Take Your Pick
Arawak Cay, Bahamas
Fish Fry
Fish Fry - Looking for some authentic Bahamian lobster fritters, a fresh conch salad or possibly a little fried barracuda? Then "The Fish Fry" in Arawak Cay is where you need to be. The two most popular restaurants are Twin Brothers and Seafood Haven, but you'll have your pick from nearly a dozen pastel colored fish shacks. My favorite dishes here are the cracked conch and cracked lobster which are served with sweet potatoes, cassava (a tropical root) and plantains. Of course you have to wash it all down with a locally brewed Kalik beer.
Cable Beach, Bahamas
Cable Beach Vista
Cable Beach - Dotted with 5 star hotels, surrounded by golf courses, lined with white powdery sands and sloping into a crystal clear ocean is the 2.5 mile Cable Beach. This is a great place to stay and soak up the sun, of course Atlantis on Paradise Island is the best place, but you will want for nothing in Cable Beach. The Wyndham Nassau Resort has all the water sports you can think of, dance clubs and a world class casino.
Nassau, Bahamas
Hog Island Light
Hog Island Lighthouse - Why is name of the lighthouse on Paradise Island called the Hog Island Lighthouse? Glad you asked. Until it was renamed "Paradise Island" in 1959 by Huntington Hartford of A&P Supermarkets, this 826 acre resort isle was called "Hog Island"- a location for farming and raising livestock. Since Hog Island isn't a very attractive name, it was changed to Paradise Island. The Hog Island Lighthouse itself was constructed in 1817 and is the oldest lighthouse in the Bahamas (and the West Indies). The light flashes white when conditions in the port are safe, bust switches to red when conditions are dangerous for entry.
Nassau, Bahamas
Sock Monkey Sized Fort
Fort Fincastle - Fort Fincastle, which sets atop Bennet's Hill, is a micro-sized fort built by Lord Dunmore in 1793. A tour takes less than 10 minutes. Visitors see several hulking orange cannons pointing towards the sea and three rooms with displays before heading to the top of the fort. On the observation deck you get one of the best views of Nassau, the cruise ships in port, and the island's historic water tower. The 126 ft water tower, which is the tallest structure on the island, was built in 1928 as a reward from the US for storing bootleg alcohol during prohibition.
Nassau, Bahamas
Aaarg You Scallywag
Pirates of Nassau - Nassau was at the heart of pirate activity during the "Golden Age of Piracy" in the late 17th century. The Pirates of Nassau celebrates this storied past with interactive exhibits in and around a life-sized pirate ship called "The Revenge". Displays depict pirate life aboard the ship including living quarters, swashbuckling battles, and punishment for misbehavior. One of the strictest punishments imposed was to make the offender "a governor of his own island". In other words, maroon him on a deserted island with little or no chance for escape. The Pirates of Nassau is a fun museum for the whole family and is one of Nassau's most popular attractions.
Nassau, Bahamas
Oldest Building
Balcony House Museum - Built in 1788, the Balcony House is the oldest residential building on the island. It is named for its second floor open-air cedar balcony constructed with wooden knee braces, a signature architectural feature of the 18th century loyalists. The interior is filled with period furnishings, features a fine mahogany staircase and is equipped with a detached stone kitchen. The house is a step back in time and there is no charge to visit.
Nassau, Bahamas
Carved Out of Solid Limestone
Queen's Staircase - The Queen's Staircase was carved out of solid limestone wall by slaves between 1793 and 1794 using only axes and other hand tools. The staircase is the most popular attraction in Nassau, drawing thousands of visitors from a mile away off their luxury cruise ships. Each of the 65 stairs in the 102 foot tall staircase, represent a year of Queen Victoria's reign. The stairs were and still are used as a shortcut to Fort Fincastle and the island's tallest water tower on Bennett's Hill. Along the way visitors can pick up souvenirs from the numerous vendors and stop in at the Bahamas Historical Museum.
Nassau, Bahamas
Everything You Could Want, But...
Straw Market - The first thing cash-laden visitors on cruise ships see when arriving in Nassau is one of the largest Straw Markets in the world. The market actually evolved out of necessity. Prior to 1940 the islands largely depended on the thriving sponge industry, but during the 1930s disease wiped out nearly all of the sponge beds. Fortunately, tourism picked up following WWII and islanders found a market for their straw souvenirs. Besides dolls, bags, and baskets of straw, shoppers will find shells, cups, drums, purses, watches and almost anything else you can think of. Except sock monkeys (maybe some day).
Nassau, Bahamas
In the Basement of Fort Charlotte
Fort Charlotte - Fort Charlotte is the largest of the three forts on the island of New Providence (Fort Fincastle and Fort Montague are the other two) and named for the wife of King George III, Queen Saharia Charlotte. It was built by Lord Dunmore in 1789 to protect Nassau's Harbor from intruders and through its nearly 100 years of service never fired a shot. A tour of the fort starts at the dry moat, weaves past the enormous guns, through the soldier's barracks, and down to the dungeon. It's interesting to see the graffiti on the walls created by bored soldiers over 200 years ago. Be sure to say "hi" to Samantha for me, she is a great tour guide (although she gets freaked out by bats).
Nassau, Bahamas
Help!! A Spider Woman Got Me
National Art Gallery of the Bahamas - The National Art Gallery of the Bahamas (NAGB) is housed in the former residence of the Bahamas' first Chief Justice, Sir William Doyle. The residence was built in 1860 and converted to a museum by an Act of Parliament in 1996 to display the artwork of the island. Historical and contemporary pieces include paintings, photographs, ceramics and sculptures. Although most of the artwork is of Bahamian born artists, some very nice watercolors are on display by part-time resident Winslow Homer.
Nassau, Bahamas
Capitol of the Bahamas
Parliament Square - Graced by a statue of Queen Victoria at its front, Parliament Square is the heart of Bahamian government. The Senate, House and Supreme Court all operate out of their respective pink pastel colored buildings. And Since you're checking out government buildings, be sure to walk up to the Government House for the Changing of the Guard Ceremony on Saturday morning. The Royal Bahamas Police Force Band plays while guards march with English precision in honor of Queen Elizabeth II.
Nassau, Bahamas
One of the Marching Flamingos
Ardastra Garden Zoo & Conservation Center - The 5 acre Ardastra Garden Zoo & Conservation Center houses over 200 mammals, reptiles, and birds in a jungle of tropical foliage. Amongst the 200 animals are Australian meerkats, South American macaws, capuchin monkeys and black swans. But the stars of the park are the world famous marching flamingos. A Marching Flamingo Show is performed three times a day and features well trained pink flamingos marching in cadence and taking orders from a park official. It's pretty amazing.
Paradise Island, Bahamas
Great Wedding Location
The Cloisters - This 12th century French Monastery was shipped stone-by-stone to the USA from Europe by newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst in the 1920s. After 40 years of sitting in storage, the disassembled monastery was bought by Huntington Hartford, shipped to the Bahamas and reassembled (without instructions). The ruins grace the finely manicured Versailles Gardens which holds numerous statues including Hercules, Napoleon and Josephine, along with former U.S. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Today the Cloisters and Versailles Gardens are a popular location for weddings and photo shoots.
Paradise Island, Bahamas
Atlantis Royal Tower
Atlantis - Atlantis is a 5 star luxury mega-resort and Disney style waterpark all in one. Officially opened in 1998, this mythical themed palatial resort contains a one mile long, three million gallon water ride, four Mayan Temple slides, dozens of aquariums, a Dolphin Cay (where you can kiss a dolphin), a lagoon, a lake and a series of interconnected waterways, just to name a few of the attractions. Adults will enjoy the night-life and gambling and the kiddos will enjoy everything else. As of this writing there were seven accommodation options available - the most architecturally famous is the Royal Tower. And do you see that span between the two towers in the photo? It is called the Bridge Suite and rents for $25,000 a night. Socko Wasn't There. :(|)
Sandy Port, Bahamas
See Some Buffy Flower Bats
The Caves - Along the side of the road, on the way to Nassau from the airport are two limestone caves. These caves were occupied by the original inhabitants of the islands, the Lucayan Indians and later used as a refuge for gold-toting pirates. Today the only inhabitants are "Buffy Flower Bats" or as we know them, Fruit Bats. If you have a few minutes it's worth the stop to sit in the chair made from seashells and climb down into the caves. Between the two caves is a small Daiquiri Shack in case you get thirsty on your short spelunking trip.
South West Bay, Bahamas
Sacred Space
Clifton Heritage Park and Sacred Space - The Clifton Heritage Park is a 208 acre former slave plantation which is preserved today as a National Park. Ruins of the Clifton Great House built in 1785 by John Wood overlook the Slave Settlement and Plantation Buildings. Throughout the park are historic stone walls, limestone passages, a carriage house and an area called the Sacred Space. The Sacred Space features eight female figures carved out of Casuarina trees in quiet contemplation. The sprawling park is also a great place to swim, camp and hike; and Jaws Beach was the film location of the movie "Jaws: The Revenge".