Kick your shoes off and get some warm sand between your toes on Barbados, the easternmost island in the Caribbean and home of palm-shaded beaches, golf courses, tropical gardens and a richly varied culture.
Need encouragement? Look at your snow shovel, then go to and click on "Beaches," of course. If that collection of sunny scenery doesn't do it, continue on to "Sunsets," "Flowers" and "Sights and Scenes."
It's a small island, so you won't have trouble getting to the beaches, golf courses, polo grounds, tennis courts or the docks for sailing and fishing cruises. Get a quick look at some of the island activities by clicking on "Sports" at and then click on "Activities" to catch up on cruises and to see where you can hire a horse for an exhilarating ride. Oh, they speak English, but with their own flavor; go to "Island Info" and look for "Slang/Jargon."
Expect crowds in March and April during warm-up matches and the final of the 2007 World Cup of Cricket. Check it out under "Latest News" at the where you'll also find some more eye candy in the form of Barbados videos. Consult "Events" to see if anything else on the calendar will affect your schedule or serve as an extra attraction, such as the Oistins Fish Festival on Easter weekend. They also have a satellite view you can zoom into to see the beaches, towns and rural areas.
After that visual stimulation, explore the menu under "Discover" to learn about the island's people, heritage, architecture and history, plus places such as The Gap. "Dream" holds topics including moonlight cruises and weddings, plus gardens, waterfalls and gardens. Then you need to head for the "Accommodation" section to see if you want to stay in a hotel, or maybe rent a cottage or villa, or possibly a less expensive guest house.
Get another view of the island with the visitor's guide at including a "Best of Barbados" section that offers "Top 10 things to do," local recipes and "Barbados Rum," the sugar cane-based spirit that's been made on the island since the 1640s. That same section of Totally Barbados also has a guide to scuba diving; for rentals and tour operators, go to "Local Listings" near the top of the page, then click on "Sport Listings" and "water sport listings."
For those who don't care to do the diving in person, submarine rides are advertised by with short cruises to see reefs, fish and a sunken wreck.
In case you ever need a break from the beach, try a leisurely stroll through the to admire the orchids and other tropical plants you'll wish you could grow back home. Or, you could go on a longer hike with some ideas from including tidal pools, mangrove swamps, caves and flowering forests. Take your camera and good shoes; some of the guided hikes are long.