Pack your swimsuit, flip flops and SPF when you head to the Bahamas. This island country enjoys 82 degree temps year-round, while the ocean water rarely dips below 76 degrees. From diving with sharks to snorkeling with stingrays, there’s plenty of once-in-a-lifetime adventures to check off your bucket list.
Meet Dolphins and Stingrays
Swim with the dolphins along the coast of a secluded private island off Nassau. Relish the sea air and sparkling azure waters as you take a 30-minute ferry ride to Balmoral Island a mile off shore. After a short intro on dolphin etiquette, wade into the clear water to frolic with your new flippered friends. For more adventure, pet, feed and snorkel with stingrays at the island’s Stingray Encounter.
Go Kite Boarding
Forget sharing strips of sea with hundreds of kite-boarders. Experience the Bahamas’ best kite-boarding conditions without the crowds at Lubbers’ Landing in Abaco. The laid-back locale enjoys consistent winds of about 12 to 30 knots from November through April. Take a lesson at the landing, and head out to nearby islands to enjoy long stretches of unspoiled natural beauty while you zip along the glassy waves.
Swim With Pigs
While they may not be as graceful as dolphins, the playful porkers that live on the otherwise uninhabited island of Big Cay near Exuma live a life of endless vacation. The island’s 20 or so pigs are feral, but they’ll leave behind the shade of almond trees to swim and beg you for treats. You’ll find a number of excursion vendors in Exuma ready to take you to the island to meet your new porcine pals.
Explore a Bimini Shipwreck
The rusted skeleton of the SS Sapona cargo steamer looms from the water 3 miles off the coast of Bimini, providing one of the best opportunities to snorkel a shipwreck anywhere in the world. Once a rum-runner’s boat during the Prohibition Era, its massive wooden pillars tower above the water, attracting would-be cliff divers. Bring along your camera for memorable pics, and stale bread to feed schools of colorful fish below the water’s surface.
Kayak and Snorkel for Days
Ditch the cruise ship crowds with a six-day adventure through the Bahamas’ Out Islands on the Best of Both Worlds tour. Spend your days swimming and kayaking as you glide through glistening waters and make your way through the Cays. Out-Island Explorers’ staff members set up camp and cook your meals, leaving you free to snorkel; explore backwaters in your kayak; and watch the colorful birds and aquatic life.
Dive With Sharks
For a heart-pumping scuba diving experience, sign up a for the Shark Reef adventure on Long Island (if you dare!). You and your nerves of steel will be among other divers standing with your backs against a coral wall; watch on as a feeder places a bucket of fish just a few feet away to attract gray tip reef sharks, bull sharks, hammerheads and nurse sharks.