Nassau
© Worachat Sodsri / 123RF
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Nassau

By Amy Adejokun Amy Adejokun Section editor

Our Editorial team's advice

Nassau, the capital of New Providence, is the compulsory stopover point for most tourists visiting the Bahamas islands. An active and flourishing city, here you will find casinos, banks and shops, as well as a port full of cruise ships that set down hoards of tourists daily. The city is not very big, and after having done some shopping on Bay Street or at the Straw Market, you can drive along its streets bordered by colonial villas in a horse-drawn carriage. Go see the changing of the guard in front of the governmental palace (Duke Street), which takes place every Saturday morning at 10:00am. Visit the exhibition on the Junkanoo on the Prince George jetty (65p from 9:00am to 5:30pm). Explore Fort Fincastle. Built in 1789, its tower rises nearly 70m above sea level and offers the highest vantage point of the whole island.

Even though it only covers 144 miČ, the island is home to 2/3 of the population which is mostly concentrated around Nassau. A friendly-sized city, the capital still has many colonial houses and relics telling of its British past. It also offers a strange mix of American-style mercantilism, an English atmosphere, and a tropical nonchalance. A quick visit of the city, including the main street, Bay Street, that is plagued by passengers on cruise ships who regularly come here to visit for the day, is all you'll need. The island of New Providence is not only unavoidable from a practical point of view (its international airport serves as a hub for the company Bahamasair) but also because it is home to some beautiful beaches and attractions that are worth seeing, including Cable Beach (the local 'Riviera'), a long beach lined with hotels. To the east of the capital, linked by a bridge that you have to pay to cross, lies the small Paradise Island, where one of the most spectacular hotels in the world, the Atlantis, is located. This impressive construction with 2,300 guest rooms has many aquatic attractions (parks, slides, marinas) but most importantly the largest tropical aquarium in the world that you can visit without having to be a guest at the hotel.

To see

Nassau. A friendly-sized city, the capital still has many colonial houses and relics telling of its British past. There are also many museums to discover, such as the one with devoted to the masks and costumes of Junkanoo, or the Pirates Museum, the Bahamas Historical Museum and the Pompey Museum. The Pompey Museum tells the story of slavery and emancipation. Then there's also the National Art Gallery.

To do

Like in the Out Islands, water activities are very popular in New Providence and Paradise Island: diving, big-game fishing, snorkelling, sailing and many more. Take some time to visit the Straw Market, a basketry market where you can barter.

pros

  • +  A large choice of hotels.
  • +  There are many possible activities.
  • +  Beautiful beaches: Cable Beach and Paradise Island.

cons

  • -  The hotels that seem to have been designed for mass tourism.
  • -  The location attracts a lot of tourists.

To think about

Bring good sunscreen or a t-shirt for swimming and deep-sea diving. The sun is strong.

To avoid

If you are travelling around, there is no need to spend more than a couple of days in New Providence and Paradise Island.

To try

Consisting of pork cooked with onions, celery, tomatoes, rice and peas, Peas'n Rice is the national dish. There is also a lot of fish to enjoy, including conch, which is without a doubt the most served variety here.

To bring back

Basketry items. You can also find bargains on international products. Jewellery, watches, perfumes, clothes, photographic apparatus and decorative items can be 10 to 40% less expensive.

Weather Nassau

These indicators are used as a set of criteria to predict overall weather conditions in Nassau . The different indicators are there to help you prepare for your trip to Nassau so you can make plans based on the weather forecast, whether it be a trip to the beach, walking, visiting attractions and museums or winter sports... Here you'll find a precise, overall weather score for each week in Nassau , which takes into account temperature indicators, bad weather predictions, sunshine levels and wind speeds.

Weather February
Overall rating 84/100
  • Temperature indicators 96% Optimal

    Maximim temperature between 22°C and 24°C, the perceived temperature is <30°.

  • Bad weather indicators 82% Dry / Optimal

    Little or no rain (less than 1.5mm per day).

  • Sunbathing indicators 68% Good weather

    Mostly sunny (60% to 80% sunshine).

  • Swimming indicators 76% Wind

    High air temperature (>24°C), pleasant to high sea temperature (between 22°C and 24°C), moderate to strong winds (between 12 mph and 18 mph).

  • Wind indicators 74% Warm breeze

    Near optimal comfort: strong to moderate winds (between 12 mph and 18 mph) in a warm atmosphere (>24°C).

  • Humidity indicators 70% Normal

    Slight feeling of discomfort due air humidity registering higher than 65%.

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