Sample Exuma Cays Itinerary
A Sample Itinerary For The Bahamas Is Shown Below.
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NASSAU to hIGHBOURNE CAY
Step on board your luxury crewed yacht, upon your arrival from Nassau International Airport. After a safety briefing and yacht orientation you will head to Highbourne Cay. This passage is 30 nautical miles across the Yellow Banks, known for their many coral heads below the crystal clear surface. Your captain will anchor in the beautiful protected anchorage of Horseshoe Bay.
Here you can swim, wade ashore to explore the beach, or kayak around the bay. There is a small marina with hammocks on the beach, a bar, and a gift shop. You will spend the night here after a full day of activities onboard.
After a delicious breakfast served by your chef, you will continue south to Normans Cay, enjoying some fishing along the way. Once at anchor on the north side of the island, you can enjoy some snorkeling or diving at sites like “Octopus Garden” and “Hammerhead Gulch”. The Coral is vibrant and healthy with an abundance of tropical fish. Another great snorkel is the sunken plane wreck that crashed during the drug smuggling days of the famous drug lord Carlos Lehder.
Your captain will take you in the tender to explore “Twinkie Beach”, with its lone palm tree, is a great place for shell collecting. For the avid fishermen, there are flats nearby for bonefishing and local guides are available to take you there. Photo: Catamaran Twin Flame 77
After breakfast enjoy a sail to Shroud Cay situated in the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. This larger island offers multiple mangrove rivers which can be cruised by tender, kayak, or stand-up paddleboard. Breathtaking beaches on the east side of the island await. “Camp Driftwood” offers spectacular views of the Exuma Sound.
Play in the current of the shallow crystal clear rivers or follow the trail across the island with ruins of the plantation from the 1700s. Another stunning beach waits at the end of the trail where you can swim and sunbathe. Spend the night at anchor under the brilliant night sky. Photo: Power Catamaran Mucho Gusto
Your next destination is Warderick Wells where the the headquarters of the Park are located. This is a perfect spot to spend some time in this naturalist’s paradise with surrounding sandbars and turquoise waters. Stop by the park office for map guides and friendly advice. There are more than 4 miles of trails on this protected island with stunning lookouts along the way.
Spot white-tailed tropical birds and the Bahamian Hutia, a large furry animal the size of a small dog. They eat the local vegetation and are harmless. Climb up to Boo Boo Hill and dinghy around to small cays nearby to snorkel, kayak, and paddleboard. Nearby, Danger Reef offers SCUBA diving to the adventurous looking to get close to ocean sharks and big fish. A little further South lays “Jeep Reef” which is a great dive site with colorful coral heads surrounding the old Jeep sitting on the ocean floor. Photo: Power Catamaran Mucho Gusto
After breakfast a cruise further south will lead you to Compass Cay. Here you can swim with sharks and explore the beautiful beaches that are located on the East side of the island. On the Northern end of the cay is “Rachel’s Bubble Bath”. This is a natural whirlpool which, depending on the ocean tide and swells, can be bubbling or calm. Hike to the East side of the island and see ruins and a beautiful unspoiled crescent-shaped beach.
There is a small fee to swim with the tame nurse sharks here and it is definitely an adventure not to be missed. After a “Burger and Beer” at the little shack in the Marina settle in for the night.
In the morning Swim with the pigs on the beach of Big Major’s Cay. You will then motor around to the nearby Staniel Cay Yacht Club. Here is another opportunity to observe dozens of nurse sharks circling the fish cleaning station. Enjoy a local conch salad and cold beer here.
You can explore this beautiful island by golf cart rental or you may just like to laze on your yacht. Snorkel “Thunderball Grotto” where the famous James Bond movie “Thunderball” was filmed in 1965. At slack low tide, swim and snorkel into the cave and see an aquarium of colorful fish and coral heads. The sunlight beams through holes in the magnificent grotto ceiling which is really a amazing sight. You will then move a short distance, to anchor for the night in the shallow waters near Sampson Cay.
Spend the morning in the calm protected waters near Pipe Cay and Little Pipe Cay. After breakfast sail north for a leisurely cruise to your night anchorage at Allen’s Cay. Explore the island where you have a chance to mingle with indigenous iguanas which are a subspecies of Bahamian Rock Iguanas. Allen’s Cay is one of the few places where you can still find these interesting gentle creatures, which are protected by law. They are friendly and welcome visitors, especially if you bring something to eat.
(Optional Extra – Instead of sailing north, sail to Black Point where a very friendly community serves great food with a smile. After a night at anchor, fly with an island hopper plane back to Nassau from the small airstrip here or Staniel Cay on the morning of Day 8)
After one more dip in the turquoise blue waters set sail for Nassau across the Yellow Bank to arrive in the bustling capital. Here casinos with water parks and golf courses are plentiful.
Stay another night in a hotel in paradise or fly back home. Wave farewell to your crew after an unforgettable vacation in one of the most beautiful destinations in the world.