The Bahamas is a tropical destination that many people dream of visiting. The archipelago is well known for its warm beaches and amazing marine wildlife, but it has much more to offer. Here is a list of some of the best ways to make the most of your time here.
The first decision you will have to make is where to stay – and you can’t go much wrong with Atlantis. This place is not just a resort; it’s also a water park and a marine habitat. While staying here you will have access to a variety of water slides in an area over 140 acres (57 hectares). On top of that, it is also the world’s largest open-air marine habitat, housing over 50,000 marine animals in 15 exhibit lagoons. Other notable attractions are an oceanside golf course, a spa and yacht and fishing charters.
Ride a banana boat, parasail or snorkel on your trip to The Bahamas. One of the most amazing features of the archipelago are its coral reefs, which are home to hundreds of different fish species – snorkeling will give you an opportunity to get within reaching distance of all of the animals. Fortunately for visitors, there are several companies that combine all of these into a convenient package. They will provide you with the equipment, transportation and supervise you to make sure you’re safe the whole time.
Try a conch salad
Conch salad is the most famous dish in The Bahamas. It is is made from a marine mollusc that lives inside a large spiral shell, while the salad comprises the meat inside the shell – cut up and served with a mix of vegetables and seasonings. You should definitely try this dish before leaving the island; the best version can be found at Arawak Cay Fish Fry.
The idea of piracy has been popularized by movie series such as Pirates of the Caribbean, but it was in fact a very real period in Caribbean history. The Golden Age of Piracy lasted from about 1690 to 1720, and Nassau, the capital of The Bahamas, hosted the largest concentration of pirates of any Caribbean island. Visitors can discover how pirates were executed, see the type of weapons they used and learn about various myths and legends.
When in The Bahamas, you have to try conch fritters – and The Cricket Club Restaurant & Pub serves up the best in the country. It’s also a great place for sports fans, as it live-streams up to four different major sporting events at a time. It is open seven days a week, from early morning until the last event has ended. The balcony overlooks a cricket pitch, and on Saturdays and Sundays you can watch the local team play, with matches lasting all day.
Ardastra Gardens, Zoo & Conservation Centre features a variety of animals that are indigenous to The Bahamas, with the most famous being the national bird, the flamingo. To see the animal in all its majesty, go see the Marching Flamingoes – a performance that takes place daily at 10.30, 14.15 and 16.00.
This is the third-largest barrier reef in the world and stretches for over 190 miles (306 kilometers). Here, you can find a wide variety of fish, sharks, turtles, rays, eels and much more. The reef begins about 8ft (2.4m) off of the east coast of Andros, making it a very accessible snorkeling spot for tourists.
The Bahamas has one of the most diverse underwater cave systems in the world, filled with marine life such as sponges, lobsters, crabs and shrimps. The network consists of submerged caves, as well as blue holes, which are extremely large marine sinkholes and can go as deep as 354ft (108m). Bahamas Underground offers training and guide services for those interested.
These recommendations were updated on January 13, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.