Flag of Barbados

The flag of Barbados is a compelling amalgamation of colors and symbols that epitomize the essence of this Caribbean island.

The flag is a visual representation combining Barbados’ natural landscapes, cultural background, and forward-thinking perspective in one symbol. This design resonates with its citizens and captures viewers’ attention globally.

Barbados Flag

The national flag of Barbados, featuring a triband design
The national flag of Barbados, featuring a triband design.

The flag of Barbados, designed by Grantley Prescod, was officially adopted on November 30, 1966, to commemorate the country’s independence from the UK.

It features three vertical bands and a central “Broken Trident,” symbolizing the island’s transition from colonial status to independence. This iconic trident adds national identity and highlights Barbados’ journey toward self-governance.

Barbados Flag: Color Palette



RGB: 0, 38, 127

CMYK: 100, 70, 0, 50



RGB: 0, 0, 0

CMYK: 0, 0, 0, 100



RGB: 255, 199, 38

CMYK: 0, 22, 85, 0

Territory of Barbados, colored in the colors of the national flag
Territory of Barbados, colored in the colors of the national flag.

Barbados Flag Emoji: 🇧🇧

Barbados’ flag’s color palette is visually striking and rich in symbolic meaning. The colors are carefully chosen to resonate with various aspects of the island’s character and narrative. The following segment will delve deeper into the significance of each hue.

This trio of colors enhances the flag’s aesthetic appeal and serves as a prelude to the stories and values they each represent. In the succeeding discussion, we’ll unpack these colors to understand better how they contribute to the overall symbolism of the flag.

Meaning of Each Color

The flag of Barbados, proudly waving against a clear blue sky
The flag of Barbados proudly waving against a clear blue sky.


The vibrant ultramarine shade prominently symbolizes the Caribbean Sea that envelops Barbados. Beyond its visual representation of this natural feature, ultramarine also holds cultural significance.

It is closely linked to the maritime activities that have long sustained the island, such as fishing and trade. Moreover, the sea’s importance in folklore and local traditions adds another layer of meaning to this serene blue hue.


The lustrous gold color represents Barbados’ pristine sandy beaches but transcends mere geography. Historically, the island was renowned for its sugar production, a golden-colored commodity that played a pivotal role in its economic growth.

Furthermore, gold is often associated with wealth and prosperity, hinting at Barbados’ aspirations for a prosperous future.

Trident (Black)

The trident, a central element in Barbados’ flag, is of paramount significance. It symbolizes the island’s maritime heritage and connection to the sea and holds a powerful historical and national meaning.

The trident reflects the break from colonial rule and emphasizes the sovereignty and agency regained through independence. It is a testament to Barbados’ ability to chart its course in history, proudly representing its heritage and spirit.

Barbados Coat of Arms

Barbados' coat of arms, a symbol of the nation's heritage and history
Barbados’ coat of arms, a symbol of the nation’s heritage and history.

Barbados’ coat of arms, granted by the College of Arms in London on May 14, 1966, symbolizes the nation’s essence. The emblem features a shield supported by a dolphin fish and a pelican native to Barbados.

A helmet and mantling are displayed atop the shield, with a hand holding two crossed pieces of sugarcane, representing the island’s sugar industry. Below the security, the national motto “Pride and Industry” is inscribed on a ribbon.

The coat of arms celebrates Barbados’ natural beauty and relationship with the sea while highlighting its economic history and commitment to industriousness and self-reliance.

Historical Evolution and the Meaning Behind Changes

Barbados’ flag has had a relatively stable design since its adoption. Before its independence as a British colony, Barbados flew the British Union Jack along with the colonial badge.

The shift from a colonial emblem to a unique flag was a significant part of Barbados’ journey toward establishing its uniqueness and governance structures. Introducing a distinct flag symbolized the culmination of years of political change and activism toward self-determination.

The colonial flag of Barbados (1885–1962)
The colonial flag of Barbados (1885–1962), representing an era of change and transition.

While the flag’s design elements have remained consistent since its introduction, their enduring presence speaks to their enduring relevance.

Unlike some nations, where changes in flag design have marked significant socio-political shifts or transformations, the continuity of Barbados’ flag testifies to the strength and enduring nature of the symbols chosen at the time of independence.

In summary, the flag of Barbados has been a stable symbol since its inception, encapsulating critical facets of the nation’s identity that have remained relevant over the years.

Its design reflects the country’s landscape, history, and values and has yet to undergo significant changes, underscoring the flag’s enduring power as a national emblem.

Overall Symbolic Meaning of the Flag

The flag of Barbados functions as a unified symbol that conveys a rich tapestry of meanings. It visually represents the nation’s journey, encapsulating its past struggles, current individuality, and future desires.

The flag’s elements harmonize to offer a complex but coherent story, capturing what it means to be Barbadian. In its entirety, the flag resonates deeply with its citizens while also seizing the attention of a global audience.

Similar Flags to the Flag of Barbados

Regarding flags that share similarities with Barbados, it’s important to note that while unique in its own right, the flag of Barbados does bear some resemblance to others, often due to common elements like design layout or shared regional influences.


The flag of the Bahamas, sharing a striking resemblance to Barbados' flag
The flag of the Bahamas, sharing a striking resemblance to Barbados’ flag, reflecting their Caribbean unity.

The flag of the Bahamas features a black triangle on the hoist side, adjacent to horizontal stripes of aquamarine and gold. While the color schemes differ, both flags anchor their designs with a solid geometric shape.

In the case of the Bahamas, the black equilateral triangle symbolizes the unity and determination of the people, a thematic echo of the symbolism in Barbados’ flag.

Saint Lucia

Saint Lucia's flag, akin to Barbados' banner
Saint Lucia’s flag, akin to Barbados’ banner, illustrating a common Caribbean spirit.

Saint Lucia’s flag showcases a cerulean blue field with a gold triangle at the center, topped by a smaller black and white triangle. Like Barbados, Saint Lucia’s flag incorporates geometric solid elements and uses triangles as a central design feature.

The flags’ use of triangles can signify strength and aspiration, themes that resonate in both nations.


The flag of Aruba, reminiscent of Barbados' flag
The flag of Aruba, reminiscent of Barbados’ flag, symbolizing shared Caribbean aspirations.

The flag of Aruba consists of a light blue field with two narrow, parallel horizontal yellow stripes toward the bottom and a red, four-pointed star in the canton.

While the layout and color palette are pretty different, the presence of a star in Aruba’s flag parallels the trident in Barbados’. Both stars and tridents are powerful symbols often interpreted to represent high ideals or guiding principles for the nation.


The flag of Barbados is a vibrant emblem that encapsulates the nation’s unique identity and vision. Distinctive in its design and symbolism, it commands attention on the global stage while uniting its citizens.

It reflects the country’s past and is a beacon for its future, embodying what Barbados represents.