Exuma Cays – Bahamas

Seen from the sky, the Exuma has something unreal. The Creator, however, opted for simplicity the day he invented this archipelago of the Bahamas: its waters are blue, turquoise or transparent, and its beaches always white sand. It was hardly necessary to make this place a full-size postcard. Precisely because everything seems too good to be true, a question quickly comes to the mind of the one who arrives in this little paradise on earth: will I not be a little bored here once I have spent two days of relaxation…? Oh no! Hard to believe but the Exuma is a bit like a top model that would have the conversation: there are a thousand things to discover in this archipelago of 365 islands and islets.

My base is a small blue house that shares with some other bungalows a peaceful beach side sea, and a swimming pool and a restaurant land side. Just 15 minutes drive from the airport, Paradise Bay has all the ingredients for total disconnection. In addition, this small hotel is held by French people who will often be good advice to tell you the best spots in the area, such as beaches where you can swim with torture. Yes, a stay in Exuma will have very little in common with your last vacation in Brittany …

The first night, first awakening, and first vision of the Exuma in the early morning. I want to say “like a Monday” to taunt the whole earth but is it worth it? … The view in front of my room is self-explanatory.

Whatever their nationality, the tourists met on the spot all asked me the same question: “you went to see the swimming pigs? Pigs in the Bahamas? Who are swimming more? It was enough to arouse my curiosity. Here I am the same day on the way to see that with my own eyes. For those who doubt the real interest of this excursion, know that it is certainly tourist but you will do more than just swim with pigs. This outing takes place in the Exuma Cays in the North of Great Exuma, a natural park of 455 km2 in which you will have the opportunity to snorkel as if you were in an aquarium! Once again, a stay in Exuma will have very little in common with your last vacation in Brittany …

The route to the North of Great Exuma provides a better understanding of the geography of the archipelago. The two main islands are Great Exuma and Little Exuma, but there are hundreds of smaller ones, sometimes about the size of a single island. Some are uninhabited and others are the property of stars and other wealthy personalities. It is worth remembering that one part of the Pirates of the Caribbean saga was shot here and that Johnny Depp liked the place so much that he bought himself a private island. It’s a dream, especially since he’s single …

Arrived at Leaf Cay, everyone descends on a beach populated by an impressive colony of iguanas. This island belonged to the actor Nicolas Cage until he left it, leaving behind some reptiles that quickly reclaimed space to become the only and unique masters of this area. Be careful, these big lizards accept visits only in exchange for salad leaves.

As you can see, this sea trip is punctuated by several stops on islands each offering a new attraction. Arrived at Compass Cay, the most courageous throw themselves into the water to swim with nurse sharks:

And in Big Major Cay, they are pigs who jump in the water to swim with tourists! How did they get there? This is the question that everyone is asking, and I already addressed this topic in a previous post as the story is amazing: Swim with pigs in the Bahamas

For those of you who would hesitate to immerse yourself in this “pigsty”, know that it is the cleanest and most beautiful in the world!

After this day at sea, I decided to explore Little Exuma, south of the archipelago. Some statues, steles, houses, and churches in ruins are a summary testimony of the past Exuma: this territory was that of the Arawak Indians until they were colonized and deported as a slave in the early sixteenth century. Inhabited for almost two centuries, these islands had become a haven for pirates of the Caribbean when in 1783, some American loyalists driven by the revolution decided to settle here to develop the cotton culture. You will understand, the architectural heritage is not really the highlight of the Exumas … And yes, a stay in Exuma will also have very little in common with your last vacation in Rome! On the other hand, I discover in passing some sublime and especially deserted beaches thanks to I do not know what mystery …

The Exumas one of the best kept secrets of mass tourism? It seems like ! Except perhaps once a year at the end of April, when the port of George Town (capital of the archipelago) becomes the vibrant heart of the Bahamas. But only for an audience of enthusiasts and connoisseurs: the Familly Islands regatta brings together for four days traditional sailing boats from all over the Bahamas.

Sailors using raised timber to remind, their technical navigation is spectacular. A unique moment to follow from the beach, a pleasure boat, and even on board with the sailors! Here too, I already had the opportunity to tell you about this experience.

Take off the sails in the Bahamas

In summary, do you like sailing, partying, or discovering a place like locals? This event is for you!

On the other hand, I never talked about the amazing encounters that can be done during this regatta. In sympathizing with a certain Peter and his family between two rounds, here I am aboard their boat to attend the race. A chance! The next day, here I am again with them, invited this time to fish with a harpoon in an emerald sea. A real boon and I see only two things to explain it: my friends have a sense of sharing, or so I have this week queen karma! I admit I like to believe that some good things only happen to me … But the truth is (also) the following: Bahamians are welcoming and very spontaneous …

Peter fished several fish, me none (my karma fell in the water the time of the fishing …), they will be prepared the same day and of course, I will be of the part (when I fished my good karma) . The rest of the afternoon, Peter takes me to discover some of the most beautiful “blue” Exuma: understand places where the sea is turquoise and translucent. My last photo of the trip will be from him and she could be titled “like a Sunday in Exuma” to taunt the whole world, but is it worth it? The snapshot needs no comment …