Take a cue from the locals and slow down to island time as you soak in the Bahamas’ shores and beaches. It’s here you can cruise through isolated cays where coral reefs stretch below and billowing clouds float above. An untouched beauty fills the water beckoning travelers to scuba dive, snorkel or simply float among the gentle waves. Those with a rod and reel may notice luck turn in their favor especially while big-game fishing from the billfish capital of the Bahamas at Chub Cay, in the Berry Islands. Close by marinas back into charismatic towns where waterfront restaurants and long stretches of white-sand beaches paint a picture of the encompassing serenity in the area. Just 150 miles due east of Florida, The Moorings’ Marsh Harbor powerboat base is easily accessed while you are cruising through the Bahamas. From here you can choose to voyage to the Exumas, Georgetown, and Eleuthera. Or ride the waves and plot a new course through the Sea of Abaco and along the chain of islands set in a sailor’s paradise.
Step aboard a Bahamas powerboat charter and experience the unrivaled feeling of cruising through passages in the Sea of Abaco. The design of your powercat ensures smooth passages among shallow waters with fuel-efficient cruising at 14 to 16 mph. Endless offshore potential awaits where navigation is mainly line-of-sight and trips to each destination are filled with spectacular views. Take note of the tides during a full or new moon as the tides change and normal anchorages may be shallower than usual. During the day temperatures range from the mid 70s in January to the high 90s in the summer while winter can bring temperatures in the low 60s. Novice sailors will find the clement seas and weather an ideal setting for exploring the islands with friends and family.
Trying to fit in all that the Bahamas have to offer would become a hard earned task that many may see as an enjoyable challenge. Sports enthusiasts can work out an itinerary of scuba diving or snorkeling in water with clear visibility. Beginners to advanced divers will find different levels of difficulty in the waters to suit their experience. For visitors who prefer to cast into the water rather than swim in it, excellent seasonal fishing conditions abound with tuna, wahoo, and sailfish while year-round saltwater anglers can go after the area’s popular bonefish. On shore you can also fit in relaxed visits to small shops in search of locally made handcrafts or rent a bike and ride near the shore as waves crash along the beach.
North of Marsh Harbor, surrounded by a jade-green sea, sits the scenic stretch of Green Turtle Cay. Natural beauty and modern day charm come together in the harbors of Black and White sounds, the food of local restaurants, and the stories surrounding significant sites. Dive into a unique learning experience to understand the ecology of the Bahamas’ reefs with exhibits at Captain Roland Roberts House Environment Center. Those with a predilection for history may find themselves strolling through the Albert Lowe Museum’s art and photography exhibits about New Plymouth. Like many areas in the Bahamas, Green Turtle Cay became a new home for former British colonists after the American Revolution ended. These long-gone, but not forgotten, British settlers are commemorated with a bronze sculpture that stands in the Memorial Sculpture Garden.
Anchoring at White Sound in Hope Town you will immediately feel the same draw to this area as Elbow Cay’s first residents did so many years ago. A sense of island pride can be found among the lapping waves and in the design of the red and white Elbow Reef Lighthouse. Since 1863 the 89-foot lighthouse has guided boats through the Abacos to safely bring them into the harbor. To this day the keeper still follows the traditional method of maintaining a steady beam shining across the sea by burning pressurized kerosene, a method only a handful of lighthouses use today. Climb the 101 steps to take yourself back in time as you gaze out over the Sea of Abaco from a new perspective.
Step into the middle of a 2,100-acre preserve where diverse species of birds, fish, and plants have made their home. About 20 nautical miles south of Marsh Harbor, the Pelican Cays Land and Sea Park is a nature-lover’s paradise. In the center of the preserve are the delicate coral reefs and tranquil undersea caves of Sandy Cay and the Pelicans. Go below the surf to snorkel and scuba dive in the nearby waters that feel worlds away. Gentle winds and curving beaches call you from the deck of your yacht to sunbathe or walk in this Caribbean haven.
Anchor on Great Abaco and lose yourself in the endless views that spread across the Atlantic and into the horizon. At Little Harbor you might just choose to linger on your boat as the sea softly calms you with its song of lapping waves and whispering winds. The harbor was founded as art colony 60 years ago and still retains an air of whimsy and imaginative design. Before exploring the art scene on land dive down to the nearby coral reef or explore the caves on the west side of the harbor. When you do decide to dry off and visit the shore head east across a narrow spit where an abandoned lighthouse is the perfect place to gaze out over the sea. Continue to the wide Bight of Old Robinson where creeks twist through the land and the scene looks like a painting from one of the area’s original artists.