Blessed with balmy weather, postcard-perfect scenery and azure waters, the Bahamas is a paradisiacal place to go sailing. The archipelago is made up of around 700 islands and more than 2,000 cays. Without a boat, it’s impossible to see it in all its glory. Here, Culture Trip reveals why you should book a sailing holiday around the Bahamas.
Never sailed before? Don’t worry. Culture Trip’s eight-day sailing adventure around the Bahamas includes a fully qualified skipper and crew, so you can kick back on deck and relax.
Soak up the winter sun
Looking for somewhere to escape those cold Northern Hemisphere winters? The Caribbean serves up great temperatures all year round, but the best time to go to the Bahamas is from November through to April, as there’s less rain. Sailing through the region will give you the perfect opportunity to top up your tan. Be sure to stock up on sunscreen and make use of the bimini (lightweight deck cover), since the wind can disguise the sun’s wrath. Avoid hurricane season in the Bahamas, which is from June to November.
Feel like you’re in your own nature documentary while sailing through the Bahamas, with an abundance of wildlife to see in crystal-clear waters along the way. The string of islands is home to several species of dolphin, including the Atlantic spotted and the bottlenose. The Bahamas is also considered one of the best places in the world to dive with sharks: tigers, hammerheads and oceanic whitetips are among the pack. Some of the best spots for diving include Exuma Cays, Grand Bahama Island and Eleuthera Island.
Get prime access to the swimming pigs
The swimming pigs on Big Major Cay, also known as Pig Beach, in the Exumas, have become one of the prime attractions in the Bahamas. The buoyant hogs certainly make for an unusual sight. Arriving on your own private boat means you’ll be able to see these characterful creatures from a different perspective and tip up at the location before the crowds descend.
Access pristine beaches
If you’re looking for the ultimate Instagrammable beach, then the Bahamas is the place to be, with white sands fringing the littering of islands and cays. Sailing the Bahamas means you can dip into these heavenly spots at your leisure. If you’ve stopped at a more remote beach with no facilities, simply hop back to the boat for supplies or rustle up a picnic.
Sip cocktails in top beach bars
Bar-hopping by boat is surely the way to go in the Bahamas, with your home-away-from-home just a short tender away. Recommendations include Nipper’s Beach Bar and Grill on Great Guana Cay for its party vibe and punchy cocktails, and Chat ‘N’ Chill on Stocking Island, which opened its doors in 1998 specifically for sailors, and whose rules stipulate “no shoes allowed.”
Dock in top marinas and yacht clubs
The Bahamas boasts some of the best marinas and yacht clubs in the Caribbean, with state-of-the-art facilities and exceptional service. Nassau Yacht Club was awarded Platinum status for 2021 by the Club Leaders Forum and hailed as one of the most exclusive yacht clubs in the world. The club, which was founded in 1931, overlooks the eastern part of Nassau Harbour and Montagu Bay. If you are a YCA (Yachting Club of America) member or a member of a reciprocating yacht club, you can gain access. Alternatively, there are dozens of world-class marinas in the Bahamas to choose from.
Unwind in a tropical paradise
Relaxation is the word of the day in the Bahamas; everything runs on island time. After touching down on the archipelago, you’ll quickly feel the strains of everyday life wash away. Sailing the Bahamas only enhances this feeling. After all, there’s nothing more soothing than being on the water, with the sound of the ocean lapping against the hull to lull you to sleep. You’ll quickly forget what day it is.
Sample local cuisine
As you’re cruising the Bahamas, you’ll have the opportunity to dip into a spread of beachside restaurants to taste the delicious local cuisine. It might just inspire you to try your hand at rustling up a recipe or two. Must-try dishes during your sailing excursion include spiny lobster from Anegada, rum cake, and fried plantain, which makes for an ideal onboard snack.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.