The Bahamas Travel Guide
About The Bahamas
Did you know that there are and over 700 islands in The Bahamas? Only 30 of the islands in The Bahamas are inhabited, but the sheer size or the footprint is staggering as there are also over 2,000 rocks and cays, covering over 100,000 square miles of the ocean.
Just about 90 miles from Florida, The Bahamas is a popular destination with travelers from the United States as well as those from further afield. The hospitality, crystal clear waters, and activities are second to none. There’s no wonder why people keep coming back.
Bimini, one of the many islands in The Bahamas, is known the world over for its tropical fish variety and clear diving. Likewise, some of the best fishing in the world is found in the waters surrounding The Bahamas. The Out Islands have a style all their own, each with a refreshing individuality. Abaco is a cluster of islands with an eclectic mix of tourist attractions and rustic charm. Cat Island remains true to its original roots.
Eleuthera, Crooked Island, Long Island, Andros – all of these islands in The Bahamas bring something different to the table. Sample them and decide which suits your tastes.
The most populated islands in The Bahamas are New Providence Island and Grand Bahama Island. However, Paradise Island, the country’s tourist capital, is the most popular destination for travelers. In about 30 minutes, you can leave the hustle and bustle of the United States and relax in the tranquillity of the Caribbean.
It doesn’t get any better than that.
Great food, enjoyable activities, and a vacation to fit any budget or style, The Bahamas is truly a versatile vacation spot. Do some island hopping and see all that the Out Islands have to offer. Take a day to enjoy the royal treatment at a spa. Enjoy one of the island’s most beautiful beaches. The Bahamas has everything you are looking for and more.
Where To Stay In The Bahamas
Visitors to The Bahamas stay in a wide variety of accommodations, including private rental, guesthouses, and luxurious all-inclusive hotels. Some of the best hotels in The Bahamas include:
- British Colonial Hilton Nassau
- Compass Point Beach Resort
- The Cove
- Graycliff Hotel
- Grand Hyatt Baha Mar
- The Island House
- Rosewood Baha Mar SLS Baha Mar Hotel
- The Ocean Club, A Four Seasons Resort
The Abacos Islands
- Green Turtle Club Resort & Marina
- Tiamo Resort
- Kamalame Cay Resort
Eleuthera & Harbour Island:
- Bahama House
- Pink Sands Resort
- The Other Side (luxury glamping site)
- Staniel Cay Yacht Club
- Old Bahama Bay Resort & Yacht Harbour
- Cape Santa Maria
Activities In The Bahamas
Major tourist activities in The Bahamas include:
- Island hopping via the Bahamas Ferries visiting all 16 major islands
- Checking out the cultural and heritage attractions including museums like the Pirates of Nassau Museum, National Art Gallery of The Bahamas and Pompey Museum of Slavery & Emancipation
- Visiting the Inagua National Park on the island of Great Inagua to see the thousands of pink flamingos roaming about
- Visiting Cat Island to experience traditional Bahamian culture
- Swimming with pigs at Pig Beach located on Big Major Cay an uninhabited island located in The Exumas
Facts About The Bahamas
5,358 square miles
Unitary Parliamentary with British Constitutional Monarchy
Telephone Country Code:
left side of the road
Kalik and Sands
Fungee & Pepperpot
Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS)
120v / 60 Hz – plugs are US standard two and three-prong
Visa Information For The Bahamas
Visitors to The Bahamas must have a passport that is valid for at least six months beyond the date of departure. Visitors to The Bahamas also need to present a return ticket or an onward ticket to another destination.
The visa entry requirements for The Bahamas depends on the country of origin. For example, visitors from the United States do not require a visa. Also, visitors to The Bahamas from Canada only need a visa if they plan to stay longer than eight months. Visitors from Europe (the United Kingdom & Schengen countries) and Latin America to The Bahamas only require a visa if they plan to stay longer than three months.
There is a departure tax that must be paid before leaving the island.
How Long Does It Take To Get A Visa For The Bahamas
With a valid passport and supporting documents, it typically takes two weeks for a Bahamas visa application to be processed by the nearest Bahamas Consulate or Embassy.
Is It Safe To Travel To The Bahamas
In comparison to major American and European cities, The Bahamas is relatively safe but crime is moderate. As such, it is vital to be vigilant at all times, especially when away from the major hotels, tourist areas, beaches, and downtown Nassau.
How To Get To The Bahamas
Most visitors to The Bahamas arrive via the Lynden Pindling International Airport (IATA: NAS, ICAO: MYNN), located in Nassau.
From Canada, book flights to The Bahamas via:
- Air Canada: Seasonal: Montréal–Trudeau
- Air Canada Rouge: Toronto–Pearson (Seasonal: Montréal–Trudeau)
- Sunwing Airlines: Toronto–Pearson
- WestJet: Toronto–Pearson (Seasonal: Calgary)
From the United States book flights to The Bahamas via:
- American Airlines: Charlotte, New York–LaGuardia, Philadelphia (Seasonal: Boston, Chicago–O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami)
- American Eagle: Miami (Seasonal: Philadelphia, Washington–National)
- Delta Air Lines: Atlanta, New York–JFK (Seasonal: Boston, Detroit, Fort Lauderdale, Minneapolis/St. Paul)
- JetBlue: Boston, Fort Lauderdale, New York–JFK, Orlando, Washington–National
- Southwest Airlines: Baltimore
- Sun Country Airlines: Seasonal: Minneapolis/St. Paul
- Silver Airways : Tampa
- United Airlines: Newark (Seasonal: Chicago–O’Hare, Denver, Houston–Intercontinental)
- United Express: Seasonal: Chicago–O’Hare, Houston–Intercontinental, Washington–Dulles
From the United Kingdom, book flights to The Bahamas via:
- British Airways: London–Heathrow
From Europe, book flights to The Bahamas via:
- Condor : Seasonal: Frankfurt
Within the Caribbean region, book flights to The Bahamas via:
- British Airways: Grand Cayman
- Bahamasair: Cap-Haitien, Cockburn Town, Colonel Hill, Deadman’s Cay, Fort Lauderdale, Freeport, George Town, Governor’s Harbour, Havana, Holguin, Marsh Harbour, Matthew Town, Miami, North Eleuthera, Orlando, Port-au-Prince, Providenciales, Rock Sound, Santa Clara, Spring Point, Treasure Cay
- Caribbean Airlines: Kingston–Norman Manley, Port of Spain
- Copa Airlines: Panama City–Tocumen
- Flamingo Air: Staniel Cay
- InterCaribbean Airways: Providenciales
- Pineapple Air: Chub Cay, Colonel Hill, Governors Harbour, North Eleuthera, Spring Point, Stella Maris
- SkyBahamas Airlines: Arthur’s Town, Fort Lauderdale, George Town, Marsh Harbour, New Bight, San Salvador (Bahamas)
- Southern Air Charter: Deadman’s Cay, Governor’s Harbour, North Eleuthera, Stella Maris
- Western Air: Andros Town, Congo Town, Freeport, George Town, Mangrove Cay, Marsh Harbour, San Andros, South Bimini
Note: Beyond Lynden Pindling International Airport, there are five over major international airports in The Bahamas including:
- Exuma International Airport (IATA: GGT) located in George Town, The Exumas,
- Freeport International Airport (IATA: FPO) located in Freeport, Grand Bahama,
- Marsh Harbour International Airport (IATA: MHH) located in Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco,
- North Eleuthera International Airport (IATA: ELH) located in North Eleuthera and
- Treasure Cay International Airport (IATA: TCB) located 25 miles north of Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco.
When To Go To The Bahamas
The Bahamas high season typically runs from mid-December to mid-April. Major events attracting visitors to The Bahamas include the Junkanoo Festival with colourful parades on Box Day and New Year’s Day. Also, there are significant events in July and August for the Junkanoo Summer Festival.
Weather in The Bahamas
The Bahamas’ mild temperature is a lure for travelers who try to escape the climate where they are. The temperature averages between 75°F and 84°F (24°C and 29°C) during the winter and summer. Mornings and evenings are typically chilly. The Bahamas gets year-round rain, but it usually does for a short period of time in the average day. May and June are the months with most rainfall, typically with about twice as much falling in the northern islands as in the southern ones. The hurricane season in The Bahamas officially lasts from June to November.
Getting Married In The Bahamas
Couples who wish to get married in The Bahamas will need to present themselves at either the Registrar General’s Office in Nassau and Freeport or the Commissioner’s Office, Outer Islands for a special license which takes 24 hours to process.
In addition to the completed application for marriage, both the bride and groom will need their:
- birth certificates along with driver’s licenses or other forms of identification
- certificates of no impediment or single status report
Also, if applicable:
- divorce papers, i.e., decree absolute and/or death certificate of spouse
- proof of parental consent if under 18, stamped and signed by a solicitor
- proof of name changes by Deed Poll stamped and signed by a solicitor
Couples need to be in The Bahamas for 24 hours before the ceremony. They can apply for the marriage license after that time and be married the following day.
A marriage license cost B$120 inclusive of one copy. Extra marriage certificates are available at $20 each.
Two witnesses that are not immediate family members must be present at the ceremony.
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