Four Lesser-Known Out Island Attractions You Didn’t Know Existed

Displays Conception Island Creek System

There are 1000s of unique experiences and lesser-known attractions in The Bahamas to enjoy.

One of The Bahamas most attractive features is there are over 3,000 islands, cays, and rocks throughout our turquoise seas. Unlike most other Caribbean destinations which are a single island for visitors to explore.

(See blog post-The Bahamas: More than Nassau)

Each island offers a unique visiting experience.

Irrespective of whether they’re inhabited and developed (to varying extents) or completely untouched and unspoiled. Some of these lesser-known out island attractions are easily accessible. While others take a little more effort.

However, the reward is just as great.

Here are some lesser-known attractions in The Bahamas that are worth exploring during your next vacation in The Bahamas.

Lesser-Known Out Island Attraction I: Conception Island

Conception Island is a (currently) completely unoccupied island not far off Long Island’s northern tip, between it and Rum Cay. It has not been inhabited for at least a century. Though remains of 5 buildings still stand. The island is only accessible by boat.

This lesser-known attraction is an ecological wonder. The small island is no larger than 11 square kilometres (4.5 square miles). It is home to several important nesting sites for endangered sea turtles, some species of birds and other wildlife. It is said to have the highest concentration of nesting tropical birds of all Bahamian islands.

In 1964, this lesser-known out island attraction, along with its nearby small cays and surrounding waters, was designated a national park in The Bahamas by The Bahamas National Trust. Recently, a new species of snake was discovered on the island in 2015; the Conception Island silver boa. It was identified on the island and is endemic to the island.

There is an extensive creek system within the centre of the island. The creek system can be explored at high tide. Also found on the island are a few navigable hiking trails. Of course, like every island in The Bahamas, the beaches of Conception Island are some of the best imaginable. Snorkelling is also a treat. Just off the island’s northern tip is a monstrous Montastraea reef. It’s the Caribbean’s largest and can be explored.

II: Honeymoon Harbour

Bimini is indisputably one of the most popular out island destinations in The Bahamas. Though, the adventure doesn’t stop on the mainland. Sitting just south of Bimini is a small island that’s now uninhabited.

Previously, the island, Gun Cay, was home to a small population. It was also a popular port during the Prohibition Era of the United States. Now the remains of a lighthouse and a few other structures are all that’s left.

However, there is a lesser-known out island attraction that can still be explored.

On the northern end of the island is Honeymoon Harbour and beach. Gun Cay is easily accessible by a short boat ride from Bimini. Honeymoon Harbour offers total seclusion and privacy on a remote and beautiful stretch of shore. Found in the waters just off the beach are a considerable number of stingrays. While these creatures have stinging tails because they’ve become so accustomed to people feeding them, they’re safe to pet. And the danger is minimal so long as one is gentle.

Image result for honeymoon harbour Image result for gun cay bahamas

Image result for gun cay bahamas honeymoon harbour

III: Little Inagua

Remote, wild & beautiful describe this lesser known out island attraction. Little Inagua is the largest uninhabited island in the entire Caribbean region. It is found just off Great Inagua’s northernmost tip. Unlike many islands in The Bahamas that are currently uninhabited, this lesser-known out island attraction is not believed to have ever had any settlement after the Europeans arrived in 1492. The island is almost wholly surrounded by a reef that made approaching it difficult. Besides that, there is no freshwater found on the island. This further made living on the island unappealing.

Because it has never been settled, the island exists in a true unspoiled state. Like Conception Island, Little Inagua is a critical nesting site for several species of sea turtles. In 2002, the island and its surrounding waters were designated a national park. Much like its larger sister island, Great Inagua, you’ll find The Bahamas’ famous flamingos here as well. This island is accessible by boat only from the mainland.

 

Image result for little inagua

 

The Final Lesser-Known Out Island Attraction: Shrimp Hole

The Bahamas is no stranger to blue holes. Andros, The Bahamas largest island, has the highest concentration of blue holes in the western hemisphere. Because of the geography of the islands, these sinkholes are found on many islands. One of these blue holes is the Shrimp Hole. This lesser-known out island attraction is found on Long Island and is just a 40-minute flight away from Nassau. Long Island is the island home to the world-famous Dean’s Blue Hole, which is the second deepest blue hole in the world.

The Shrimp Hole is nestled behind the historic St. Mary the Virgin Anglican Church; the first church built in The Bahamas. This inland cave, surrounded by a great deal of shrubbery, is home to many shrimp and other small crustaceans. Hence its name. Like most blue holes, the Shrimp Hole is safe to swim in and its waters are refreshingly cool and offset the extreme heat of the island very well.

Be sure to follow me on Instagram to see more of  the out islands.

 

Kris Ayala-Strachan

A wannabe photographer & lover of all things Bahamian.

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