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 Bridgetown - Profile

Location

Bridgetown is the capital of Barbados and lies on the island's south west corner.

Position 13° 05.35'N, 059° 36.83'W (anchorage - Castle bay)

Clearance

See the Barbados Formalities page for full details on clearing into and out of Barbados.

Clearance here is more difficult than at Port St. Charles.

Clearance can only be done in the Deepwater Harbour north of Bridgetown.

On approach, yachts should call the signal station on VHF Channel 12 (call sign 8PB) and will be advised where to proceed.

Time your arrival, if you can, for the morning to avoid unnecessary hanging around. Cruise ships enter and leave port in the afternoon, therefore an afternoon arrival may mean several hours of circling outside the port before you can be dealt with.

Once permission is given, the yacht should go into the Deepwater Harbour and unless advised to the contrary come alongside the Cross Berth, in the southern corner.

Because of the large fenders set up for cruise ships, this is an unsatisfactory place to tie up a sailing boat, especially if there is any surge. If so, it may be better to launch the dinghy and for the captain to visit the various offices while the rest of the crew stay with the boat. Permission must be sought in advance to do this. See comment at bottom of page from cruiser who visited December 2014 about this option.

It is necessary to stay in radio contact while entering the harbour to ensure no other vessel is manoeuvring, as the harbour frequently has cruise ships berthed there.

The Q flag must be flown until clearance is completed. The captain only, should proceed to clear Customs, Health and Immigration in the Customs Examination Hall behind the Cross Berth, from 06:00-22:00 seven days a week.

Overtime rates will be charged after 17:00. If arriving outside these hours, yachts may be directed by the signal station to anchor in the Quarantine anchorage in Carlisle Bay and the crew should not go ashore. The following morning the yacht must proceed into the Deepwater Harbour as outlined above.

Permission has to be obtained from Customs, preferably requested on arrival, if wishing to cruise or anchor along the coast away from Carlisle Bay.

On departure, the Port Authority's clearance must be obtained first in order to get Customs clearance. Immigration must be visited last. On checking out one must carry cash (US$50) for harbour fees because credit cards are not accepted.

Last updated January 2017.

Barbados Port Authority
Barbados Port Inc., University Row , Bridgetown , Barbados
Tel:(246) 430 4700 Fax:(246) 429-5384 ,VHF Channel 12, 06 '8PB' (eight Papa Brava).
The Port Control office is located in a red- roofed building next to to the large terminal which houses Customs and Immigration.
Bridgetown Harbour Master
Tel:434-6100 (Office) 428-6858 (Home)
Customs
Tel:246 430 2300
Opening hours: 07:00-22:00(daily)
Their office is on the second floor above the Immigration and Baggage offices in the cruise-ship terminal.
Health Office
Tel:246 426 5080
Immigration
Tel:246 426 1011

Docking

After entry formalities are complete, a yacht may anchor in Carlisle Bay or berth in the Careenage in the centre of town.

Careenage

The Careenage has visitors berths in the inner basin and the daily fee includes water and electricity.

Docking space in the Careenage is limited and yachts must obtain permission to berth there at the Marine Services Office before entering. This is located inside the harbour next to the Waterfront Café, open weekdays 0900-1500.

Anchoring

Most yachts anchor in Carlisle Bay, which is beautiful but does suffer from swell and noise from constant jet skis, tourist boats and music from bars ashore. It is also rather crowded with moorings.

You can dinghy in to the town through the port entrance, go down to the first bridge and take the far left channel under it. After this, tie up on the quay wall next to one of the stainless steel steps and padlock your dingy and engine/fuel. At night take the usual precautions.

Dinghies can also be left at the Boatyard jetty which has some facilities for cruising boats, such as toilets, showers and water. They charge a daily fee to use the jetty (redeemable at the bar), but only during the day. After dusk no fee is payable. Alternatively pull your dinghy up the beach but take care with the surf.

There may be an available mooring buoy to rent. The yacht club has moorings and being a member of any yacht club entitles you to a weeks honorary membership and use of their facilities.

Note: There have been several reports of a "noise war" on the waterfront from the cafes and bars there. Since the loudspeakers are directed out to sea, sleep can often be difficult for boats at anchor out the front of Cococabana, but not so bad when upwind at the yacht club. We understand that this is only a real problem during the high season.

Last updated December 2017.

Yacht Clubs

The presence of an active racing community, centred on the Barbados Yacht Club, ensures that there is a good range of repair facilities. The Yacht Club welcomes visitors and can be of help in an emergency.

Barbados Sailing and Cruising Club
Aquatic Gap , St Michael , Bridgetown, Barbados
Tel:+1 246 426 4434
A welcoming and informal yacht club. Bar and restaurant (open Wed-Sun evenings).
Barbados Yacht Club
Bay Street , St.Michael , Barbados
Tel:+1 (246) 427-1125 Fax:+1 (246) 435-7590 ,VHF Channel 16
The club welcomes visiting yachtsmen and has excellent facilities. Water can be collected free by jerry jug from a buoy near the clubhouse (depth 3m). Will hold mail, and can send or receive e-mail on their behalf. They hold a beach party every Friday night and snacks as well as dinner are available at very reasonable prices. The have a good menu at their beach restaurant and also serve a buffet in the Clubhouse Mon-Fri, as well as on Sunday's on the beach. Their rum punches are the best in the island!
Maria
Maria says:
Dec 24, 2017 05:12 PM

Barbados Bridgetown
December 2017
There is no fuel here but one of the boat owners in our Rally organised a Diesel truck to come and fill up all the boats. He had to do 3 trips to fill up his tank but he was great. Here’s the phone number .

Tel: 425 5000 Williams

Carenage was quite dirty, lots of rubbish collects here. Unfortunately the place is also very attractive to rats because of the amount of rubbish on the shore. We were told to put our rubbish up near the road because they collect daily from the road but only weekly from the park bins.
This place is noisy but we were really glad we stayed here . It really is in the centre of Bridgetown, no trouble but we did lock up the boat and close the hatches when we left her. This was also to keep out the rats and the rain. Lots of tourists from the cruise ships and local people stopping and asking questions, it was a great time experience. $50 usd a night but we were on the Odyssey Rally so had 7 nights included. After this we anchored in the bay.
The office is supposed to open 11- 3pm but we found it was open at random times, but not st the weekend. Most notably when the bridge opens. You can request it to be open by contacting Barbados control on 12 or 16 - best to give them advance notice if you can.
They have adapters at the office to convert 110 electric to 220 which you can use. They will also unlock the water taps for you. Tonya, the lady in the office was very helpful.
Be aware that it is expensive in The Caribbean. The supermarkets are nearby and if you are paying by credit card they will ask for other ID . I didn’t have any but they must have thought there was a good chance that I was not a thief and they let me use my card.
You will have locals trying to be your tour guide or just asking for cash. Taxi drivers are also asking to take you places. We did get a taxi to the Mount Gay Rum factory - cost $25 BD there and $20 BD back - he came back and collected us about 2 hours later. We also went to Oisin’s fish place and I negotiated it for $30 BD there. And the same back later on. We took his phone number but we found him waiting for us.
You can walk along the beach and there are various restaurants along the way.
We took the local bus which goes from Princess Alice bus terminal and not the one by the careenage. Bus 4 from stand 7 goes to Harrison caves for $2 BD each . Drops you at the end of the road and then it’s a 5 min walk - the bus driver will tell you when to get off if you ask him .
We also went to Celestine’s for lunch on the way back from the caves.

The anchorage was a bit rollie, but ok for a couple of nights.

OceanCrusaders
OceanCrusaders says:
Oct 29, 2015 02:35 PM

Carlisle Bay is a beautiful anchorage although a rolling swell can come in even when there is no wind. We anchored in front of Copocabana for few nights and then moved to a mooring that was in front of the Yacht Club. We asked the people in the yacht club if there was a mooring available and were given one of the owners who had his yacht in St Lucia. Being a member of any yacht club entitles you to a weeks honorary membership at the yacht club and use of their facilities. There is a laundry across the road from the yacht club which charges BDS4.48 per pound of washing or BBD6.68 if you want it pressed as well. To the north of the yacht club is a new chandlery called MPS that carries basic stuff otherwise on the north side of the careenage there is a place called Fisherman's corner which also carries basics. The careenage is quite dirty and in the middle of town so a lot of road noise. You also have to go through a bridge and make bookings in and out every time. Minimum 3 night stay at US$25 per night. Water and Electricity included. The sound war mentioned is not really a factor. It seems the harbour lights night club is the loud one and so far have had nights Sat, Monday and Wed as music nights till 3-4 in the morning. Not so bad when upwind at the yacht club but very loud when out the front of Cococabana. Sunday nights seems to be Dee's Bar local night with lots of locals gathering. The 'Boatyard' is quite popular during the day but you have to pay US$20 per person minimum to even sit at the bar. We pulled our tender up on the beach and this was not a problem with anyone. Barbados people are friendly and laid back. Great place.

Stein-Tove I Engh
Stein-Tove I Engh says:
Dec 14, 2014 05:48 PM

Arriving Bridgetown dec 12 2014, we heard on the VHF one yacht asking the port authority permission to anchor before checkin and proceed with dinghy for checkin. This was granted.
Ourselves we proceeded with the yacht to the customs yacht berth in the harbour. And we can confirm that this is not a good place to tie up. With swell, mooring line points hard to access and no ladder to get onto the quay, it was quite unpleasant. Hard to understand that yachts are expected to come in this way. It is easy to get some damage to the yacht, or even hurt oneself. If I should check in here again, I would also try to negotiate another way.

Nitrosails
Nitrosails says:
Mar 31, 2014 01:20 PM

Hello, kiss is anchored in carlisle bay, in front of the harbourlights bar. We catch his wifi signal with no problem, we just have to take a beer to get the password.

Don Shimoda
Don Shimoda says:
Mar 06, 2014 11:03 PM

Hi everyone, Guajira here anchored at Carlisle Bay using free WiFi signal from "CopaCabana Free Hot Spot" with no trouble at all :-)

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