Tag: Sandals

Social Distancing Is Always A Luxury At Sandals Resorts | Sandals

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

Yes, Sandals has taken safety measures to another level. But take a long look and you’ll notice that the qualities travelers crave more than ever have actually been at these resorts all along.


Image: The pristine Sandals Grande Antigua Resort, providing the space you need, with the luxurious all-inclusive privacy you want.

Just before midnight, the navigation lights on American Airlines flight #2405 could be seen descending onto the island of Antigua. The landing of the plane at V.C. Bird International Airport carried so much significance on this night that local television showed the event. Matthew Cornall, General Manager of Sandals Grande Antigua, was among those watching.

“It’s difficult to put into words the emotions,” says Cornall, who had gathered dozens of his team members around a TV. “When I looked around, I saw tears in their eyes.”

The arrival of the commercial flight meant Sandals Grande Antigua would be the first of 15 Sandals All-inclusive Resorts to re-open to travelers since COVID-19 forced the world economy to shut down in mid-March. Given a panoramic view of the property, you’d never know it had been closed. In the stillness of the previous 10 weeks, crews kept the landscaping and pools in their Instagram poses — a constant state of readiness, same as the resort team.

Sandals-Grande-Antigua-Beach
Image: Beach huts adorned in the sand make for the perfect seaside napping spot.

“Do you hear that?” Cornall asks about the sounds in the background. “The laughter and the singing? That’s who we’ll always be. We’re a team and… I don’t want to overstate this… we really are family.”

The environment is casual and warm. It’s as normal as normal can possibly be, given the protective masks and gloves worn by team members, reminders of the headlines that say: “Travel will never be the same.” True. You can’t turn a corner at any Sandals resort without passing a hand-sanitizer dispenser or seeing someone wiping down touch points every 15-30 minutes, whether the points have been touched or not.

But before diving deep into the “never the sames,” Cornall wants to stress something else that is just as important at all Sandals properties:
“For us, some things will always be the same.”

Sandals-Grande-Antigua-Long-Beach
Image: The Sandals Grande Antigua resort is situated on Dickenson Bay’s longest stretch of white sand beach.

A Wide-Open Perspective

Cornall walks more than ever. He says “Good morning… Good morning… Good morning” as he passes team members; many responsible for sanitizing air ducts every time guests depart a suite and using black lights on surfaces to make sure there are no stray imperfections.

He stops at the elevator and allows two people to take the next ride. “One couple at a time,” he says politely. When he arrives at the third floor, he steps onto the landing and stops again.

“I think we’ve all learned to be less hurried and more aware of our surroundings,” he says.

Sandals-resort-pool
Image: Built for romance and relaxation, the Mediterranean Village Pool is just one of 6 captivating freshwater pools at Sandals Grande Antigua and home to Sandals’ iconic swim-up pool bar.

From where he stands, your eyes can follow one couple strolling along an extra-wide path of pavers toward a humongous pool and beyond that to a perfectly blue sky and an even bluer sea. All of it merging into a space that’s spectacularly infinite. The view itself is just as it’s always been, but the perspective might “never be the same” because doesn’t everyone crave space more than ever?

“Six months ago, couples would pause here and say ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’ for maybe half a minute,” says Cornall. “Now it’s five minutes. They just stare and breathe it all in.”

Sandals-beach-front-suite
Image: Feel the Caribbean’s ocean breeze from your own private balcony overlooking the idyllic sea at Sandals Grande Antigua.

With that comment he’s awakened perhaps the most ominous concern for travelers: breathing used air. Which must explain why one couple after another pauses in spots like this. Allowing the Caribbean sunshine to melt away the concern. The constant trade winds disintegrating whatever’s left. Taking time to breathe.

“Honestly, I felt more safe at the resort than I do in my hometown,” says Joanna Baumann, who traveled to Sandals Grande Antigua with her husband, Andrew, in June to celebrate their wedding anniversary. “The staff made us feel more protected than ever, but at the same time we didn’t lose that relaxed Sandals vibe.”

The open views, open minds, and open spaces are not just phenomena on the 3rd-story balcony in Antigua. What’s true here is also true where couples breathe 1,000 miles away, all the way to Sandals’ home island of Jamaica.

Sandals-South-Coast-overwater-bungalows
Image: The romantic Sandals South Coast Over-the-Water Bungalows, perfect for privacy and seclusion.

The long swath of sand framing the western side of Sandals South Coast in Jamaica is still cool under the feet at 8:30 a.m. Secluded as the beach is, the overwater suites at the end of a long boardwalk are as visible-yet-distant as the moon. It’s impossible to tell if anyone is home out there, where the sea breeze flows over the outdoor soaking tubs and eventually into the open-air restaurants along the beach. These “always the sames” — the seclusion, the breeze, the tropical air — are just as disinfecting as the stringent protocols found in the thick handbook on Sandals’ Platinum Protocols of Cleanliness.

Sandals-Resorts-butler
Image: As part of the Sandals Platinum Protocols of Cleanliness, all team members wear protective face gear and can be seen smiling through their warming eyes.

We have dedicated inspection teams at each resort that follow the strictest guidance from medical professionals, the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the local Ministries of Health in each country we call home,” says Sandals Resorts’ Founder and Chairman, Gordon “Butch” Stewart.

Sandals-Resorts-Cleaning-Protocols
Image: Sandals has always adhered to the highest standards of cleanliness and safety protocols, and now with additional measures in place, guests can have peace of mind when enjoying their romantic escape in the Caribbean.

Among the hundreds of details: The water in the pools is checked every hour. Every surfacedoor handles to coffee makers — is inspected at least three times a day. Bar stools and tables are pulled farther apart. Dive gear is immediately stored in sanitization solution. The spraying and wiping are continuous, as is the presence of the black light.

But perhaps the most effective “protocol” is one that’s been in place for decades:
Our commitment to romance. To us it has always been synonymous with seclusion… luxury… privacy” Stewart continued.

Beach huts adorned in the sand make for the perfect seaside napping spot.
Image: Couples enjoying personal beach cabanas, because love has always required privacy and seclusion – a concept that Sandals Resorts has built its brand on since the very beginning.

Another term comes to mind: Social distancing. Look again at the overwater villas, alone over the Caribbean Sea. Or the Rondoval Suites spaced along the beach in St. Lucia. Or the skypool suites reachable only by a wind-blown feather in Grenada. “Social distancing” might be new to the everyday language, but it isn’t a new concept at these resorts.

Sandals-Grenada-suite-Skypool
Image: A Sandals Grenada Skypool suite, so private that a breathtaking view and swim are only as far your balcony.

“Actually, we’ve never felt like we’re in a crowd at Sandals,” says Baumann. “It’s as exclusive as we want it to be, but now it’s at a whole different level. They’ve put a lot of thought into spacing everything out, and that made us comfortable about safety the minute we arrived. And then… it felt like the resort was all ours.”

Ideas called innovative, even radical, in Sandals’ quest for the ultimate romantic experience now appear fortuitous. Private infinity-edge pools. Private tubs on the verandas. Private in-suite bars. On beaches two miles long, couples can practically claim an acre of sand to remain distant. The decisions to include as many as 105 private pools, up to seven expansive main pools, and 16 restaurants on one giant property have never been for the sake of attracting crowds. It’s to diminish them.

Sandals-Royal-Barbados-Rondoval-Butler-Suite
Image: Plunge right into a Sandals Royal Barbados Royal Rondoval Butler Suite; a romantic escape that comes with its own private pool and a luxurious tranquility soaking tub for two.

Occasionally, one other person does appear: The butler. For couples in such a suite, the butler is the only human touchpoint — using white gloves. What the guests do not notice is that each butler, and every single team member, goes through a new daily routine upon arriving on property. There’s a temperature check, mandatory changing of clothes, and a “shoe bath” to clean and disinfect shoes.

Being squeaky-clean extends beyond the staff and into all guests’ suites, too. It’s another stop-and-take-it-in moment. The soft fabrics have just been steamed, the sanitizer station filled, the bathroom disinfected with hospital-grade products. Every nuance, from bedframe to sliding veranda door, has passed the tests.

“Now, even the bottles of Appleton Estate Signature Blend and Robert Mondavi Twin Oaks are shining,” says Cornall.

Sandals-Grande-Antigua
Image: Sandals Grande Antigua, where privacy has always been a luxury, and white sand and turquoise waters are standard.

Whenever Joanna and Andrew Baumann would walk to a restaurant or to the beach, they’d look around and listen. Taking in, as Joanna says, “the familiar Sandals vibe that we came for.” If anything, the vibe is thicker. It’s inescapable. And — let’s just be honest and say the word — it’s contagious. The freedom to breathe and move and drink in the casual mood is fantastically contagious. Take it from those who have been among the first to return: It’s the same as always, and just maybe it’s even better than ever.

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

38 Pictures of Barbados You’ll Fall in Love with | SANDALS

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

Experience the Royal Treatment at Sandals Royal Barbados, the all-new, all-suite Caribbean all-inclusive resort in the spirited St. Lawrence Gap area.

Barbados-Carnival

Photo credit: Perris Tumbao/Shutterstock.com

Crop Over Carnival is an epic Caribbean celebration, and its beginnings have something to do with the last sugar cane harvest of the season.

Find out more about Crop Over Carnival, and other celebrations in the region by checking out our complete Caribbean Carnival calendar.

Barbados Enterprise Beach

Photo credit: Richard Semik/Shutterstock.com

Described often as “the perfect little beach”, Enterprise Beach is a great choice for a Caribbean beach adventure.

Barbados Andromeda Botanic Gardens

Photo credit: Paulo Miguel Costa/Shutterstock.com

Andromeda’s Botanical Garden is the handy work of Iris Bannochie, a horticulturist who founded it as an extension of her home. To this day, it is still located on the eastern parish of St Joseph, near to Bathsheba.

Sandals Royal Barbados Beach Wedding

A Sandals all-inclusive destination wedding takes the worry out of planning, giving you more time to enjoy the moment.

Barbados Bridgetown Food Stall

Photo credit: Ana del Castillo/Shutterstock.com

“Bajan culture, history, and food” in a nutshell, the Original Bajan Walking Food Tour is a great option for a fun-filled tour where you’ll be able to eat like a local.

Barbados Bathsheba Beach

Photo credit: Simon Dannhauer/Shutterstock.com

Bathsheba Beach is a sight to behold with its striking coral rock formations and natural pools. Take lots of pictures as you explore what is possibly one of the most scenic spots in Barbados.

Barbados Green Sea Turtle

Photo credit: blue-sea. cz/Shutterstock.com

Turtles are among the gentlest sea creatures that you can swim with, and this opportunity should not be missed while in Barbados. You can do this on a private charter, or on a catamaran tour which will take you out into the ocean where you’ll be able to swim with hawksbill and leatherback turtles.

Barbados Harrisons Cave

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Probably one of the most popular attractions in Barbados, you are unlikely to be disappointed with Harrison’s Cave. Here you’ll be able to see signature cave features like stalagmites and stalactites up close, but that’s just the beginning of it.

Barbados Huntes Gardens

Photo credit: Simon Dannhauer/Shutterstock.com

While in Barbados you can enjoy one of the most amazing sights of your life at Hunte’s Garden, where nature’s ambiance also falls under the spell of Barbados resulting in a truly unique experience filled with blooming orchids, idyllic palms, and lush, magnificent greenery.

Also read: 15 Incredible Things Barbados Is Known For.

Barbados Antillean Crested Hummingbird

Photo credit: Pascale Gueret/Shutterstock.com

Get up close and personal with the island by embarking on a hiking trip. You’ll get to see a variety of plant species, native animals such as the Antillean Crested Hummingbird, and historical sites like forts.

Sandals Royal Barbados Beach View

Sandals Royal Barbados is set along the white sands of Maxwell Beach–one of the islands most unspoiled beaches–you’ll find mesmerizing seascapes and lush gardens everywhere you turn. It’s a perfect natural backdrop for a resort of unsurpassed luxury where everything is included.

Barbados Animal Flower Cave

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The Animal Flower Cave features the island’s only accessible sea cave. Once there, you’ll be able to take in fantastic views, and even dip into the rock pool inside the cave. From inside you’ll be able to look out of the naturally formed windows, right onto the ocean.

Barbados Building Arquitecture

Photo credit: Sue Martin/Shutterstock.com

The island of Barbados is packed with more stunning historical architectural buildings than anywhere else in the Caribbean. The Mutual Life Assurance Society, better known to Barbadians as “The Mutual”, was a Caribbean insurance company that supplied a significant number of loans to local plantations after being formed in 1840.

Barbados Fish Patties Bajan Food

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Fish cakes are a Caribbean delicacy, and like in most of the other islands in Barbados, they are made by battering and deep frying them. You won’t have a hard time finding fish cakes in Barbados; they’re available from most local food vendors, and even at some of the more upscale restaurants on the island.

Sandals Royal Barbados Lovers Lanes Bowling Alley

Lovers Lanes, Sandals first 4-lane bowling alley, features a colorful backdrop for a romantic evening of couples bowling and Sandals first ever craft beer bar serving 19 different types of beers.

Barbados Farley Hill

Photo credit: Chris Smart/Shutterstock.com

Barbados isn’t known to be a mountainous island, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get amazing views from some vantage points. Farley Hill is an ideal spot to picnic, escape into nature, hide in the shade of a comforting tree and to simply stare out to sea.

Sandals Royal Barbados Pool Sunrise

From the moment the sun rises over the eastern horizon, the natural beauty of Barbados is revealed. Sunshine bathes the island further into the Caribbean ocean in a splendid display of orange, yellow and pink.

Barbados People

Photo credit: Dave Primov/Shutterstock.com

The Caribbean island of Barbados is known for its colorful and rich culture.

Barbados Carlisle Bay

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Carlisle Bay is known for its calm waters, which adds to its swimming and scuba diving appeal, making it one of the top things to do in Barbados. Carlisle Bay is a family centric spot, though thrill seeking types can also enjoy the abundance of water sports and other activities available here.

Barbados Parliament

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Of course, Barbados is now home to modern buildings, infrastructure and architecture, but the locals are in no hurry to sweep the past aside. These historic Parliament Buildings (once known as the Public Buildings) are home to the House of Assembly and Senate. Packing more than 350 years of history, these buildings were built from local limestone and completed in 1874 by a Gothic Architecture.

Sandals Barbados Swim Up Bar

Pool areas have been completely reimagined to take full advantage of the island’s sultry, tropical landscape, and nowhere is that more apparent than at Sandals Barbado’s ocean-side pool. Complete with Sandals signature pool bar and a seaside infinity whirlpool.

Welchman Hall Gully Green Monkey

Photo credit: pythian2/Shutterstock.com

Monkeys are a rare find for most of the smaller islands of the Caribbean, but not so in Barbados. The Green Monkey is a common sight on the island, and sometimes even pops up in people’s gardens. Locals believe that Green Monkey came from Senegal and the Gambia in West Africa 350 years ago.

Barbados Garrison Savannah

Photo credit: Filip Fuxa/Shutterstock.com

Near Bridgetown and inland from Carlisle Bay, the Garrison is part of the World Heritage area and was the home of the British command in the 1800s. Standing along the west side of the Savannah are some of the Garrison’s more ornate colonial buildings, where you’ll find the world’s largest collection of 17th-century cannons.

Barbados People Culture

Photo credit: John B Hewitt/Shutterstock.com

Each Thursday the historic Garrison area in Barbados comes alive with the “Changing Of The Sentry” ceremony! The sentries officially take their position in front the Main Guard House and the band parades directly in front of this historic building. Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison, including the Main Guard House, are a UNESCO designated historic site.

Sandals Royal Barbados Main Pool Front View

Enjoy amazing views from Sandals Royal Barbados’s oceanfront infinity pool.

Barbados Bottom Bay

Photo credit: Simon Dannhauer/Shutterstock.com

If you venture into the south east coast of Barbados, you will find Bottom Bay just after Crane Beach and Sam Lord’s Castle. This secluded beach is marked by tall palm trees, rugged coral cliffs and a scenic view of the south of the island.

Barbados Church Building

Photo credit: evenfh/Shutterstock.com

Built in 1846 to replace the church that was destroyed by the Great Hurricane of 1831, St. John’s Parish Church is solid and soaring. The church grounds are serene and the cliff-edge site commands a sweeping view of the picturesque east coast.

Barbados Colorful Houses

Photo credit: zstock/Shutterstock.com

As you travel around the island you will see many examples of the Chattel House, a distinct form of architecture that is unique to Barbados.

Barbados Bajan Mailman

Photo credit: Stephanie Braconnier/Shutterstock.com

A Bajan mailman poses with his motorcycle near Bathsheba Park on the east coast.

Barbados Bridgetown

Photo credit: NAPA/Shutterstock.com

Named Bridgetown from its original title ‘the Indian Bridge Towne’ – a reference to the rustic bridge left by the Amerindians, built over the Careenage River – the capital enjoys a formidable strategic location on the southwest coast of Barbados.

Barbados Dover Beach

Photo credit: Simon Dannhauer/Shutterstock.com

Dover Beach in St. Lawrence Gap on the south coast of Barbados is ideal for those who prefer less crowded beaches, with opportunities to try out watersports like sailing, jet skiing and windsurfing.

Sandals Royal Barbados Rooftop Pool

Overlooking the ocean from its rooftop setting, this zero-entry, glass infinity pool is a Sandals first and one of 31 pools featured at Sandals Royal Barbados. While its rooftop location makes it the perfect place to sunbathe, the surrounding lounge areas and rooftop bar are a great place to relax, cool off and take in the breathtaking vistas.

St Nicholas Abbey

Photo credit: Karen Hadley/Shutterstock.com

Built by Colonel Benjamin Berringer in 1658, this plantation house, museum and rum distillery opens its doors to visitors who want to know more about its transformation over the years. St. Nicholas Abbey remains one of three authentic Jacobean mansions in this part of the world, and on the extensive estate where the plantation house is located.

Barbados Fish Market Worker

Photo credit: RUBEN M RAMOS/Shutterstock.com

Thousands of Barbadians work in the fishing industry as boat builders, fishermen and vendors. The Bridgetown Fish Market is very popular with locals. Located on the outskirts of the capital city, Bridgetown, this large market offers a wide selection of fish.

Barbados Holetown

Photo credit: Frank Fell Media/Shutterstock.com

Holetown was the first town in Barbados and was discovered in 1625 by an Englishman called Henry Powell, who was blown off course and discovered Barbados by accident.

Sandals Royal Barbados Sky Pool Suite

This all-suite resort features Sandals signature accommodations including Skypool Suites, Millionaire Suites and Swim-up Suites – all featuring Tranquility Soaking Tubs™ for two.

Find out more and read Things guests love about Sandals Royal Barbados.

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

Barbados Food & Drinks To Try While On Vacation | SANDALS

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

People who identify themselves with the country of Barbados, often call themselves “Bajans”. Bajans are proud people, and you can tell this by the way they carry themselves, their love for their island, and of course the amazing local dishes enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. This love translates to a beautiful experience for all who visit the island, who discover for themselves just why Bajans are so passionate about the land that they call home.

Where food is concerned, Bajan cuisine is literally a mixing pot of cultures. Flavors from places like Africa, Portugal, and India stand out, and there are also Irish, Creole, and British influences that are apparent even with tasty, tropical touches mixed in. Bajans often use fresh ingredients and home-grown herbs and spices in their cooking, which means even if you think you’ve tried something before, you may still be surprised at its Bajan transformation and upgrade!

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Of all the interesting food options on the island, seafood is somewhere at the top in terms of popularity, and you’ll frequently see items like fish, shrimp, lobster, sea eggs, and crab on the menu. Apart from that, some of the things you see might be a little unfamiliar, as at most local restaurants, indigenous food is often incorporated into the menu.

If you’re planning on going on vacation to Barbados, pudding and souse, pepperpot and cou cou are some of the things you’ll need to get familiar with ahead of your holiday, and as you read on you’ll learn a bit more about what goes into these amazingly unique Bajan dishes which will definitely keep you coming back for more!

Ten traditional Bajan main dishes

 

Flying Fish

Flying Fish Barbados Food

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Fish of all varieties are popular among the islands, which makes it not at all surprising that flying fish, with a side of cou cou, is the national dish of Barbados. Considering that flying fish is also the most popular fish catch on island, it explains even further why this dish is loved so much by locals who have various ways of preparing it. Most commonly, you’ll find it next to cou cou, which is cornmeal cooked with okra and water (more on the traditional Bajan side dish cou cou later in this article). Frying, steaming, baking, or pickling are the most popular methods of preparing flying fish in Barbados, and though the basic aspects of making this dish remain the same, seasonings may vary depending on where you get it. Nevertheless, it is one of those things that you shouldn’t leave Barbados without trying.

Fish Cakes

Fish Cakes Barbados Food

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Fish cakes are a Caribbean delicacy, and like in most of the other islands in Barbados, they are made by battering and deep frying them. The filling usually consists of salted cod or white fish and an assortment of herbs and spices. You won’t have a hard time finding fish cakes in Barbados; they’re available from most local food vendors, and even at some of the more upscale restaurants on the island. Some people eat their fish cakes with hot pepper or mayonnaise on the side, while others make a sandwich called “bread and two” with their fish cakes, and this is done by sandwiching the fried fish cake into a bread roll with pepper sauce.

Chicken Curry

Chicken Curry Barbados Food

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Who can resist a hearty chicken curry? You might have tried chicken curry before, but what makes this dish extra special in Barbados is the signature Bajan seasoning, which adds the perfect blend of spices, and an overall richness. Curry is best over plain rice, with baked macaroni pie or in flatbread… and in the latter case it would be known as chicken roti. These are the most popular ways to serve it, but chicken curry is so versatile that you can pair it with just about any Bajan side.

Pepperpot

Pepperpot Barbados Food

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Bajans know good food, and Barbados is one of the Caribbean islands which has mastered the art of pepperpot. You’ll find meat of all varieties in the classic Bajan pepperpot stew, including pork, mutton, beef, and more. Bajan spices and hot peppers bring the stew together, and pepperpot is usually served alongside rice or bread. It is a popular holiday dish, but you can also find it at some local restaurants throughout the year. If you plan on recreating this dish at home, keep in mind that it works best for a family meal, or for a party, since pepperpot is usually cooked in large proportions.

Jug Jug

Jug jug is one of those seasonal delights that make people happy around the holidays, and it can be compared to the Scottish dish known as haggis. Traditional jug jug is made with guinea corn flour, pigeon peas, salted beef brisket, ham or other salted meat, pork or chicken, onions, and other herbs and spices. Pepper is optional. Bajans are very particular about how this dish is made, and the perfect jug jug will resemble the consistency of Cou Cou, and not a regular soup. Some people like preparing this dish, refrigerating it, and warming it up and serving it the next day.

Mahi Mahi/Dolphin

Mahi Mahi Barbados Food

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Don’t worry, it’s not the playful and amazing marine animals that people fly thousands of miles to the Caribbean to swim with in the ocean that we’re talking about here. When it comes to food, Mahi Mahi or Dolphin in Barbados refers to a popular sport fish that Bajans often serve pan-seared or blackened. The best way to have this is with a side of fries, or with a full meal that includes seasoned rice, lentils, and a fresh salad.

Pudding and Souse

Pudding and Souse Barbados Food

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Pudding in Barbados refers to steamed sweet potatoes made with onions, salt and pepper. Souse is a pickled pork dish. The pudding serves as the filling for the pickled pork, and the two are combined expertly for an end result that’s bursting with flavor. Pudding and souse is one of the most loved food duos in Barbados, and while there you can experiment with sweet versus spicy variations to see which you like best. Though pudding and souse are always in high demand, it may take some asking around to find the best spot to pick this up. When in doubt head for the vendor with the biggest crowd!

Roti

Roti Barbados Food

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Roti is notorious in the Caribbean, and it is a common menu item in Barbados. You can get roti of every variety on the island, flavored with local herbs and spices. Consider it the island version of a burrito and enjoy it with anything from curried potatoes and vegetable filling, to chicken, beef, and fish varieties. Try the local Chefette fast-food joint for a quick roti on the go.

Barbecued Pig Tails

Grilled Pig Tails Barbados Food

Photo credit: Padchara Krungsri/Shutterstock.com

This dish isn’t as weird as it might sound, and you don’t have to worry about ending up with a full pig’s tail on your plate. In fact, many people liken it to barbequed ribs in terms of look and taste, especially when slathered with barbeque sauce. Before they get to your plate, BBQ pig tails would have been boiled, barbequed, and thrown around in a delicious barbeque sauce. If you see these on the menu, they are certainly worth a try.

Brown Stew Chicken

Brown Stew Chicken Barbados Food

Photo credit: Fanfo/Shutterstock.com

Brown stew chicken is at the heart of Caribbean cuisine. This chicken stew, cooked the Caribbean way, is so popular that it has made its way into the international realm, being served up at Caribbean restaurants across the globe. In Barbados you can try an authentic version of this classic dish, made even better for the fact that local spices and other seasonings are at the disposal of all who make it. You can get brown stewed chicken at almost every local restaurant in town. Don’t forget to ask for extra gravy!

Five traditional Bajan side dishes

 

Cou Cou

Locals make the well-known cou cou dish with cornmeal and okra, or breadfruit and green bananas. Some people compare it to grits. Cou cou is part of Barbados’ national dish, and surprisingly, it is also the national food of the British Virgin Islands, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Antigua. The dish is said to have origins with African settlers in the region, and in Barbados this is one side dish you’ll frequently find on your plate.

Bakes

Bakes Barbados Food

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If you’re looking for something delicious to eat while in Barbados that you can recreate easily back at home, bakes are a great option. All you’ll need is flour, sugar, nutmeg, and Bajan spices, which you can pick up at the local market during your time on the island. Once the batter for bakes are combined, it is then deep fried until golden brown. Once fried, bakes are either served plain, with fish cakes, as a side for fish or barbeque dishes, or with anything you like stuffed inside.

Rice & Peas

Rice Peas Barbados Food

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Bajan rice and peas goes with just about anything, but it is often served with fried fish. On this island, rice and peas refers almost solely to pigeon peas and rice. The cooking process for rice and peas is simple; the peas are cooked first with seasonings, and the rice is added after. Some people choose to boil the rice with coconut milk to give it a fluffier texture and a sweeter taste. As rice and peas sets the foundation for a scrumptious meal, precision is key!

Macaroni Pie

Macaroni Pie Barbados Food

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You just might fall in love with macaroni pie in Barbados as it has much more zeal than the conventional mac and cheese. Macaroni pie is often served with fried fish, as well as curried or stewed meats. Ingredients for Bajan macaroni pie include tubed macaroni, grated cheddar cheese, evaporated milk, ketchup, yellow mustard, onion, egg and breadcrumbs. The ingredients are all placed into a casserole dish and baked. When this dish is done well, it is extremely rich, and may just be the best thing you’ve tasted in your life.

Salt Bread

Salt Bread Barbados Food

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Freshly baked and delicious, however you decide to eat it, salt bread is a great choice for dinner rolls or cutters. Though sweeter bread varieties are preferred in Barbados, salt bread definitely has its place, and locals enjoy it as a snack, sandwich, or as a side. Even though the name suggests otherwise, salt bread isn’t saltier than regular bread, but it is when compared to other sweet bread treats.

Five traditional Bajan snacks

 

Cutters

Cutters Barbados Food

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Cutters are essentially simple sandwiches made with salt bread. To make these, a roll of salt bread is cut in half to make room to stuff your choice of filling inside. Fillings include egg, sausages, ham, or fish – but you can put pretty much anything you desire into a salt bread roll. Salt bread can be eaten all day round, and you’ll find it at most local food spots. Spice yours up with a dash of local pepper.

Conkie

Dive into your journey of culinary exploration in Barbados with conkie, a much-loved Bajan snack. With corn at its base, conkie is a snack that is especially popular around the island’s Independence Day which is observed annually on November 30th. Aside from corn flour, other ingredients for this local snack include pumpkin, sweet potato, grated coconut, and raisins; these are all steamed in a banana leaf that is wrapped and tied up. Though you may not spot it as often all throughout the year, sometimes you can order it from a local deli.

Guava Cheese

Guava Cheese Barbados Food

Photo credit: Iuliia Timofeeva/Shutterstock.com

Guava cheese is a real treat, just don’t expect it to look or taste anything like regular cheese though; its color is that of cranberry, and it has a fudge-like appearance. Guava cheese is sweet with a hint of citrus. It’s made by combining guava pulp with sugar, lime juice, and other ingredients. Guava cheese is sometimes eaten with salt bread, or on its own.

Breadfruit

Breadfruit Barbados Food

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Breadfruit’s starchy nature makes it unlike most other fruits, and its unique texture means that it also is never served up in a fruit bowl. In the Caribbean breadfruit is considered a ground provision, along with things like yam, dasheen and the like. There are various ways to cook breadfruit, and most people choose to either boil or bake it or make it into chips. Breadfruit is delicious alongside steamed fish, or brown stew chicken.

Paw Paws

Paw Paw Papaya Barbados Food

Photo credit: areeya_ann/Shutterstock.com

Paw paw is an interesting fruit with a wild flavor. Many people describe it as a mango-banana-citrus blend that’s super sweet. Paw paw is rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, and other nutrients. It has a short shelf life, which means your best chance for the freshest variety might be right on island. Try the local fruit and vegetable market to pick up some paw paw while in Barbados.

Three traditional Bajan desserts

 

Sweet Bread

Sweet Coconut Bread Barbados Food

Photo credit: MAZM MAZM/Shutterstock.com

Sweet bread, also known as Bajan coconut bread, is a staple at most Bajan homes particularly around Christmas, or on other special occasions. Inside the crispy crust of this bread you’ll often find raisins, coconut chunks, and cherries. Coconut bread looks like any other loaf of bread, but it’s a sweet treat you’re sure to love.

Cassava Pone

Cassava Pone Barbados Food

Photo credit: Shirley Phoon/Shutterstock.com

Cassava pone is made with frozen grated cassava and coconut. It is a dessert that satisfies your sweet tooth, without being overly sweet. Cassava pone is known for its stickiness and gooey texture, and it is best described as a combination of cake and pudding. Other ingredients in this dessert include grated sweet potato, cinnamon, nutmeg, and sometimes carrots and raisins.

Bajan Black Cake

Bajan Black Cake

Photo credit: vm2002/Shutterstock.com

Making Bajan Black Cake is a process that includes soaking fruits like cherries and raisins in rum with spices, but you won’t have to worry about baking your own during your holiday as this dessert is readily available during most of the year. If you travel during Christmas or the holiday season however, you’ll be able to have more than your fill of this delicious treat which usually incorporates Bajan rum.

Five popular Bajan drinks

 

Rum Punch

Rum Punch Barbados Drinks

Photo credit: Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock.com

You haven’t tried rum punch until you’ve tried rum punch in Barbados, or at least that’s what the locals will tell you. Waste no time arguing with bartenders, or any islander, where to get the best rum punch. Just order and drink up. No matter where you order, you’re sure to agree that rum punch in Barbados is absolutely delicious and refreshing. What more could you want during your Caribbean holiday?

Want to enjoy unlimited free Rum Punch on the beach or at the swimming pool? Guests of Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Barbados get unlimited signature cocktails and other drinks. All created by the best bartenders on the island, using premium brand liquors.

Mauby Drink

Mauby Drink Barbados Drinks

Photo credit: Shyripa Alexandr/Shutterstock.com

As it tends to be a little bitter, Mauby is one of those drinks you’ll either detest or love unconditionally. There is no in between, but this drink is certainly worth trying for an authentic taste of Barbados. Ingredients in mauby include mauby bark, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Locals believe there are several health benefits for mauby, including cholesterol reduction, treatment for arthritis, and more.

Ginger Beer

Ginger Beer Barbados Drinks

Photo credit: Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock.com

If you travel to Barbados around Christmas time, ginger beer is one of those things you might be offered everywhere you go. Even though it is considered by some to be a holiday drink, you can find it at other times of the year. In Barbados, this non-alcoholic drink is made with ginger, sugar, water, and lemon juice. It is available in carbonated or non-carbonated versions.

Sorrel

Sorrel Barbados Drinks

Photo credit: Alp Aksoy/Shutterstock.com

Another popular Christmas drink, sorrel has plenty of health benefits that you’ll appreciate, especially since it is so delicious to begin with. Sorrel is made from dried petals of the sorrel flower (hibiscus), which is believed to help lower blood pressure and it is also high in vitamins and minerals. Other ingredients include clove, ginger, and sugar. Even though it is most popular around the holidays, you can still find sorrel at some local shops at other times of the year.

Banks Beer

Banks Beer Barbados Drinks

Photo credit: S_Photo/Shutterstock.com

Banks Beer’s has done a notable job with marketing over the years, so much so that you may even recognize the name of this beer when you come across it in Barbados. Banks Beer is so popular in Barbados in fact, that it is considered by some to be a national symbol. Pack it into your beach cooler along with your other drinks to have something cold and refreshing to sip on out in the sunshine.

Did you know? Sandals Royal Barbados comes with a bowling alley and a craft beer bar, serving 19 beers from all over the world – for free, unlimited. All drinks are included in your stay!

FAQ’s

 

What alcohol is Barbados known for?

Barbados is also known as “The Rum Island”, which makes it more than apparent what the most popular thing to drink there is: rum! This equates to rum punch and lots of it as you’ll probably be able to tell right off the bat as you’re sipping on your welcome rum punch drink, and sampling rum punch specials at local bars.

See what else Barbados is known for.

What is the national food of Barbados?

The national food of Barbados is Cou Cou and Fried Flying Fish. Second in popularity is pudding and souse, but as with all other Bajan food, it all depends on your individual taste, and what you’re looking for.

What’s the best resort in Barbados for amazing food options?

All-inclusive resorts like Sandals Barbados are a great choice if dining and having lots of food options are an important part of your holiday. Sandals Barbados offers guests unlimited food and drinks 7 bars, including swim-up bars, and 18 themed restaurants. It just doesn’t get any better than that when it comes to having so many amazing options in one place in Barbados!

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

30 Pictures of Jamaica that’ll make you fall in love | SANDALS

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

One of Jamaica’s largest swimming pool at Sandals South Coast comes with breathtaking views and a swim-up bar. Best part: drinks for guests are always included, always unlimited.

Reggae Tribute Band Nine Mile Jamaica

Photo credit: Lost Mountain Studio/Shutterstock.com

A reggae tribute band at Nine Mile, the birthplace of Bob Marley.

Beaches Negril Jamaica Seven Mile Beach

Negril’s famous Seven Mile Beach. Everything you can possibly imagine is possible at all-inclusive resort Beaches Negril. A water park, lively pools, restaurants and bars – all located right on the beach.

Blue Mountain Jamaica

Photo credit: eric laudonien/Shutterstock.com

The Blue Mountains form the longest mountain range along the eastern edge of Jamaica and features majestic scenery. This under-explored area is also the source of the world famous and fragrant Blue Mountain Coffee.

Sandals South Coast Jamaica Over Water Bungalows

From all-new Over-the-Water Bungalows, an overwater bar, and a romantic Over-the-Water wedding chapel, Sandals South Coast brings guests closer than ever to the water.

Saint Ann Jamaica Local Musicians

Photo credit: Yevgen Belich/Shutterstock.com

The Caribbean island of Jamaica is known for its colorful and rich culture.

Romantic beach getaway Jamaica

Jamaica is the perfect place for a romantic beach getaway.

YS Falls Jamaica

Photo credit: Stefano Manocchio/Shutterstock.com

YS Falls is located on the South end of Jamaica in a parish called St. Elizabeth. Like much of Jamaica, the falls are surrounded by lush gardens and beautiful trees. Many people say YS Falls is one of the most beautiful sights they have ever seen.

Sandals Royal Caribbean Jamaica Mariners

There is a soul in cooking in Jamaica that is unmatched. Enjoy unlimited local favorites including Jerk Chicken and Jerk Pork at Sandals Royal Caribbean, where peppery jerk and fiery scotch bonnet spices are used to season these local treasures.

Bamboo River Raft Jamaica

Go on a romantic bamboo river rafting adventure at the Marta Brae or Black River.

Sunset Cruise

Even if you’ve never been to Jamaica, you’ve probably heard all about the peaceful blue water, warm temperatures, lush rainforests, and other alluring details. But the one thing that may impress you the most if you ever visit is the mesmerizing tropical sunsets.

Blue Hole Ocho Rios Jamaica

Photo credit: Photo Spirit/Shutterstock.com

Hidden in the looming mountains, lie pools of crystalline turquoise waters, which beckon to you to take a leap and immerse yourself in promises of a cool and refreshing swim. Ocho Rios’ Blue hole, often called Irie Blue Hole, this attraction is arguably one of the most beautiful tourist attraction in Jamaica.

Sandals Royal Plantation Jamaica Gardens

Both charming and enchanting, this is Sandals Royal Plantation – an intimate beach resort of just 74 ocean view suites tucked into a magnificent coral bluff. You can spend your days lazing by the pool with cool libations delivered right to you by a beach butler.

Ricks Cafe Clif Jumping Jamaica

Photo credit: Alchemist Chronicles 876/Shutterstock.com

A short drive from all-inclusive resort Sandals Negril you’ll find Rick’s Cafe, famous for its amazing sunsets and cliff jumping.

Floyds Pelican Bar Jamaica

Photo credit: Deju1988/Shutterstock.com

Just off the south coast of Jamaica, you’ll find Floyd’s Pelican bar – completely made of drift wood. Have a drink and carve your name in the wood!

Mayfield Falls Negril Jamaica

Photo credit: Michael Kucsmas/Shutterstock.com

Mayfield Falls is an eco-tourism attraction centrally located in the parish of Westmoreland, Jamaica. It consists of 2 beautiful waterfalls, 21 natural pools, 52 types of ferns and lots of exotic flowers, plant species, birds, butterflies and wildlife native to Jamaica.

Appleton State Tour Montego Bay Jamaica

Marvel at the workings of the Appleton Estate, a rum distillery that’s known for creating one of the world’s smoothest and most sought-after rums.

Couple watching sunset Ricks Cafe Negril

Photo credit: Debbie Ann Powell/Shutterstock.com

While in Jamaica, enjoy a local Red Stripe beer while watching the sunset.

Frenchman Cove Jamaica

Photo credit: SLIC/Shutterstock.com

Often referred to as Paradise, Frenchman’s Cove beach is a unique beach located in the parish of Portland, Jamaica.

White River Rafting Jamaica

Photo credit: LBSimms Photography/Shutterstock.com

Jamaica’s scenery can also be enjoyed through its rivers on your own personal bamboo raft. You can choose from the Martha Brae, Black River and many more.

Margaritaville Jamaica

Photo credit: Debbie Ann Powell/Shutterstock.com

Have some cocktails, hop on the water trampolines and enjoy the slides at Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville. Locations can be found in Montego Bay and Fallmouth.

Bob Marley Statue Kingston Jamaica

Photo credit: Debbie Ann Powell/Shutterstock.com

Bob Marley statue in Kingston,one of the pioneers of reggae. His musical career was marked by blending elements of reggae, ska, and rocksteady, as well as forging a smooth and distinctive vocal and songwriting style.

Sandals Royal Caribbean Cabana Night

Private beach cabanas with butler service at Sandals Royal Caribbean. Guests have access to a private offshore island.

Sandals Ochi Golf Country Club

Sandals Golf Club in Ocho Rios recognized as one of the finest in Jamaica by Golf Digest and Frommers Travel Guide. Give yourself the perfect golf vacation, with rolling fairways lined by sweeping views of the sea and mountains. This magnificent 18-hole course is located near Sandals Ochi and Sandals Royal Plantation. Green fees are included in your stay when booking a room at one of Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica.

Lighthouse Negril Jamaica

Photo credit: Lucky-photographer/Shutterstock.com

This Lighthouse is situated at south Negril Point which is at the extreme western end of the Island. Built before the turn of the last century, the Negril Lighthouse has served the people of Jamaica since 1895.

Dolphin Swim Jamaica

Is swimming with dolphins on your bucket list? You can check that off your list in Jamaica.

Sandals Negril Seven Mile Beach

Sandals Negril nestled within lushly landscaped acres along the island’s legendary Seven-Mile Beach.

Dunns River Falls Ocho Rios Jamaica

Photo credit: Jan Schneckenhaus/Shutterstock.com

Climb Jamaica’s most popular attraction: the Dunn’s River Falls. Located near Ocho Rios, you can choose between a ‘wet hike’ and a ‘dry hike’.

Sandals Montego Bay Swim Up Room

Take a swim right from your suite with Sandals Montego Bay’s luxurious swim-up rooms.

There you have it, some of the most beautiful pictures of Jamaica. Only a short flight away from the U.S., this slice of paradise is the ideal place for a romantic getaway!

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

Is the Bahamas Expensive Compared to the US? | SANDALS

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

If you’ve got your heart set on a luxury vacation in an amazing Caribbean destination, the Bahamas just might be at the top of your list. That doesn’t mean however that the islands of this coral-based archipelago don’t cater to visitors desirous of a more budget conscious holiday experience; if you want to spend less and still enjoy a holiday in the Bahamas, you’ll just need to do a bit more planning to avoid spending more than you intended.

Before setting off to the Bahamas, know that it is the third most expensive country in the world to live in, according to a survey by Numbeo. If you’re not staying at an all-inclusive resort, expect to be paying up to 10 USD for a beer and 18 USD for a cocktail.

In this article, we’ll discuss what the high cost of living in the Bahamas means to visitors to this territory, how the Bahamas is compared to other Caribbean islands, and what you can do to save money on your Bahamas vacation.

In this article on the Sandals Blog:

How expensive is the Bahamas?
How expensive is the Bahamas compared to the US?
How expensive is the Bahamas compared to other Caribbean destinations?
How to keep down expenditures while in the Bahamas?
The Bahamas is expensive, but you’ll have the time of your life

 

How expensive is the Bahamas?

Most Caribbean islands tend to be more expensive than the United States for things like shopping, dining, accommodation, and more. Many visitors to the region consider vacations to this part of the world a once in a lifetime opportunity, or a once in a while endeavor, with experiences to be gained that are not likely to be forgotten anytime soon. You’re in paradise after all!

Sandals Royal Bahamian Beach Couple

If you choose to vacation in the Bahamas, you’ll likely notice right away how much more expensive it is to eat out (expect to pay around 20-25% more than in the US), and even to pick up select items from the store. All hope is not lost, however. Many visitors who vacation in the Bahamas go the all-inclusive route, which includes unlimited food and (alcoholic) beverages as part of your booking. Sandals Resorts for instance, offer couples looking for a romantic getaway in the Bahamas unlimited soft drinks, beers, amazing wines, exotic cocktails and premium liquors. Even the mini fridge in the room is stocked and free to use! Considering the fact, you can expect to pay as much as 10 USD for a beer and 18 USD for a cocktail at regular resorts/hotels in the Bahamas, going all-inclusive might not be such a bad deal after all! Even gourmet breakfast, lunch, dinner and in-between snacks are all included at the restaurants on-property (Sandals Royal Bahamian features 10 restaurants, Sandals Emerald Bay in Exuma features 11 restaurants).

How expensive is the Bahamas compared to the US?

Many visitors from the US to the Bahamas make mention of the high cost of living in the islands. The higher costs are due to the fact that most goods need to be imported, and all of these items are taxed, when they arrive and clear customs. Unlike the US, there is no income tax in the Bahamas. Instead the government makes its money by taxing imported goods, as well as charging value added tax (VAT) for goods and services when they are sold by vendors.

Eating out for example, tends to be at least 20-25% more expensive in the Bahamas than in the US. In fact, the prices for decent breakfast and lunch options may shock you; in some instances, you may pay double for the same sort of meal you’d find for breakfast or lunch in the US. In addition, most restaurants charge 15% gratuity (automatically by law), making all of these good reasons to venture out on an all-inclusive vacation in the Bahamas. Judge for yourself:

Eat and drink comparison white Sandals

Love to drink a beer on the beach or at the swimming pool? Enjoy a local Kalik or Sands beer or try the Pirate Republic craft beer. You’re unlikely to be disappointed!

Sandals Emerald Bay Dining

Picture: The culinary experience at Sandals Emerald Bay is unrivaled in the Bahamas. The best part is: food and drinks are always included, always unlimited!

How expensive is the Bahamas compared to other Caribbean destinations?

As you know by now, the Bahamas isn’t the cheapest place to vacation. Nonetheless, the Bahamas offer a tropical paradise that is hard to match. The islands boast incredible white sand beaches, tropical palm trees and turquoise waters. Snorkeling and scuba diving are amazing, and you can expect a variety of tropical fish and turtles to pass your path. Looking for an alternative Caribbean paradise with a lower cost of living?

Sandals Negril Seven Mile Beach Overview

*Picture: Looking for a less expensive alternative in the Caribbean? Jamaica might have what you are looking for. Stay at Jamaica’s most beautiful beach, the legendary Seven-Mile Beach in Negril, to see for yourself if it matches up with the Bahamian beaches.

Spending your travel money in Jamaica can be up to 40-50% less expensive than in the Bahamas. For that reason, Jamaica is a great alternative for vacationers who like to spend a bit less while on vacation. The Bahamas beats out Jamaica for its closeness to the United States (45 minutes from Miami), but keep in mind Montego Bay in Jamaica is only 1 hour and 33 minutes away from Miami.

Like to know how Jamaica matches up with the Bahamas? Read our ‘Jamaica vs Bahamas’ article for a comprehensive overview!

Islands like Saint Lucia and Grenada are also good swaps that are cheaper than vacationing in the Bahamas, if cost is a factor for you, and you’ll have your pick of several categories of accommodation in both tropical islands. Saint Lucia and Grenada match Jamaica in having prices that are about 40-50% lower than that of the Bahamas, but there’s a little more travel time (and costs) associated with these islands. Saint Lucia is 3 hours and 29 minutes away from Miami by plane, and it takes 3 hours and 34 minutes to get to Grenada from Miami.

Do these destinations live up to what the Bahamas has on offer? It’s up to you to decide!

How to keep down expenditures while in the Bahamas?

The Bahamas on a mid-range budget

  • Go for an all-inclusive resort which gives you the most bang for your buck. While the common perception is that all-inclusive resorts can be costly, not so much when you take into account all the things that are included with your stay! Things to look out for: Are airport transfers included? How many restaurants and bars are available on-property? Does the resort include high-quality premium brand liquors? Are water sports included? Is golf included? Are snorkeling trips and scuba diving trips included? Is entertainment included in the evenings? Does the resort give you access to private offshore islands?

Sandals Emerald Bay Golf Green

Picture: Designed by golf legend Greg Norman, Sandals Emerald Bay’s award-winning golf course is recognized as one of the most scenic 18-hole ocean-side golf courses in the Caribbean and renowned for its challenging fairways.

What can you expect to be included at an all-inclusive resort in the Bahamas? Read ‘What Does All-Inclusive Mean? Answering All Your Questions.’.

 

  • Use the amenities provided by your accommodation and take full advantage of watersports equipment use (e.g. stand-up paddle boards, snorkeling gear and kayaks). This can help you save money as opposed to searching for the same things elsewhere.
  • Ask about joining other groups when heading out on excursions to save on transportation cost. The resort staff will likely be able to help you plan.

The Bahamas on a low budget

  • Do your research so you find the best spots to go to, and don’t waste money trying ‘hit’ or ‘miss’ attractions or restaurants. There are some decent takeaway restaurants on the islands with lower prices and good food. The fish fry restaurants like the ones in Arawak Cay in Nassau are also a great option.
  • Local buses in the Bahamas are known as jitneys, and you can use them to get around in the daytime if you’re not heading too far out. This can save you from spending on a taxi or rental. You can also alternate taxi and jitney, depending on where you’re headed.

Jitney Bahamas Public Transport

Photo credit: Zoe Esteban/Shutterstock.com

 

The Bahamas on a shoestring budget

  • If you’ve saved up enough to make it to the Bahamas (but barely) and want to stick to your budget, try to make use of your contacts in the islands if you have any. People with friends or acquaintances living in the islands may consider a bit of ‘Couch Surfing’. If that isn’t possible, opt for an economical guest house, preferably one that includes at least one meal a day.
  • Go grocery shopping and cook your own meals. Check out one of the Supervalue supermarkets, where you’ll be able to find most things you need. Solomon’s Freshmarket is a bit more varied than other local grocery stores, but it’s also a bit more expensive. Keep in mind though, that no matter where you go, grocery shopping in the Bahamas is not cheap.
  • If you’re a drinker, buy beers by the pack or buy a bottle of local rum and chasers, rather than spending all your money at a bar.
  • If you don’t mind the occasional unhealthy option, pick one of the fast-food options. You’ll find options like MacDonald’s, Wendy’s, KFC and others in the Bahamas, offering a cheaper meal than most other restaurants.

The Bahamas is expensive, but you’ll have the time of your life

Sandals Royal Bahamian Private Island

Picture: What better way than to enjoy an all-inclusive vacation in the Bahamas, when you can escape to Sandals exclusive offshore island. Only accessible for guests of Sandals Royal Bahamian!

The Bahamas might be more expensive than the US, but considering the experiences you can gain on the island during your tropical getaway, the cost of living there shouldn’t sway you from visiting this slice of paradise. Worst case scenario, you can save a bit more, and visit later, or travel to alternative Caribbean islands like Jamaica, Saint Lucia, and Grenada, where things cost a little less. Just like in the Bahamas, these islands all offer all-inclusive resorts, which will help ensure your Caribbean vacation is everything you’ve ever imagined, and more.

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

Destination Wedding Etiquette | Do’s & Don’ts | SANDALS

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

Traveling to an exotic location for a wedding is one of the more exciting occasions in life. You’ll get to skip town to solidify your union or experience the joining of close friends on their way to happily-ever-after. Perhaps you’ve been to other destination weddings before, or maybe you haven’t. Either way, you probably have lots of questions on the do’s and don’ts, and we have the answers. In the hopes of helping you get it right; we’ve summarized some of the key things you’ll need to know before taking off for your destination wedding.

Tip: Also read ‘Destination wedding tips from wedding planners’.

Go to: Etiquette for the Bride and Groom
Go to: Etiquette for guests

Destination wedding etiquette for the Bride and Groom

Who pays for what?

Photo credit: mirtmirt/Shutterstock.com

Most of the time, guests to a destination wedding are expected to pay for their own airfare and accommodations. However, an exception can always be made for important guests that might not be able to make it without some financial help.

Everything else is usually up to the bride and groom, and this includes costs associated with the wedding ceremony, reception, food, drinks and other activities. Typically, the bride and groom also pay for any extras, like goody bags, which can be filled with customized wedding knickknacks. Sometimes too, the family of the bride and groom will take on some or all of the expenses.

Tip: If you’re planning a destination wedding and staying at a hotel or resort, it’s a good idea to state within your booking that you’ll be travelling with a group. This will make it possible for you to negotiate a discounted rate for your party. Some airlines also offer group discount rates.

 

Manage your guest list

Wedding Reception Sandalas Royal Plantation

Picture: Wedding reception in Sandals Royal Plantation.

There are two scenarios in life that allow you to get to know a person on a whole new level; living with them and travelling with them. Don’t let your destination wedding be the reason for fallouts with friends or family; keep the guest list short. Invite only the people who absolutely need to be there, that you would regret not having around to share the special moment. You can always arrange a reception later for everyone else once you’re back at home.

Give guests time to plan

Save the Date Wedding Couple

Photo credit: efeyldrmkn/Shutterstock.com

Though a decision to have a destination wedding can sometimes be spontaneous, it is important to allow enough time for your guests to plan their own travel, and other arrangements. With a destination wedding, ideally, you’ll want to send out save-the-date cards about 8 to 10 months ahead of the wedding, and mail out invites a minimum of three months before. This gives guests plenty of time to plan and RSVP.

Make your guests feel welcome at the destination

Wedding Ceremony Welcome Sign

Photo credit: Stanislav Ronchkovsky/Shutterstock.com

You’ll have to play host during your destination wedding, no matter how helpful wedding planners are at your resort (if you have one). A good idea is to have a small welcome party once everyone arrives. If you’re in a warm location, like the Caribbean, you can have a welcome bag filled with beach goodies, which will enhance the experience of guests. You may even want to create a group on Whatsapp or another platform where you can share useful information (weather, outfit suggestions, etc.), or have someone else manage for you.

Make gift giving easy for your guests

Wedding Present Bride

Photo credit: Mihail Pustovit/Shutterstock.com

Gift giving for a destination wedding is a bit of a blurred area, especially considering the amount of money your guests will be paying just to get there. Some people forgo the gifts and let their guests know that their presence is all that matters. Others make a point of keeping it simple, and virtual, so guests are not burdened with bringing along heavy packages. To manage your luggage as well, you can state within your registry that you will be accepting gift cards only, if you decide to go along with gift giving for your destination wedding. You can also make a note for guests to contribute to experiences during the wedding period.

If you want privacy after the reception, plan for it

Sandals-Grenada-Suite-Infinity-Pool

Picture: Couple enjoying SkyPool Butler Suite with balcony tranquility soaking tub available at Sandals Grenada.

Some couples choose to claim their post wedding privacy by booking a suite at completely different resort. While this can be a good idea, it may not be the most convenient. All-inclusive resorts like Sandals are created especially for couples, so you can find rooms that are more secluded, while the family can stay at a nearby Beaches resort. This way you can enjoy Sandals adults-only setting after the wedding, while the family and kids have fun at one of the Beaches resorts with water park. Maybe even stay in one room category ahead of your wedding, and switch to a honeymoon suite afterwards – your guests will surely get the message.

Incorporating local traditions and cultures

Beachfront Wedding Beaches Turks and Caicos

Picture: Beachfront wedding at Beaches Turks & Caicos.

Ahead of the ceremony ask your wedding coordinator how best you can incorporate cultural traditions (if you choose to) into your wedding. Get all the information you can, so you’re informed about what’s acceptable and what’s not.

Keep guests up to speed

Sandals Grenada Wedding Ceremony

Picture: Wedding reception in Sandals Grenada.

You’ll definitely want to keep guests informed throughout the ceremony; this includes the weekend’s agenda, transportation details, emergency contact information, and other logistics. Some people set up a small wedding website to share all important details.

Leave room for socializing

Survivor Catamaran Cruise

Icebreakers are a good idea, especially if your guests are unfamiliar with each other. If the people you’re inviting are from diverse groups, allowing a plus one can be a good idea. Aside from the initial welcome party, schedule excursions including boat cruises and sightseeing tours.

Destination wedding etiquette for the guests

Ask before inviting a plus one

Wedding Reception Beaches Turk and Caicos

Picture: Wedding reception in Beaches Turks & Caicos.

Don’t assume that because you’re invited means you’re automatically entitled to bringing someone else along. Speak with the couple about it before, so you don’t cause any further expenses they haven’t accounted for.

Pack accordingly

Luggage Travel Packing

Photo credit: sebra/Shutterstock.com

Pay attention to the schedule of activities of the wedding, and pack clothing suitable for each day and event. Consider the climate of the destination and the theme of the wedding as well when selecting outfits and other things to pack.

Don’t overspend on a gift

Wedding Present Guest

Photo credit: DawidAndMarcelina/Shutterstock.com

It’s important that you consider the money you spent getting there, to see whether you can afford to get a gift, and if you can afford it, at what cost. Be realistic. If you decide to get a gift; make it travel friendly, like a gift card, or ship it to the couple in advance. It’s a bit more difficult to bring home a whole bunch of kitchen equipment after a wedding in Jamaica!

It’ll be a fun ride!

Sandals Royal Caribbean Island Reception

Picutre: Wedding reception on the private offshore island at Sandals Royal Caribbean.

Whether you’re the one getting married, or part of the wedding party, destination weddings require careful planning. If it’s your turn at the altar, these destination wedding etiquettes should help you flawlessly execute your wedding, and if you’re a guest, you’ll know just how to navigate this exciting and once-in-a-lifetime affair!

Also read:

How to plan a destination wedding in 12 steps.
Destination wedding tips from wedding planners.
Destination wedding location ideas (inspiration!).
Destination wedding venues in paradise (inspiration!).

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7 Amazing Caribbean Destination Wedding Locations | Sandals

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

Picture: Beach front wedding at Beaches Turks & Caicos.

There are lots of easy decisions you can make in life, but unfortunately, choosing a location for a destination wedding is not one of them. There are just so many places in the world you can travel to, and have an amazing experience, that a bit of research is necessary in order to choose the best place for you.

Also read: Sandals 8 Most Romantic Destination Wedding Venues in the Caribbean to see the one-of-a kind Over-the-water chapels and more unique wedding venues.

Some of the top wedding destinations in the world include Mexico, Hawaii, and the Caribbean islands; like Jamaica and Saint Lucia. Not surprisingly, the latter are high up on the list of the most popular destinations for weddings. Unquestionably exotic, these Caribbean islands make it easy for any visitor to appreciate their unique and captivating landscapes. This is with good reason, as these locations consistently deliver on their promise of spectacular experiences filled with sun, sea, sand, and a chance to rediscover the essence of love.

Sandals White House Over the water Chapel Wedding

Picture: Over-the-water chapel wedding at Sandals South Coast.

Just in case you’re fighting a losing battle to reduce your top 10 wedding location list to your top 2, or even top 5, we’ve put together a list of Caribbean islands which are perfect for both destination weddings, and honeymoons. The sooner you get reading, the sooner you’ll be on your way to choosing the location of your perfect Caribbean destination wedding!

Expert tip: Find out which documents need to be notarized ahead of time for your marriage license application. Most destination weddings require a residency period. This means you’d need to stay within the borders of a country for a specified period of time (often several days), before getting married. To avoid the residency requirement altogether, consider getting married at home, and having the official ceremony abroad.

Getting married at a Sandals or Beaches all-inclusive resort? Your personal wedding planner will help you with the documents and requirements! We do this all the time and know exactly how to make this process go smooth and worry-free.

 

1. Jamaica

Beaches Negril Wedding Beach

Picture: Beach front wedding at Beaches Negril.

The lure: Jamaica is at the top of the list for romantic and exciting island getaways, in the Caribbean. Much more than beaches and palm trees, Jamaica has a rich history and vibrant people. Reggae music is the heart and soul of this land, and these trends seem to add something laid back to the entire experience. Montego Bay is a great place to stay while in Jamaica, as is Negril and Ocho Rios.

Flight duration from Miami: 1 hour, 45 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 4 hours.

Best time for a wedding in Jamaica: December to April are good months to get married in Jamaica. Read ‘Best time to visit Jamaica’ to find out more.

Residency period: 48 hours. Friday arrivals can be married on Sunday.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 95 USD

Documents you need to get married in Jamaica:

  • Notarized original state-issued birth certificate and passport.
  • Court certified final divorce decree (if applicable).
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers (if applicable).
  • State issued death certificates with related marriage certificates (if applicable).
  • Notarized copy valid government issued photo ID or driver’s license.
  • An original notarized sworn affidavit can be provided to accompany photocopies of documents which should refer to documents specifically.

See Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free! Sandals resorts are designed for couples and adults-only. Inviting families with children to your destination wedding? Check out one of the nearby all-inclusive Beaches resorts in Jamaica!

Also read: Getting Married In Jamaica: Insights From Wedding Planners.

 

2. Turks & Caicos

beaches turks and caicos wedding beach

Picture: Beach front wedding at Beaches Turks & Caicos.

The lure: The Turks & Caicos have a more high-end feel, when compared to some of the other Caribbean locations. Among the 40 beautiful islands, 8 of which are inhabited, life is beautiful in Turk & Caicos, just like your wedding will be, if you have it at this destination. Here you will also find what many call the most beautiful beach in the world: Grace Bay beach.

Flight duration from Miami: 1 hour, 45 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 3 hours, 35 minutes.

Best time for a wedding in Turks & Caicos: December to April are good months to get married in Turks & Caicos.

Residency period: 48 hours. Does not include day of arrival, weekend or holidays.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 400 USD

Documents you need to get married in Turks & Caicos:

  • Original state-issued birth certificate & a valid passport or driver’s license.
  • All pages of all court certified final divorce decrees (if applicable).
  • State issue death certificates with related marriage certificates (if applicable).
  • Legal age to marry is 21 years old.
  • Under 21 must have written consent from both parents.

Your best option? The Beaches all-inclusive resort on Grace Bay Beach, Turks & Caicos. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free! Inviting families with children to your destination wedding, or do you have children yourself? The kids will love the waterpark at this resort! It’s all included.

3. The Bahamas

Sandals Emerald Bay Garden Gazeebo Wedding

Picture: Garden gazeebo wedding at Sandals Emerald Bay.

The lure: The islands of the Bahamas have a charm that’s hard for any other island to emulate. It is one of the best locations for a destination wedding with powdery white sand beaches, exotic uninhabited islands, and great scuba diving. The Bahamas is also one of the closest Caribbean territories to the United States, which works out well when a majority of your guests are joining from the US.

Flight duration from Miami: 1 hour.
Flight duration from New York: 2 hours, 48 minutes.

Best time for a wedding the Bahamas: December to April are good months to get married in the Bahamas. Read ‘Best time to visit the Bahamas’ to find out more.

Residency period: 48 hours. Does not include day of arrival, weekend or holidays. No Sunday weddings in Exuma.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 310 USD

Documents you need to get married in the Bahamas:

  • Original state issued birth certificate and passport.
  • Court certified final divorce decrees (if applicable).
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers (if applicable).
  • State-issued death certificates with related marriage certificates.

See Sandals all-inclusive resorts in the Bahamas. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free!

4. Saint Lucia

Sandals Grande St Lucian Oceanfront Wedding

Picture: Ocean front wedding at Sandals Grande St. Lucian.

The lure: Saint Lucia is becoming increasingly more popular for travelers to the Caribbean, especially destination wedding seekers and honeymooners. The island is a mix of luxury and simplicity, and these two concepts meet each other right in the middle in this romantic island nation.

Flight duration from Miami: 3 hours, 38 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 4 hours, 31 minutes.

Best time for a wedding in Saint Lucia: December to April are good months to get married in Saint Lucia. Read ‘Best time to visit Saint Lucia’ to find out more.

Residency period: Three business days. No Sunday weddings. Friday arrivals can be married on the following Thursday. Monday arrivals can be married on Friday.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 270 USD

Documents you need to get married in Saint Lucia:

  • Original state issued birth certificate and passport.
  • Court certified final divorce decrees (if applicable).
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers (if applicable).
  • State-issued death certificates with related marriage certificates.

See Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Saint Lucia. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free. Guests of any of the three Sandals Resorts in Saint Lucia, can make use of all the amenities at the other two Sandals Resorts (this includes all the restaurants and bars – 27 in total!).

5. Barbados

Sandals Barbados Couple Wedding Beach

Picture: Beach front wedding at Sandals Barbados.

The lure: Barbados is a festive and upbeat island where you’ll find the sort of beauty the Caribbean is known for, against a backdrop of music, culture and love. Here you’ll have options like getting wed on a boat, in a church, inside a plantation house, out in a beautiful garden, atop sea cliffs, or with your toes dipping into the sand. This island beckons all romantics for an experience you’ll always remember.

Flight duration from Miami: 3 hours, 42 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 4 hours, 41 minutes.

Best time for a wedding the Barbados: December to April are good months to get married in Barbados. Read ‘Best time to visit Barbados’ to find out more.

Residency period: 48 hours. Does not include weekends or holidays.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 325 USD

Documents you need to get married in Barbados:

  • Original state-issued birth certificate and passport
  • Court certified final divorce decree
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers
  • State issued death certificates with related marriage certificates

See Sandals all-inclusive resorts in Barbados. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free. Guests of any of the two Sandals Resorts in Barbados, can make use of all the amenities at the other Sandals Resort (this includes all the restaurants and bars).

6. Antigua

Sandals Antigua Garden Gazeebo Wedding

Picture: Garden gazeebo wedding at Sandals Grande Antigua.

The lure: You probably won’t get a chance to take in all 365 beaches in Antigua, but you will get a chance to explore at least a few. There are lots of fun places to tie the knot in Antigua, including at old forts, nature parks, and resorts like Sandals Grande Antigua for a more upscale experience.

Flight duration from Miami: 3 hours, 5 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 3 hours, 57 minutes.

Best time for a wedding in Antigua: December to April are good months to get married in Antigua. Read ‘Best time to visit Antigua’ to find out more.

Residency period: 48 hours, must include 1 business day, which includes day of arrival. Excludes holidays. No Sunday weddings. Example: Friday arrivals can be married on Tuesday.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 288 USD

Documents you need to get married in Antigua:

  • Original state‐issued birth certificate and passport
  • Court certified final divorce decree
  • State-issued death certificates with related marriage certificates
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers

7. Grenada

Sandals Grenada Couple Wedding Rocks

Picture: Ocean front wedding at Sandals Grenada.

The lure: Grenada will forever be known as the spice isle, but this small island in the Caribbean is also known for its abundant greenery, gorgeous beaches, and friendly locals. There are over 50 beaches to choose from in Grenada and plenty to do on each one. Grenada is conservatively developed, with the environment in mind, allowing you to tune into your most natural self. This can be a great way to get in tune with your significant other on a deeper level.

Flight duration from Miami: 3 hours, 34 minutes.
Flight duration from New York: 4 hours, 43 minutes.

Best time for a wedding in Grenada: January to April are good months to get married in Grenada. Read ‘Best time to visit Grenada’ to find out more.

Residency period: 72 hours. Marriage license will have to be applied for, take into account 1‐3 days for processing. Example: Friday arrivals can be married on the following Thursday. Monday arrivals can be married on Friday. Or choose the 48-hour express wedding for an additional US$190.00 fee to expedite, which must include one (1) business day. Example: Monday arrival can be married on Wednesday after 12 noon.

Marriage license and administrative fee: 180 USD

Documents you need to get married in Grenada:

  • Original state-issued birth certificate and passport
  • Court certified final divorce decree
  • Legal name changes or legal adoption papers
  • State issued death certificates with related marriage certificates
  • Sworn affidavit attesting that neither party has been married before
  • Sworn affidavit or letter from a clergyman, lawyer, registry or notary public. This letter must be on letterhead with relevant notarization stamps and seals, etc. Letter must state that neither party was married previously.

See Sandals all-inclusive resort in Grenada. Stay three nights or more and get your wedding for free!

Will my marriage be legal and recognized in the US?

Given all requirements are met, when you get married in Jamaica, the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, Saint Lucia, Antigua, Barbados or Grenada your marriage will be recognized as legal in most places, including the US.

Note: In Turks & Caicos you’ll need to be of the legal age to marry or have consent from both parents if under the age of 21.

The Caribbean was made for love!

beaches turks and caicos wedding beach

Picture: Beach front wedding at Beaches Turks & Caicos.

One of thing things you’ll be most convinced of during your Caribbean destination wedding is that the islands were made for love. When you get married here, everything will convince you that your match was made in heaven; from the waves kissing against the shore and the birds flying gracefully overhead, to the unmatched beauty of the tropical landscapes. They will all sing their approval of your union.

Disclaimer: All information on this article was correct at the time of publishing and may change at any time without prior notice. Sandals is not affiliated with the relevant authorities or their application centres and will not be liable for loss or inconvenience arising from the use of this volatile information. Please double-check all information provided with the relevant application centres, before making any final decisions.

Book your next vacation today through M & M Travel and Tours! (810) 877 1814

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.

Sandals Foundation’s Hurricane Dorian Relief Fund

By MM Travel and Tours in Travel

Sandals Resorts matches donations to Sandals Foundation’s Hurricane Dorian Relief Fund. All funds raised for International Day of Charity will go directly to those affected by the Hurricane. Find out how you can make a donation here.

Today Sandals Resorts International pledged to match every dollar donated to the Sandals Foundation.

Coinciding with #InternationalDayofCharity, 100% of all donations raised will go directly to those in desperate need in the Abaco and Grand Bahamas Island.

So far, The Sandals Foundation has partnered with Head Knowles to deliver 30,000 bottles of water to the Islands.

The Foundation has also set up two donation sites – one at Hospitality Purveyors Inc. in Miami, and another at Sandals Royal Bahamian in Nassau.

Items needed include water, non-perishable food, diapers, baby formula, first aid items, blankets, flashlights and cleaning supplies.

Find out how you can make a donation to the Sandals Foundation here.

Are the Sandals Resorts impacted by Hurricane Dorian?

Sandals Resorts are thankful to report that all of our resort locations in the Bahamas (Sandals Royal Bahamian Resort in Nassau, Sandals Emerald Bay in the Exuma’s and Fowl Cay Resort in the Exuma’s) were far from the path of Hurricane Dorian – and have not been affected by the storm system.

It’s important to note that the Bahamas are comprised of a chain of over 700 islands spanning 100,000 square miles and this storm localized through the northern area including Abaco and Grand Bahama Island.

Our resorts have not sustained any damage and are fully operational.

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All content is property of the owner, unless otherwise specified. This content is not owned, or maintained by M & M Travel and Tours, and is used only for informational purposes. Please visit the content owners link via the source link for more information.