The Bahamas is such an interesting place to visit – with 16 main islands and some 3,000 islets, cays and coral reefs, it’s no surprise there’s such a multitude of exciting things to do during your stay. We’ve put together a list of the top ten best places to see whether you’re looking for fun-filled adventures, or for more relaxed activities, there’s something for everyone.
- Dean’s Blue Hole on Long Island
Dean’s Blue Hole is one of the many breath-taking diving spaces available to be explored. The world’s deepest blue hole plunges 663ft below sea level and 250ft wide, and definitely one for the brave of heart. Found on Long Island, it’s one of the many vast underwater caverns formed through rising sea levels causing the ceilings to collapse, creating the dreamlike adventure divers can enjoy today. There is a vibrant variety of sea creatures, ranging from turtles, seahorses, rays and colourful, tropical fish. If that sounds like it floats your boat, take the dive into the deep.
2. Glass Window Bridge – Eleuthera
Shaped like a praying mantis, the island of Eleuthera, once renowned for its lush pineapple plantations, is a natural beauty. If you’re a fan of a spectacular view, the ‘glass window bridge’ is the one for you, offering the magnificent contrast of the deep blue Atlantic Ocean on one side, and the dreamy, turquoise colours of the Caribbean Sea on the other. It is a truly amazing sight to see.
Junkanoo Festival is an exotic blend of art, culture, music, and local and national entertainers, uniting together in the form of a parade of incredibly colourful handcrafted costumes and rhythmic Bahamian beats.
Traditionally the festivities take place over Christmas and New Year, but 2015 welcomed an extravagant new mix of events with the Junkanoo Carnival in early May, showcasing the imaginative musical fusion of the Bahamian musicians. June and July offers Junkanoo Summer with a range of Junkanoo themed activities to enjoy.
Many of the celebrations take place on Nassau and Grand Bahama Island, but the atmosphere can also be enjoyed across many of the other islands.
If that wasn’t enough already, there’s even something especially for the kids, Junior Junkanoo is a fabulous extension of the Junkanoo custom. In mid-December the Junkanoo prodigies of the future lend their hand in the flamboyant parades, assisting in the planning and organisation, making it a truly wonderful experience for all. The culture of Junkanoo ensures a warm welcome to The Bahamas and a sure-fire highlight of any trip.
4. Swimming pigs
One of the true delights of The Bahamas can be found on Big Major’s Cay, now known as ‘Pig Island’. Found in The Exumas, Pig Island is uninhabited by humans, but populated by some very friendly swimming pigs. You’ll be able to join them swimming around in the clear blue waters enjoying the high life in luxurious paradise.
Legend has it the pigs were dropped off by sailors who planned to come back for let’s say… a sizzling good time. Luckily enough, they never returned, and the pigs survived from excess food dumped by passing ships, and today from locals and tourists. If you’re visiting The Bahamas, a visit to Pig Beach is definitely an activity for your itinerary.
5. Lagoons at Atlantis Paradise Island
If you’re looking for an all-round adventure of discovery whilst enjoying the luxury of the Atlantis Paradise Island, the twelve lagoons are a must-see.
The famous Mayan Temple Lagoon allows you to whizz through the shark pool from the Leap of Faith water slide, thankfully via a viewing tunnel through the magnificent world of Hammerhead sharks, barracudas, Caribbean Reef sharks, and many more. For a tranquil, relaxing time float along the quarter-mile Lazy River. Or dive into The Current, where you are propelled along a mile-long river in an inner tube via water escalators, rolling waves and extreme rapids powered by master blaster technology. Unlike traditional water slides that require you to exit the water and climb back to the start, you never have to leave The Current as you are propelled back up the slide tower via water conveyors.
If that isn’t breath-taking enough, take a tour of The Dig and the Ruins Lagoon, where you can embark on a journey through history. Discover the reimagined lost city of Atlantis through underwater tunnels and streets. It’ll be an experience hard to forget.
6. Sunset over the water at Tiamo Resort, Andros Island
If you’re lucky enough to stay at the Tiamo Resort on Andros Island, be prepared for an astonishing view of the Bahamian sunset each evening. For optimal viewing, be sure to stay in one of the two petite Sunset Rooms which are located in ideal sunset-viewing position located on the oceanfront, with the beach as your doorstep. It’s a sight that will definitely stay with you long after your holiday draws to a close.
7. The pink sands of Eleuthera & Harbour Island
Harbour Island is renowned for its pale pink sand beaches, a magical stretch of sand and sea for a relaxing day or evening. The visible pink sheen is caused by microscopic shelled single cell organisms known as Foraminifera, which have bright pink or red shells and live on the underside of reefs on the sea floor. As they get washed up along with the waves, they create the calming, otherworldly pink tinge that can be seen lapping the shore. There are pink sand beaches on Eleuthera also and it is also popular with honeymooners and groups who enjoy horseback riding along the beach. http://www.oceanview242.com/
Eleuthera & Harbour Island are ideal for couples and families alike, and the magical experience can be reached on a day trip ferry from Nassau Paradise Island.
8. Hope Town on Elbow
Feel like you’re stepping back in time into the old Bahamas with a visit to Hope Town on Elbow Cay situated in The Abacos chain of islands. Enjoy the amazing pastel coloured clapboard houses of this picture perfect island where you’ll be able to enjoy the serenity and local culture of The Abacos right on your doorstep. Or take a ride in the island’s only form of transportation, a golf cart, to find your own secluded beaches and experience the water activities or hop across the harbour by boat to visit the still manned Elbow Cay Lighthouse.
9. Flamingos on Inagua island
Great Inagua Island is home to only 1,000 Bahamians, so you’ll be forgiven for thinking there’s nothing special about it. It’s only when you discover that 80,000 West Indian flamingos also call this place home that you begin to discover the magic. It’s well worth the visit to see the quirky rituals of the strutting sea of pink flamingos. Along with the flamingos, birding enthusiasts will find over 140 species of native and migratory birds, making Inagua the Birdwatching Capital of The Bahamas. The island is also home to three national parks/reserves, as well as one of three remaining kerosene-burning, hand-cranked lighthouses in The Bahamas. If ecotourism is your forte, Inagua is your destination.
The island is accessible by scheduled flight from Nassau, three times a week and by special charter or by boat from other islands.
10. The Iguanas on Allen Cay, Exuma
If scaly, four-legged reptiles are your type of thing, the iguanas found on Allen Cay are a must see. Accessible only by available powerboat trips to The Exumas, it can pull right up to the beach where you can interact and feed the iguanas that have grown accustomed to the frequent visitors to the Cay. If this sounds like your piece of Bahamian luxury, be sure to give it a visit.
There we have it, our list of the top ten sights to see on your adventure to The Islands Of The Bahamas. We hope you enjoy a taste of paradise and have unforgettable experiences.