#From beaches to infinity
They have made the Bahamas' reputation on their own. They spread their idyllic fringes of fine white, golden or pink sand along a sea with incredibly clear and translucent waters. Blond, golden, pink, immaculate white, flooded with sunshine and refreshed by light breezes, shaded by pines or hemmed with coconut trees, wild and secret, hidden at the bottom of deep coves, rocked by the lapping of the lagoons or swept away by the fiery waves of the Atlantic Ocean, intimate and nonchalant or vibrant with activities and explored by athletes of all kinds, Bahamanian beaches have a thousand faces... You can choose your own!
Notice of good weather :
An ideal climate all year round is what the Bahamas offers, which rightly boasts of being the islands of eternal spring. An average temperature of 26°C over the calendar is enough to delight those used to continental climates that we are. There is indeed a period of winter (from late November to March) that is theoretically cooler (especially at night) and less humid, but it does not show any obvious difference with summer, which is hot and a little more humid. These exceptional weather conditions attract visitors all year round.
The Mecca of diving
Secret caves, steep cracks, gigantic caves, narrow tunnels, deep ravines, steep drops, shipwrecks and aircraft wrecks, the Bahamas' underwater diving catalogue is still to be completed, as the possibilities are so numerous that new sites are discovered every week. If we add to this tormented underwater geography a fantastic underwater fauna and optimal diving conditions, we understand that the islands have built a reputation as an essential international diving centre.
An open-air aquarium
They are called clown, damsel, picasso, angel, emperor, surgeon, they wear costumes striped in blue, orange, light clothes with dots, liveries, yellow, black, silver or fluorescent dresses... They are the dancers of a fascinating underwater ballet with undulating rhythms and strange rites. Tropical fishes constantly offer a magical spectacle in Bahamian waters. There is no need to hold your place, all you have to do is show up armed with a mask and a snorkel to enjoy a performance that does not have an intermission. Farther and deeper, the large pelagic fishes evolve lazily without paying attention to the funny visitors, webbed and loaded with bottles, who come to observe their morals. The Bahamas offers everyone an aquarium sea within reach of a mask, regardless of the diver's level of expertise.
Big, slow, fly, longline....
While the Bahamas has a long established fishing tradition, "Papa" Hemingway is no stranger to this reputation. A large number of international fishing tournaments punctuate the calendar and attract boats from all coasts and neighbouring islands to Bahamian waters, allowing fishermen to compete. Each type of fish has its own privileged fishing period during the year. Marlin, sailfish, grouper, barracuda, tuna, sea bream, albula (bonefish), mackerel, tarpon... the exhaustive list would be too long, but it would be very surprising if the fine lines did not return with beautiful trophies.
The Bahamas certainly has more golf carts than conventional vehicles. In addition to serving as a means of transport for wealthy owners in luxury residences or for customers and staff of large hotel complexes, they also make it possible to travel on golf courses that are on the edge of perfection. The great names of golf have drawn for you on emerald green canvases between forest and idyllic beach on world-class courses. The very favourable climate of the archipelago allows you to play all year round. All this invites you to do something special!
A hospitality without false creases
Smiling, debonair, friendly, helpful, simple and not stressed for two cents (or rather for two hundred!), the Bahamians, of a welcoming nature, are the worthy heirs of a tradition of warm hospitality. With the tourist, they are happy to engage in conversation and connect easily. They do not harass the visitor who feels safe, but rather willing to offer their help. Their standard of living, much higher than that of the inhabitants of neighbouring islands, undoubtedly allows them a certain detachment.The Bahamians have also understood well how much the tourist is a hen with golden eggs to pamper, but their attitude is totally disinterested. In short, the Bahamians are a disarming kindness to which we succumb very quickly!
Security, no problem
In the Bahamas, there is no problem of insecurity. Everyone here knows everyone else, and the slightest infraction is quickly detected. Disputes that exist are most often based on domestic disputes or neighbourhood problems, and do not concern foreign visitors.No hygiene or health problems, no insects or poisonous snakes. The greatest threat is probably the voracious mosquitoes and sand fleas that haunt the seaside at the end of the day, at sunset on some islands!
A Caribbean charm with a touch of English tradition
The Bahamas is a very young nation whose culture is nevertheless secular, a blend of African influences and traditions from old Europe. The British heritage can be found everywhere, in the taste of well-ordered gardens and botany, in the practice of rugby and cricket, in left-hand drive, in the sacrosanct five o'clock tea... Nevertheless, the Bahamas has a strong identity and a rich and original culture that is expressed in music, junkanoo (carnival), cuisine and many other things...
The "People to People" program
Having tea or a meal with a family, attending a church service, talking to someone who works in the same profession as you or who vibrates for the same passion, visiting an elementary school... as many things as possible through the People to People program. Set up by the Ministry of Tourism, the program is free for everyone. It allows the visitor to discover the local way of life by encouraging closer contact between tourists and certain voluntary and volunteer residents.The meetings are tailor-made, according to the visitor's interests and interests, who meets his Bahamian "correspondent" in his or her intimacy. More than 1,200 people participate in this program on the islands of Nassau/Paradise Island, Grand Bahama Island, The Abacos, The Exumas, Eleuthera/Harbour Island, Bimini, Andros, Cat Island, and await foreign visitors.
Shopping at all costs
Shopping addicts, beware of temptations! The Bahamas offers a wide range of products from all over the world. Jewellery, perfumes, cosmetics, leather goods, watches, clothing, alcohol, tableware... the temptations are permanent. Long zero-rated, all these products are now subject to VAT, which was introduced and set at 7.5% in January 2015. Nevertheless, some products found on the spot are sometimes not even available in Europe. This is enough to stir up many desires!
© Dominique Auzias & Jean-Paul Labourdette