Start with a journey to the Bahamas, where serene beaches, blue waters, and lively culture await. Explore our guide to the best islands in the Bahamas, each offering a unique blend of natural beauty, thrilling activities, and unimaginable peace.
A Guide to the Best Islands in the Bahamas
In this guide, we uncover the best islands in the Bahamas, promising a journey into unparalleled beauty, vibrant cultures, and serene destinations. Whether you’re attracted to the famous Bahamas islands or exploring hidden secrets, our recommendations will guide you through the wide landscapes and memorable experiences that make these Bahama islands truly astounding.
Harbour Island & Eleuthera
Harbor Island undoubtedly is one of the best islands in the Bahamas, where pastel-colored houses and galley carts rule the streets. Bring a bike across and explore the stunning pink sands of the pink sand beach, a stunning stretch where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Caribbean Sea. In Eleuthera, dive into hidden coves like Surfers Cove or kayak through the lush green mangroves of Leon Levy Preserve. Most shops and restaurants in Harbor Island are open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, with some running until 8:00 pm during peak season.
- Flights from major US cities to Eleuthera can range from $300 to $800 depending on the season. Ferries cost $5 per person.
- Getting around is often free, bike travel costs $10 per day, and activities like pink-rated beaches and snorkeling exploring hidden coves cost nothing.
- Accommodation: Enjoy island luxuries at a boutique group like El Sands or Pink Sands Resort, costing $400 nightly. You can also find hidden gems like Daqua Eleuthera, an oceanfront bungalow starting at $300 per night. For a local experience, check out Penn Applefields, a collection of cottages priced under $200.
- Meals: Enjoy fresh lobster at The Denmore Club Enjoy a taste of the island at Yaquin Conch. For an oxmee meal, grab a conch salad from Daddy Joe’s. Sample the cuisine at The Fish Fry in Governor’s Harbor or enjoy the fresh ocean with a spectacular view at The Co Eleuthera Beach Restaurant. For a local hangout, head to Tipi for grilled conch and sky-high rum cocktails.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Discover the magic of Harbor Island’s pristine pink sands, perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and enjoying the island’s atmosphere. Explore the lively streets of the best islands in the Bahamas, unveil hidden coves by kayak, or relax on a pristine beach with a good book.
- Main Features: The main features of the place that make it one of the best islands in the Bahamas are pink sand beaches, glass windows, and Levee safe.
- Pro Tip: Do one more thing to help build on the island’s natural beauty, pack a reusable water bottle, and use single-use plastic.
Escape the crowds and discover the untouched beauty of Long Island. Trek through lush forests, relax on secluded beaches like Stella Maris or kayak through Gum Eleuthera. Not forgetting Dean’s Blue Hole, the world’s deepest blue hole makes Long Island the best Bahama Island for experienced divers. There isn’t a specific time to open the island, it’s good to check before you go.
- Cost: Roundtrip flights from major US cities can be found for $400-$600. Traveling via ferries from Nassau costs $70-$120 per person. Renting a bike costing $10 per day is also a good option to get around.
- Accommodation: Pitch your tent at Point Meadows or Stella Maris Point for $15 or look out for cozy accommodations for less than $100 in towns like Deadman’s or Clearances town. You can also choose an oceanfront home or a spacious option for a unique Bahama Islands experience.
- Meals: Pack groceries and drop by the beach at your resort or visit local spots and cafes serving flavorful Bahamian dishes like conch salad grilled fish.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Among the plethora of thrilling activities to experience, diving into the world’s largest deep blue hole stands out. Experienced divers can dive into its depths, while snorkelers can enjoy the surface.
- Main Features: Main features include Dean’s Blue Hole, Sea Acanthus, and Gum Eleuthera.
- ProTip: Long Island stands as one of the best islands in the Bahamas because it is heaven for nature lovers who prefer calm over chaos. This is not one of the Bahamas Islands suitable for partying, so take it slow and enjoy the natural beauty of the island.
Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park
Immerse yourself in an underwater wonderland at the Exuma Cays and the 176-square-mile Sea Park. Snorkel with playful reef sharks at Compass Cay or prepare to get awed at the mesmerizing Thunderball Grotto that is featured in a James Bond film. The park is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, some commercial properties, such as the Park Office and Mooring Field, operated for a limited time.
- Flights to Nau can start at around $300, then the names for the Exuma Keys can vary, but budget around $100-$200 per person, fuel costs apply.
- Being one of the best islands in the Bahamas, you will have to pay nominal fees for exploring Exuma Keys Land and Sea Park, such as park entrance fees are $10 per person per day or $30 per week, and camping fees are $12 per night, snorkeling gear rentals cost about $10 per day, and a kayak hack costs about $20 per day.
- Accommodation: Exuma Keys Land and Sea Park offers a variety of accommodation options including camping. Pitch your tent under the stars or take a boat ride to one of the swamp villages. There are several private islands and resorts in the park, which offer excellent accommodation and facilities.
- Meals: Pack your snacks and packets to keep costs down, especially on small islands with other food options. Several settlements like Steinel K and Little Exuma provide small stores to shop for various necessities. Some resorts and vacation hack-in packages included meal planning.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Apart from snorkeling, the park also offers other activities including scuba diving and kayaking. You can also travel long and watch 30 parties like the majestic osprey and the playful iguana.
- Main Features: The main features of the destination include snorkeling with Reef Sharks, Thunderball Grotto, and Stingray City.
- Pro Tip: Exuma Keys Land and Sea Park is a well-protected area. Be a responsible citizen and avoid polluting the location.
Bimini’s waters are famous for catering to several opportunities to hunt fish like marlin, sailfish, and tuna. Rent a fishing boat or join a guided tour for an unforgettable deep-sea adventure. Bimini also includes Bimini Road, a mysterious underwater reef that some believe is the remains of Atlantis. The island doesn’t have specific opening hours. Planning refreshing Bimini Road Tours via a car or hiring fishing charters, have specific schedules that it’s best to check before you go.
- Round-trip flights from major US cities can be found for $300-$500. From Miami, ferries range from $150-$250 per person.
- You can rent a golf cart for $40 per day or exploring on foot is a better option as this out of many Bahamas islands is small and very walkable.
- Accommodation: Find charming rooms for under $100 per night in Ellistown or Baileytown or pitch your tent under the stars at Bimini Sands Campground for about $15 per night.
- Meals: You can enjoy dinner on the beach at Bimini Big Game Club, Hemingway’s former haunt, or pack groceries shopped from local supermarkets to cook on your own.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Hiring a fishing boat for an exciting fish-hunting adventure is one of the coolest activities tourists like to experience.
- Main Features: The main features of this island include Deep Sea Fishing and a road trip on Bimini Road.
- Pro Tip: Bimini is all about laid-back island charm and outdoor adventure. Don’t expect glitzy resorts or nightlife. Embrace the local vibe, pack your swimsuit and fishing gear, and get ready to paint your Bimini experience in the turquoise waters and embrace the tranquility of one of the astounding Bahama islands.
Grand Bahama Island
Explore the diverse landscape of Grand Bahama Island, from pristine beaches like Gold Rock Beach to the Lucayan National Park, a paradise for bird watchers and nature lovers. Dive into the world’s longest underwater cave system, or visit Patterson National Park, a protected habitat for iguanas and sea turtles. The island doesn’t have specific opening hours, but some attractions, such as Lucayan National Park, have set opening and closing times, so check before you go.
- Round-trip flights from major US cities can be found for $300-$500. From Fort Lauderdale, ferries range from $100-$200 per person.
- Rent a bike for $10 per day or explore on foot as many beaches and attractions in the central areas are within walking distance. Public buses provide cheaper options.
- Accommodation: Bunk with fellow explorers near Tano Beach or Freeport. You can also find charming rooms at Lucaya for around $80 per night, perfect for couples or small groups.
- Meals: Local joints offer conch salad and Bahamian fish. Are you craving fresh seafood with a view? Enjoy dinner on the beach in the lively port of Lukia.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Immerse yourself in nature’s playground. Hike through lush jungles, kayak through mangrove channels, or snorkel in crystal-clear underwater caves.
- Main Features: Key features of the place include Lucayan National Park, the underwater cave system, and Patterson Park.
- Pro Tip: Grand Bahama Island being one of the best islands in the Bahamas has to offer something for everyone, from history buffs to nature lovers. Embrace the laid-back island vibe, pack your adventure gear and reusable water bottle, and get ready to paint your budget-friendly masterpiece on this diverse Bahamian gem.
Experience the fascination for Cat Island, known for its friendly locals and abundance of free-roaming wild cats. Here, goes shallow-water fishing in hidden coves like the Upper Bight, or relax on pristine beaches. The island’s slow pace and natural beauty provide freedom from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The island doesn’t have specific hours, but some attractions like the Grove Tour at Fernandez Bay have scheduled times, so check first.
- Cost: Roundtrip flights from major US cities can be found for $400-$600. From Nassau, the ferry person was from $100-$200. You can buy or pass the account for $10 per day. Taxis are available but expensive.
- Accommodation: Immerse yourself in nature at Eco-Lodge with quaint cabins or Tambo destinations like Fernandez Bay Village. You can also pretty much stay in Old Bight or New Bight for less than $100 a night, looking to find a real island that’s useful enough to explore with one or more people involved.
- Meals: Mistakes to the weekly fish fry – a lively meeting with grilled lobster. So, whether you’re grilling on the beach or looking for a charming cafe, Cat Island delivers delicious food.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Relax on secluded beaches like Bight Pond, charter kayaks to explore hidden coves, or simply watch the playful wildebeest frolic. Many activities here are free or very cheap.
- Main Features: The highlights of the places include wild cats, bone fishing, and old bait.
- Pro Tip: Cat Island stands among the best Bahamas Islands as it is all about slowing down and embracing the natural beauty of the Bahamas. Pack your sunscreen and buckle embark on a voyage to Cat Island.
Explore Andros Island, the largest landmass in the Bahamas. Dive into the underwater world of Blue Holes National Park, paddle through the depths of the North Andros Bight Reserve, and explore the depths of haunted habitats such as Stafford Creek. Andros Island offers a unique combination of charm and cultural immersion. The island itself doesn’t have a specific time, but there are times for some surprises like the Blue Holes, or the Andros Barrier Reef, so check beforehand.
- Cost: Roundtrip flights from major US cities can be found for $400-$600. From Nassau, the ferry person was from $100-$200.
- Accommodation: Pitch a tent along Conch Sound or Little Creek under the wires for about $15. Find options in Fresh Creek or Stafford for less than $100 a night.
- Meals: Whether you’re grilling on the beach or looking for a secluded cafe, Andros Island offers delicious food. Local roadside conch salad and spicy grilled lobster are served for around $1-$20.
- Traveler Favorite Activity: Dive into the world’s best place to visit in the Bahamas which owns the largest reef system, snorkeling tours, starting at $50, take you to Jayant Monga Gardens, teeming with colorful fish.
- Main Features: The main features of the place include Blue Holes National Park and North Andros Bight Reserve.
- Pro Tip:
- Andros Island is all about embracing the wild and wild. Beat the crowds and get ready for your memorable trip over the glorious Bahamian skies.
- Wrapping up the quest for the best places to visit in the Bahamas, it is proven that this place stands as a jewel in the crown of tropical paradises. Whether you seek the stunning ambiance of Nassau, the serene beauty of the Exuma Cays, or the untouched landscapes of Andros, the best places to go in the Bahamas offer a plethora of valuable experiences.
- The best islands in the Bahamas cater to a variety of preferences. With a diverse range of landscapes, from pristine beaches to lush green scenics, each island awaits to be explored. The best Bahamas islands provide a spot for relaxation, adventure, and the creation of endless memories. So, buckle up to embark on captivating destinations nestled within the Bahama Islands.
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