Public Holiday

Bayleys, Barbados,

01 Aug, 2021

Emancipation Day is a Barbadian Public Holiday celebrated on the first of August. The holiday commemorates the abolition of slavery on the island and celebrates those who fought for that cause. 

Barbados became an English colony in the mid-seventeenth century and quickly became an important producer of sugar cane. This meant that workers were needed, and many enslaved workers were brought from Africa to tend to the sugar plantations.

Bussa.jpgThe slave trade was eradicated in 1807 however, slavery continued in Barbados for 30 more years until it was finally abolished. Over that 30 year span, the island had several minor revolts and a major slave uprising, which occurred on Sunday 14 April 1816. It was the largest, most substantial slave rebellion to occur on the island.  The Revolt began on Bayley Plantation in St. Philip and moved across the island. By the time it was over 3 days later, 20,000 slaves from various plantations had been involved. 

Emancipation day is also celebrated on August 1st in St Vincent & the grenadines, The Cayman Islands and  Trinidad & Tobago. 

Please note: On National holidays, most businesses are closed with the exception of restaurants and hotels. All schools, Government institutions, banks and supermarkets are closed.

Kadooment Day is the finale event for the Crop Over Festival, it occurs on the first Monday in August. The word ‘Kadooment’ is defined as a big occasion filled with fun and merriment and the Kadooment Day parade lives up to its definition. 

This event gets going from as early as 7:00 a.m. when over 15,000 masqueraders begin to descend upon the streets of the island adorned in mesmerizing costumes, colourful feathers, beads, diamonds and glitter.

KADOOMENT1FI2.jpgThe action-packed day sees patrons, gathering in their Kadooment bands to hit the streets for the all-day soca party. Travelling through Warrens and  Green Hill towards the National Stadium,  along the streets of Black Rock, all the way to the Mighty Grynner Highway, adjacent to the picturesque Brighton Beach.  As the bands travel music blares from enormous speakers perched on flatbed trucks, while the revellers parade displaying their handmade costumes. Many celebrities, including Barbadian sweetheart Rihanna, also don costumes and join in the festivities.

The jouvert of bands in costumes of all colours is arguably the main attraction of the entire festival.  

Please Note: The Dates for Kadooment Day and the form that the activities will take is still to be announced.


30 Nov, 2021

On November 30th, 1966 Barbados became fully independent from Great Britain. Barbados was the fourth English-speaking nation in the West Indies to achieve full independence from Britain. 

From the very first day of November, Barbadians all around the world are dressed in blue, yellow and black. Barbados flags can be seen virtually everywhere. 


The lighting ceremony is the start of the month-long festivities. It is held on November 1st, in Independence Square, Bridgetown. As the name suggests, blue, yellow and black light bulbs (similar to Christmas lights) are used to decorate government buildings and historic parliament buildings in the city. The lights remain on every night through the month of November and through the Christmas season. 

During the month Barbadian delicacies like conkies, sugar cakes, cassava pone etc are enjoyed along with more savoury dishes such as Cou Cou and Flying Fish (Barbados’ National Dish), pudding and souse and rice ‘n’ peas.  

The Independence Day Parade is held on November 30th and is the highlight of the season. It used to be held at The Garrison Savannah where the very first Independence ceremony was held, but recently it has been moved to Kensington Oval. The parade features the Barbados Boy Scout Association, Barbados Girl Guides, Royal Barbados Police Force and all Military Units.