Visiting Nassau For The Day
I am a born, bred, ga dead, Bahamian and I am always happy to welcome of anyone who wants to visit my beloved Bahamaland. Although I am from Grand Bahama, I have lived in Nassau for about 4 years. Many of my friends and family, from abroad, often have questions about travelling to Nassau, so I thought I’d see if I could offer some assistance.
I’ll break this series into multiple parts to keep it sort.
Cruise ship passengers usually only get a few short hours in Nassau. And, many times unknowing visitors can get sucked into tourist traps or spend their entire time wandering around Bay Street. Junkanoo Beach is dandy and all, but there is so much more to do in those short hours. I would recommend checking out the Bay Street Straw Market and grabbing some Sky Juice aka Gully Wash from one of the stalls near the cruise ship, but don’t let this be your final stop. Here are a few options for every budget.
Here are just a FEW of your options.
PHOTO: Atlantis Aquarium
You can get to Paradise Island via a ferry/water taxi from Bay Street for about $4, or you can catch a taxi. The water taxi is the cheaper option, but its takes slightly longer.
Cabbage Beach – Cabbage Beach is stunning and has amazing powder-fine sand. If you are coming to the Bahamas for the beautiful beaches, this is definitely my choice. (And, it is MUCH nicer than the beach near the cruise ship that has much more traffic.)
Atlantis – Atlantis is huge, and pricey. But, feel free to go and get your big-chair photo. You know you want to.
While at Atlantis, you may want to check out the Aquaventure Water Park and the Atlantis Aquarium. At $161 per person, it is expensive, but it is fun! If this is your chosen activity, schedule as much time as possible to enjoy it.
Of course, there are also lots of water sports etc. available on Paradise Island and you can swim with the dolphins etc. It is up to you. Paradise Island is obviously tourist friendly, so this may not be a great place to soak up Bahamian culture.
National Art Gallery
The National Art Gallery is about a 10-minute walk from Bay Street. There are some beautiful works of art there, and at $10 per person, it is worth the visit.
Da Fry aka Arawak Cay
Arawak Cay is where you go for no-frills Bahamian food. There are dozens of restaurants and food stalls here, so you have lots of options. Da fry started out as just a few food stalls and it grew from there. It is definitely not fancy, but this is a good stop to get traditional Bahamian food. I really enjoy Drifters or Candies for conch salad, and you can get a yummy and inexpensive daiquiri from Twin Brothers. I would recommend taking a taxi to get to Da Fry.
Fort Charlotte is in the same area as Arawak Cay, on the opposite side of the street. (There is also a nice fruit stand nearby.) It is one of the Bahamas’s historical sites, and is good for a quick tour, which costs about $5-7 per person.
Bahamas Food Tour
This tour is also excellent for a taste of Bahamian food. It starts at 11:30am and last about 3 hours. At $69 per person, it is not cheap, but it is worth it.
If you have a goof chunk of time, I would recommend taking a day trip. I have had great experiences with Stuart’s Cove. You can even get to see the underwater sculptures!
I hope this was helpful. These are just a few options for a single day or a few hours in Nassau.
Next up…. Everything You Need About Planning A Trip to Nassau
One tip I would give every traveller is to get the biggest bang for your vacation buck by traveller when major events are happening on the island. My top choices are below.
1. New Year’s Day Junkanoo & Boxing Day Junkanoo Parades are bucket list worthy and takes place on January 1 and December 26, respectively.
2. Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival takes place in May.
3. International Food Festival happens every October.
4. Rum Fest takes place in February.
5. Jollification usually happens sometime in November.