I have been working to organize my pictures and thoughts of our Blackbeard’s Scuba trip. Off the map and onto the water, The Bahama’s are quite large. Our Captain, Nate, said that if we were going to visit each Island, it would probably take minimum of 3 weeks! That is quite remarkable once you think about how long it took to motor from one island/cay to another.
Our Trip centered around only a small part of the Exuma Cay’s. The entire Exumas chain are an archipelago of about 365 cays (small islands) beginning about 35 miles South East of Nassau. I found this map online that gives the view of most of our trip on the Pirate’s Lady.
After clearing immigration and customs (no, we don’t have any tobacco, alcohol or drugs thank you), Our group took a chartered shuttle from the airport to the marina. All of us piled into one shuttle and the luggage was tossed into a shabby /rusty hollowed out minivan. We zoomed down the left side of narrow streets towards the center of town.
Nassau was still decked out with bunting and banners celebrating their 40th year as a country. Small compound residences were tucked behind white washed walls. The tree foliage was much lower to the ground than I had imagined. While there were some large flowering trees, most of the plants seemed more scrub like in nature. They dotted the road side, low and gangly to the ground.
As we got to the main center of town, through the tiny streets, you could see the large Cruise ships at the main docks. These massive structures towered above Nassau’s colorful buildings. Shops selling shirts, shells and rum cakes lined the streets with bars and restaurants promising the best (and cheapest) conch fritters and drinks available. Bahama’s finest, decked out in snappy uniforms & white pith hats, chatted up the local ladies as they directed traffic around the congested corners of Bay Street.
After getting settled onto our boat, Pirate’s Lady, we left the dock and headed out to sea. The sun was setting to the west of us. You can see the large bridge that goes from Nassau to Paradise Island (where Atlantis Hotel is). Hotels, condo’s and mansions lined the water-way as we headed out to sea.
There is a bit of wind a chop as we left port. Our goal for the evening was to get across and anchor in the lee of Highbourne Cay for the night. It took about 4 hours to make it across the distance. We got settled for the night about 10pm at night.
More tomorrow from Highbourne Cay!