Speightstown is the first major port and commercial centre of Barbados. It is the second largest town in Barbados and is located about twelve miles from Bridgetown in the parish of St. Peter. This town was originally a small village, the same village which Cromwell’s soldiers took a lot of time to conquer. The town has been named after William Speight, who was a member of Barbados’ first Assembly and was also the former owner of the land where the town is located. The earliest settlers came to this place around 1630 and it later became one of the busiest ports in Barbados. Sugar and other commodities was sent from Speightstown directly to London and Bristol. Since most the consignments were sent directly to Bristol, this town was nicknamed as ‘Little Bristol’.
When you stroll down Speightstown, you will see a number of historic buildings of the colonial times mostly on Queen Street, Church Street, and Orange Street. Speightstown would have seen a lot of activity during the days of the sugar industry and the days of the slave trade. Sugar and slaves were shipped from this town in the yesteryears. There were a number of small British military forts spread around town that helped in defense of the island. Orange Fort was located in the middle of the town where the present fish market is now located. Fort Denmark and Fort Dover protected the town from the top of the cliff on the east.
You will find a lot of activity in Speightstown during the weekends when locals and visitors descend on the town to do their shopping. You can see a number of street stalls and vendors selling all sorts of wares and street food. The town which had fallen into a state of neglect and disrepair has undergone a lot of restoration and development. A lot of development work has been undertaken for the construction of a luxury marina at Port St. Charles.
A number of high-class luxurious and comfortable hotels and excellent restaurants can be found in the close proximity of Speightstown. The Colony Club Hotel is an exclusive private club where you have an exclusive beach shaded by casuarina trees. You can enjoy the serene tranquility of the sea, or if you desire you can enjoy a host of water sports. The Legend Gardens Condos are located almost on the edge of the blue sparkling waters of the sea. The resort, which was once a 250 acre plantation, is set out in lush tropical gardens. The resort is within walking distance of banks, supermarkets, restaurants, and entertainment. The Cobbler’s Cove is resplendent with the beauty, charm, and elegance of an English Country House. You will definitely appreciate the peace and quiet which can give you the rest and relaxation you desire. Speightstown has some excellent places for dining – Fish Pot Restaurant, Mangos by the Sea, Fisherman’s Pub – to name a few. The places are so good that you just cannot walk in – you will have to make a reservation.
To all appearances you may get the impression that Speightstown is a neglected place, but do not let such impressions deceive you. The town is lovely and surrounded by beautiful and exotic places which are bound to make your holiday peaceful and tranquil.