Bahamas General Information | The Essentials
Below we’ve outlined the Bahamas General Information you might find helpful when traveling in the Bahamas on a luxury yacht charter. If you’re planning a visit to the Bahamas, here’s a comprehensive guide to help you make the most of your trip.
Bahamas Facts | Bahamas General Information
- Geography: The Bahamas is in the Lucayan Archipelago and the United States southeast of Florida. It spans an area of approximately 13,878 square kilometers (5,358 square miles).
- Climate: The country experiences a tropical climate characterized by warm temperatures throughout the year. The peak tourist season is from December to April.
- Capital: Nassau on the island of New Providence.
- Population: 300,000+
- Area: 700 islands of 5,380 square miles
- Currency: Bahamian $; US$1=Ba$1
- Language: English. Tourist center employees, however, often speak other European languages.
- Political status: Independent nation; and a member of the Commonwealth.
- Religion: Traditional Christian churches
- Electricity: The voltage in the Bahamas is 120V, and the standard plug type is the same as in the United States, with two flat parallel pins. If you travel from a country with a different voltage or plug type, you may need a voltage converter or an adapter.
- Phone: the dialing code for the Bahamas is +1 242, followed by seven digits. On the island, use the seven digits alone.
- Communication and Internet: The major tourist areas in the Bahamas have reliable cell phone coverage, and most hotels and resorts offer Wi-Fi access. However, if you plan to venture to more remote areas, be prepared for limited connectivity.
- Driving: When driving in the Bahamas, keep left. Additionally, be sure to have your driver’s license and insurance card.
- Emergency Services. In emergencies, dial 911 to reach the police, ambulance, or fire department. It is recommended to have travel insurance that covers medical expenses and evacuation if needed.
The most common way to reach the Bahamas is by air, with several major airlines offering direct flights to Nassau, the capital city. Once in the Bahamas, inter-island transportation is facilitated by domestic flights, ferries, and private boat charters. Taxis and rental cars are also available on the larger islands.
Like any tourist destination, the Bahamas has its share of petty crimes. It’s advisable to exercise caution, particularly in crowded areas and tourist hotspots. Take necessary precautions such as safeguarding your belongings, avoiding isolated areas at night, and being aware of your surroundings. Stay informed about any travel advisories from your country’s embassy or consulate.
Business Hours in the Bahamas
- Business: In Nassau, Paradise Island, and Freeport, banks are open 9.30 am-3 pm, Monday to Thursday. On Friday, they are open 9.30 am-5 pm. Hours vary on the other islands.
- The leading banks include the Central Bank of The Bahamas, Bank of Nova Scotia, Barclays, Chase Manhattan, Citibank, and Royal Bank of Canada. Shops are open 9 am-5 pm or later. In addition, they close early on one weekday afternoon.
Bahamians are known for their friendly and welcoming nature. It’s customary to greet others with a warm “Good morning,” “Good afternoon,” or “Good evening.” When visiting local communities, it’s polite to dress modestly and ask for permission before photographing. Unless otherwise specified, addressing people by their titles and surnames is polite. Respect the cultural norms and traditions of the islands.
The Bahamas boasts stunning beaches, and respecting the environment and local customs is essential. Avoid littering, and if you’re visiting a more secluded beach, bring your trash back with you. It’s also courteous to ask permission before setting up near someone else’s beach spot.
The Bahamas is renowned for its breathtaking underwater world. Snorkeling and scuba diving enthusiasts can explore vibrant coral reefs, underwater caves, and marine life. Ensure you have the necessary certifications and choose reputable operators for a safe and enjoyable experience.
The Bahamas offers unique opportunities for wildlife encounters. From swimming with pigs in Exuma to spotting flamingos in Inagua National Park, respect the animals and their habitats by observing from a safe distance and following any guidelines provided.
Local Festivals and Events
If your travel dates align, attending a Bahamian festival or event can be a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the local culture. Junkanoo, a vibrant street parade featuring music, dance, and colorful costumes, is the most famous festival celebrated during Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.
Shopping and Souvenirs
The Bahamas offers various shopping opportunities, from high-end boutiques to local markets. The Straw Market in Nassau is a popular spot for handmade straw crafts, souvenirs, and local artwork. Remember to negotiate politely when shopping at local markets.
Communication and Internet
The major tourist areas in the Bahamas have reliable cell phone coverage, and most hotels and resorts offer Wi-Fi access. However, if you plan to venture to more remote areas, be prepared for limited connectivity.
The dress code in the Bahamas is generally casual and relaxed due to its tropical climate and laid-back atmosphere. However, there are a few things to keep in mind regarding appropriate attire for different situations:
When you’re at the beach or poolside, wearing swimwear, cover-ups, flip-flops, and sandals is acceptable. Remember to bring a beach towel and sunscreen for protection from the sun.
Many resorts in the Bahamas have dress codes that allow for casual resort wear during the day and may require more formal attire in the evenings, especially in dining areas. Check with your specific resort for their dress code guidelines.
For exploring the islands, dining at local restaurants, or visiting attractions, you can opt for casual and comfortable clothing such as shorts, lightweight pants, skirts, sundresses, t-shirts, and sandals. Remember that the weather is generally warm, so lightweight and breathable fabrics are recommended.
Some upscale restaurants and entertainment venues may have dress codes that require more formal attire in the evenings. Men may be expected to wear collared shirts, long pants, and closed-toe shoes, while women may wear dresses, skirts, or dressy pantsuits.
If you plan to engage in outdoor activities like hiking, water sports, or exploring nature reserves, comfortable and appropriate active wear, including athletic shoes, is recommended.
Wearing long sleeves and long pants is advisable in the evenings or in areas with mosquitoes. Use mosquito repellent to protect yourself from bites.
Modesty in Local Communities
When visiting local communities, particularly religious or conservative areas, it’s respectful to dress modestly. Avoid wearing revealing or provocative clothing and opt for more conservative outfits that cover the shoulders, chest, and knees.
While there is no explicit ban on wearing camouflage clothing in the Bahamas, it is generally advised to avoid wearing camouflage attire. The use of camouflage clothing by civilians is often associated with military or law enforcement personnel. Wearing camouflage might lead to confusion or raise unnecessary concerns among locals or authorities. To avoid misunderstandings, opting for casual, non-camouflage clothing is recommended.
Bahamas Yacht Charter Cruising Areas
- The Exuma Islands and Cays
- Abacos Islands
- Harbour Island and Spanish Wells
- The Berry Islands
Nassau is the central departure city for the Exumas, and Marsh Harbour or Treasure Cay are options for the Abacos.
Popular Times to Visit | Bahamas General Information
For popular times to visit the Bahamas, click here.
Bahamas Yachts For Charter
We customize all Bahamas yacht charter itineraries according to your preferences and the weather. Our Bahamas general information is just a brief overview of what to expect, so please contact us for more information.
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