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bulletA Cat Island Bahamas Vacation
bulletHarbour Island Bahamas - Best Kept Secret
bulletBahamas Bimini Island - A Paradise With Endless Beauty and Tranquility
bulletThe Many Wonders of Flamingo Bay
bulletBahamas Vacation - How to Choose an Island
bulletBeach Babes in the Bahamas
bulletSwimming with Dolphins in Great Exuma

 

 

 

 

A Cat Island Bahamas Vacation
By Pete Marciulonis

The Hermitage is a bit of an historical oddity, fascinating and strange. The hike up to see this religious site will take visitors through small villages along beautiful trails, full of island flora and fauna. It is located at the top of Mt. Alvernia, which is 206 feet above the sea and the highest point in the Bahamas.

The Hermitage itself is made from the limestone of the cliffs, with each piece painstakingly extracted, shaped and set by hand by the Canadian mule-skinner turned Anglican turned Roman Catholic priest known as Father Jerome. The Father built the structure to scale, designed it to fit his rather diminutive form. Beloved by the island people, the priest passed away in 1956 after reaching the ripe age of 80.

Other historical sites include an Arawak cave, found at Columbus point, and plantation ruins, left over from the islands efforts at joining the worlds cotton growers. Deveaux mansion was once the residence of Andrew Deveaux of the US Navy, who participated in the 1873 battles to get Nassau back from Spain. Another well known ruins is the remains of the Ambrister plantation, near Port Howe.

For those interested in water sports, the Cat Island Dive Center is the place to contact. They operate out of the Greenwood Beach Resort and have a variety of diving and snorkeling packages available, and there are many fine areas to explore, offering a wealth of marine life and fascinating geological formations. They also have water sport equipment to rent.

Cat Island is the sixth largest island in the Bahamas, and boasts extraordinary beaches. There are literally miles and miles of virtually undisturbed beaches, where swimming and relaxing can be done in near complete privacy.

Fine meals can be had at several locations on Cat Island. Hawk's Nest Resort and Marina serves a variety of dishes, but among the best are the fresh, grilled fish and the roasted rack of lamb. Fernandez Bay Village is the place to go for creative and delicious native dishes, served either in the dining room or a patio table by the beach. Greenwood Beach Resort's Bahaman cuisine is complemented by their marvelous breads, which are baked every day.

Cat Island is an excellent choice for vacationers who are seeking a natural beach experience, and enjoy a peaceful and very laid-back atmosphere. The island can be explored at a leisurely pace, which is a much better way to enjoy the local flora and fauna, as well as to enjoy the local culture. Because it is so much smaller in population than many of the other islands, it's easier to get a real feel for the people and their way of life. Cat Island is an interesting place that will make a lasting impression on its guests.

About the Author

Pete Marciulonis

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Pete_Marciulonis

 

 

Harbour Island Bahamas - Best Kept Secret
By Perry Joseph

Promise not to tell? One of the best kept secrets of the Bahamas is Harbour Island. This romantic little island, known as "Briland" by its inhabitants, is a short hop from the States. A one hour flight from Florida to North Eleuthera followed by a brief cab and water taxi ride gets you to this Bahamas gem in a hurry.

Harbour Island is less than 4 miles long and a 1/2 mile wide. Its long wide beach is famous for its hard-packed pale pink sand. The likes of Fodors and Conde Nast rate it as one of the "best Bahamas beaches." The beach, combined with some great restaurants, hotels and vacation home rentals, makes Harbour Island a destination of choice amongst Bahamas enthusiasts. It's no surprise to find a few "rich and famous" there -- they know they won't be hounded.

Central to Harbour island is Dunmore Town. This quaint and friendly community features old Victorian structures adorned with Bahama's colorful pastel paint schemes. No high rise hotels, fast food or traffic jams on this island!

Golf cart rentals are the transportation of choice. Swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, and just plain walking the beach are some of the popular activities. To be sure, Harbour Island is not known for its shopping and night life nor is there any gambling. If you seek large crowds, wild parties or theme park rides, this is not your destination.

Harbour Island's weather is delightful; especially during late Winter and Spring when there is little chance of rain. Ocean breezes take any edge off of moderately warm temperatures ranging from the 70s to 80s during the day and late 60s at night. Air conditioning during season is unnecessary -- ceiling fans are adequate. Nothing beats falling asleep to the sounds of the ocean through an open window.

Dining out is casual. The better restaurants include Pink Sands Hotel, Coral Sands, The Landing, Rock House, Romora Bay Club and Harbour Lounge. For local fare, Ma Ruby's should not be missed. And there are more... Part of the pleasure of exploring the island is checking out the restaurants. When compared to other Bahamian islands, Harbour Island has one of the best selections of restaurants -- all within close proximity to any place you stay.

On the ocean side, hotels include Pink Sands Hotel, Coral Sands Hotel and Dunmore Beach Club. On the bay side, it's The Landing Inn and the Rock House. On a budget? There are other hotels to choose from. Visiting Harbour Island is not cheap, but if it was, then everybody would be there, right?

Harbour Island's vacation home rentals and villas are numerous. Location and size come at a price. If you desire "beachfront", the better locations are usually on the north and south along the east coast. If you want to save a little, there are some nice rentals in Dunmore Town and others located in the interior of the island. The beach is always minutes away.

Look for home rentals on the internet offering more than a few photos so you know what to expect. A number of rentals are handled by rental or real estate agents who may not provide much in the way of details, descriptions, map locations or photos. Owners who care about promoting their home rental typically have independent web sites and accept e-mail inquiries directly.

The better house rentals on Harbour Island are booked nearly a year in advance of prime season. Those who want the best make early reservations -- many are repeat customers. You can also take a "standby" position on a number of rentals in hopes someone cancels. Ask for referrals and double check policies for deposits and refunds.

If you seek a memorable and relaxed Bahamas vacation coupled with sun, sea, great food and a romantic beachfront that will knock your eyes out, consider Harbour Island. See you on the beach!

Copyright 2004 Perry Joseph

About the Author

Perry Joseph is a freelance writer, website developer and frequent visitor to the Bahamas. For more information on Harbour Island, visit his website: Harbour Island Bahamas

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Perry_Joseph

 

 

 

Bahamas Bimini Island - A Paradise With Endless Beauty and Tranquility
By Sanjay Kak

The Bimini Island of Bahamas is closest island to America and is a very popular destination for Americans. The Bimini Island is 40 nautical miles from Miami, Florida and provides perfect getaway to popular Bimini Island for vacation. The Bimini Island is made of chain of islands, the largest islands being north and south Bimini.

The Bimini island is couple of hundred feet wide and couple of miles long providing most sparkling crystal clear water and visibility in underwater over 80-100 feet. The island of Bimini is between the Great Bahama bank and the Gulf Stream, surrounded with many cays giving view of sparkling water. The island was discovered by Ponce De Leon in early 1500. The island is also world famous for sport fishing, numerous games are organized in this island for locals and tourist.

The two major highway are King and Queen highway. The north Bimini spread into seven miles long which is approximately 11 kilometers and two hundred ten meter wide. The main town on north Bimini is Alice Town, which hosts numerous shops, bars and restaurants around King's Highway. The south is known for Biological Field Station a extension of University of Miami studying marine ecosystems. The field station is locally known as Shark Lab. In compare to north Bimini the south offers quite setting for those looking spiritual connection. There is small airport on south Bimini to connect with other island and connection to outside world. Popular Activities in Bimini Island are Fishing, Scuba diving, Boating, and Snorkeling.

Facts about Bimini Island

bulletPopular for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling.
bulletIn 1926 a ship named "SS Sapona" went down in water, the top part of ship is visible from air and bottom half is submerged. This site is used by Scuba divers to discover the submerged ship and snjoy scuba diving experience.
bulletPart of wood wreckage from SS Sapona was used in building the Angler Hotel on north Bimini.
bulletMany songs filmed on Bimini, the popular one are "I Love You" Bimini.
bulletThe last film scene in "The Silence of Lamb" was filmed on north Bimini.
bulletThe 500 pound Blue Marlin was caught off the coast on Bimini Island.
bulletFamous for big fishing events.
bulletBimini (Bi-mini) also means Mother of many water.

How to get in Bimini Island

The new airport is in south Bimini, tourist can take TAXI or private cars from airport to nearest ferry. The time taken by ferry from south Bimini to north Bimini is five minutes, where the major attraction is. You can reach to Bimini, either by Sea plane, air plane or by boats, if you are adventurous take sea route.

The best way to explore Bimini is either on foot, bicycle or golf cart. That is all you need to explore north Bimini. While you can eat, shop and drink around King's highway where most of shops are located and then head to Queens highway where most of the beaches are. Best time to visit Bimini is April to July, when seas are calm and it is perfect for fishing and scuba diving. Most of the tourist visit during this period.

Bahamas - A Paradise with breathtaking beaches.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Sanjay_Kak

 

 

The Many Wonders of Flamingo Bay
By Fred Coolridge

Great Exuma Bahamas has earned its remarkable reputation by being one of the most desirable vacation destinations in the world. Discriminating travelers choose Great Exuma for its friendly people and stunning natural beauty. The island may be small but there are many beautiful sights to see, one of which is the impressive Flamingo Bay.

Located just 2 miles south of George Town, Flamingo Bay is a scenic paradise. Boasting one of the most beautiful beaches on the island, the bay is a quiet enclave, home to only a select number of luxurious villas. A spectacular coral reef, approximately one mile out, prevents breaking waves and allows you to walk on a sandy ocean floor and swim in calm waters.

Unlike many Caribbean destinations, Flamingo Bay is not densely populated and does not play host to an endless number of tourists. Life in and around the bay is serene and relaxed, yet there is still much one can do. There is a view of Stocking Island which can be accessed by kayak or other boat. Fishing enthusiasts can enjoy the excellent bonefishing nearby. If a game of golf is more your speed, a visit to the Greg Norman golf course is in order. Located up the coast at Emerald Bay and designed by the golf legend himself, this 18-hole championship course is one of the best ocean-side courses in the world. And, even if you are not an avid boater, it is impossible to remain unimpressed by the Bay’s marina. Stroll around and marvel at the stunning vessels or hop aboard one for the day.

For those with refined taste, George Town is only one half mile up the coast. Although the February Point restaurant in Flamingo Bay is definitely worth a visit, George Town also offers several restaurants that serve local specialties. George Town also has a number of specialty shops, a bank, a gas station, scuba shops, day-trip planners, bicycle rentals, grocery stores and everything to satisfy your needs and more.

Flamingo Bay has a variety of attractions that appeal to all tastes. Enjoy fine dining, world-class sport, upscale shopping and unparalleled natural beauty - everything you need for your dream holiday!

About the Author

Fred Coolridge is the content manager and author for the website Great Exuma Island, Bahamas - http://www.exumabahamas.org.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Fred_Coolridge

 

Bahamas Vacation - How to Choose an Island
By Matthew Simon

Thinking about a vacation in the Bahamas but don't know which island to visit? This article will introduce you to each island's unique character and the mysteries and adventures it has to offer.

New Providence Island is home to Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas and by far its largest city. Nassau was first settled in the 1600's and is rich with history, including plenty of genuine pirates. Nassau has some beautiful colonial architecture, and on the outskirts, a strip of high-rise hotels and casinos along Cable Beach. Paradise Island, connected to New Providence by a bridge, is home to the gargantuan Atlantis resort with its shark pools and water slides. New Providence offers golf, tennis, diving, fishing charters, gambling, night life, sight-seeing, and cultural activities.

Half a century ago, Grand Bahama Island, where Freeport is located, was almost uninhabited. Today, its port is one of the largest in the hemisphere, and the city of 50,000 is well known as a resort and cruise-ship destination. The tourism center is Port Lucaya, which features a large marina, high-rise beach resorts, shopping, and dining. Unlike New Providence, Grand Bahama has less populated regions as well, with deserted beaches and tropical pine forests. The Lucayan National Park includes a nature preserve and vast underwater cave system.

The Abacos, the acknowledged sailing capital of the Bahamas, are among the world's most beautiful cruising grounds. Marsh Harbour on Great Abaco is a major boat-charter center as well as a base for diving and deep-sea fishing. The Abacos were settled by Loyalists who fled New England after the Revolutionary War, and the islands are known for their Cape-Cod-style houses with clapboard siding and picket fences. To contrast its quaint villages, Abaco has several major resorts complete with championship golf courses and acres of condominiums.

The Exumas are a chain of over 300 islands and cays. Aside from Great and Little Exuma, which are the two largest, most are uninhabited-and that's half the fun. Like the Abacos, the Exumas are wonderful cruising grounds. The largest settlement is George Town on Great Exuma, a village of 1000 souls with a fine harbor. The Exuma Cays Land and Sea National Park, at the north of the chain, is popular with divers, and even has a few nature trails for landlubbers. Exuma also has several major resorts, including the Four Seasons at Emerald Bay.

Hemingway's famous "Island in the stream," Bimini lies in the Gulf Stream, just 50 miles from the east coast of Florida. Hemingway helped make it famous as a center of deep-sea fishing, and it remains so to this day. Bimini-which is actually two islands and a number of cays--is also a popular cruising ground, and the main settlement, Alice Town, caters to the yachting crowd. Bimini has one major resort, Bimini Bay, but is otherwise still very rustic. Bimini's other claim to fame is Bimini Road, a highway of stone in twenty feet of water that some believe is a remnant of the lost city of Altantis.

With sixty miles of beaches and only a few dozen hotel rooms, Eleuthera is a paradise for beach lovers who enjoy privacy and unspoiled natural beauty. Eleuthera is an island of rolling green hills and sleepy villages. The guidebooks are fond of noting that Eleuthera has not a single traffic light, but that isn't surprising when you consider that most of it has only one road. Needless to say, there is little need for a map, and on an island less than a mile wide for long stretches, you're never far from the beach.

Andros is by far the largest of the Bahamian islands, with an area of 2300 square miles. The interior, said to be the largest still-unexplored landmass in the world, is home to six-foot iguanas and the rare Bahamian boa constrictor. Sasquatch has not been sighted, but only because no one has braved the iguanas and boas to look for him. The east coast of the island, the only populated area, has scattered villages and miles of beautiful beaches. Just offshore is Andros's other great attraction, a vast barrier reef-the second largest in the world.

Long Island is one of the few Bahamian islands which does not depend primarily on tourism. Fishing, and to a lesser extent agriculture, still predominate. The island was settled by American Loyalists from the South, who came with their slaves and established plantations. The soil would not support large-scale farming, however, and the plantations were gradually abandoned. Their ruins can still be seen. Long Island is also home to Dean's Blue Hole, one of the deepest in the world and a spectacular sight with its high cliff walls.

Fifty miles long and with a population of 1600, Cat Island is a place for people who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of, for example, rural North Dakota. Cat has many miles of deserted, pink-sand beaches, and a central ridge that reaches 200 feet, the highest elevation in the Bahamas. A monastery known as the Hermitage, hand-built by an Anglican clergyman turned Catholic priest, is located atop the peak. Aside from heaven itself, a hermit could hardly have found a better place for peace and quiet.

Columbus made his first landfall in the new world on the Bahamian island of San Salvador. There are four monuments to the event scattered about this lonely island of 1000 souls. The interior of San Salvador is taken up largely by salt lakes and marshes, and the only road follows the circumference of the island. San Salvador is almost entirely surrounded by a reef and has some of the best diving in the Bahamas, including cave diving and wreck diving. The beaches are also excellent. The island is home to the Bahamas' only Club Med, a vast resort of 200 rooms, one of the most luxurious in the Club Med chain.

Matthew Simon is developing Oceanfront Condominiums on the island of Eleuthera: http://www.buttonwoodreserve.com. His latest book is How to Buy and Sell Real Estate in the Bahamas: http://www.howtobuyrealestatebahamas.com. Matthew may be reached at mattsimonmx@juno.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Matthew_Simon

 

 

Beach Babes in The Bahamas

By Jan Norman 

Yes, other people swim with dolphins, walk with gorillas and hang out with chimps. But here in the extraordinary Exumas, it is the pigs that are the main attraction. These lucky porkers have their very own island. It is called Big Major Cay and they spend their days rooting around Pig Beach.

Back in the day of the first settlers, an entrepreneur from nearby Staniel Cay found that the unpleasant odour from his pig stock was causing a problem in this tiny island hamlet. He hit upon the cunning plan of relocating them to their own deserted yet nearby island. There were 365 island Cays after all. So these happy hogs were moved to their own neighbouring island where they could be "harvested" as the need arose for a roast and some streaky bacon. The pigs learnt that while the sight of an oncoming boat may mean the loss of family, it also meant the arrival of food. After a few decades, the pigs were declared protected and pig farming ceased on the island.

The descendants of these original hogs remain today providing a unique tourist attraction. These smart little babes have gathered that whoever swims out to the visiting boats first, is the most likely to score delectable bread snacks from the tourists. As we glided in on our boat, we saw no sign of the pigs but suddenly the low scrubby bushes at the back of the beach began to shake and emit grunting sounds. The pigs leapt onto their trotters, the grunts gave way to squeals as they hurled themselves headlong down the beach. Hurtling into the water, they swam furiously towards us using their snouts as built-in snorkels. Now was the time for us to plunge overboard and swim toward shore surrounded by a motley coloured crew of swine. Surprisingly calm and respectful, there was no snapping or biting or snatching. The only lurking, bobbing danger being the little poop parcels that should best be avoided.

How to get there: Book a trip with one of the friendly boat operators based in Georgetown or Staniel Cay. Expect fun, friendly entertainment from the moment your flip-flopped feet alight upon the deck. Cruise past islands of the rich and famous, snorkel Thunderball Grotto, spot the sunken drug plane, get close to the endangered dragon-like Exuma Island Iguana and of course swim with those irresistible oinks.

What else: Eat a conch salad on the beach at Stocking Island. Pack your fins, masks and goggles and board Elvis' water taxi from Georgetown harbour. Stocking Island is for the committed and talented chiller. Flop on the beach, watch dolphins, ogle the giant rays, order a pina colada and savour the freshest flavours in a delicately balanced ceviche-style conch salad. As the sun glides toward the horizon, be sure not to miss the last taxi. And maybe I should not mention that there is a famous pig roast on the beach every Sunday.

http://www.alwaysjumpingneverlanding.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Jan_Norman/2291617

 

Swimming_With_Dolphins_in_Great_Exuma

By Fred Coolridge

Nowhere in the world is swimming freely with dolphins an easier and more exciting adventure than in The Bahamas. It is where countless visitors travel to relax on unspoiled beaches, take in stunning scenery, enjoy warm people, and of course, swim in the wild with dolphins. It has become a popular attraction in Great Exuma Bahamas. Numerous diving programs are offered throughout The Bahamas, making swimming with dolphins a comfortable and wonderful activity for tourists and locals alike. Part of the amazement lies in observing them in their natural habitat, as you dive into open waters along coral reefs.

Swimming with Dolphins

Thirty years ago, swimming with dolphins was less common an event than it is today. At the time, a diver would spot one, maybe two, dolphins. Now, the experience can include an entire family unit. Dolphin encounters take place around the globe, but The Bahamas is recognized as one of the great centers where swimming with dolphins is possible. Much can be attributed to the natural beauty of the countless islands and cays in The Bahamas. Wild dolphin encounters occur regularly in Bimini, Grand Bahama, the Abacos and Great Exuma Bahamas, just to name a few. You can touch, interact, and even hand-feed these amazing mammals in their natural habitat. But before you start swimming with dolphins, you might want to learn some facts about them.

Dolphin 101

- Most dolphins have acute eyesight

- They have a sense of hearing superior to that of humans

- They have a well-developed sense of touch

- They range in length from 1.2 m (4 ft) to 9.5 m (30 ft)

- They can weigh anywhere from 40 kg (88 lb) to ten tons

- They are social, living in pods (also called "schools") of up to a dozen mammals

- They are found mostly in the shallower seas of the continental shelves

- They are carnivores that eat mostly fish and squid

- They use their sonar to communicate with each other

- There are almost forty species of dolphin worldwide

Dolphins and Humans

Dolphins are often regarded as one of Earth's most intelligent species. Numerous stories are told of dolphins protecting shipwrecked sailors against sharks by swimming circles around them. In many cultures, spotting dolphins during a sea voyage is considered a good omen. Swimming with dolphins is the closest encounter one can experience with these fascinating creatures. On your next trip to Great Exuma Bahamas, be sure to consider this once in a lifetime opportunity, an adventure that will create memories you will treasure forever.

Fred Coolridge is the content manager and author for the website Great Exuma Island, Bahamas - http://www.exumabahamas.org.

 

 

To learn more about the outdoor adventure in the Bahamas, visit our other pages:

bulletAn introduction to the Bahamas
bulletOutdoor Recreation around Nassau
bulletOutdoor recreation on Grand Bahama island
bulletOutdoor recreation on the other islands of the Bahamas
bulletPlaces of Interest in the Bahamas

To learn about the other islands in the Caribbean, visit our Island Adventures Page

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Last modified: April 15, 2009