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Tonight the island of Barbados is preparing for a visit from Tropical Storm Elsa. I’m fully expecting to lose power sometime early tomorrow, so I figured I better take the opportunity to get a new gallery up before that happens! Without further ado, here’s the beach of the moment.
Barbados’ west coast has so much shoreline that sometimes it’s hard to tell where one beach ends and the next one begins. This is the case with Brighton Beach, which connects to the north end of Brandons Beach and the south end of Pile Bay.
As is typical of beaches in Barbados, the water at Brighton Beach is the usual, beautiful turquoise blue. Although the sea is calmer closer to the Brandons Beach side, Brighton Beach tends to stay quieter since it’s a little bit further away from the bustle of nearby Bridgetown. This also means that the beach is beautifully clean. No litter, no loud music or car noise, just the gentle crashing of waves along a long stretch of soft, unspoilt sand. In fact, at just about 2 miles long, the stretch of sand is one of the longest in Barbados. You can walk uninterrupted along the shore all the way north past Paradise Beach up to Batts Rock.
Brighton Beach is a great place for those visiting Barbados by cruise ship, as it is only about a 20 minute walk from the port in Bridgetown.
Very little boat traffic comes through this area, likely due to its close proximity to the cruise port. Combined with a mostly sandy seafloor, Brighton Beach is a safe and inviting place for a refreshing swim.
There are only a few reef and coral clusters close to the shore, so Brighton Beach doesn’t offer the best snorkeling in Barbados. You may spot a few colorful fish here and there, however.
Although it seems like it would be an ideal area for kayaks and paddleboards, I haven’t seen much in the way of either – nor any other watersports. However, the largest waterpark in the Caribbean, Rascal’s Waterpark, is located just south on Brandons Beach. They also advertise paddle boarding, so I would check there for watersport equipment. I haven’t seen any other places offering any for rent in the area, though.
The nearest and main dining attraction is the restaurant and beach bar that Rascal’s also owns, across from the waterpark on Brandons Beach. There is plenty of dining space with both indoor and outdoor seating available. They have a large TV to broadcast an occasional sporting event, and of course, all the Piña Coladas and Rum Punches your heart desires!
There are also a number of other bars and cafes across the main highway for those that prefer to try something else.
At the northern end of Brighton Beach, you will find a stunning pool of emerald-turquoise water. The aptly named inlet is locally known as the “Hot Pot”, and is actually hot water being expelled from the run-off pipes of an electricity plant. Some Bajans believe the unnaturally warm waters to have healing properties. The idyllic spot is known for having a strong current and undertow though, making the area less safe for swimming.
On the opposite end, you can find Mount Gay Visitor Center. It is a popular tourist attraction, offering rum tastings and guided tours of the 18th-century distillery.
Brighton Beach doesn’t have a dedicated access point, but there is a public parking lot off Spring Garden Highway on the northern end of Brandons Beach, just beyond Rascal’s restaurant. You can park there and take a short stroll north to find Brighton Beach.
Before heading north, you can stop at Rascal’s to rent lounge chairs and a beach umbrella. The closest bathrooms are also located in Rascal’s.
Well, this is more of a lowlight than a highlight. But, I feel it’s only fair to be honest when sharing information about all the beaches of Barbados.
Brighton Beach is situated directly in front of both the West Indies Rum Distillery and the Barbados Light and Power Plant. Sadly, these are both industrial eyesores. They emit ugly brown smog and unpleasant smells into the air the closer you get to the “Hot Pot”. Additionally, with the cruise port in sight at the southern end of the beach AND Rascal’s waterpark floating out in the bay, I can’t put Brighton Beach on the list of Barbados’ prettiest beaches.
None the less, if you’re willing to face the ocean and ignore the sights and smells behind you or just looking for a tranquil place to swim, Brighton Beach is still a great place to relax for the day.
+ Peaceful and quiet
+ Not usually many people around
+ Reefs close to shore for snorkeling
+ Close to The Hot Pot and Bridgetown
+ Nearby restaurant on the beach
– Not the calmest waters
– Requires a short walk from the nearest public parking access point
– Close to a power station which doesn’t smell the best
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