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Old 11-09-2012, 08:35   #16
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

IMPI
The guide books and explorer maps for the Abacos and the Exumas are very good, they have great details about almost every island that you will come upon, they also give details about ancorages, routes, and moorings which is extremly helpful. The water, the people, the diving, almost everything over there is great except the shopping. While we were there this last May, we never saw any types of water patrols or athority figers of any kind, except when we went through customs which was very easy. We have a 3 cabin sailboat which we turned one cabin into a storage room for alll of our dry goods for our 4 week trip. This saved us a ton of money and hassle of not having to try and buy it on the islands.
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Old 11-09-2012, 08:47   #17
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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If you are sailing you boat to Nassau, stock up on everything that you can carry for the whole trip, if possible, before you get there. It is hard to find anything in the strores except Nassau and Marsh harbor which is in the Abacos.
I donít necessarily agree that itís difficult to find provisions in the Bahamas as a couple people have stated. While Nassau and Marsh Harbor have large mainland style supermarkets, we found well stocked stores in numerous places further south. For example, Rock Sound in Eleuthera, Spanish Wells, Georgetown, Emerald Bay and Salt Pond on Long Island all had very good grocery stores. Numerous other settlements had smaller stores that carried staples at a minimum. Fresh fruit and vegetables were hit or miss at the smaller places depending on when the last mailboat was in. And yes most items are more expensive but many things can be found at reasonable prices. Rum and some other liquors are still pretty inexpensive (compared to US mainland), but beer is definitely expensive there.

Bottom line if can you provision at a low cost stop, of course that's the best solution, but I wouldn't be too worried if you are running low when you get to the Bahamas.

Scott
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Old 11-09-2012, 08:59   #18
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Can't agree with this. Good stores is Thompson Bay (Long Island) and Georgetown (Great Exuma). Both will be on your route coming from BVI but GT is a better stop. On your way up the Exuma chain Staniel Cay has a fair store but you have to be there when the boat comes in. Black Point to the south of Staniel has a smaller store. Nassau is not as good as it was two years ago as the big grocery store by Harbour Club Marina has closed.
Let me guess, you grown up in Russia in the 80s or so?
Yes Staniel Cay has some stores, but the they are very limited. If you like beef and see the frozen "stock" you become a veg - but you will have to stick to expired canned vegetables as it will be all you get.
Supermarket in Georgetown looks real great - but just after spending time in the other stores in Staniel or Black point. Yeah, shopping with a list again. In reality its a very small overpriced mini market.
There is no comparison to any supermarket in US or PR - The Georgetown store would be even tiny to Grenadian Standards where we are now.
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:03   #19
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Me in 2012 in the "decent" Store in Black Point.....beef and so is in the freezers....
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:21   #20
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Brent, I see you say your tired of the Guide Books, but I too would recommend the Pavlidas guides for lots of details you might not get here to help with your planning. Be sure and have a good set of charts, Explorer Charts are the best. We too prefer the Exumas over New Providence and really don't like Nassau, but that's just our preference. We did a couple of blog posts on both our sites for things many boaters want to know before going to the Bahamas and things to do when you get there. It might help. Click on the Cruising category. Have a great trip and if your still there in January, look for the Trawler Beach House. Chuck
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:26   #21
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Be aware that regulations in the Bahamas are very loose, I suspect that regulations regarding food there is all but non existant. When I talked with one of the store owners, they told me that they send a person over on a ferry to the US once a month or maybe more to buy from places like COSCO and Sams, then bring it back on the ferry to there store to resale.
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:29   #22
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

I, too, think the "provision before you get to the Bahamas" chant is overdone. You can find plenty of great food and fairly reasonable prices there. The beer is expensive, though.

I would say there are great cruising destinations all over the Bahamas. There really isn't enough time in a lifetime to take it all in. Nassau and Freeport would be at the bottom of my list of places to visit, though.

Somewhere up high-- on the bucket list, really-- should be a visit to Nipper's on Great Guana Cay in the Abacos on a Sunday afternoon. I can't really explain it, but...
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:42   #23
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Let me guess, you grown up in Russia in the 80s or so?
Yes Staniel Cay has some stores, but the they are very limited. If you like beef and see the frozen "stock" you become a veg - but you will have to stick to expired canned vegetables as it will be all you get.
Supermarket in Georgetown looks real great - but just after spending time in the other stores in Staniel or Black point. Yeah, shopping with a list again. In reality its a very small overpriced mini market.
There is no comparison to any supermarket in US or PR - The Georgetown store would be even tiny to Grenadian Standards where we are now.
I agree but we're talking about the Bahamas. If you want really good provisioning come to Toronto. Our prices are better than anywhere in the States and the fresh stuff is just amazing, anytime of the year. But then you wouldn't be in the Bahamas. I think it's a bit much to go cruising and then expect it to be just like back home in the USA.
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:24   #24
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

You'll probably be coming up thru the Exuma's so you can form an opinion.The Exumas are Great ,but for Good Fishing Diving Anchorages the Berry's are 6 hrs away from Nassau and are remote and peacefull.Stoped there year's ago for an day or two stayed 2 weeks,not much shopping or night life.Also easier sail stateside when leaving.I,always go back.
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Old 11-09-2012, 11:25   #25
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Two spots I really loved when I was island hopping (with an airplane) were Staniel Cay and Cat Island. Thunderball Grotto and Iguana Cay make great day trips from SC (hint, the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders have done photo shoots there) and have great photo ops and snorkeling. The scuba wall diving off Cat Island is spectacular and nicely off the beaten track. It might be nice to rent a cottage at SCYC for a few days break during the trip, the package deal with a 13 foot Boston Whaler and full meals is terrific- lobster tail, cracked conch etc. Even made custom boxed lunches.
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Old 11-09-2012, 17:07   #26
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Guys, now we remember why it was we joined cruisers forum. There are so many fantastic posts here ... Ana and I are really grateful for so much input and are sifting through every comment made. We are sailing up from the south (BVI's) so will do a huge shop before leaving.
Are there no restrictions on food types being brought into the Bahama's?
Unfortunately our son will be arriving and leaving from Nassau so we will have to do a 'round trip' ...

Thanks again everybody ... we appreciate every comment made and welcome additional ideas
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Old 11-09-2012, 17:19   #27
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Exumas are really great - don't forget to stop at Allen's Cay. North of that are a few mostly deserted islands, look for Ship's Channel, we spent a few weeks in that narrow anchorage a few years back - great place, a little hard to get into and won't take to deep a draft. You could spend weeks exploring the Exumas - you won't want to leave.
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Old 11-09-2012, 17:20   #28
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Old 11-09-2012, 18:29   #29
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Guys, now we remember why it was we joined cruisers forum. There are so many fantastic posts here ... Ana and I are really grateful for so much input and are sifting through every comment made. We are sailing up from the south (BVI's) so will do a huge shop before leaving.
Are there no restrictions on food types being brought into the Bahama's?
Unfortunately our son will be arriving and leaving from Nassau so we will have to do a 'round trip' ...

Thanks again everybody ... we appreciate every comment made and welcome additional ideas
In a dozen or so trips was never aware of any food restrictions,just make double sure you declare everything, firearms and rounds of ammo,if applicable can't use any spear guns other than Hawain slings,and be aware of the Bahamain Parks where fishing is prohibitied.]Bahamains are very nice people and easy to get along with,just be mindfull it is there country,another note when clearing in you must do so at the FIRST available point,this I,know to be looked at.
Have Fun you will
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Old 11-09-2012, 20:56   #30
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Bahamas air will fly your son for $75 from Nassau to Georgetown, you can then make a leisurely trip up to NAS. It is worth every penny... Exuma market in georgetown is pretty good if you forget provisioning.
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