Prices are generally high, but the range of goods available is excellent. Travellers who are going on to other islands may find it useful to do some shopping here. If coming from another Caribbean island there are strict controls on bringing in fresh fruit and vegetables, because of the mealy bug infestation.
The best stocked supermarket is JB’s Mastermart in Wildey. Big B in Worthing and Supercentre in Oistins and Holetown are also good, and are easier to reach by public transport. Also in Holetown is the Gourmet Shop selling a lot of luxuries. Emporium in Holetown and Worthing has a good selection of wines and luxury foods. Patisserie Flindt, Holetown, Savoy-trained chef makes delicious (expensive) French pasties, cakes and chocolates (US$5 for a chocolate mousse, US$1.50 for one chocolate), very good coffee, good for a light meal. Food is not cheap but generally most things are available and good quality. Supermarkets are now open on Sundays 0900-1300. Big B in Worthing is open 0800-1900 Monday-Tuesday, 0800-2000 Wednesday-Saturday, 0900-1300 Sunday, photocopying available. Julie’N on the corner of Rendezvous and Highway 7, satisfactory. Large new Julie’N hypermarket on St Barnabas Highway, corner of Highway 5, and in Rendezvous, typically American with wide range of surrounding shops, usually provides free transport back home with shopping within three mile radius, which include some south coast hotels. Julie’N also has the biggest supermarket in central Bridgetown, north side of bridge opposite Treasury Building.
Duty-free shopping is well advertised. Visitors who produce passport and air ticket can take most duty-free goods away from the store for use in the island before they leave, but not camera film or alcohol. Clothing is significantly cheaper duty-free, so don’t go shopping without ticket and passport. Cameras and electrical goods may be much cheaper in an ordinary discount store in the USA or Europe than duty free in Barbados. A duty-free shopping centre for cruise ship passengers in Bridgetown inside the deep water harbour: the Bridgetown Cruise Terminal has 21 shops, hand carts selling crafts, 13 chattel houses selling T shirts etc, car hire, bicycle hire, dive shop, agency to arrange horse riding, outlet for tours off the beaten track, two fast food restaurants, steel band twice a day plus other entertainment.
Broad Street is dominated by enormous jewellers: Colombian Emeralds, Diamonds International, Diamonds in Paradise, Jewelers Warehouse and Little Switzerland. The Art Foundry (Heritage Park, Foursquare, St Philip, Monday-Friday, 0900-1700, T4180714), have paintings, sculpture, prints, photographs, installation art and craft for sale. The Verandah Art Gallery (Bridgetown, Monday-Friday 0900-1630, Saturday 0900-1300, T4262605) has a reasonable selection with some Haitian art and temporary exhibitions. The Barbados Gallery of Art, Bush Hill, The Garrison, St Michael, T2280149, sells prints and has exhibitions. Medford Craft Village, Barbarees Hill, has wooden carvings etc. Other good displays of craft items are at Pelican Village on the Princess Alice Highway near the harbour, where you can watch artisans at work. Red Clay Pottery and Fairfield Gallery just outside Bridgetown sells very good ceramics, T4243800. Earthworks & Potters House, Edgehill Heights No 2, St Thomas, T4250223, for ceramics, also has small restaurant/café. There is also a street market in Temple Yard where Rastafarians sell leather and other goods. Street vendors are very persistent but generally friendly even when you refuse their wares.
Bookshops are much better stocked than on other islands. The Cloister on Hincks St, T4262662, probably has the largest stock and sells Footprint Handbooks. The Book Place on Probyn St specializes in Caribbean material and has a good secondhand section. Brydens and Cave Shepherd also have a good selection. Also Roberts Stationery, The Book Shop, The Bookstop.
Camera repairs Louis Bailey in Da Costa Mall in Broad St is well-equipped, expensive. Professional Camera Repair, Room 1, Collins Building, Broad St, Bridgetown, T4267174. Film processing Graphic Photo Lab in Worthing is quick and efficient. Recommended for slides and enlargements. Be prepared to wait a day or two for slides wherever you go. Fast film processing at Cave Shepherd and at Photo Finish, which has Worthing, Broad St and Sunset Crest branches.