Words & Photos Laurent Nevarez
It’s the eternal question for paddlers in the colder reaches of the Northern Hemisphere. Where do you go for a surf trip in February? Well, situated at the southern tip of the West Indies arc and slightly off to the east, Barbados is without doubt one of the Caribbean islands most exposed to the Atlantic swells, offering year-round consistently excellent waves.
After a long, hard and successful competition season (French and European Championship titles) Alexis Deniel and his girlfriend Melanie grabbed some much-deserved down time on this island paradise, exploring the incredible richness of a destination that is still largely overlooked. Let’s take a walk though some impossibly turquoise waters and a beautifully chilled lifestyle.
It’s just before midnight local time when the plane touches down on the tarmac at Bridgetown Airport. The long journey and tiredness are written all over our faces, and as we walk down the steps from the aircraft, a massive wave of delicious tropical heat engulfs us. We’re still drinking in the unique Barbados atmosphere in as we meet our guide and host, Jason Cole, the human incarnation of all Barbados’ charms. An SUP obsessive since day one and heavily involved in its development on the island of his birth, he’s truly the main man here and charming with it, without question the best possible guide to help us discover the full variety of everything this incredible island has to offer.
“Welcome to the island, hope you’re not too tired and jet-lagged with the time difference, because tomorrow the conditions are going to be perfect, you’ll see in the morning, every morning !” he says, with a grin. There’s still work to do anyway, picking up the hire car, loading up… Then we follow Jason up the road to Freights Bay, where our apartment is.