Nassau is the capital and largest city of the Bahamas. Nassau is a popular cruise-ship stop known for its beaches and coral reefs, destination for diving and snorkeling. Nassau’s population is estimated around 244,400 people. On average the temperature is always high. Most rainfall is seen in May, June, July, August (the warmest month), September and October.
Planning a trip
Crime is increasing, and visitors should use caution and good judgment when visiting The Bahamas. While most criminal incidents take place in a part of Nassau not usually frequented by tourists (the “Over-the-Hill” area south of downtown), crime and violence have moved into more upscale tourist and residential areas.
You cannot reach Nassau by taking a flight. Many frequent visitors to The Bahamas do everything they can to avoid the congestion, inconvenience, and uncertain connections of the Nassau International Airport.. In Nassau and Freeport, you can easily rely on public transportation or taxis.
History & Culture
Early history: Nassau was established around 1670 as a commercial port and overrun by seafaring men. Years after, Nassau was destroyed twice, once by Spanish troops and the other time by French and Spanish navies. Piracy quickly became rampant, a “privateer’s republic” was established in Nassau. When England signed treaties with its enemies, the privateers officially became outlaws. Nassau’s over the hill district was first established as a settlement for liberated West Africans. By the time parliament declared general emancipation in 1834, about three-quarters of the Bahamian population was from West Africa. Middle history: During the American Civil war, England and Nassau defied the North’s blockade and continued to trade with southern states. Later, during Prohibition, Nassau defied the U.S again and did a lively business smuggling liquor into Southern ports, until President Roosevelt repealed the “unfortunate amendment”. In the 1940s, began a new era of peaceful glamour, attracting an ever-increasing number of visitors, and celebrities to the island. Recent history: In 1953, young politician Lynden Piddling, formed the progressive Liberal Party, which 20 years later led the nation to vote for independence from England. Despite the independence, the island still retains strong ties to England, choosing to remain within the commonwealth and to declare allegiance to the Queen. Given the Bahamas’s historic and multicultural background, it’s no wonder that Bahamian English is a fascinating mixture of Queen’s diction, African influences and island lingo.
Pirates of Nassau Museum: The museum is located in the hearth of downtown Nassau. Your adventure begins on a moonlit dock amidst the sounds of lapping water and pirates celebrating in a nearby tavern. Enter the world of bloodthirsty pirates. National art gallery of the Bahamas: The museum is dedicated to Bahamian artists and it gives a wonderful insight into the people of the Bahamas..Fort charlotte: If time allows it, and if there is one fort to visit in the Bahamas, you must visit this one. Fort charlotte: commands an impressive view of Paradise Island, Nassau and the harbour.Step back in time and experience daily life in the 18th century Nassau.
Internet service is widely available in the capital at hotels and select business establishment; however, in some cases Wi-Fi is offered for a fee. Police:911, Emergencies: call (242) 322-1181, ext. 4406, 4584 or 4547 or 242-311-1181×9 during business hours, and 242-357-7004 at all other times.
Downtown area of Nassau, an area rich in history and culture. The Fort Fincastle & the Queens Staircase are worth a stop. The Gray cliff Cigar Company which is famous for handcrafted cigars. Atlantis will give you the opportunity to walk around and see this world famous resort. The Arawak Cay is the famous location known to locals as the Fish Fry.
Bus:In Nassau, public local buses are safe. It is relatively cheap. Locals are very friendly and some loud music plays in the bus. Water taxi or ferry boats: These are classic Bahamian style and fun to experience. It is inexpensive and safe.
Club Luna: This club is one mile east of the Cable beach strip and is home to one of Nassau’s newest hotspots for the party crowd. Music varies depending on the day. The club offers in door and open air dancing and owners continues to reinvent the seaside nightclub every decade.22 above: While in Nassau, seek out this sophisticated lounge and indulge in delectable cocktails crafted by charismatic bartenders. 22 Above also offers an extensive martini list, wines by the glass and award-winning exotic concoctions. Bambu:One of the most refreshing night clubs in Nassau, Bambu is a favorite of visitors and locals alike. With music as mixed as its clientele, this crowd-pleaser always offers a thrillingly new experience.
Montagu beach: Nassau has no shortage of sand, Away from downtown Nassau’s popular, you can find thinly inhabited, locals beaches that offer everything from caves, historic sites and snorkeling to horse back riding and experiencing a true Bahamian village. Blue lagoon island dolphin encounters: Enjoy interaction with the fascinating, gentle and intelligent Atlantic bottlenose dolphins following 20-minute boat ride to Blue Lagoon Island and a brief orientation period. Queen’s staircase: Named to honor the 66 years of Queen Victoria’s reign (there were originally 66 steps), this is one of the most popular stops in Nassau and is on the agenda of most cruise ship shore excursions
Food & drinks
Bahamians signature drinks are as colorful and fun as their people. Ski juice, a mixture of sweet milk, gin and coconut water is popular with locals.Poop deck: You can pick your meal from the selections, which typically consist of red and yellow snapper, hogfish and Bahamian spiny lobster (crayfish). Can’t decide? Order a combination platter.Nobu:Internationally known chef Nobu Matsuhisa has acclaimed restaurants in world-class cities such as New York City, London, Las Vegas, Miami, Dallas, Milan and Tokyo. Atlantis’ Nobu is every bit as elegant, sleek and design-forward as the rest, and the food makes an equally impressive statement.
Atlqantis resort: Fantasy aquariums such as a glass tunnel of sharks and The Dig, themed on an archaeological excavation of the lost World of Atlantis, are enchanting. If the casino is more your style, drop the kids off at the Atlantis Kids Club or awesome CRUSH teens club. The casino claims to be the biggest in the Caribbean, with thousands games and tables. Food outlets, bars and clubs mean you can spend hours without leaving or until your cash runs out.Graycliff shops:Graycliff, a short uphill walk from Bay Street, has been the first name in lodging and dining in Nassau since 1973.You can do a tour of the factories and even sit in on chocolate- and cigar-making experiences. The chef offers wine tastings and cooking classes. Ask for a tour of its wine cellar – the third largest in the world.JohnWatling’s distillery: Take the short tour of the distillery, sample the rum and enjoy the view of the harbor from the historic estate. Tours of the distillery are complimentary and museum-like, with informative tour guides and interactive signage.
Junkanoo:Junkanoo is to the Bahamas as Mardi Gras is to New Orleans: defining. Near the National Art Gallery of the Bahamas, it has been open for several years as a school field trip destination, but recently blipped on tourism’s radar. National art gallery: Housed in the beautifully restored 1860s-era Villa Doyle, the fledgling National Art Gallery of The Bahamas, which opened in 2003, has managed to collect a number of important works. Bahamian artists are the primary focus, but there are works by ex-pats as well, including some stunning Winslow Homer landscapes. Stuart Cove: Stuart Cove’s is the leading full-service dive center on New Providence, offering equipment sales and rentals in addition to a wide variety of organized trips. Join a snorkeling trip, a thrilling scuba dive or even a ride aboard an innovative SUB.