The Bahamas is located southeast of the United States, and east of the Florida Keys. It consists of over 700 islands, 2400 cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean. Most islands are uninhabited. All the islands are low and flat. Geographically, the Bahamas consists of the Turks and Caicos Islands, Mouchoir Bank, Silver Bank and Navidad Bank. The three banks have more extensive submarine features. The outstanding marine conditions make snorkeling in the Bahamas so great and easy. You can easily find a snorkeling spot, or book a snorkeling tour to have a wonderful and exciting day! Continue reading the article to get closer to your best snorkeling in the Bahamas.
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Where to Snorkel in the Bahamas?
The warm, crystal-clear waters, shipwrecks and reef formations attract millions of visitors annually. There are various aquatic animals, including stingrays, sea turtles, dolphins, sharks, and Nassau grouper. Swimming with a tropical fish is so natural and easy. Many local beaches, resorts and private islands have shallow areas for snorkeling. Some boat tours include snorkeling in their schedule. You can bring your own gear, or rent some at locally. Considering the hygiene, you’d better a bring your own snorkeling gear. Grab a Seabeast AF90 full face snorkel mask and start your best snorkeling in the Bahamas.
Nassau, New Providence Island
Nassau is the capital of the Bahamas. The miles of fabulous beaches and living coral reefs are amazing for snorkeling. You can swim with tropical fish and sharks. During the Junkanoo Festival, you will meet with the incredible costumed parade! You can feel British favor in Nassau (once a British colony). You can’t miss British Colonial Hotel if you are a James Bond fan. To me, snorkeling and visiting the British Colonial Hotel created my best snorkeling in the Bahamas.
Freeport, Grand Bahama Island
It’s located in Western Grand Bahama. You can go snorkeling on Deadman’s Reef, and relax on the white sand beach. Deadman’s Reef is only offshore. First-timers can learn the basics of snorkeling from an instructor.
Peterson Cay National Park
The water is calm and shallow. You can see colorful fish, vivid coral reefs, and small native sharks.
Half Moon Cay
Half Moon Beach
The water is beautiful and clear, and the sand is white and soft. You can snorkel with tropical fish, or you just rent a chair or a cabana to have a relaxing daytime. One thing has to be mentioned. Half Moon Beach is a private beach belonging to Carnival and the Holland America line.
Coco Plum Beach
It’s a peaceful and beautiful beach. The water is calm and crystal clear. There are swings standing in the water. With low tide, you’ll have a fun time.
Swim with Pigs
Swimming with pigs must perfect the best snorkeling in the Bahamas. “Pig Beach” is located at Big Major Cay. It is one island in Exuma. You can only reach the Pig Beach by boat. You can take a full-day boat tour including a lunch. Or you can rent a boat, which is much more expensive (normally not including a guide).
Feeding the pigs are allowed. However, I’d like to advice you to pay more attention to the feeding food. Feed them fruits and vegetables in the water. There have been several pig deaths caused by the sand ingestion. And the fresh water supply is limited on the island. You can bring them some. Be careful to the big pigs. They may attack you if you’re carrying food.
It’s better to visit them in the morning. They could get tired by late afternoon and prefer lounge in the sand. The pigs are not from local. They are taken and raised here. During the hurricane season, they are taken to shelter. Recently, there are some controversies about pig’s habitat.
Island-hopping through seaplanes and water taxis is quite expensive, especially during the peak tourist season. I would recommend you to choose one island that you are the most interested; and booking your tour package (fights, hotels, taxis and etc.) in advance helps you to save money. You can visit the Official Site of the Bahamas to book your trip and purchase a real 100% anti-fogging full face snorkel mask.
General the Bahamas Snorkeling Travel Tips
The Bahamas has a tropical climate. Averagely, there are over 340 days of sunlight every year. The temperature difference between the warmest month and the coolest month is only 8°C in most islands of the Bahama. The Atlantic hurricane season is from June to November. It rains a lot during these months. The best snorkeling in the Bahamas happens from December to April. The tourist peak leads to a soaring price of almost everything.
I suggest not going to these pricey resort restaurants. Consult with locals to find the really delicious. You can’t miss the johnnycakes, peas n’ rice, deep-fried conch fritters and Bahamian rock lobster.
Nassau’s Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) and Freeport’s Grand Bahama International Airport (FPO) are the most common airports. If you need to head to other islands, you can take jitneys, taxis, or rent a car. Some cruises and boat tours also stop at several islands.
The Bahamas is in the Eastern Time Zone. Daylight Saving Time policy starts on the second Sunday in March at 2:00 a.m. and ends on the first Sunday in November at 2:00 a.m.
The electricity is 60 cycles/120 volts, which fit with American devices. Prepare an adapter and a 220-volt converter if you need.
The Bahamian dollar has the same value as the U.S. dollar. Both currencies are accepted. I prefer to use a credit card.
The safety is an unavoidable problem in the Bahamas. It’s better to stay with your friends and stay alert always. Keep an eye on your belongings.
Normally, waiters and taxi drivers will charge extra 15% for tips. You can leave $1 to $3 to bartenders, bellhops (per bag) and hotel housekeepers (per day).
Tourism is a big part of the Bahamas’ economy. People in the Bahamas can speak English. Over millions of tourists visit the Bahamas every year. It’s a popular cruise-ship stopover. However, most Bahamians live a simple and modest life. Try to follow their flow and bring your beach cover-up:) The Bahama is also a paradise of duty-free shopping. Women will love it! Share your best snorkeling in the Bahamas with us!