Island for My Bahama Vacation
by Eve Pearce
My Enchanting Bahama Vacation on Eleuthera Island.
Less developed for tourism than many other islands in the Caribbean, the Bahamian island of Eleuthera's stunning scenery and mellow locals made for my perfect break from a busy life.
It was impossible for me to stray far from the beach on this narrow strip of an island. Eleuthera is basically an island of two sides.
The surfers looking for some wild waves can hit the Atlantic side while those preferring a lazy lapping shoreline can stick to the crystal clear waters of the Caribbean Sea on the western side.
With vast stretches of white and pink sandy beaches and a coastline of coves, caves and cliffs, Eleuthera has all of the right ingredients for a memorable vacation.
Despite being a relatively small island, Eleuthera is serviced by no fewer than three airports. Granted these are small and have fairly minimal facilities, but they are both well positioned – one in the north (North Eleuthera: ELH), one in the south (Rock Sound: RSD) and one in between (Governor’s Harbour: GHB) - and well connected.
Direct flights from Florida into Eleuthera are available with Continental or from Atlanta with Delta.
Alternatively, Eleuthera is just a short hop from Nassau with Southern Air or Bahamas Air. However arrival by air is not the only option. Arrival by inter-island ferry is another option with Bahamas Ferries offering daily services.
Should you be looking for a more scenic route to the island, you might wish to incorporate a visit as part of a Royal Caribbean cruise. A cruise is an ideal and relaxing way to explore several Caribbean islands in one vacation, without the inconvenience of arranging your own transport.
Days By the Sea
The infectious laid back attitude of the locals and the absence of busy shopping precincts, casinos and amusement parks means that you will undoubtedly leave Eleuthera feeling relaxed.
You may well want to spend your whole time exploring the many beautiful beaches of the island by day and relaxing with a plate of cracked conch and an ice cold Bahamian Kalik beer by night.
If you can tear yourself away from your towel, Eleuthera offers outstanding snorkeling in its clear shimmering waters filled with tropical marine life and coral reefs.
To the northern
edge of Eleuthera lies the so-called "Devil's Backbone", a perilous reef which has ended the sailing days of many a vessel. Consequently home to numerous wrecked ships, those determined to go deeper will find several exciting diving prospects here.
Are you more comfortable on the water than in it? You could take advantage of the excellent fishing on offer. Whether it be, deep-sea, bone fishing or angling, novice or advanced - the needs of every fishing enthusiast are catered for.Exploring Eleuthera
You may be looking to take in the many sights of the island. Then you should be sure to include Glass Window Bridge, referred to as the “narrowest place on earth”. Just north of Gregory Town, what was once a naturally formed arch of rock was destroyed by hurricane. It's now replaced by a man-made bridge.
Despite this, the site remains the narrowest part of the island and makes for breathtaking views of both the Atlantic ocean one one side and the Exuma Sound to the other.
While in the vicinity, if the sea is calm, be sure to have a paddle in the Queens Baths. These are beautiful rock pools.
Another of the island's attractions which combines the natural and the historical is Preacher's Cave in North Eleuthera. This spot marks the very origins of the Bahamas as it was this cave which housed the shipwrecked Eleutheran Adventurers and in fact served as their place of worship.Eleutheran Eateries
The majority of the restaurants on the island maintain that all important laid back vibe, with casual dress, music and Bahamian food being the main-stay.
A vacation on Eleuthera would not be complete without rocking up to the famous Friday Fish Fry in Governor's Harbour. An excellent way for tourists to mix with locals and unwind after a hard day on the beach.
Even if you are not a fan of fish, you're catered for with barbecue chicken and an abundance of sides on offer such as rice and peas or macaroni cheese and not forgetting the local Rum Bubba to wash it all down.
If you fancy cooking up your own Caribbean feast then buy some fresher than fresh fish and lobster from Aaron who sells his daily catch from around 2pm by the turn in the Queens Highway at Governor's Harbour.