Rum is more than a social lubricant here on the island of Barbados. It’s the history, culture, and essence of the island poured over ice. Barbados is considered the birthplace of rum, and Mount Gay Distillery—founded in 1703—is believed to be the oldest rum found anywhere in the world. For three centuries sailors and seamen have sipped its amber silk, and during a visit to the Mount Gay Visitor Centre, travelers can literally taste the history that has shaped Barbados’ past.
Learn how sugar cane is fermented into rum, and sample varieties with hints of vanilla and almond. Hear the tales of how rum is tied with seafaring and sailing, and watch as the liquid is carefully bottled for shipment across the globe. Finally, after watching a film on rum production and hearing the history of Mount Gay, sample the smooth, award-winning rums in the tasting room or at the main bar. Though rum was once known as “kill devil” by early Caribbean sailors, centuries of practice and the world’s best ingredients have made the staff of Mount Gay Distilleries experts at their very own craft.
The Mount Gay Rum Visitor Centre is located in Bridgetown just a short distance from the cruise port. Signature tours are offered Monday through Friday from 9:30am to 2:30pm. The center is open on Saturday from 9:30am to 4pm during the months of November to April. Tours depart every hour on the half hour.
Admission is $15 for adults and free for children 12 and younger.
Rum pairing tours are available on Monday; cocktail tours are available Monday, Wednesday and Friday; and buffet lunch tours are available Tuesday and Thursday.