The Garrison Savannah in Garrison Historic Area is one of Barbados’ most famous tourist attractions. Many of the landmarks there consist of military fortifications and other old weapons.
Location and How to Get to This Specific Site
The garrison is a district, a couple of miles to the east of Heroes Square. Heroes Square is in Bridgetown, the country’s capital. If you drive by the Hastings village, you will see it on the west side. It is not far off the Christ Church.
What to See There
In the center of the site is a horse-track with grass grounds. This is the main site. There are many structures in the area, notably military personnel barracks. At the district’s southern portion is Highway 7 and Saint Ann’s Fort. The BDF (Barbados Defence Force) is right there. The Barbados National Cannon Collection is there too with ancient and rare English cannons.
Over at the guardhouse you will see the sign for the garrison itself. However, the main attraction is the Savannah racetrack. There are over 70 old edifices in the complex. Some of them date from the 1660s up to the 1800s. About 26 batteries and 20 forts dating from the 1600s can be seen there today.
From the 18th to the 19th centuries, the Garrison Savannah in Garrison Historic Area was used by the British West Indies Regiment as their base.
In 1751, former US George Washington spent some time at the district’s Bush Hill section. He stayed for six weeks with his ailing sibling. The place where Washington stayed can still be seen. It is known as the George Washington House.
It was during the 18th century that the racetrack started being used for horse racing. Construction of the UK garrison began in 1789. It is the remains of these buildings that visitors see.
Guided walking tours around Bridgetown cost BD$15.00 and BD$7.5 for kids. The fares will vary depending on where you are coming from. Taxi fares can range from BDS$6 up to BD$55.
There are other landmarks in the area. These include the clock tower, which has been on the garrison since 1803. The guardhouse where the tower is set was also built in 1803. On November 30 1966, the garrison became the center for the raising of the Barbados flag and the lowering of the Union jack flag.
The Garrison Savannah in Garrison Historic Area was the West Indies’ first garrison. Today however, it is known as one of Barbados’ most important landmarks.