Day Dream of a Vacation in Paradise
While COVID-19 cases remain high, international travel should be restricted as much as possible. That will be our greatest hope of keeping the most number of people safe and healthy. That doesn’t mean, however, that we can’t dream about the vacations that we are going to take in the future. Once restrictions are lifted and cases in our home countries drop, there will be travel again. When that day comes, there are few fantasy vacation destinations more alluring than the Bahamas!
When we think of the Bahamas most people’s first thoughts are of white sand beaches, palm trees, and crystal-clear turquoise waters. This is not far from the truth. The Bahamas have long been a destination for families and celebrities, alike. Anyone looking for a little slice of paradise, sun, sand, and relaxation need look no further than this island nation.
In 2019, the Bahamas were hit hard by the dramatic Hurricane Dorian. It caused extensive damage to the major city of Abaco and various smaller islands. There were, however, great swaths of the Bahamas that escaped the gale unscathed. The tourism industry makes up a large percentage of the country’s economy and it was severely affected by the storm. The events of 2020 and the strict curb on tourism, has only made matters worse. We encourage travelers to visit the areas unaffected by the hurricane when international vacation becomes a viable option once again. Returning to those areas, you are guaranteed a beautiful island getaway. You will also be supporting a community that has faced their own fair share of challenges with resiliency!
One of the Bahamas’ most popular destinations and capital is Nassau. This bustling port city was once a major destination for many tourists, cruise-goers, and Bahamas partiers. It’s definitely worth a stop but, as Bahamas’ locals, we recommend that you daydream about vacationing in the Exuma District. This 365-island archipelago remains damage-free after Dorian and is about as close to paradise as you can get on earth. With hundreds of white sand beaches, sand bars, and swimming pigs the Exumas have everything you could wish for on a laidback holiday in the Bahamas.
The largest island in the Exumas district, at 37 miles (69 km) in length, is Great Exuma. This island is home to the district’s capital city, George Town. This city was founded in 1793, by loyalists to the British Crown escaping the newly founded United States. Other islands, or cays as they are locally referred to, are owned in their entirety by celebrities such as Johnny Depp and David Copperfield. Johnny Depp fell in love with the Exumas while filming Pirates of the Caribbean in the area. The James Bond film Thunderball was also shot in the Exumas.
With almost 400 islands, each full of secluded inlets, vacation rentals, and spacious beaches, there is plenty of social distance to be had. The Exumas are a perfect post-pandemic vacation destination. Attend an outdoor pig roast, spend a day fishing enjoying the vibrant colors of the underwater world, or simply relax at the beach. There are plenty of activities to keep you and your family entertained in this Instagram-worthy location. Below we have listed our top five Exuma activities.
1. Thunderball Grotto
Located near Staniel Cay, this grotto or cave was the shoot location for the unofficial James Bond film Never Say Never Again. This is an ideal snorkelling destination, complete with beautiful rock walls and a natural skylight. Best visited by experienced swimmers, it is well worth it!
2. Sea Life
Enjoy the surrounding ocean that is teeming with life! Schedule a day tour with a local company to help tourism dollars circulate once again. These tours will generally get you out on the water to explore parts of the ocean that are only accessible by boat. Beyond hundreds of unique species of brightly colored fish, you might also spot sharks and stingrays. Get acquainted with a world entirely apart from our own and discover the life beneath the sea. Consider renting a snorkel to get even closer to the underwater action!
The Bahamas have a unique cuisine that is all their own. Sample the local delicacies and enjoy the distinctly Caribbean flavors. Attend a pig roast to discover a traditional custom along with some of the most flavorful, juicy pork you have ever tasted. From the sea, rock lobster and conch (pronounced conk), a savory sea snail, are classic Bahamian luxuries. For dessert, track down a piece of rum cake for a classic island treat.
Whether you have never fished before in your life or you are an old pro, the Bahamas is an idyllic location to practice this beloved sport. The area is known for calm, turquoise waters where a wide variety of tropical fish lie in wait just beneath the surface. With palm tree covered beaches and a wealth of islands to explore, you are guaranteed an enjoyable experience. Rent gear and go at it alone or hire a guide for insight on the best locations the islands have to offer.
5. Swim with the Pigs
We purposely saved the best for last! The swimming pigs of the Exuma islands are world-famous. How they got to the islands remains a mystery. Some believe the pirates left them there, intending to return and eat them but never made it back. Others believe them to be the sole survivors of an ancient shipwreck. No matter how they arrived, today they are a well-known attraction. The pigs are friendly and will come right up to you and your group. Keep in mind, however, that some are larger than you expect and can be forceful. Finally, whether they have visitors or not, when the pigs feel the call of nature, the water is their toilet. Perhaps it is this laid back attitude that has made them the unofficial mascot of the Bahamas islands.
If you are planning your getaway for sooner rather than later, the safest way to travel in 2020 is most certainly by private jet. At Tropix Air we will take you anywhere you want to fly within 500 nautical miles of southern Florida. We also have regular flights between Fort Lauderdale, FL and Nassau. Throughout the modern public health crisis, Tropix Air is committed to offering a clean and safe alternative to traditional travel. Skip the hassle, waiting, and germs of the airport and escape to the Bahamas with us!