Explore South Eleuthera- Bahamas

There is so much of Eleuthera to check out. I think it was better to split blog post into mini blog posts. There is just so much to cover. Plus it is an amazing place. That is worth exploring every part.

The best way to see Eleuthera is renting a car. Renting a car on a tiny island is hard and fun! There are no rental agencies that you are used to; they are sometimes personal cars. It can also be a little expensive around ($80-100), but totally worth it. Get an SUV if you can so you can drive off the road to some of the beaches. Here is a link for more information.

Places to See:

One of the best snorkeling stops on the island is Half Sound. If you want to explore the world under the waves. Throw on your mask and explore Half Sound. You will be surrounded by nurse sharks, turtles, and beautiful corals.

The largest town in south Eleuthera is Rock Sound. It is a little town nestled in the on the water. It is a small town that sees very little tourists. You can see the rainbow painted houses. The is a cute white church right on the water.There is a cute little shop call the “The Blue Seahorse” that sells local crafts. It is definitely worth a stop.

Cape Eleuthera Institute is a must see! I worked here, so I’m a little biased.     It is a marine lab that works with the community and education. Not only do they work with a high school semester program but as well as educating the local community. Stop by and ask for a tutor, see the organisms in the tanks, find out what kind of research is going on.

Lighthouse Beach: The number one place that I would definitely go to is Lighthouse Beach. If you want to feel like you have a beach for only for you. It is an isolated beach at the end of the road on the very southeastern tip of Eleuthera. It is the most beautiful beach I have ever seen.

Places to Eat

Sammy’s is a small restaurant off the beaten path in Rock Sound. If you want local food and will a fun Bahamian atmosphere. I love going here because the people are so friendly! And they have good food.

Shari’s Restaurant has the best fried chicken you will ever have. I have been living in North Florida and explored all the south; it is still the best-fried chicken I have ever had. Don’t be deceived by the building it looks like a home. The restaurant doesn’t have the best decor. But you will get the best Bahamian food! They don’t sell alcohol, but you can go across the street to a white building with old men outside playing dominos is the local bar. Grab a beer and sit outside on the picnic benches and watch the small town.

Frigate’s Bar and Grill is a restaurant that is located in the Davis Harbor Marina. They have beautiful deck seating overlooking the marina. It is a great restaurant to stop on the way back from Lighthouse Beach.

Harbour Pointe Restaurant is part of the Cape Eleuthera Resort and Marina an elegant restaurant looking over the far South Western tip. It is adjacent to the pool. So you can get drinks at the pool and grab lunch. They have a great deck that overlooks the water.

Places to Stay

In the south Eleuthera, there is very little development. You can get a feel for the true Bahamas. There are really only two main options.

Rent a home in Cotton Bay and here is a link to some. They have beautiful homes that are maintained well. It was part of an old country club resort in the 1950s that has shut down. Here is a link.

The other option is Cape Eleuthera Resort and Marina which has two bedrooms and a fun kitchen. It is a great place you can use that as a base to explore south Eleuthera. There are a pool and a restaurant there as well. My family stayed there when they would come visit me. Here is the link.

Conch

I have to tell you a little about conch. As a marine biologist, I will tell you a little warning that it is endangered. It is a delicacy in the Bahamas. The locals have been eating conch for years. I do believe in trying new things and eating what the locals eat, but don’t have it for every meal. Conch is an endangered and could be extinct. Conch use to be abundant in the Keys but now it is extremely hard to find a conch in the wild. Most of the time if you are eating Conch it can be a juvenile. This means that because of the demand of Conch fisherman are getting smaller Conchs that aren’t able to reproduce. This will cause the speciesto become extinct. 

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Central Eleuthera, Bahamas

When I travel, I love to learn a little about the history and culture. I think it is so important to learn.

A Little History 

Eleuthera was founded in 1648. It is known as the birthplace of the Bahamas. A group of Puritans called the Eleuthera adventurers sailed from Bermuda in search of religious freedom.  They first arrived at the north end of the Eleuthera. They settled at a place called peachers cave. The adventures call their new place “Eleuthera” which means freedom.

Originally Eleuthera was occupied by Lucayan Indians. Not much is known about the Lucayans, they were enslaved by the Spanish in the 1500s.

Places to Stay

French Leave Resort

The Cove

Pineapple Fields Resort

La Bougainvillea

You can always check out Airbnb!

 

I’m wearing an old dress but similar here and here, and illesteva sunglass. I bought the bag on the island here and here is a similar bag.

Things to do

The best way to see the Eleuthera is to rent a car and drive the island. I’m going to list things to do North to the South.

Preachers Cave – it is a cave where the Eleuthera Adventures arrived and used to as shelter.

Saphire Blue Hole– blue holes are known to happen throughout the Bahamas. They are deep holes in the land or the ocean that can be thousands of feet deep. This one is near Preachers Cave, so it is great to do both. It is in the bush a, and there is a significant drop in a blue hole. There is a latter you can climb up after you jump. The water is so clear and blue it is really unbelievable.

Glass Window Bridge– Is the thinnest part of the island. You can see the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.

The Queen’s Baths– They are a group of pools right after the Glass Window Bridge. You can hang in these pools that overlook the Atlantic Ocean. It’s best on calm days.

 

 

I have this suit on, and here are some similar ones too ( here and here).

Gregory Town– This little town is known as the surf town. It has great places to eat ( Laughing Lizard), and great places to shop ( Island made, and Pete Rebecca’s).  It is a great town to wander around and check out the little marina. During the spring there is a pineapple fest! Where they celebrate growing pineapples. The pineapples are different than most that you see, they are white and small, but they are sweeter and better!

Surfers Beach– Is the best place to surf on Eleuthera. There is a dirt road out to the beach, but you can walk if your car can’t go.

Hatch Bay Caves– Is a mile long, 3 level cave, the walls are covered with Graffiti. You may see an occasional bat. It is a neat cave. There are stories of pirates hiding treasure in the cave and Lucayans burying their dead.

Governors Harbour– This little harbor town that was historically the capital of the Bahamas. It has beautiful victorian homes painted with bright yellows, pinks, and blues. If you are there on a Friday night check out the fish fry. You can dance in the street and grilled fresh fish. Some of my favorite spots in Governor’s harbor:

Resturants

The Cove– Is the only place on the island you can get sushi! So if you are staying there or want really good sushi check out this place!

1648 Bar and Grill– Great food right on the harbor overlooking the bay. It is a perfect place to watch the sunset.

Tippy’s- is on the Atlantic side of the island, great pizza, and large cocktails. They have a band on Saturdays! It is a great beach, go for a walk and swim.

Things to Check Out

The Library–  Was built in 1897, it has survived so many hurricanes. It is painted pink and turquoise. It is still a working library. You can walk around the neat old building, and look through the windows on the second floor to a beautiful view.

Here is a great link to check out more!

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Bahamas- Harbor Island

I lived on a small “family Island” in the Bahamas for three years. I love the small set of Caribbean Island near Florida. I didn’t expect to fall in love with the islands, but I kept going back.

The capital, Nassau is on main Island, New Providence; the most famous island is a small island attached to New Providence called Paradise Island. This is where the famous pink Atlantis and other famous all-inclusive resorts. All of these Hotels are great! It just depends on what kind of trip to the Bahamas you want.

I like a little more local trip. I like to get to know the Islands and culture. Eleuthera is one of my favorite islands. Eleuthera means “freedom” it is a small flight from Nassau, or you can get a flight from Florida. The world-famous pink sands are located on the eastern side of this island.

Harbor Island is a quaint little island off of Eleuthera. You should fly into North Eleuthera Airport. Then take a taxi to the ferry ($5) to get to Harbor Island. Note: Bring some cash, they use American dollars. The main source of transport is by golf cart. You can rent a golf cart for ($50 a day). When you get to the dock, you can look up at the hill and see all the colorful little houses. This island is known for their color houses and rosters. You will see and hear roster everywhere. This is a great place to visit; it has a little of everything. You can go deep-sea fishing, SCUBA, shop, and just lay on the beach and enjoy. I use to come up to Harbor Island just to get away from work on the weekends.

I’m wearing an old dress (but similar here or here), bag similar, sunglasses, and sandals.

History:

The locals call it “Bri island.” It was once the capital of the Bahamas and the second largest city to Nassau in the 1900s. It was known for shipbuilding, and sugar refinement in the late 1800s.

Great places to stay:

My favorite place to stay on the island is Pink Sands it is one of the most historic hotels on the island. It has a beautiful gate with vines climbing up and Beynon trees in the entrance. There is a main lobby that has a great restaurant.

I’m wearing an old dress ( but similar herehere or here), bag similar, and sandals.

Where to stay?

One of the best places to stay is The Dunmore. It is very pricey but so beautiful. They are famous for their white and turquoise colors. If you are willing to spend the extra dollars, it is a real treat. If you don’t want to stay, there you can always grab lunch or brunch there. The restaurant is right on the beach. You can check out the hotel too.

The Ocean View Resort is a newer hotel. It is a little boutique hotel that has a nice mix of beachy vibes and a unique flare. I would love to stay there when I visit again.

Coral Sands is next to pink sands. It has a great pool, and two different bars one close to the main lobby and one by the ocean. It is a great, beautiful resort it just doesn’t have the vintage feel that the some of the other places have.

Valentines is a great place to stay on the marina side of the island. If you want to have more access to the marina for fishing and diving. The units have more of an apartment feel, with a full kitchen. It does have pool and walking distance to downtown and the beach.

The Landing is a boutique hotel overlooking the marina on a historic property dating back 1800s. The rooms are inspired by India Hicks is a classic plantation style with colonial and Carribean character. It is a great place to grab dinner; it has a great island vibe with white wall and dark accents. They have indoor and outdoor dining in their lit up courtyard.

What to do?

The Bahamas is a great place to visit if you love the ocean. You can spend hours on the beach. It is a great beach to run on in the morning before it gets to hot. At Coral Sands there is yoga sometimes. Most of the hotels have paddle boards, kayaks, and floaties to play in the waves. There is great snorkeling a little farther off shore. Just ask the locals where to go. If you want to try SCUBA (which I highly recomend) or if you are certified their is great diving in the area. If you like fishing there are deep-sea fishing usually during the spring. You might catch a Mahi Mahi or a Wahoo! There is so much to do, even rent a car and explore more of the island.

Why is There Pink Sands

Harbor Island is most known for the pale pink beaches. The sand is consist of coral, broken shells, and calcium carbonate from tiny marine rocks. The pink color comes from tiny microscopic shelled animals known as Foraminifera.

Coffee and Breakfast

Bahamas Coffee Roaster roasts their coffee! Its so good, my favorite is Junkanoo. I always buy a bag when I’m there. It has a great outdoor space, to sit in the morning and watch the town wake up.

Arthur’s Bakery is a great little place to grab little sweet baked goods.  A painted the famous Bahama pink building. It’s also where the famous white pineapple fence.

Sweet Spot Cafe is a great little place on the water that has healthy smoothies and bowls. It is a great place to get a recovery food from a hangover!

 

Lunch

I would definitely recommend Sip Sip. It is just off the beach. So it is perfect to come from the beach and get some good Bahamian food! It is bright green you can’t miss it!

The Rock House is a great place to grab lunch overlooking the marina. Last time I was at “Bri land” I had cocktails there before going to dinner. you can watch the sunset over the water on that side of the island.

 

Dinner

There are a lot of great places to eat, and most hotels have a restaurant. I’m only going to list my favorites.

I love The Landing’s restaurant,  excellent contemporary menu based on local produce and freshly caught fish and seafood.

The Dunmore, you can wander inside a cozy, breeze-filled dining room or in the open air on the breathtaking ocean view terrace.

Coral Sands has a great menu of indoor/outdoor dining. The dining room is surrounded by old black and white photographs of Harbor Island.

 

Enjoy exploring the island, there is so much to do and explore! Don’t be afraid to rent a car and explore more of Eleuthera.

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5 days in Jamaica

Last year I went to Jamacia with my boyfriend. I was living in the Bahamas for a couple of years, but haven’t been able to explore other islands. It was a great little retreat. I don’t like touristy things, so I searched and searched for places to go on the island.

 

I decided I wanted to stay in Port Antonio.  I found this place Goblin Hill Villas.  This is the view from our villa. It was wonderful we had a woman that would come and make us fresh breakfast every morning and dinner every night. I was so good. We had great food made by a local!

The must-sees in Port Antonio area:

  • Blue Lagoon
  • Eat Jerk Chicken for Boston Bay
  • Walk through the town of Port Antonio
  • Have a  beach day at Frenchman’s Cove
  • Drive through the blue mountains and try Blue Mountain Coffee
  • Reach Falls
  • Listen to Ragaee in the streets on Antonio on Wednesday night

Optional:

  • Rio Grande ( its a longer rafting session than the blue lagoon)
  • Montego Bay
  • Ocho Rio

Day 1:

We woke up and enjoyed a great meal, made in our villa. Then we headed on the road. We went out to see the blue lagoon.

Blue Lagoon, which is an across the street from the Goblin Hill Villas.

Tony was our guide. It is about a 2-hour raft ride around an island and a deep lagoon. It is about $60, a little expensive but worth it to swim around and check out the beautiful water.

They call these the healing springs, its really cold, water where the fish eat the dead skin off your feet.

We then went to have local jerk chicken at the birthplace. In Boston Bay, there are a bunch of different restaurants to stop and try their jerk.

Day 2:

In downtown Port Antonio, walked around the old marina town, and got ice cream by the water. It is a busy town with people on the street selling goods. On Wednesday night, there is a large reggae concert in the street. Worth checking out.

Reach Falls is really cool and worth the drive you come up to a national park. This is a beautiful waterfall you can jump off the top. You can climb up the waterfall, and there is a cave that you can hang out in the waterfall. It is a little cold, but it’s nice on a hot day. Make sure you get there early before the crowds come. We got there right when they opened; we were the second car to get there.

Day 3:

Frenchman’s cove there is an entrance fee, but it is worth it! It is a beautiful beach.  I love beach days! Sometimes you just need some sun. Make sure you wear sunscreen. They serve food and drinks so you can stay there all day.

 

Day 4:

Famous Blue Mountain Coffee! We climbed up the mountain in our little car. On these narrow streets, David ( my boyfriend) hated it because he is scared of heights.  But you get a really great view and drive through these little towns on the side of the road. So Blue mountain coffee is one of the best coffees in the world. It has so farmed on the blue mountains between Port Antonio and Kingston.  You can go on a tour if you want. unfortunately the only day we had time was on Sunday to drive over the mountain.  We just went on the adventure by ourselves hoping to see some coffee. 

At the very top of the mountain. We stopped for a second to look out, and see if we took a wrong turn. This man came up to us and said do you want to try coffee. We said yes. We were a little confused and worried to follow this guy into his house. We walked in, there was a whole set up to show us how they make coffee, from the green and red beans to the roasted beans you see in the store. He offered us coffee, which was so storm and to show us the trees where the beans come from. It was so good. What a cool experience!

Day 5:

 We got to our last at Strawberry Inn Hotel. It was amazing. On Sundays they have a famous spa and brunch, so after our long day of driving we got spa treatments. We checked into our room. We had the a little villa on the side of the hill over looking Kingston. This hotel was a plantation, so there are some of the original buildings that they converted into a restaurant and lounge. The hotel was owned by the same guy who owned the island records, (Bob Marley was one of their artist). Each villa had a different theme. There was an outdoor shower where you could look up at the stars and Kingston. It was a beautiful.

Last night in Jamacia! 

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