The word “paradise” instantly comes to mind when thinking of the tropical oasis that is The Bahamas. It’s simple to see why The Bahamas is persistently one of the most popular sailing destinations in the world, with its warm exotic climate, friendly people and magnificent scenery in every direction. Cruisers can easily reach this beautiful location from South Florida’s coast, providing for a quick and convenient crossing. For most tourists, the Bahamian beaches are the most popular attraction in The Bahamas. The powdery white beaches, as well as the patchwork quilt of blues that connect the sea and sky in an unbroken horizon, are truly unique. There is also plenty of flavour to be found in the Bahamas, ranging from formal resort restaurants to scruffy beach shacks serving conch salads and fresh seafood dishes.
The Bahamas has always lured in the rich and famous as one of the world’s most sought-after locations. Many celebrities own luxury properties in the Bahamas, including private islands, where they can indulge in and experience the Bahamian lifestyle in complete seclusion. After filming for the Pirates of the Caribbean, Johnny Depp purchased his own private island, ‘Little Hall’s Pond Cay.’ He describes the incredible 45-acre island, which has six beaches, as one of the most ‘pure and beautiful’ places he’s ever seen.
Exuma is a district of The Bahamas, home to over 365 stunning islands and cays. The Exumas island chain is divided into three main areas, including Great Exuma, Little Exuma and the Exuma Cays. These islands are known for their sapphire-blue shallow waters, so vibrant that their vivid colours can be seen from space! The flawless footprint-free beaches, secluded cays and luxurious resorts dotted across the islands attract many island lovers each year. Some of these paradisal beaches include Coco plum beach, Pig Beach, Jolly Hall beach, Tropic of Cancer beach and many more… you’ll be spoilt for choice.
A few of the most highly recommended and prettiest islands and cays in the Exuma chain, include Stocking Island, Allan Cay, Emerald Bay, Norman’s Cay, Big Farmer’s Cay (Sandbar) and Staniel Cay. The Exumas islands are fringed with glowing white sand and lush greenery, and tend to be a lot less crowded compared to The Bahamian islands, ideal for those craving a relaxing, tranquil and paradisal getaway.
If you want to island hop in the Bahamas, some of the most beautiful islands to visit include: Long island, Cat island, Exuma, Harbour island, New Providence, Eleuthera, all with their own distinctive features. For example Long Island is home to some of the worlds deepest blue holes, Exuma is renowned for its iconic swimming pigs and you can completely disconnect with the world on Cat island.
New Providence island also known as Nassau (the Capital) is offers a great variety of things to do – you’ll find much more than just beaches. Nassau is where most residents live and where visitors will flock; think countless bars and restaurants, hotels, resorts, beaches, and a lively nightlife! In comparison to the remote ‘out islands’, with endless empty beaches, peaceful dining, plenty of outdoor activities and water-sport opportunities.
Each island is completely unique. For instance, small Harbour island is filled with luxurious hotels and holiday homes, compared to Andros which is in fact the largest of The Bahamas islands and remains virtually untouched – known for scuba diving, fly fishing, national forests and blue holes. Have a delicious lunch at Bahamian Cookin’ Kitchen for some local delicacy; the dishes made here are as close to homemade as you can get in a restaurant! This bustling spot is popular with the locals as well as cruise ship and yacht passengers. Curly’s Restaurant and Bar, located at Fish Fry Nassau, is highly recommended and loved by anyone who visits, serving mouth-watering melas and even better service.
Harbour island is best known for its stunning three and a half mile Pink Sands Beach, with inviting warm blue waters, offering phenomenal swimming, snorkelling and boating opportunities. This patch of paradise is often nicknamed ‘The Island of Friendly People’ due to the kind and welcoming locals of Dunmore Town. For a delicious meal with a sea view, head to Acquapazza at Harbour Island Marina for a selection of fresh Caribbean, Italian and seafood dishes – book a table for an early dinner to witness an incredible sunset view. Another excellent spot to eat is ‘Queen Conch’ in Dunmore Town, Harbour Island for some tasty and traditional Bahamian cuisine with a friendly and laid back atmosphere.
Halfway down the Exuma Island chain lies Staniel Cay, around 75 miles Southeast of Nassau. This island is one of the Exuma gems and an ideal place to anchor and explore your beautiful surroundings; the North side features gorgeous undisturbed beaches perfect for sunbathing and numerous hiking trails. One of its more popular attractions is the Exuma swimming pigs on nearby Big Major Cay who love having visitors! Another must-visit spot here on Staniel Cay is the James Bond famed ‘Thunderball Grotto’ featured in two Bond films and other Hollywood films; the cave is full of tropical fish.
There is no shortage of beaches on Eleuthera. Finding a favourite among the 165 sandy beaches isn’t always easy. The long narrow island is located at the convergence of the Atlantic Ocean and the Bight of Eleuthera. The shoreline on the west side of the island features calm and shallow waters great for swimming, and Elauthera’s eastern coast is home to rose-tinted sands with aquamarine waters – true bliss. The unspoiled pink sand at French Leave Beach stretches for a mile and is surrounded by rich greenery. Due to its accessible location near Governor’s Harbour, the French Leave is one of the most popular beaches among visitors. Tippy’s, a favourite waterside restaurant and bar, serves the freshest of seafood and local dishes like conch fritters and refreshing pina coladas. Try and visit Tippy’s on a Saturday for some upbeat live music while tucking into one of their dishes.
If you have fallen in love with these heavenly islands and want to explore them on a luxury yacht, get in touch with Lizzie to book your once in a lifetime charter and customised itinerary.
Lizzie – firstname.lastname@example.org