March - May 2013
The Commonwealth of the Bahamas, is a country consisting of more than 700 islands, cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean. Its capital is Nassau on the island of New Providence. Geographically, the Bahamas lie near to Cuba, which is part of the Greater Antilles, along with Hispaniola and Jamaica.
Originally inhabited by the Lucayan, a branch of the Arawakan-speaking Taino people, the Bahamas were the site of Columbus' first landfall in the New World in 1492. Although the Spanish never colonized the Bahamas, they shipped the native Lucayans to slavery in Hispaniola.
The Bahamas became a British Crown colony in 1718, when the British clamped down on piracy. After the American War of Independence, thousands of American Loyalists, taking their enslaved Africans, moved to the Bahamas, where the Americans set up a plantation economy. Today the descendants of slaves and free Africans form the majority of the population; issues related to the slavery years are part of society. The Bahamas became an independent Commonwealth realm in 1973, retaining Queen Elizabeth II as monarch.
March - May 2103
We had a 24hr fast but bumpy passage from Cuba to Noth Bimini where we checked into the Bahamas. Our boat insurance limited the number of days we could stay so far north so we made our way south along the Exumas. Most boats which come from the USA or Canada, stay in the relatively protected waters north of George Town and concequently where they are the anchorages are bussy. South of George Town was totally different. Anchorages were exposed and passages between longer with rougher water so we encountered the more 'serious' sailors. From the Exumus we crossed to Long Island, Conception then the Crookeds and Acklins Islands. We cleared out of the Bahamas at Great Inagua.
12 March 2013
Having cleared in on Bimini we sailed east across the shallow Bahama Banks at night to reach Nassua early morning. We were joined by a number of 'larger' cruise boats arriving at this time. Like all other cruise liner destinations they all look the same with the shopping mals selling the same brand diamonds and wrist watches
15 March 2013
Unique to Nassau was the Atlantis hotel. It looked identical to the one we had seen in Dubia so we certainly didn't need to get any closer to this one.
March - May 2013
16 April 2013
There are two churches in Clarence Town, both designed by John Hawes, of similar appearance with their twin towers. One is Anglican/Episcopal, named St. Paul's Anglican Church. The other is Roman Catholic, named St. Peter and Paul.
27 March 2013
At Staniel cay the pigs came out to our dinghy to get food scraps. Once they sensed you had food there was no holding them back. One even got his front legs into the boat. We were lucky he did not have sharp hooves otherwise he would have have given us a puncture !
18 April 2013
Dean's Blue Hole is the world's deepest known Blue hole with seawater. It plunges 202 metres (663 ft) in a bay west of Clarence Town Long Island.
As we headed south through the Exumas we encountered fewer boats and some anchorages we had to our selves.
27 April - 5 May 2013
Great Inagua was our last island in the Bahamas. It is the southern most island in the Bahamas and one of the remotest. Norton Salt produces salt from the 'Salinas' which has been going on for several hundred years. Two people are employed in the operation and without it the island would be dead. Although an atempt is being made to construct a marina there are no all weather anchorages and we had several uncomfortable days on the hook.
We met Mike and Di on Water Witch and shared time together touring the island. A guide took us inland to see flamingos.