US Dollar and Bahamian Dollar
Even if you’re arriving in The Bahamas for the first time, it may feel familiar to you. The Bahamas’ pristine beaches and crystalline waters are much photographed on account of their perfection. It has been said that even from space, the beautiful blue hues of Bahamian water are recognisable. The Bahamas is a collection of islands within some of the world’s clearest waters, thus the region is famous for its diving, snorkelling and watersports activities. The beauty of The Bahamas is beguiling and can only be understood by those who experience it first hand.
The Bahamas is made up of 700 individual islands and over 2,000 cays. Discovered by Christopher Columbus in the late 15th Century, these islands continue to invite fascination and exploration. This stunning archipelago has captivated the hearts and minds of explorers for centuries. Even before the discovery of The New World, people had been drawn to the region for the profusion of food to be found in its azure waters. It’s also been a popular place for pirates as the shallow waters and myriads of islands made great places to hide treasure, and so, many legends and myths of shadowy figures were born.
The Bahamas also set themselves apart by offering a complete catalogue of Caribbean escapades. Everything from glamorous casinos to colourful carnivals, lush-green golf courses and seaplane safaris are just some of the ways to make the most of your time in paradise.
A wonderful way to explore the many stunning islands of The Bahamas is to take to the water. Sailing is a very popular pastime here, and it’s little wonder with so many pretty cays and islands to explore. For inimitable beauty and serenity, be sure to drop anchor at some of the less-populated islands - the Exuma islands are very pretty and a great place to enjoy a scenic lunch, or head south to Mayaquana Island and the aptly named Rum Cay island.
Recently highlighted as one of the top ten resort golf courses in The Caribbean, the One&Only Ocean Club’s Golf Course is a state-of-the-art, Championship course with awe-inspiring views of the world-famous Caribbean waters. Designed by 16-time PGA title-holder, Tom Weiskopf, this captivating 18-hole, par-72 course has hosted many televised tournaments and celebrity events, showcasing its challenging formations and photogenic greens. The golf complex also includes a Pro Shop and Clubhouse for an all-round professional and memorable day’s play.
Diving and Snorkelling
The stunning, clear waters surrounding The Bahamas are home to an array of technicolour tropical fish, the world’s third-largest barrier reef and some of the most spectacular sea life imaginable. An underwater playground aching to be uncovered, The Bahamas offers dazzling dive adventures for all abilities. Whilst scuba-diving allows guests to uncover the hidden gems of the crystalline Caribbean waters, those who opt for a casual snorkel in the shallows will still be astounded by the abundance of colour and life to be found below the surface.
Beaches and Activities
Beaches in The Bahamas are spectacular and there are simply so many to choose from. Recently voted as one of the Top 20 Best Beaches in the World 2017 by Condé Nast Traveler, Harbour Island is well worth a visit for a day of pure relaxation on the striking pink sand. This patch of paradise is away from the buzz of other Bahamian beaches, exuding serenity and exclusivity. After unwinding beneath the glorious sunshine, head down to Dunmore Street where you can dine on the delicious fresh catch of the day or cool off in one of many brilliant bars.
As this part of the world provided a glamorous backdrop for a Bond film, the decadence and suave is implicit. Just like Daniel Craig in Casino Royale, you too can take on Lady Luck at the tables. The Bahamas is renowned for its casinos, so soak up the glamorous atmosphere at The Cove, Atlantis and hedge your bets on red or black!
The holiday season sees the ever-vibrant Bahamas fully embrace the Caribbean carnival culture. Junkanoo, The Bahamas’ version of carnival, with immensely colourful costumed parades and partying, takes place on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, with the biggest celebrations in Nassau.
If you’re seeking an active start to the New Year why not combine your Bahamas holiday with the Race Weekend? The Bahamas has established itself as something of a runners’ paradise, thanks to its agreeable climate and stunning scenery. Race Weekend sees runners from across the globe gather to participate in races of various lengths and demands, ranging from a full marathon to a 5k. The next event takes place on the weekend of January 16th 2016 and, now in its seventh year, will see runners enjoy the range of course entertainment, sponsorship gifts and post-race party in true Bahamian style.
For an area so rich in marine treasures it is, perhaps, no surprise that conservation and pro-eco programmes are an important part of The Bahamas culture. For those interested in gaining a greater insight into the region’s efforts to protect marine life, it is possible to spend time behind the scenes of the Atlantis with its team of marine biologists and researchers. An exceptional opportunity to gain first-hand experience of a successful conservation project, this excursion is a must for any budding biologist or would-be eco-warrior.
Our Travel Consultants can advise on, arrange and pre-book many things to enhance your holiday. This includes everything from spa reservations and dinner reservations, to a range of special experiences available in our featured resorts that you may not know about.
Thanks to the trade winds that blow throughout The Bahamas, warm weather can experienced here year round. The coldest winters average a modest 70 degrees. The coolest time is from September to May, when temperature average 70-75 degrees while the rest of the year, temperatures range from 80 to 90 degrees with a little more humidity. At night, temperatures remain warm but comfortable enabling you to enjoy your evenings under the stars.
There is a ‘hurricane season’ in the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, Central Mexico and South Eastern seaboard of America between June and November, the months of August and September being particularly susceptible.
These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for The Bahamas.
British Airways flies from London Heathrow to Nassau.
From London Gatwick to Nassau: 9 hours, 15 minutes.
Travelling With Children or Without an Adult
Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.
Visa and Advance Passenger Information
All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.
Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.
For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk
Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya), Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/insect-tick-bite-avoidance/
In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.
Visit the FCO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Additional sources of information include: www.hpa.org.uk, http://nathnac.net,
www.fco.gov.uk, www.hpa.org.uk and www.nathnac.org, your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.
For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.
Cases of Chikungunya virus have been confirmed in the Bahamas. You should take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. For more details about this outbreak, see the website of the National Health Network and Centre.
View the travel advice in full here: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/bahamas