I recommend Ocean Spray Beach Apartments which is where Kitesurf Int’l operates out of—they have an ideal waterfront location and are only a short distance from your main kiting beaches. Most of these rentals will be in the $100-$200 per night range. The nicest rental villas are located on the posh west coast, sheltered from the wind and waves where no kiteboarder would want to be. You can easily spend in the thousands per night and get all the perks that you would expect for that price.
Kitesurf International Barbados – www.kitesurfintl.com
Upwind Kitesurf School – www.upwindkitesurfschool.com
Endless Kiteboarding – www.endlesskiteboarding.com
De Action Beach Shop – www.briantalma.pro
OTHER NO WIND ACTIVITIES:
Beginner surfing at Freights or check out Bathsheba Beach/Surf Soup Bowels if conditions and skill level allow.
Go snorkeling along the west coast or sign up for a sunset sail; booze cruises and typical tourist stuff on and off
the water are based out of Bridgetown. Go hiking, or just enjoy the beach. The Crane on the east coast, Miami or
Dover on the south or nearly any beach on the west coast (Mullins, Batts Rock, Sandy Lane resort) are popular.
Walk around St. Lawrence Gap for good food or a night out.
THE ONE THING EVERY VISITOR MUST DO:
Friday night fish fry at Oistins really captures the island culture and brings everyone out.
WHY EVAN NETSCH RECOMMENDS THIS SPOT:
For me Barbados is not just about the kiting—it is an amazing island as a whole with that classic Caribbean feel and really lets you feel like you have gotten away (assuming you are not staying in a giant resort). In addition to the culture and the nightlife, and the kiting, of course, it really has some amazing surf, which for me is the final touch that any place needs to be eligible for a return visit!
Tkb’s Getaway Travel Guide is chock full of destinations like this. Whether you’re looking for a kite mecca, flat water spot, wave spot, best of both worlds or trips, tours and clinics, we’ve got you covered with a collection of locations to satisfy any type of kiteboarder no matter what they are looking for on their next vacation.If you’re already a Tkb subscriber, log into your account to view the entire Tkb Getaway Travel Guide for free.