Harbour Club Marina, Nassau
Date: Saturday 24th May 2014
Phil’s help in getting to Nassau at short notice had been invaluable. We had arranged for him to fly back to Staniel Cay on Friday 16th and he was up bright and early to get the taxi to the airport. He told us that he had a good flight and even persuaded the captain to make a low level run over his boat in the anchorage so that he could get some good aerial photographs. Fortunately the weather had been settled whilst we had been away and Nikki had been OK whilst she stayed on board by herself. A big thank you to you both again.
Our unplanned early trip to Nassau had meant that we had bypassed some of the more interesting islands in the Exuma chain. Eileen had previously arranged to fly to the UK from Nassau on the 24th so we still had 8 days in which we could have returned to see them, but to be honest we were both feeling a little drained and decided to stay on in the marina for the remaining few days she had left.
It wasn’t the most comfortable of places; in fact it was more uncomfortable than most anchorages we had been in. It was exposed to the wash from the numerous boats that passed up and down the channel between New Providence and Paradise Island. But it was a convenient place to recoup our energy and venture into Nassau to explore the dubious pleasures of the city.
On our way through the Bahamas we had been exposed to numerous warnings from other boaters, mostly American it has to be said, about the horrific crime rate in the city and the danger to life and limb from venturing out of the safety of the marina. In fact most of the doom mongers were so concerned about the crime rate that they had never been there. That last statement says it all. We walked all over town, we walked to the nearby restaurants at night and we even hired a car to explore the island. We never saw any danger or felt the slightest sign of any threats. The most dangerous things we were exposed to were heavy traffic and the dodgy food quality in the restaurants we visited. In this respect it was no different from many of the other islands we had been to in The Caribbean.
It was not the prettiest of places. Most of the Nassau that we saw was a little run down; all of the recent investment appeared to have been allocated to Paradise Island, a separate island that is almost an outer suburb of Nassau and is where all of the big resorts are based. That said the Chinese are making a major investment in a resort development to the west of Nassau which will be a significant competitor for The Atlantis, Nassau’s huge (and rather ghastly) resort/casino/hotel on Paradise Island.
There are a couple of large bridges linking Nassau to Paradise Island, and under one of them lies part of the commercial docks. In the background the marina we stayed in can just be made out::
Looking from one of the bridges across to Paradise Island with The Atlantis in the distance.
Wherever you look that damn hotel seems to work its way into the background:
Although the outside of The Atlantis is just garishly Disneyesque the interior has a few artworks that have some interest.
Here we have a bridge that appears to go nowhere: