Nassau is a small town with a population of 274,400 people, located on the island of New Providence. It is the capital of one of the leading “tourist” countries of the world – the Bahamas, and at the same time the commercial and cultural center of the country. Despite the fact that the area of Nassau cannot be compared with most of the world’s capitals, it was and remains the largest city in the Bahamas.
Nassau is the main city of the Bahamas, their economic and cultural center, it is very modern and immediately attracts attention with the color of its buildings. Modern editions are combined with magnificent examples of old colonial architecture. Already nothing reminds of the fact that once upon a time there was a small and noisy village in its place, founded not by somebody, but … by pirates. Beautiful harbor and port promenade, crowded business districts, a variety of retail outlets – all this is Nassau today.
There are no world-class attractions in Nassau, like Chichen Itza or the Eiffel Tower, but for the real traveler this is not the most important thing. Another thing is important: to get to know at least a little local culture, look where tourists do not go, talk to the locals. Nassau is a storehouse of impressions from the local color.
Despite the distance from Europe and other centers of civilization, Nassau is interesting to travelers from all over the world, not only beach recreation, entertainment, and shopping, but also unique sights. Only in Nassau and nowhere else can tourists combine serenity with active pursuits, and thrilling impressions are guaranteed. Anyone who visits this wonderful place at least once, which is called, on the other side of the globe, will definitely come back here. In order to once again feel the whole rich palette – natural, historical, ethno-cultural – of this magnificent resort city.
THINGS TO SEE AND DO IN NASAU
• Paradise Island and Atlantis Hotel
• Royal Victoria Gardenrepresents a large botanical garden, whose history dates back to the XIX century. The family of the most different tropical plants collected from all over the world unites over 300 species. Particularly striking are the magnificent orchids, of which there are many, including the rarest species. Whimsically twining trees, they emit so exquisite aromas that everything seems to be saturated with them.
• From Atlantis Bridge the best view of the strait separates New Providence and the adjacent Paradise Island. Ships freely pass under it, and the roadbed rushes up sharply from the shore. The traffic on the bridge is organized in such a way that there are no traffic jams: on the left side the transport moves to the island, on the right side – from the island. The famous pink hotel Atlantis, cruise liners at anchor and boats running back and forth along the strait are perfectly visible from the Atlantis Bridge.
• Straw Market
• Pirates of Nassau Museum: in its area the museum is small, but it contains a large number of fascinating and exclusive exhibits. On the “decks” of an improvised “ship” there are memorial plaques with information about the most famous thugs of the Caribbean.
• Queen’s Staircase: The unique building is invariably included in the lists of mandatory places to visit in the city. The staircase got its name in honor of the British Queen Victoria.Punched by slaves right in the stone, this staircase of 66 steps lies between a picturesque waterfall and a sheer cliff. Later, the stairs were named after the British Queen Victoria.
• Kayaking, water scooters, and bananas on the beaches
TYPICAL COSTS WHEN TRAVELLING
Accommodation – Paradise Island is the pearl of New Providence, the main resort area of Nassau. Here is perhaps one of the best hotels in the world of Atlantis, with prices going up to 3100 USD per night, but there are more mundane options for 150-170 USD, 305-370 USD – it all depends on the building of the hotel that you choose to stay, and, of course, the room itself. One more unique hotel is British Colonial Hilton, the only one with its own beach. The northwestern coast of New Providence also houses several hotels and houses for rent. Prices vary dramatically: from 100 and up to 1500 USD. The latter is the price for a stay in a house by the sea with 7 rooms and a pool.
Food – Living on the island, do not miss the opportunity to eat fresh seafood. Here is popular conch salad dish – or simply conch. It captured the nearest regions – neighboring islands like Jamaica, as well as Miami in Florida. It is also important to know the names of middle-class restaurants, such as Pirate Republic Brewing; Lukka Kairi Restaurant and Bar; Athena Cafe & Bar; Oh Andros; and Blue Sail. As well, get familiar with expensive ones, such as Cafe Matisse; Sapodilla; Graycliff Restaurant; Nobu; and Luciano’s of Chicago.
Transportation – Travel by local bus costs 4 USD per person. Taxi prices range from 8 to 32 USD depending on the distance.
Suggested daily budget – For a meal in a cheap restaurant you need at least 20 USD (maximum – 100-200 USD), an apartment costs nearly 25 USD a day, while active rest of different kind costs from 130 to 265 USD per a person and visit of aquarium is 40 USD. In total, you need nearly 150 USD a day.
MONEY SAVING TIPS
1 Find cheap accommodation! The most budget options are apartments, the price of accommodation in which ranges from 120 to 350 USD. There are a couple of houses near the coast – they are rented for USD 250-500 per day.
2 Follow golden rule of residence: If you are going to rent a house on the beach or other similar housing, then the golden rule is valid: long-term rent is much cheaper than short-term rent if you count daily payment.
3 Go to the straw market! Those who are interested not in luxury but in the real goods should, definitely, go to Straw Market.
4 Eat out in the budget restaurants: there is a list of places which provide the tourists with incredibly delicious food and quite reasonable prices, such as Tiki Bikini Hut;Daiquiri Shack;McKenzie’s Fresh Fish and Conch;Nirvana Beach Bar; and Gregory’s Mediterranean Delights.
ON THE SCENE?
Nassau has its own amusement park, the Aquaventure water park, located on the island of Atlantis Paradise. For children’s entertainment, Castaway Cay is a real town in which pirates andDisney cartoon characters live. It gives young visitors the opportunity to plunge into the world of unforgettable adventures.
For adults, there are many options of entertainment in Nassau, which includes bars, restaurants and nightclubs. Among the latter, Senor Frogs and Booze & Cruise are very popular. Since the nightlife does not subside until the morning, you will surely find comfortable places where you can relax, have a drink of local rum and dance. And in order to stay in shape after the night “vigil”, during the day you can go in for tennis, golf, diving, yachting and other sports –the options are endless in the city for that.
Something more you need to know about Señor Frog’s is that it is is a great party place! Every day people gather here, play loud music, and hold fun contests. Disco until the morning, soap parties, laser shows, musical chairs – that’s not all. If you are looking for nightlife in Nassau, this is the place for you.
One more variant is Aura Nightclub at the Atlantis Hotel. Entrance prices for hotel guests: women – for free, men – 25 USD. Prices for all others: women – 25 USD, men – 40 USD. On holidays and special events, the prices will be higher.