The Caribbean, Bahamas & Bermuda

Nassau, Bahamas

written by | Posted on January 25th, 2012

This article originally appeared in Delta Air Lines’ 2012 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide. It has been extracted from its original format. To read the full travel guide, visit the digital edition.

The capital of The Bahamas is also home to its most historic sites. Rawson Square, sitting across from the cruise dock at Prince George Wharf, welcomes visitors to the city with tropical foliage, a fountain, and a bust of the first Bahamian Governor General, Sir Milo Butler. Several forts, built to protect New Providence during the colonial period, still remain. At Fort Charlotte, the largest, visitors can enjoy striking views of the harbor and its surroundings from its fortifications dating to the late 1700s. And the Queen’s Staircase, impeccably carved out of limestone by slaves in the late-18th century, still draws visitors to its 65 steps. Even the shopping area surrounding the cruise port has historical significance, with Bay Street—Nassau’s main thoroughfare—lined with boutiques, is also its oldest. More modern attractions await at Cable Beach, home to a strip of beachfront resorts like the Sheraton Nassau Beach Resort and the Wyndham Nassau Resort. The Cable Beach area is also home to the Crystal Palace Casino, offering gamers both slot machines and table games like blackjack and poker. But the largest casino on the island—and in the entire Caribbean—waits across the bridge at Paradise Island, home to Atlantis. This is an expansive resort complex famous for its exciting waterpark, its exotic aquarium, and its iconic accommodations. Its Bridge Suite, linking the tops of two of its towers, ranks among the world’s most expensive hotel rooms. Blue Lagoon Island, on the other hand, offers a more low-key experience. The small island—also known as Salt Cay—sits about a 20-minute sail from Nassau, and offers visitors the chance to partake in dolphin and sea lion encounter
programs, as well as relax on a its tranquil beach and explore its grounds to discover tropical birds and exotic plant life.

Facts

  • Best time to visit:
    November to May
  • Fun fact:
    Kalik, the local beer of The Bahamas, takes its name from the sound of the cowbell, a common instrument in the traditional music of the islands
  • Getting there:
    Delta flies from New York (LGA) and Detroit to Nassau
  • Entry documents:
    Valid passport
  • Currency:
    Bahamian dollar; U.S. currency is widely accepted
  • Must-try local food:
    Bahamian Rock lobster
  • Best buys:
    Duty-free designer clothing and accessories, local handicrafts
  • Information please:
    The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism—bahamas.com