Barbados boasts blue skies and near-perfect temperatures alongside a fascinating history and culture and plenty of things to do. The west coast of this 166-square-mile island hosts a lengthy string of soft white-sand beaches lapped by the blue waters of the Caribbean Sea, while the eastern Atlantic coast features pounding and jagged hillsides. Barbados melds Afro-Caribbean culture and traditions with strong historic ties to Great Britain, of which it remains an independent commonwealth. The capital, Bridgetown, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the island has a lively sports scene, including world-class golfing.