September 11th, 2015
A trip to Nassau, the Bahamas. What’s not to like.
Nassau has this real jet-setter feel to it. It’s a stone’s throw from Florida. Miami to Nassau is 179 miles. Jet boats, yachts, the Bahamas Express and more head over to the Bahamas with relative ease. Flights from Florida are about 55 minutes and flights into Nassau from around the world are plentiful.
The Bahamas is an independent nation but as a former British colony, its roots and traditions are very British. As you drive into Nassau, you feel like you are in a tropical, seaside England. Blackbeard the famous pirate once called the Bahamas home and now many a celebrity do so as well including Mariah Carey, Sean Connery, Johnny Depp and others.
As we cross the bridge to Paradise Island, the Atlantis Resort and its Royal Towers arise to a majestic view. Officially opened in 1998, the resort was created by South African hotel magnate Sol Kerzner and his company (think “Sun City” in South Africa). It’s a large property and now features the 3 towers of Atlantis Resort, the Reef Tower, the Cove Tower and the Harborside Resort. They’re all very distinct. You can easily stay in your own little area or wander the property and take in all it offers such as numerous dining choices, 11 pools, 3 beach areas, dolphin cay, a water park, marine habitat and other activities.
Atlantis is very much about the experience. Although it’s a large property, it has a comfortable feel to it. The Atlantis experience also includes a spa, 5-star restaurants and entertainment. During the weekend we were there, Justin Bieber was there too. Every few weeks there is a featured performer in concert to draw fans from North America.
Food is everything and the dining reflects that. Buffet breakfasts, snacks and casual dining are all exceptional. We had great dinners at the Bobby Flay Restaurant (Mesa Grill) and Cafe Martinique.
While it’s easy to get drawn into the glitz of the larger than life resort, it still comes back to the water for me. The Dig (one the world’s largest walk through aquariums) is one of the most amazing fish viewing experiences anywhere. As a water thrill, the “Leap of Faith” a.k.a. Shark Slide, has no equal. As you jump into the tube at the top, you must cross your feet and fold your arms (lest they be ripped from your torso). You drop 60 feet at breakneck speed through a glass tube with sharks racing around you (or so it seems). At the bottom, you are dumped into a pool and immediately think “ok, that wasn’t as bad as I thought”. But at the end of the day, it’s all about the beach. The beaches are gorgeous and the water is perfect. That’s all I need.
Of course, there is more to the Bahamas than Nassau, but it’s a great place to start.
Like this destination? You may also be interested in...