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The Most Beautiful Beaches in the Bahamas

Home to azure blue waters and pastel pink sands, the Bahamas are known for its wonderful coastline
Home to azure blue waters and pastel pink sands, the Bahamas are known for its wonderful coastline | © Jon Arnold Images Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Celia Topping
28 October 2021
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From the candy floss-coloured Pink Sands Beach to renowned Pig Beach, the Bahamas are home to miles of tropical coastline. In a country boasting 700 islands and over 2,000 cays – pronounced “keys” – it’s not surprising that the best way to reach most of its best beaches is by boat. Or, preferably your own private yacht, where you can cruise between the sandy coves of Eleuthera to the beach bars outside Nassau and beyond. Grab your flip flops and make a beeline for one of Culture Trip’s top picks, backed by the azure Caribbean Sea.

Escape the crowds by chartering a yacht with SamBoat to access these beaches.

Pig Beach, Big Major Cay

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The famous swimming pigs (feral pigs) of the Bahamas living in an uninhabited island
© Giongi63 / Alamy Stock Photo
Forget swimming with dolphins, how about swimming with pigs? For one of the more unusual beaches in the Bahamas, you’ll need to fly 100mi (160km) south of Nassau, to the Exuma Cays. A short boat ride from Staniel Cay will bring you to Big Major Cay, with some of the cutest inhabitants around. It’s most likely the pigs arrived here because they were too smelly to reside with their owners on a nearby cay – but it certainly doesn’t keep tourists at bay.

Bita Bay Beach, Green Turtle Cay

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The Ocean Beach on Bita Bay on Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas
© Richard Ellis / Alamy Stock Photo
This cay is located in the Abaco Islands in the northern Bahamas and is home to a number of fantastic beaches. Our favourite is Bita Bay, favoured by families because of its shallow, calm waters, protected from the northern and western winds. Beginner snorkelers can explore two small reefs, right off the shore. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a turtle.

Whiteland Beach, Rock Sound

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Drive down a narrow sandy track and you’ll find one of the best beaches on Eleuthera – it’s a fairly remote stretch of white sand, but the beauty lies in its lack of crowds. On the way back, make sure you visit Ocean Hole, a circular water hole with 15ft (4.5m) cliffs to jump off – plus a handy ladder to get out again. The hole is teeming with angelfish, parrotfish and snapper – who will virtually eat out of your hands if you bring food.

Tahiti Beach, Elbow Cay

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This delightful cay is full of some of the friendliest locals you’ll meet on your travels. The candy cane striped lighthouse and quaint Caribbean coloured houses of Hope Town alone are a reason to make the trip – which is somewhat off the regular Bahamian beaten path. And, of course, the beaches are world-class. Tahiti Beach is hidden away on the southwestern tip of the island and, for this reason, is never crowded. Wade out to Thirsty Cuda’s boat bar and the staff will come and find you on the beach to deliver your drink.

Sandpiper Beach, Treasure Cay

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The Beach at Treasure Cay in the Bahamas
© Jon Arnold Images Ltd / Alamy Stock Photo
Although you may not find the buried kind, the Bahamian island of Abaco is home to the precious beauty of Treasure Cay. With 3mi (4.8km) of white sand to lay your towel on, you’ll always find a spot to sunbathe – especially on Sandpiper Beach at the eastern end. It’s hard to believe you’re only 200mi (321km) from Florida as you relax into the Caribbean pace of life. Rent a golf cart or motorboat to go exploring – or just relax in the knowledge that as far as beaches go, you’re at one of the Bahamas’ gems.

Guana Cay Beach, Great Guana Cay

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Sunset Beach at Great Guana Cay in the Bahamas, West Indies
© Robert Harding / Alamy Stock Photo
This small island is one of the least developed in the Bahamas, so if it’s peace and quiet you’re looking for, add Great Guana to your list. Stroll along miles of almost pink sand of Guana Cay Beach, best enjoyed just before sunset. Ready for a drink? Grab a Guana Grabber – the eponymous cocktail from Grabbers Bed, Bar and Grill, first mixed here in the 1960s. If you’re feeling more sociable, head to Nippers beach bar and you’ll be dancing on the tables in no time.

Manjack Cay

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At the north end of this cay in the Abaco islands, you’ll find a unique little bay where you can feed the marine wildlife. For those brave enough to swim with stingrays and – mostly – harmless nurse sharks, you’ll have an experience to remember. This pretty, uninhabited cay is great for spearfishing lobster, too. We recommend you cook up lunch in the little picnic area near the beach – and wash it down with a cold beer or chilled rum punch, of course.

Cable Beach, Nassau

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Deck chairs along Cable Beach on Nassau, in the Bahamas
© Olga Kolos / Alamy Stock Photo
For some downtime in Nassau – the capital city of the Bahamas – head west in a jitney and jump off at Goodman’s Bay. From here, it’s a short walk to Cable Beach and the resorts here. Grab a plate of conch fritters and a beer from one of the bars and enjoy the soft sand and clear blue waters. Jet skiing is a popular pastime here and there’s a multitude of other watersports to enjoy, too – before trying your luck at the casino.

Gold Rock Beach, Grand Bahama

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Gold Rock Beach on Grand Bahama Island
© Phil Friar Photography / Alamy Stock Photo
This beach is part of the Lucayan National Park on Grand Bahama Island and is by far its prettiest beach. Access the beach on a boardwalk crossing over a marshy area and you’ll be rewarded with beautiful sand and aquamarine water. After a sweltering trek through the jungle park, a dip in the water here is a welcome relief. It’s not the best place for snorkelling – but with racoons and coconuts for company, you won’t really mind.

Pink Sands Beach, Harbour Island

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The peaceful Pink Sands Beach on Harbour Island in the Bahamas
© Dylan Garcia Photography / Alamy Stock Photo
We’ve saved the best ‘til last, as this stunning beach on Harbour Island is possibly the most beautiful in the country. The incredible light pink hue of the sand is a result of microscopic organism, foraminifera’s crushed red shell, mixing with finely ground coral and shells – to create candy floss coloured sand as soft as talcum powder. The pink sand, turquoise ocean and blue skies triumvirate have to be seen to be truly believed. At sunset, the beach becomes a fiery strip beneath the last embers of the glowing day – don’t forget your camera, as you won’t need any filters.

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