Just about everywhere you go on the south coast of Barbados you will come to a typically white sandy beach extending right out into the brilliant turquoise sea. And Welches beach, just to the west of the Oistins fishing village, is no exception.
In 2006 the local Coastal Zone Management team constructed groynes and spurs and brought in sand to nourish the beach and protect the road. East and West public access points, a ramp for the physically challenged, a walkway and an overlook were also added.
The plants haven’t had time to grow into huge shady trees, but you will find a couple of small coconut trees with a bit of driftwood comfortably placed if you’d like to sit a while and watch the planes fly in over the glistening waters. Alternatively you can relax on the stone lookout. From Welches Beach you can also see the Oistins jetty and fishing boats, and further along, the South Point lighthouse.
Opposite the supermarket there is a quaint, picturesque little section of beach with shady trees and a couple of old beached fishing boats. Here you’ll usually find one or two people restfully sitting on a rock in the shade of the trees.
This is also where the Oistins boatyard begins. A fine subject for an artist are the Moses’ and the Dayboats on land and sea. The Dayboats go out faithfully in the morning and come back in the evening. One catch of interest is the Flying Fish (Yes, these fish propel themselves over 4 feet or 1.2 meters above the water and glide long distances, up to 655 feet or 200 meters)!
Back at Welches Beach, refreshments are not far away. On the other side of the road, you will find Golden Sands Hotel where locals gather on Saturdays for “Rum & Souse Lime” and Karaoke.
The beach runs into the old Benson Beach which was once home to the Windsurf Club and is now Butterfly Beach Hotel. There is a bar and restaurant there looking out to the sea with access from the beach.
Near Oistins, on the sea side, you will find Surfer’s Café, cool and rustic with tables overlooking the sea. Favourites are the Catch of the Day and the Big Kahuna Howlie Burger.
Also on the seaside there is the fish market to buy fresh fish and the Oistins Fish Fry famous for its social life and Bajan meals.
On the other side of the road you have the supermarket, the bank, KFC and Chefette for fast food and Grannies for local fare.
If you haven’t visited Welches Beach yet, add it to your “to-do” list on your next Barbados vacation…