The best travel tips for the Bahamas

Anyone who spontaneously thinks of “The Bahamas” when they say “I’m ready for the island” has made a good choice, but has yet to think about it. Because there are theoretically around 700 islands to choose from. However, only about 30 are inhabited. And on some there is something very special: the pink beaches. TRAVELBOOK has all the tips for a Bahamas vacation.

The Caribbean archipelago, located north-east of Cuba, owes its name to the Spanish conquerors, who perhaps had unpleasant experiences there with their boats: “Baja Mar” (in English: flat sea) they called the islands, which are actually surrounded by coral reefs (Cays) are surrounded – and later residents made the Bahamas out of it. The islands of the Bahamas are between eight (Harbor Island near Eleuthera) and almost 6000 square kilometers (Andros), the number of inhabitants varies between 72 (Ragged Island) and 210,800 in New Providence with the capital Nassau.

Anyone who has decided on an island chooses the desired month. It is cooler in January and February with 25 degrees, warmer in July and August with 32 degrees. The hurricane season is between June and November. Expect tropical storms and heavy rains during this time.

Natural parks in the Bahamas

Nature benefits from the hot and humid climate. There are large wetlands, mangroves, rainforests and coral reefs, and so much of it all that the Bahamas now has 22 national parks covering 260,000 acres. The uninhabited island of Little Inagua is now fully protected. Rare sea turtles live there. In Great Inagua, on the other hand, up to 60,000 West Indian flamingos can sometimes be seen, a sight as in Sydney Pollack’s world famous film “Out of Africa” ​​(1985).

Flamingos on Great InaguaPhoto: Getty Images

The capital Nassau

New Providence is much livelier. This is not only due to the capital Nassau with sites such as the Bahamas Historical Society Museum, which deals with the time from Christopher Columbus’ discovery of the Bahamas to the present day. Also worth seeing is the Pompey Museum, dedicated to slavery, the Montagu and Charlotte forts and the monastery, which originally stood in France and has been near Nassau since the 1960s. If you wish, you can play golf, visit the immense water landscape of Atlantis, or admire the beautiful old houses with pastel-colored facades in the historic center of Nassau.

Nassau Bahamas
Nassau, capital of the BahamasPhoto: Getty Images

Dream beaches in Grand Bahama

One of the major tourist islands in the Bahamas is Grand Bahama, which is no surprise given its dream beaches like Gold Rock Beach. There are many hotels, there is a casino, clubs and diving schools. However, you can easily find quiet stretches of beach. A special feature of Grand Bahama are the underwater caves found in Lucayan National Park.

Andros – island for nature lovers

The largest island in the Bahamas lures with a special natural beauty: Andros. The island has a huge coral reef, large rainforests and swamps filled with orchids. Although hotels are plentiful, Andros lacks the typical large tourist developments, making the island a favorite destination for nature lovers.

Andros Bahamas
Andros beachPhoto: Getty Images

Views on Eleuthera

The island with the most unusual name is Eleuthera. The name derives from the Greek and means “free”. It is not known how Eleuthera got this name. It is known, however, that celebrities such as Robert de Niro and Prince Charles spent their holidays on the island. Eleuthera is famous for its pink beaches (found on the beautiful small neighboring island of Harbor Island) and for places like the cave area or the “Ocean Hole”, an offshore lake that fills with salt water and changes with the emotional tide.

Nature lovers will love the rare Michigan Warbler who winters on the island. Others discover small neighboring islands such as Spanish Wells, which make you feel alone in the world.

By the way, James Bond was already on the islands. Parts of “Casino Royale”, “Thunderball” and “Never Say Never Never” were filmed there and brought further tourist flows to the Bahamas.

Wreck diving in Bimini

Bimini is a district in the Bahamas and is only about 80 kilometers from Miami. A paradise for fishermen and divers, the archipelago is where Juan Ponce de Léon sought the fountain of youth and the remains of Atlantis.

Hammerhead dive bimini
Encounter with a hammerhead shark in the underwater world in BiminiPhoto: picture alliance / imageBROKER | Michael Weberberger

Choosing the right island is not easy, because the most beautiful beaches are everywhere. Many visitors come to the Bahamas on a cruise and get to know several islands at the same time.

Beware, mosquitoes!

Visitors to the Bahamas should remember to bring mosquito repellent, as dengue fever is a frequent occurrence on the islands. According to the Federal Foreign Office, standard vaccinations according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) vaccination schedule and a hepatitis A vaccination are recommended for the Bahamas.

Important note: Information on entry requirements and the current status of the crown in the Bahamas can be found on the website of the Federal Foreign Office.

Map: Location of the Bahamas

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(Text: Silke Böttcher)

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