#TBT: Exotic Exuma
I am always so surprised at how few people are familiar with the Exuma Islands. These islands are the favorites of many celebrities and the famous swimming pigs! The water here is the most clear, turquoise and breathtaking view you can see. The Exuma is a district of the Bahamas and consist of a whopping 365 islands which are called cays to the locals. We spent 6 days here in March earlier this year. I can't believe it took me about a year to convince my fiance to get on board with this trip. I guess he just really didn't get the whole swimming pigs thing...but he changed his tune once we where there, here's why.
You can fly right into Georgetown, Great Exuma on many airlines. This is going to be the main island where the most resorts are. The airport was hands down the smallest I have seen. Baggage claim was a truck unloading you bags onto a dock. They are very strict about cell phones inside the airport so be sure to put them away.
We choose to stay at the Grand Isle resorts. We had found a great deal on Jetsetter and couldn't pass it up. This resort shares a private beach with the all-inclusive Sandals Resort. The Grand Isle Resort is a privately owned condo resort where you can rent out 1-3 bedroom condos. They also give each condo a golf cart to transport yourself around the grounds, to sandals, and even to the stores across the street, and by stores I mean liquor store and a bar. The resort has 1 restaurants on premise, The Palapa Grill, which serves poolside meals during the day and themed dinners in the evenings. Dinner's include Bahamian Night and Junkanoo BBQ. The concierge here is wonderful and you can pre-schedule your excursions with them via email prior to your arrival. They also offer guests of the resort day passes for Sandals for a small day fee, I think it was $75 per person but don't quote me on that.
I couldn't hold out too long so I booked the swimming pigs tour for the next day after we arrived. We booked an all day tour of the Exumas with Four C's Adventures. This is a perfect tour to take to see and do everything the Exuma's has to offer. The full day tour consisted of the following activities:
- The Thunderball Grotto
- Sunken Drug Plane
- Swimming Pigs
- Iguana Island
- Snorkeling at Blow Hole Beach
- Sand Bar
- Celebrity Homes Tour (Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, David Copperfield and more)
- Sand Bar
- Starfish Bay
- Swimming with Sharks
- Lunch and Libations at Staniel Cay
Scroll through the photos from this tour below.
We decided to hang out at the resort the next day and enjoy the beach and pool service. We started the morning with golfing which starts at the Sandals resort and circles the Grand Isle Resort. This course's back nine is stunning! The course is worth the cost!
Another activity I highly recommend is renting a car, which the resort can set you up with, and driving out to the Tropic of Cancer Beach. This beach is ranked one of the best beaches on Travel and Leisure 2015 best island beaches list at number 8, along with many other lists. The hotel will give you directions on how to get there. There's no GPS so you may have to go back in time a bit and follow landmark directions. I think we did alright and only got lost once, maybe twice. Also, you'll be driving on the left side of the rode so be alert. Be sure to bring towels, chairs, umbrellas, drinks, snacks and sunscreen. There are no stores on vendors at the beach. We were one of 8 people in sight on the whole beach and it was such a peaceful view, I could stare out into the view for hours...and I did. Afterwards we packed up and headed to one of the islands most popular restaurants Santana's Grill. You can get some one the islands best food and a great view of the tropic of cancer. They have quite a few nurse sharks that hang out here too, so keep an eye out. Scroll through the photos below to see our Tropic of Cancer beach day.
Hands down, one of my top vacations ...ever. If you have the chance you cannot miss out on this magical place. I hope I have added this place to your bucket list, I know I will be back. As always, feel free to email me with any more questions you may have about this destination. Stay wandering!