on the road

the gadlfy in...

the bahamas

gadfly homepage on the road home last contact: 7/2006 first contact: 7/11/2006

Bahamas Trip Stats (7/06):


Islands visited: 1

Last visited: 7/2006


Best island: Grand Bahama

Town visited most: Freeport (Lucaya)

Places slept in: Lucaya

Most impressive area: Port Lucaya

Least impressive area: Freeport (downtown)

Biggest town: Freeport

Most scenic area: Port Lucaya

Most scenic spot: coral reef off Lucaya Beach

Unofficial animal: Curly tailed lizard

Unofficial bird: frigate bird

"Barracuda" spotted: at Lucaya Beach

Best sound: junkanoo

Three Words: fragrant, sunny, hair braid, baby?

Best Food: Rum Runners Conch & Fries

Best hotel: Pelican Bay

Bahamas Links:  www.thebahamas.com

Road Trips: more like a boat/bike trip on Honeymoon (7/06) 


Neighboring States/Countries: FL, Cuba, Turks & Caicos


Areas throughly explored: stayed near Port Lucaya for four nights


Best: ocean beaches, conch meals, hospitality, sea life, friendliness  Worst: food and drink prices


Future Plans: One day when more adventurous we should explore San Salvador and I am also intrigued by Cat Island. heard the drug trafficking trade is big on these Outer Islands.


Bahamians: The people of the Bahamas see themselves as progressive members of the international marketplace, but seem to have a strange idea about what their role is. Bahamians have two sets of rules... one by which they govern themselves and rules for tourists. Most Bahamians seem to be quite devout Christians, but do not hesitate to provide tourists with crass t-shirts, drug paraphanelia, and endless quantities of rum. It is true that Bahamians are banend by law from the casinos that dot the largest islands. They seem to see themselves as real people and naturally see the tourists as decadant souls. They trust God to sort it all out. The Bahamian culture and accent is that of the Carib-African that is most known in Jamaica. Little culturally besides Junkanoo celebrations seem to be their own. Still they are quite unlike their Jamaican counterparts in their notable sobriety and history of political stability.


Heroes: Like Canada, the Bahamas is not adverse to demonstrating their loyalty to the British crown with honors to Queen Elizabeth. Like Canada,  the Bahamas has a history as a haven to Loyalists. Pirates are remembered in the names of the islands. Heroes of the independence movement who still live are honored as well.

bahamas.jpg (12440 bytes)

First Contact: I fist met the nation made of the 700 islands of the Bahamas after a five hour boat ride from Fort Lauderdale to Freeport, the nation's second-largest city where tourism is the top priority. The island's proximity to the U.S. has made its history.... as pirate hideout, bootlegger's paradise, and now tropical report. The purpose of the trip was my honeymoon. Grand Bahama Island was everything my research promised.

Grand Bahama Island (7/2006)

Perfect weather. Everything smells good. large curly-tailed lizards gather everywhere looking for shade. A paradise for sure. No wonder Bahamians were ranked among the happiest people in the world in a recent survey. Freeport Harbor. Container harbor where I made landfall. Now serving as an importer of U.S.-bound Asian goods. White vans marked "taxi" lined up and competed for tourist dollars with the gusto of used car salesmen. Freeport. The city, contructed for tourists (gaining wide popularity after the fall of Havana in 1959) is made up of hotels, casinos, and the homes of service employees. Some areas are marked with noticeable poverty. Port Lucaya. The locale where we spent most of our time is an insulated tourist area. We ventured down the dead-end toward the rest of the island and through the pine sticks battered by storms of years past only once by bike. This proved nearly fatal in the tropical heat. A sheltered harbor for pleasure boaters is surrounded here by a marketplace and several hotels. The Marketplace is full of locals offerring "braids for the lady" and t-shirts that go for "2 for $10... 3 for $10 for you, baby." The marketplace offers all sorts of shopping and dining depending on taste and the showplace is home to live music and junkanoo re-enactments. Across the way are two casinos and beautiful, clear waters and white sand of Lucaya Beach. If that's not enough, boats leave the harbor taking toursits to the more out of the way Taino Beach. The coral reef that lies just outward is beautiful. Snorkeling over it, I felt both peace and a panic in remembering I couldn't swim. Taxi stands say it all. The drivers sit, feet up fanning themselves and reading the newspaper and seem to shoot the breeze all day long...


baha6.jpg (14424 bytes)The sun sets over the Atlantic Ocean from aboard the Discovery Sun. This part of the ocean is shallow and part of the Bermuda Triangle.


baha1.jpg (11219 bytes)

Hurricanes and the tropical sun have battered Lucaya Harbor's lighthouse. The trees of the non-resort areas consist of battered pine that remind visitors of the ocean's occasional fury. (2006)

baha2.jpg (17652 bytes)

Overlooking Lucaya Beach. Beautiful coral reefs sit about seven feet below the surface a bit out to sea from this point. (2006)

baha4.jpg (24122 bytes)

I look over Lucaya Harbor, destination for boaters from the all over the Caribbean and Florida,  from my hotel room at Pelican Bay. (2006)

baha3.jpg (23195 bytes)

Coconut palm provides relief from the relentless tropical sun in Lucaya.(2006)


Photos (c) 2007 by J. Bezold. All rights reserved.