Abacos: The Best of the Bahamas

Bahamas / Caribbean
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September 2018
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By
Bob
Arrington

Starting Point

Old Bahama Bay

Located in West End, Grand Bahama Island, Old Bahama Bay Marina is only  56 miles from Palm Beach, FL. The  facility is a full-service marina destination with 72-slips and a controlling depth of  8 feet at mean low tide and 24-hour security. Old Bahama Bay offers quick  and efficient on-site Bahamian Customs and Immigration.

Leg 1. Great Sale Cay

Estimated Mileage: 51 NM

From West End, it is another 80+ miles across what is called the Little Bahama Bank, a beautiful emerald-colored stretch of water that is about eight or so feet deep. You can break up the trip by anchoring at Great Sale Cay. The uninhabited island offers a large anchorage with excellent protection from all but the south to southwestern quarters.

Leg 2. Spanish Cay Marina

Estimated Mileage: 42 NM

Spanish Cay is only within a mile of the third-largest Barrier Reef in the world. Beyond the breakers the Atlantic deepens to over 1,000 feet providing some of the finest sportfishing the Bahamas has to offer. A vacation on Spanish Cay comes complete with a freshwater pool and heated spa, four tennis courts, an enclosed air-conditioned game room with pool tables, shuffleboard, ping-pong/table tennis, fooseball, darts and karaoke.

Leg 3. Green Turtle Club & Marina

Estimated Mileage: 17 NM

The Green Turtle Club Resort & Marina  is the only resort marina on the Cay that is within easy walking distance (less than 10 minutes) of the breathtaking, white sand beaches on the Atlantic Ocean. Extraordi-nary reef snorkeling can be found right off Ocean Beach. For those who prefer serene beauty, Coco Bay Beach is only a five- minute walk from The Club. Just north of Marsh Harbour, the cay has numerous secluded anchorages, snug harbors in  Black and White sounds, eclectic shops, restaurant and hotels, as well as intriguing historic sites. Visit the Albert Lowe Museum featuring art and photography about the history of the town of New Plymouth.

Leg 4. Treasure Cay Beach Marina & Golf Resort

Estimated Mileage: 8 NM

The docks are just a few steps from an award-winning beach, hotel, restaurants and local services. The marina offers both diesel and gas, protected anchorage and moorings, laundry and shower facilities, grocery stores, duty-free shopping and cable TV. The docks serve as a departure point for bonefish outings, boat rentals, charters and guided excursions.

Leg 5. Orchid Bay Yacht Club & Marina

Estimated Mileage: 11 NM

Great Guana Cay is about seven miles long with a spectacular beach on the ocean side that offers wonderful swimming, snorkeling and beachcombing. Orchid Bay Yacht Club & Marina has something for everyone with a variety of activities, including fishing, snorkeling, diving, swimming, cruising, sailing, kayaking and island-hopping adventures. Stop by Nippers for dinner and drinks, enjoying live music and a guaranteed great time for all. Orchid Bay Yacht Club & Marina is also home to the third-largest reef in the world with stunning coral reefs and exotic fish just 50 feet from shore.

Leg 6. Man-O-War Marina

Estimated Mileage: 8 NM

Located on the picturesque harbor of Man-O-War Cay in Abaco, Bahama. Enjoy lunch or dinner at the Hibiscus Restaurant that overlooks the waterfront. Or rent a golf cart and pick up lunch at The Island Treats Take-Away and take a tour of the island with its softball field, basketball court, playground and pristine ocean and bayside beaches. While you're in town, stop by to see local craftsmen in their wood-working shops. Watch as they turn native wood into furniture or boat models.

Leg 7. Abaco Beach Resort and Boat Harbour Marina

Estimated Mileage: 4 NM

Abaco Beach Resort at Boat Harbour is located just 165 miles east of West Palm Beach in beautiful Marsh Harbour, Bahamas. Things to do include gorgeous beaches, water activities, fishing, diving, island tours, national parks and eco tours.

Leg 8. Hope Town Inn & Marina

Estimated Mileage: 5 NM

Elbow Cay has much to offer cruisers including historic Hope Town (home of the distinctive red-and-white striped Elbow Reef Lighthouse that has been a landmark in the Abacos for generations), White Sound and Tahiti Beach. Snorkeling, scuba diving, watersports, shopping and fine dining are all popular pastimes. Yachting in Tahiti Beach waters is a highlight of cruising to Elbow Cay. The marina offers deep-water slips up to 100 feet.

Leg 9. Little Harbour

Estimated Mileage: 15 NM

The well-protected anchorage at Little Harbour on Great Abaco Island is an attractive spot to drop the hook or pick up a mooring. A pleasant walk east to the abandoned lighthouse provides spectacular views of the broad Atlantic, as waves roll in and break on the beach. A reef nearby offers good snorkeling, and on the west side of the harbor are caves. Visit Pete's Pub and Gallery to savor island cuisine and appreciate the artwork on display.

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