When you think of the Bahamas, the first thing that comes to mind is beautiful beaches and crystal blue water. As the capital and largest city of this island nation, Nassau is the place to be. And, now that Southwest flies here, you can get here even cheaper and easier – especially if you have a Southwest Visa.
Located on the island of New Providence, the city is a popular spot for cruise ships to dock. With tourists all about, there are plenty of things to see in this bustling beach town. Here are 6 of our favorite things to do in Nassau, Bahamas.
This public beach is just an easy 15-minute walk from the cruise port, and it is free to enter. During the walk there, you’ll get to see quite a bit of downtown Nassau, and you’ll definitely notice the lovely pastel colored buildings throughout the city. The beach itself is nice, but not super fancy. However, it is lined with some small local bars and restaurants, so you can get your eat and drink on while you soak up the sun. If you want an all-in-one package, you might want to try the Tiki Bikini Hut. For about $35, you’ll get a lunch, unlimited shots and tropical drinks, one beach chair, and 4 beers. That’s a pretty good value for a day at the beach. Of course, you can skip the deal and enjoy the sand for free!
Atlantis Aquaventure Waterpark
With over 63-acres of waterpark fun, the Atlantis Aquaventure Waterpark is truly a sight to behold. If you arrive by cruise ship, you can’t miss the towering Atlantis resort right in front of you. You can buy a day pass to the park, which includes wild water slides, lazy rivers, and even marine animal encounters. There are plenty of other activities available, including the Caribbean’s largest casino. But a day at Atlantis isn’t cheap. During the high season, day passes run about $150 per adult and $86 per child older than 4. Still, if you have the money, this is one site not to miss.
The Queen’s Staircase
One of the most popular tourist destinations in Nassau is the Queen’s Staircase. Built in the 18th century by slaves, this staircase is carved out of the limestone wall they sit upon. Named in honor of Queen Victoria, the staircase originally included 66 steps (it now has 65) – one for each year of her reign. The steep ascent leads to Fort Fincastle and the Water Tower. There, you can walk up another 216 steps to get a wonderful panoramic view of the island. Again, this site is just a short walk from the cruise port. Due to its popularity, the steps can be a little bit crowded. However, if you have a few extra minutes, it is worth taking the time to make it here. The staircase itself if free and the entrance to the fort is less than $5.
The Pirates of Nassau Museum
If you’re looking for things to do in Nassau and a museum is more your style, be sure to visit the Pirates of Nassau Museum. Located in downtown Nassau, it is just a few minutes walk from the cruise port. Museum goers will learn about famous pirates who sailed these seas through a series of educational vignettes and interactive Q&A’s. The attraction costs just $12 for adults and lasts for about 45-minutes.
John Watling’s Distillery
For those in the mood for rum, you’ve come to the right place. John Watling’s Distillery bottles three types of rum here – amber, pale, and Buena Vista. The short 15-minute tour of the building is free, while a taste of each flavor will run you about $6. Located in the center of town, you can soak up a great view of the harbor while sipping on your spirits. Don’t make the trek here on a Sunday, as the shop is closed.
Blue Lagoon Island Dolphin Encounters
One of the best things to do in Nassau is to experience the Blue Lagoon Island Dolphin Encounters. You’ll take a 20-minute boat ride from the Paradise Island Ferry Terminal to the island. There you can enjoy the beautiful beach, ride a pedal boat, or paddle a kayak. The dolphin encounters come at a price, depending on which level you choose. Swimming with the dolphins costs $185 while standing in waist deep water with them will run about $100. You can also choose a sea lion encounter for $80 or simply observe for $45. It isn’t cheap, but it is an experience you’ll never forget.
As one of the most popular cruise ports in the Caribbean, there are plenty of fun things to do in Nassau, Bahamas. Spend your money on some unique Bahamian experiences or do Nassau on a budget. The choice is yours. Either way, Nassau is a place you’ll never forget!