BareboatSailing-TheExumas travel blog

Planning a trip to the Bahamas?

Consider visiting the smaller Out Islands instead of the more populated ones. Each one has its own unique features. Or rent a vacation home in one of the Marinas' gated communities for a secluded getaway.

If time or conditions dictate staying on New Providence, there are some less tourist-y experiences to be found outside of the downtown and Paradise Island areas.

- a meal "under the bridge", interacting with local conch and vegetable vendors

- a peek into the early lives of Lucayan, Loyalist and African slaves who once lived on New Providence, followed by a snorkel in the Sir Nicholas Nuttall Underwater Sculpture Garden and around the underwater movie props at Jaws Beach -- all in the Clifton Heritage National Park

- bird-watching at Harrold and Wilson Ponds or Bonefish Pond National Parks

- a walk through a preserved old-growth tropical habitat in the Primeval Forest N.P.

- rides on local buses to enjoy the music, see the neighbourhoods and maybe talk to real Bahamians one-to-one (rather than tourist-to-vendor)

Plan at least one underwater and one open water activity.

Allow enough slack time in the schedule to linger; to watch and listen to the surge of life in each place.

Don't assume the weather will be good every day. Outdoor activities dependent on good conditions should be scheduled on the first suitable day. Leave the tours of the brewery, the rum distillery, the forts, the museums, etc. for the bad-weather days.

NOTE: If you are squeamish about "ambience" or don't care to see the gritty aspect of local life, it is best to stay in the tourist areas where garbage and other unsightly items are kept hidden.

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