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Old 03-12-2012, 17:22   #121
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

LOVING the BAHAMAS !!!

SO far have done MAYAGUANA (Abrahams Bay) and RUM CAY (magnificent water) and now at George Town on Exumas anchored off Stocking ... Wow ... really nice so far.

More contributions and ideas about places to visit here always welcome
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Old 03-12-2012, 21:37   #122
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Great to hear!! What are you liking better: Tobago Keys or Exumas?
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Old 03-12-2012, 23:39   #123
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Great to hear!! What are you liking better: Tobago Keys or Exumas?
Thanks ... very difficult question ...

We really have not been here long enough to make any sort of comment on the Exumas yet although I must say that as we dropped anchor off Stocking Island Ana could not stop talking about the 'good feeling' she gets from this place.

My judgement could be somewhat tainted by what I feel as harassment by 'boat boys' ... I get tired of that and I enjoy the fact that here the islanders leave yachtsman to enjoy the peace and tranquility of it all. In Tobago Cays we had boats trying to sell T-shirts even before the anchor was down, then another asking to collect rubbish for a fee, then a park boat asking for park fees ... in the end I paid a guy to tell all the boat boys to respect our space!

Katia, I will have to give you that answer once we have been here a while, but my guess is that it will be a tough choice for us between Bahamas and Bvi's. TC for us no longer has a natural feel to it ... although we enjoyed visiting and loved exploring the little islands
My initial thought between here and TC is .... Exumas
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:07   #124
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

You certainly won't get harassed in the Exumas, and some of the smaller settlements will treat you like family. If you're going up the chain, the best is yet to come. But spend a little time in GTown and hike on Stocking Island...even when there's a lot of boats there, there's plenty of empty spaces. I still recommend the Brigantines on the way...we anchored there for days without even SEEING another boat or person...not even a fishing skiff...and had several uninhabited islands and beaches to ourselves...heaven! We were tucked in at New Cay, but we have very little draft. Other spots can accommodate 4 feet or less...5 is about the max and very limited.
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:49   #125
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

If you want a nice quiet spot go north about twelve miles to Glass Cay. Good reefs, a blowhole and your personal island with a few palm trees. Good spot for spear fishing, but don`t tell anyone.

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Old 04-12-2012, 11:14   #126
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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You certainly won't get harassed in the Exumas, and some of the smaller settlements will treat you like family. If you're going up the chain, the best is yet to come. But spend a little time in GTown and hike on Stocking Island...even when there's a lot of boats there, there's plenty of empty spaces. I still recommend the Brigantines on the way...we anchored there for days without even SEEING another boat or person...not even a fishing skiff...and had several uninhabited islands and beaches to ourselves...heaven! We were tucked in at New Cay, but we have very little draft. Other spots can accommodate 4 feet or less...5 is about the max and very limited.
Thanks Mike ... Will definitely be looking into that!

Of the few guide books we are using we are enjoying Waterway Guide
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:16   #127
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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If you want a nice quiet spot go north about twelve miles to Glass Cay. Good reefs, a blowhole and your personal island with a few palm trees. Good spot for spear fishing, but don`t tell anyone.

ha ha ... don't tell anyone ...

Sounds awesome so am going to check out how that fits with the route toward Nassau where we drop my son off ... thanks for the suggestion. Is there much for the kids to do there? Are there any dive spots that are good with tanks?
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:19   #128
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Originally Posted by Waterway Guide View Post
You certainly won't get harassed in the Exumas, and some of the smaller settlements will treat you like family. If you're going up the chain, the best is yet to come. But spend a little time in GTown and hike on Stocking Island...even when there's a lot of boats there, there's plenty of empty spaces. I still recommend the Brigantines on the way...we anchored there for days without even SEEING another boat or person...not even a fishing skiff...and had several uninhabited islands and beaches to ourselves...heaven! We were tucked in at New Cay, but we have very little draft. Other spots can accommodate 4 feet or less...5 is about the max and very limited.
.... another question ... what draft do you draw? We draw 1.3m
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Old 05-12-2012, 15:20   #129
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

We can do 22" when we need it, but seemed like there was at least 3-4' throughout that area. It's all soft sand, so you can tuck in nicely with 1.3m. The Explorer and NV-Charts are very accurate.
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Old 07-12-2012, 20:37   #130
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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We can do 22" when we need it, but seemed like there was at least 3-4' throughout that area. It's all soft sand, so you can tuck in nicely with 1.3m. The Explorer and NV-Charts are very accurate.
Thanks for that info Mike ... much appreciated. We are using Explorer charts and they provided a nice CD as well ...
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Old 25-01-2013, 23:05   #131
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Just a bit of feed back to all those who assisted us with advice on this thread ... we are in fact nearing the end of our time in the Bahamas although we intend to visit two or so islands on the way out as we depart for our journey to the Pacific.
We eventually sailed as the wind direction and weather allowed and started at Mayaguana, Plana Cays, Rum Cay and then George Town in the Exumas. From here we worked our way up through the Exumas to Nassau and then worked our way back down through the islands to GeorgeTown again. The Exumas proved to be stunning and my personal favorites were O'Briens Cay (Coral Gardens, diving on the drug smugglers plane, the botique beach on the south with a stream leading to a huge sand pan and speaking with the skipper on Johnny Deps boat, Vajoliroger, anchored off his neighboring island) and Normans Cay (especially the southern part of the lagoon area which is remote and beautiful).
Interestingly enough, we had written some islands off as not being worth a re-visit but went back anyway and learnt something we had not factored much in during our travels previously ... weather.
We found that even with the lighter winds in the wrong direction, the islands were unpleasant and unattractive to us but when we returned in calm smooth water conditions, these same islands were spectacular in every sense of the word. A major example to us was Great Guana Island which at first had no appeal for us at all, however when we dropped anchor on our southbound route off White Point, I must say the entire place was awe inspiring with its stunning long white beaches and crystal clear waters.
Little Farmers Cay also proved to be very quaint on our return journey when the water was 'glassed over'.
We departed George Town with about 10 boats at anchor off Stocking Island and returned to 180 boats ... quite something! Thanks again for all the input ... very much appreciated and I may start a new thread asking for advice and recommendations on Cuba next!
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Old 26-01-2013, 14:43   #132
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

Glad to hear you did well.

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Old 26-01-2013, 16:38   #133
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Well here's one of my favourite spots.... Normans Cay.

Cleaning conch at Normans. My boat in the background.



As for snorkeling the cuts. We do it towards the tail of an incoming tide, always with the dink. Just hang onto the dink's anchor, a foot or two off the bottom. Of course we start at the outer end and drift in.
Yum Vasco.

For those sailing to the Bahamas now, you should be aware that harvesting conch is illegal. Fine to buy it from a Bahamian.

Impi, sounds like a great trip. I was born in the Bahamas, grew up mostly in the US, but discovered sailing during a solo sea kayaking trip in the Exumas in 2003. After seeing nobody for many days, I saw a couple sail out of the sound and anchor near Square Rock. It just seemed like a much more practical way to travel, compared to sea kayaking. Kind of a life changing moment -- realizing that the whole world was connected by water. Can't wait to get down there with my "big boat" and my lady.
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Old 26-01-2013, 16:48   #134
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

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Yum Vasco.

For those sailing to the Bahamas now, you should be aware that harvesting conch is illegal. Fine to buy it from a Bahamian.
Unless the regulation was changed this year I think you are wrong and spreading false information as was done by another uninformed poster when I first posted this picture. With a Bahamian fishing permit cruisers are allowed 6 conch.
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Old 26-01-2013, 17:04   #135
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Re: Bahamas - Do's and Dont's

For cruisers interested in fishing in the Bahamas here is the catch limit. If you intend to spearfish get an endorsement on the permit. There is no charge for the permit, it is included with the cruising permit, for which there is a charge.

How much fish am I allowed to keep?
The catch limits in the new Regulation are expressed in terms of amounts that may be aboard the vessel at any time. They are not per day limits, or per trip limits. The new bag limits are:


18 Pelagic fish (Dolphin, Wahoo, Kingfish or Tuna)

10 Lobsters

60 lbs or 20 Demersal fish (grouper, snapper, etc.)

6 conchs
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