BARBADOS: Scintillating Spirits, High Literacy, and Elegant Hotels

local produce and fresh herbs picked from the organic garden at Colony Cove

local produce and fresh herbs picked from the organic garden at Colony Club

Frankly, until I attended a press luncheon sponsored by Elegant Hotels and co-hosted by Diamond PR, I knew nothing about Barbados. Lucky you. I’m paying forward my newfound enlightenment.
For instance, do you know that this sovereign British Commonwealth in the Lesser Antilles is only 21 miles in length and 14 miles wide, yet has one of the highest literacy rates in the world or has 1500 rum shops within its borders? It’s true.
In 2013, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) acknowledged Barbados’ literacy rate at 99.7%. If you’re a fan of Mount Gay Rum, did you know the company is a sponsor of the Food, Wine & Rum Festival every November?
I didn’t know that the populace refer to themselves as Bajan, or that signature culinary dishes include macaroni pie (cheddar cheesier than typical mac & cheese and usually has unexpected ingredients such as ketchup and mustard), cou-cou and flying fish, coconut sugar cakes (made with those two ingredients) and salt bread, described as akin to an Irish soda bread.
I learned that the best time to travel there (if watching your dollars) is June through September Read more

St. Kitts: a Caribbean treasure ripe for discovery

 I’ve never been to Aruba, St. Martins, St. Thomas or Nevis (St. Kitts’ smaller, sister island), which are some of the area’s better-known vacation draws, so can’t tell you how St. Kitts compares. What I do know is that if you’re a history buff or botanist, a connoisseur of unusual foods (provided your point of reference are U.S. supermarkets and farmers markets), love sailing on a brisk catamaran at sunset under usually-clear skies, browsing among affordable quaint shops with batik attire and colorful coconut shell jewelry, dancing to calypso music at late night local clubs, or Read more