Every year about 6 million tourists rest in the Bahamas. For such a small island country, these are huge numbers. You can understand tourists, because the Bahamas have excellent conditions for a beach holiday, including diving and sailing. Some tourists are also interested in seeing the places that were once “native” to the famous pirates of the Caribbean.
The Bahamas (officially the Commonwealth of the Bahamas) is a state in the Atlantic Ocean, which includes more than 3,000 islands and coral reefs. The Bahamas are north of Cuba and Haiti, northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands, and southeast of the Florida peninsula. The total area of the country is 13,938 sq. km.
The largest islands that make up this state are New Providence, Grand Bahama, Andros, Bimini, Inagua, Eleuthera, Cat Island, Long Island, San Salvador, Aklins.
The landscape of all the Bahamas is flat. The highest local peak is Mount Alvernia, whose height reaches 63 meters.
It should be noted that the territory of the Bahamas is prone to frequent hurricanes. The last destructive hurricane occurred in 2005.
Capital of the Bahamas
According to simplyyellowpages.com, Nassau is the capital of the Bahamas. In this city, which is located on the island of New Providence, more than 250 thousand people now live. Nassau was founded by the British in 1666.
The official language of the population of the Bahamas is English.
About 35% of the population are Baptists, about 15% are Anglicans, and about 13.5% identify themselves as Catholic.
The Bahamas is a constitutional monarchy ruled by a governor-general appointed by the Queen of Great Britain. The head of government is the Prime Minister.
The bicameral local parliament consists of the Senate (16 senators) and the House of Representatives (38 deputies).
The main political parties are the Progressive Liberal Party and the Free National Movement.
Climate and weather
The climate is subtropical and tropical, strongly influenced by the Gulf Stream (especially in winter). The average annual air temperature is +24-29C. The hurricane season lasts from June to November. However, in fact, hurricanes in this country are a rare occurrence. The weather service warns in advance if a hurricane is expected.
The best time to visit the Bahamas is winter.
Sea in the Bahamas
The Commonwealth of the Bahamas is surrounded on all sides by the Atlantic Ocean. The average annual water temperature near the shore is +25C.
In the XVII-XVIII centuries, millions of Africans were brought to the Caribbean Islands, under whose influence the modern culture of the inhabitants of the Bahamas was formed.
The main cultural events are festivals, carnivals, fishing competitions and sailing regattas. The most popular of them are: in January – Junkanoo Festival, Sailing Regatta, in February – Farmer’s Cay Festival, in March – Bacardi Billfish Tournament, in April – Bahamas White Marlin Open, in May – Long Island Regatta, in June – Eleuthera Pineapple Festival, Independence Week in July, Cat Island Regatta in August, All Abaco Sailing in September, Discovery Day in October, Guy Fawkes Day, One Bahamas Music & Heritage Festival in November, and Junkanoo Boxing Day in December.
Cuisine of the Bahamas
Cuisine, unfortunately, is not one of the main reasons why tourists choose the Bahamas for holidays. Most local restaurants offer so-called dishes. international cuisine. In general, the cuisine of the Bahamas focuses on seafood and fish (mainly sea bass and oysters).
The best restaurants are in Nassau, Cable Beach, Paradise Island, and, to a lesser extent, Freeport.
Bahamian fish soup is most often made with sea bass, adding celery, onions, tomatoes and various spices and spices (for example, thyme), as well as lime juice and a little rum. Many tourists still order turtle soup in restaurants, although the turtles themselves have the status of endangered animals.
The national dish in the Bahamas is oysters, which are eaten as a main dish, made into salads and appetizers. Oyster soup is very popular. Each local chef has his own recipe for this soup. Usually, tomatoes, potatoes, sweet peppers, onions, carrots, bay leaves, thyme, and, of course, salt and pepper are added to oyster soup.
We also recommend trying the original local oyster pancakes – they are made in the shape of balls, served with hot sauce, as well as “Cracked conch” (fried clams with Creole sauce), baked crab, “Johnnycake” (baked bread with milk, flour and sugar).
For dessert, we recommend trying local fruits, sour cream apple ice cream, Sapodilla pudding and guava dessert duff. The traditional alcoholic drink is rum. Rum-based Bahamians have invented several local drinks (Yellow Bird, Bahama Mama, and Goombay Smash).
Tourists, of course, do not expect any serious unique attractions from the Bahamas. However, in this small island country there is something to see, because it was discovered by Christopher Columbus himself. After the Spaniards and the British (they captured the Bahamas in the middle of the 17th century), many beautiful houses, churches and forts remained.
So, in Nassau, we recommend that tourists pay attention to Dunmore House (1793) and Graycliff House, Fort Fincastle, the Royal Stairs, as well as Charlotte and Stanley Forts.
Parks and reserves are very popular with tourists – Inagua National Park, Abaco National Park, Man-O-War Reef and Embrister Creek on Cat Island.
Cities and resorts
The largest local cities are West End, Freeport and Nassau. All these and other settlements are excellent beach resorts, especially Nassau.
The best local beaches include the following:
- Cable Beach (New Providence Island)
- Cabbage Beach (Paradise Island)
- Xanadu Beach (Grand Bahama Island)
- Tahiti Beach
- Ten Bay Beach
- Pink Sands Beach (Harbor Island)
- Saddle Cay (Exumas)
You should also highlight the beaches on Stocking Island and Cat Island. All the beaches of the Bahamas have white sand and are surrounded by coconut palms.
Tourists in the Bahamas buy handicrafts, straw baskets, linen towels, local soaps and lotions, bags, wallets, hats, guava jelly, pineapple jam, rum as souvenirs.
Food shops are open on Sundays from 07:00 to 12:00.
Ukrainians need to apply for a visa to visit the Bahamas (this is done at the British Embassy).
Currency of the Bahamas
The Bahamian dollar is the official currency of the Bahamas (its international designation is BSD). The second monetary unit in this country can be considered the US dollar. Most hotels, restaurants and shops accept credit cards.
You can import and export foreign currency without restrictions, but in order to take out of the country more than 70 Bahamian dollars, you need to obtain permission from the Central Bank of the Bahamas.
You can take out antiques and art only with the appropriate permission. It is also necessary to obtain permission to export plants and art objects carved from wood.
Useful phone numbers and addresses
Embassy of Great Britain in Ukraine:
Address: 01025, Kiev, st. Tithe, 9
Phone: (044) 490-36-60
Fax: (044) 490-36-62
Embassy of Ukraine in the UK:
Address: 60, Holland Park, London W11 3SJ
Phone: (020) 7727-6312
Fax: (020) 7792-1708
411 Emergency Phones
– 911 Fire Department
– All Emergencies
Behind Kyiv for 6 hours. Those. if, for example, in Kyiv 13:00, then in Nassau – only 07:00.
Tips in hotels and restaurants are usually included in the bill (they are 15%). If tips are not included in the bill, then it is customary to leave an additional 15% of the bill for service (20% in prestigious restaurants).
When traveling in a taxi for short distances, the bill is usually rounded up, and for a long trip, the taxi driver is given an additional 1-2 dollars. Many taxi drivers in the Bahamas offer a 1-hour tour of the island. Such an excursion costs 25-35 dollars.
In hotels, a porter or porter for each bag is given a “tea” of $ 1. The maid who cleans the room is given an additional $ 2 per day.
In bars, they usually give a 10-15% tip to the waitress who brings the order, or 1-2 dollars to the bartender for the order.
Doctors recommend tourists before traveling to the Bahamas to be vaccinated against typhoid, rabies, hepatitis A and malaria.
In recent years, street crime has been on the rise in the Bahamas, so tourists in this country need to be careful. In Nassau, for example, most crime still occurs in areas where there are few tourists, but every year more criminals “visit” the tourist upscale areas.
Foreigners in the Bahamas are advised not to walk alone late in the evening and at night, drink alcohol in moderation and not accept alcohol from strangers. Keep your documents, airline tickets, credit cards and money in your hotel safe. Try not to wear jewelry.
Be careful on deserted beaches at any time of the day, even during the day. It is better to relax on the beaches, where there are a lot of tourists. Do not leave wallets and valuables unattended on the beach.