The Bahamas is an English-speaking nation in the Caribbean with hundreds of islands, the size of which is equal to that of California. This multi-island nation is located in the north of Cuba in the Caribbean.
Financial services and tourism are the nation’s largest economic sectors. People like to visit this place for its soothing weather and sights, colorful and rich culture, beautiful beaches, and vistas. You can easily travel to this accessible destination for your next holiday.
However, you can only make a healthy and enjoyable trip if you know some necessary information about the place, the services to get, the activities to perform, and the site’s culture.
This travel guide will walk you through the basic information about the Bahamas so that you will be able to decide what and how to get around the island and get the best out of the trip.
The climate of the area is generally warm. Trade winds continually blow through The Commonwealth of Bahamas, thus giving the area an agreeable climate. Clothing is preferred to casual summer wear.
However, evenings could be cool, specifically from December to January. Make sure to bring a sweater or jacket. Be aware that beach clothes are inappropriate in Nassau’s downtown and in casinos, restaurants, and churches.
Language and Culture
English is the official language of the Bahamas. However, it is British English and not American English. Indian words such as guava and cassava remain in the language.
Bahamians are very much hospitable and warm to visitors. You will get all kinds of help from the locals whenever you need it. The locals get appreciation from the strangers for their friendly and welcoming nature.
They are always interested in educating people about their culture, sights, cuisine, and everything. So you will be fine with getting information about the islands.
Food in the Bahamas
The Bahamas is a great place to experience uniquely cooked seafood cuisine items like crabs, big fish, lobster, etc. Their national dish is Conch, which is a sea snail. You will also get rice, potatoes, tropical fruits, pork, and pigeon peas. Rice and pigeon peas are very popular as lunch and dinner dishes.
The local stores and restaurants sell baked crab, conch fritters, and fruit smoothies that are worth trying. Moreover, the cuisine of the Bahamas will give you their traditional and authentic food habits. You will need to pay around 20 Bahamian Dollars per meal for the restaurants and 70-80 dollars for having meals from more exclusive restaurants.
Things to Pack before Going to the Bahamas
You must bring the most necessary items while going to an unknown place and staying for a few days. You can’t avoid bringing some ultra essentials even if you are a light packer.
It is possible for a light packer to get away with only a 40-liter backpack to carry the necessities. However, we should know the common things to pack while visiting the beaches of the island destinations.
The locals of the Bahamas, like sunscreen or aloe vera gel, do not commonly use some things. Therefore, you will have to count the high prices for these items if you buy them from the local stores in the Bahamas. Consequently, you should bring items from your place that are not used by the locals of your travel destination and avoid the hiked-up prices.
Check out some essential things you must pack when vacationing in the Bahamas.
- Beach Blanket
- Waterproof passport pouch
- Passport copy
- Personal documents
- Luggage lock
- Reusable water bottle
- Medication (if necessary)
- Outlet adaptor
- Rechargeable power bank
- Extra handy and dry bag
Upon arriving in the Commonwealth of Bahamas, visitors need to fill out an immigration form. They must keep a portion of the card until they depart. In addition, an oral declaration of their baggage is necessary. Every adult must bring fifty cigars, 200 cigarettes, and a quart of spirits. Total purchases of $100 are allowed.
When visitors depart, they need to pay a $15.00 departure tax. Meanwhile, kids aged six years and below are exempted. Departures to the United States need to go through pre-clearance in US customs. Visitors are allowed to take home US$600 of duty-free products.
Take note that British rules need to be followed, so driving is expected to be on the left. Visitors could utilize their home license for a maximum of three months. After that, they also need to apply for an international driver’s license. Pedestrians are always advised to look to their right before crossing any street. Electricity is 120C AC, so US appliances are compatible.
Things to Do
1. Enjoying The Marine Life
The marine environment is protected, so using scuba gear and spearfishing is illegal. Any boats for cruising need to clear customs at the port of entry before fishing or diving. A permit is necessary for visiting vessels that want to do sports fishing.
2. Exploring the Beaches
You will find opportunities to dive along the shipwrecks and explore the beautiful beaches of the 16 islands of the Bahamas. Beaches are the best attractions for tourists as the beachside experiences help them to relax, have adventures, and have fun in the sun.
3. Trying the Cuisine
Foodies are welcome in the Bahamas to experience local Caribbean cuisine at the local restaurants throughout the island. The rich spices and their local seafood are cooked so differently that you will hardly find them elsewhere.
In addition, the foods have a good fusion of fruit flavors. Remember to try out their local seafood conch or lionfish, a favorite item in the Bahamas for many years.
4. Going to Lucayan National Park
This is a fantastic park you can explore within a day’s trip. There is an underwater limestone cave system, a fabulous rock island beach, nature trails, and many more. This park offers visitors many unique things to do and makes the trip as enjoyable as possible.
Shopping from Nassau Straw Market will be a great pastime activity if you are a shopaholic. This famous flea market opens at 7.30 am and closes at 5 pm. You will find amazing handmade crafts, unique jewelry items, wood carvings, kid’s dolls, straw hats, souvenirs, and many more.
6. Swimming with the Pigs
There are opportunities for the tourists to swim with the pigs. The origin of the pigs has yet to be discovered by the locals. Travelers can visit the swimming pigs in the Exumas.
Best Time to Visit Bahamas
Since the Bahamas gets fantastic weather throughout the year, you can visit there anytime. It is excellent to enjoy a soothing breeze, sunny atmosphere, and low humidity almost daily. Therefore, we assure you that you will experience the best island vacation in the Bahamas.
Consider visiting the Bahamas from December to April, the peak season for travelers. The weather is more travel friendly during these months, but you must remember that the prices of accommodation and tickets will be significantly higher this time.
If your budget supports you enough, choose the best time to visit the Bahamas. You will also experience the highest crowd during these months.
Note that the temperature of the Bahamas is typically excellent throughout the year. Therefore, we recommend you visit during the off-season so that you can enjoy everything within a comparatively low budget.
There is no consistency of bad weather in the Bahamas. So, what’s the point of spending higher on accommodation and flights?
However, the islands are prone to be affected by hurricane belts between June to November. Therefore, it is better to avoid flying to the Bahamas between June and November, the Atlantic hurricane season.
During this time, travelers may also experience the region’s rainy season. Therefore, you can’t enjoy your trip and spend time in outdoor activities if you visit during a hurricane or rainy season.
Vacation in the Bahamas is a widespread practice for visitors from the United States for easy access. However, people from all over the world visit the island yearly to get a gentle and quiet Bahamian experience. Tripping to the Bahamas is nothing to worry about because getting around this island has become so easy nowadays.
This travel guide will help you to know the necessary information that you must know before visiting that place. Book the best flights and accommodation beforehand from the best service dealers for the best experience of the whole trip.