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Nassau (Bahamas)

Travel Guide Caribbean Bahamas New Providence Nassau

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Introduction

Nassau

Nassau

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Nassau, situated on the northeastern edge of New Providence Island, is the capital of the Bahamas and home to the majority of its population. Even so, with a population of around 260,000 it is still a relatively laid-back place. Nassau is also the transport hub of the Bahamas, home to its international airport and with good connections to major cities in the USA, Canada, UK and the Caribbean. While most visitors will likely be visiting on the way to a beach, the city has some attractions of its own to offer while you are in town.

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Events and Festivals

  • Junkanoo is a street parade with music, which occurs in many towns on the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos Islands every Boxing Day (December 26), New Year's Day and, more recently, in the summer on the island of Grand Bahama. Nassau still has the best and biggest one though!

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Weather

Nassau has a pleasantly warm but humid climate. Compared to Caribbean cities more to the south, there are some differences regarding temperatures, mainly because it is somewhat colder during the wintermonths of November to April. Generally though, temperatures are high, with summer maximum temperatures averaging around 30 °C and minimum temperatures around 24 °C. During the wintermonths temperatures are about 5 °C lower. The rainy season lasts from May to October, with September and October being the wettest months. This is also the time (especially from August to October) when hurricanes are a possibility.

JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Avg Max25.6 °C25.7 °C26.7 °C27.9 °C29.6 °C31.1 °C32 °C32.1 °C31.5 °C30 °C28 °C26.4 °C
Avg Min17.1 °C17.3 °C17.9 °C19.3 °C21.1 °C23 °C23.7 °C23.8 °C23.5 °C22.3 °C20.5 °C18.4 °C
Rainfall47.2 mm49 mm54.4 mm69.3 mm104.9 mm218.9 mm160.5 mm235.5 mm163.1 mm163.1 mm80.5 mm50 mm
Rain Days8676101517191715108

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Getting There

By Plane

Bahamasair is the national airline of the Bahamas and is based at Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) near the capital Nassau. It doesn't have that many international services, but at least Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Providenciales and Havana are served. Several airlines offer flights mainly to the United States and Canada as well as several islands in the Caribbean. British Airways has flights to and from London, as well as the Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands. Other airlines serving the airport are Air Canada (Toronto and Montreal), American Airlines (Dallas), Cubana (Havana), Copa Airlines (Panama City), and Air Jamaica (Kingston).

Bahamsair and several smaller airlines serve many domestic destinations, including Marsh Harbour, Abraham's Bay, Arthur's Town, Cockburn Town, Colonel Hill, Deadman's Cay, Freeport, George Town, Governor's Harbour, Matthew Town, North Eleuthera, Rock Sound, Spring Point, The Bight, Treasure Cay, Great Harbour Cay, Rum Cay, Black Point, Farmer's Car, Staniel Cay, Chub Cay, Colonel Hill, Deadman's Cay, Stella Maris, Andros Town, Bimini, Congo Town, Mangrove Cay and San Andros.

By Boat

Bahamas Ferries has car and passenger services from the capital Nassau to destinations on Eleuthera, Exumas, Andros and Abacos. Fast daily ferry services travel between Nassau and most of the main islands. The main connections are:

  • Nassau to Abacos - about 4 hours between Sandy Point, Great Abaco and Nassau
  • Nassau to Eleuthera - two-hour run from Potter’s Cay in Nassau to Harbour Island. It also runs a ferry from Potter’s Cay to Governor’s Harbour
  • Nassau to Exumas - Departs the Bahamas Ferriesdock at Potter’s Cay for the overnight journey to the Exumas. The scheduled 12-hour trip can stretch closer to 14 depending on the weather.
  • Nassau to Andros - There’s a two-hour ferry run by Bahamas Ferries from Nassau to Fresh Creek on Andros

Other services with Bahamas Ferries include Cat Island - Nassau, Driggs Hill - Nassau, Current - Nassau, George Town - Nassau and Spanish Wells - Nassau. The latter leaves Nassau at 8:00am and arrives in Spanish Wells around 10:00am, and is often advertised as a possible daytrip as well.

To add, there are watertaxis between Nassau and Paradise Island regularly making the crossings. Several other offshore islands and their neighboring cays are served by private water taxis. Also, there are about 20 mailboats serving many islands, including the Outer Islands further away to the south and southeast. Although less comfortable, they are a great but slow alternative to the normal ferries and watertaxis.

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Sleep

Budget

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
The Towne Hotel40 George St Po Box No. 4808Hotel78

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafes are not common on the islands, but in Nassau you can try Cybercafe, in the Mall at Marathon. On the Outer Islands, your hotel may have a computer with Internet access for guest use. If you're traveling with your own computer, internet access via Wi-Fi hot spots is increasingly common at hotels, even in the Out Islands. Some restaurants, cafes and foodchains like McDonald's offer free wifi most of the times as well.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to The Bahamas is: 1-242. To make an international call from The Bahamas, the code is: 011

If you bring your own cell phone, be sure to switch off roaming to avoid high internet costs. It's also better for lower call rates to buy a local SIM card (make sure your phone is unlocked), and internet charges are much lower in that case as well. Sim cards and airtime credit for topping up can be purchased online at Ezminutes.com or at the local shops. To apply the phone card credit, dial *44 followed buy pin number.

Another option would be to buy a simple local phone which usually comes with some value on the card for calling and internet as well. Rates are between $0.15-$0.33 per minute for local calls and incoming calls and about a dollar more for outgoing calls within North America, more for Europe and other areas.

Post

The Bahamas Postal Service provides services in the country. Most of the kiosks selling postcards also sell the stamps you'll need to mail them, so you probably won't need to visit the post office. If you do need a post offices, general opening times are 9:00am to 5:00pm, though sometimes shorter hours are kept o the Outer Islands. If you want to send a package, it's better to use companies like UPS, DHL or FedEx, as they are fast and reliable.

Quick Facts

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Coordinates
  • Latitude: 25.066127
  • Longitude: -77.339025

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This is version 19. Last edited at 9:01 on Jul 25, 14 by Utrecht. 11 articles link to this page.

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