Dive Into The Abacos
You’ll be happy to know that the Abacos attracts international boaters and is known as one of the top sailing and boating destinations in the entire world. But if you prefer to have your feet firmly planted on the ground, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the Abacos too. Nature-lovers, adventure-seekers and just about anyone who wants to escape modern life will love it here. There are historic colonial towns with great sights, beaches with just about any kind of watersport, plus a nice selection of hotels and bars. And all of it takes place against the gorgeous, calming backdrop of turquoise waters. Regardless of whether you like your flippers in the water or your feet in the sand, there’s plenty to see and do in the Abacos.
Abacos vacation packages treat you to 650 square miles of gorgeous coastline, filled with bays, coves and harbors. Abacos is a water lover’s paradise, no doubt, and you’ll find the colonial town charming.
The Abacos Overview
Mapping Out the Bahamas
With over 700 islands and 2,000 cays sprinkled across the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, the Bahamas can be kind of confusing without a guide. Lucky for you, we've got you covered.
The most popular islands you've probably heard of are New Providence, home to Nassau and Paradise Island, and Grand Bahama Island.
However, there are numerous other small islands that make up the Bahamas, and they're typically known as the Out Islands. These beautiful, more pristine islands are true gems in the Caribbean. The most popular tourist region in the Out Islands is The Abacos. But whether you stay on the mainlands or adventure to the Out Islands, you'll love every minute in the Bahamas.
Spot a Rare Animal at Abaco National Park
If you’re hoping to run into the rare Abaco parrot, you just might spot him amidst this 20,500-acre sea of pine forest and mangrove wilderness.
You can start your hunt for him on the southern tip of Great Abaco Island at Abaco National Park. This is also a designated a preservation area by the Bahamas Government. What does that mean to you?
Well, it means that when you visit here, you'll see several exotic species like the white-crowned pigeon, iguanas and Bahama Mockingbirds. If you're not really into animals, then the breathtaking views of Caribbean Pine are also worth a visit. Plus, you can tell your friends you ventured through one of the last intact wilderness areas in North America.
Dive Into the Abacos
Dive into a scuba experience unlike any other! You'll love the dive sites in the Abacos. You see, what makes the diving waters in the Abacos really awesome is that they’re relatively shallow, usually 60 feet or less.
That means you don't have to go very far to propel through crystal waters and jet past a mix of mysterious caverns and crazy, colorful fish.
If you’re the daring type, head to Walker’s Cay where you can go on a shark dive and mingle with danger. If you prefer friendly groupers, try Green Turtle Cay instead. But make sure not to miss the Catacombs, a shallow dive in a cavern full of tropical fish.
Whatever your diving style, the Abacos have you covered.
Lighting up the Skies
What’s red and white and candy-striped? Nope, we’re not talking about a candy cane, but this landmark is just as sweet.
Hope Town Lighthouse is one of the most famous landmarks in the Bahamas and one of the last remaining manual, kerosene-powered lighthouses in the entire world!
Climb up its 101 steps to view the lantern itself and look out at breathtaking views of the outlying cays. Or, just hang out at the marina below for snacks and great photo ops of this must-see site.
Join the Crew and Sail Away
As home to world-class sailing conditions, the Abacos offer you the opportunity to rent a boat and play captain for a day!
With your own vessel, you can sail the seas and explore the pristine cays and secret coves at your own leisure. If bareboating (captaining a ship on your own) isn’t your thing, just play it safe and let others do all the work by joining a boat crew.
Whatever you choose, you’ve got to spend some time out on the water to experience its calm, crystal beauty that surrounds this island chain.
Loyalist Sculpture Garden
Want a brief history of the Bahamas but don’t really want to hit the books? Then visit the Loyalist Sculpture Garden instead.
Here, you can walk amongst 24 busts and 6 full-bronze figures of notable Bahamians and prominent figures who played an important role in the history of the Abacos.
Impress your friends with more than just a great tan from your Caribbean vacation. Wow them with your amazing photos and impressive tales of what happened to the Loyalists of the American Revolution in 1783.
Abacos Quick Facts
120 volts AC; American appliances are fully compatible
All U.S. citizens must have a valid passport when traveling to and from the Bahamas.
Water is safe for drinking
Eastern Standard Time (UTC/GMT -4 hours)
November to May
Tips & Transportation
The Best Key Lime Pie You'll Ever Have
“Let them eat key lime pie” is the motto of local shop owner Vernon, who runs Vernon's Grocery Store and Upper Crust Bakery. At his shop, he doesn't just sell groceries. He makes a delicious, fragrant, mouth-watering key lime pie. And he does it all himself.
Once you enter his quaint store, the first thing you'll notice is that he has tons of notes scribbled with memorable sayings. They line his walls, from floor to ceiling. It's a sight to see and read! But you're not there to read, of course. What you want is a taste of that key lime pie.
So, before you head out the door, you’ll see Vernon himself, baking what the locals call the best key lime pie you can find in the Abacos. Grab one and say hi!
Crack Some Conch at Cap'n Jacks
If you've wanted to try the Caribbean specialty, conch, then look no further than Cap'n Jacks.
Once you stumble onto this quaint restaurant, you'll be taken in by its gorgeous pink and white exterior. What's even better is the food.
Not only do they sell beer by the case and your favorite liquor by the bottle, but they also have conch served up in every way imaginable. Try a conch burger, conch quesadillas, conch wraps, buffalo conch, conch chowder, conch fritters or cracked conch. Oh, and don’t forget conch fingers and fries for the kids.
Eat Homemade Bahamian Food at Laura's
A visit to the Bahamas means you've got to try at least one authentic Bahamian dish. Trust none other than Laura Sawyer. She runs the family-owned Laura's Kitchen.
Housed in a quaint, white Bahamian cottage, this place has quickly become a favorite among the locals. Depending on what’s fresh at the market, the menu will change nightly, so you'll always get something good.
Treat yourself to delicious American and Bahamian homemade treats too: fried grouper, fried chicken, and cracked conch. The burgers are tops too.
Bag a Record Bonefish
Maybe you've tried fishing, fly-fishing and even deep-sea fishing. But have you tried bonefishing?
If you're ready to try your hand at it, then head to Sandy Point. There, you'll find pristine water barely touched by man and a warm, consistent climate that makes for ideal bonefishing.
What's really challenging about this type of fishing is that the bonefish are hard to find. But you'll know you've spotted a bonefish when you see a silver or gray fish with a long body built for speed.
Once you're in an area where they're known to hang out, you can catch them in lots of different ways.
The easiest way is to try throwing chum into the water to attract them. Once they arrive, throw a baited hook into the midst of them!
Best Chicken in a Bag
Sit on the harbor and watch the boats come and go while sipping ice-cold Kaliks (Bahamian Beer) and munching on a delicious snack. This can all be done at Harbour's Edge Restaurant.
What snack should you get to go with your Kalik? You've got to try one of the most popular Harbour's Edge specialties: Chicken in a Bag. Don't get grossed out until you hear what it is.
It’s a crispy fried chicken on a bed of French fries, coated with ketchup and hot sauce and served all wrapped up in a brown paper bag to seal in all the juices and flavor. It's delicious. We promise. Just try not to lick the bag. Or you can. We won’t judge you.
There are no travel advisories in effect for the Abacos Islands. The Abacos Islands port-of-entry is Treasure Cay International Airport (TCB). It’s a small airport with one terminal and one runway that’s 8 feet above sea level. Less than 15 planes arrive per day. The airport does have a small store that sells snacks.
Immigration & Customs
All Immigration forms are usually supplied by the airlines. When entering the Bahamas, visitors must complete and sign an immigration form. A portion of this card (returned to you by the immigration official clearing you for entrance) is required to exit the Bahamas. Don't lose this tiny, "check stub size", immigration document!
Customs clearance is available in Treasure Cay airport. You may bring in whatever food you want as long as it's a quantity you can realistically consume during the time period of your vacation. An oral baggage declaration is also required of all visitors.
Getting to Your Hotel
CheapCaribbean.com has partnered with Majestic Tours as our premier transportation company in the Abacos Islands. They’ll provide you with safe, comfortable and professional transportation, from the airport to your hotel and back. They’ll also provide transportation to any excursions booked through our site that you’d like to take while you’re in your destination.
It’s easy to find your Majestic Tours team when you arrive at the airport. They’ll be standing in the ground transportation waiting area, holding a CheapCaribbean welcome sign. All drivers are fluent in English, friendly and knowledgeable about the culture, history and things to do while you’re there. By the end of your ride, you’ll have made a new friend. Vehicles are all clean, modern and reliable.
Majestic Tours is the official transportation rep for CheapCaribbean.com excursions when you book vacations to the Abacos Islands on our site. The majority of our partner hotels have a Majestic Tours desk in or near the lobby so they’re easy to find, should you need them. For this reason, we suggest that our guests do not rent cars while in the Caribbean or Mexico as traffic laws and road quality and street signs are not the same as they are in the US.
Getting Around Abacos
Making transport arrangements with our tour operator is the safest bet. If you need to grab a taxi, ask your hotel to request one for you. Ferries are also available among the islands.