A Winter Getaway Guide To Nassau Paradise Island

Above: The lighthouse in Nassau, Bahamas and tourist resorts in the city (Photo: Daniel Korzeniewski/Shutterstock)
Above: The lighthouse in Nassau, Bahamas and tourist resorts in the city (Photo: Daniel Korzeniewski/Shutterstock)

Now that winter has finally shown its frosty face, it’s time to think about escaping to warmer climes. If you’re looking for a diverse destination that offers all the requisite sunshine, sandy shores and poolside lounging, as well as an array of other activities and sights to keep you busy when you’re not beachside, Nassau Paradise Island is well worth considering. Whether your interests lie in golf, finding hidden foodie gems, soaking up the sun, shopping or getting a dose of history and culture, there’s something on the island for every type of traveller. Here’s our guide for where to stay, eat and play while you’re there.

Stay

You won’t be short on options when it comes to choosing where to rest your head in Nassau, but one of the best spots to stay in terms of size, amenities and the sheer amount of activities, is Atlantis Resort. Whether you’re coming as a couple, a family or as part of a guy’s getaway or bachelor party, there’s something here to keep you entertained, relaxed or satiated, depending on what kind of mood you’re in and what you need. In terms of rooms and suites there are several options to choose from, but we stayed at the all-suites Cove Atlantis which gets you access to Cain at the Cove, a gorgeous 9000 square foot adult’s only pool with an outdoor gaming pavilion and 20 private cabanas.

Eat

Since there are 21 restaurants and 19 bars and lounges peppered throughout the sprawling Atlantis property, from high end spots like Nobu and Seafire Steakhouse, to casual dining and poolside grab-and-go snack bars, you don’t necessarily need to leave the resort to get your food and drink fix. But there are other options if you want to see what else the island has to offer. Two excellent restaurants to try include Graycliff Restaurant at the beautiful Graycliff Hotel, the first Five-Star restaurant in the Caribbean and Dune by Jean-Georges Vongerichten at One&Only Ocean Club Resort, a stunning beachfront property on Paradise Island.

See & Do

One of the best ways to really get to know a destination is through its food. You can learn so much about the people and history of a place based on what they cook, the ingredients they use and how what they eat brings them together. Anyone wanting to discover the real Nassau, the one that exists outside of resorts and soft sand beaches should consider the three hour Bites Of Nassau Food Tasting & Cultural Walking Tour, a fascinating food journey through the streets of downtown Nassau. The well-paced tour was led by knowledgeable, friendly and enthusiastic guides and leads you to six significant tasting locations and five historical sites. Highlights included a stop at Athena Café, the island’s oldest Greek restaurant; trying traditional Bahamian dishes like Bahamian baked macaroni and cheese and peas n’ rice (not to be confused with rice n’ peas) at 30 year old Bahamian Cookin’; and sampling Bahamian-made hot sauces, spices, jams and jellies at Genuinely Bahamian Boutique.

The aforementioned Graycliff Hotel doesn’t just offer a stylish place to savour well-crafted meals. In addition to being a boutique hotel and restaurant, Graycliff is also a cigar company where you can learn to roll your own cigars, stop by for a rum and cigar tasting, or just take some home. In addition, if cigars aren’t your thing but you have a sweet tooth you’ll be happy to learn that there’s a chocolate factory here, too. Graycliff Chocolatier offers factory tours as well as hands-on chocolate-making workshops.

Play

Atlantis Resort is home to one of the world’s largest waterparks so it’s safe to assume that at least part of your time will be spent taking advantage of the many water-based attractions on offer, of which there are many. “Aquaventure” consist of 141-acres of water rides and pools, including 11 swimming pools, 18 waterslides of varying thrill levels and The Current, a mile long river ride with rolling rapids and pretty sizable wave surges. Of the waterslides Serpent Slide is a must. The five storey corkscrew slide starts off twisting and turning in total darkness and then takes you through a clear tunnel submerged in a shark-filled lagoon so you can shark-watch as you slide. The Falls is also a must-try, which starts with a 58-foot drop before sending you and your inner tube on a roller coaster of curves and ups and downs before a huge splash at the end.

In addition, a stay at Atlantis gets you access to beautiful beaches, the Tom Weiskopf-designed Ocean Club Golf Course, a spa, rock climbing wall and more.

Jessica Padykula

Jessica Padykula

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer based in Toronto. Her work has appeared on Styleathome.com, ElleCanada.com, Slice, Travel + Escape, Thrillist, AmongMen.com and SheKnows.com among others. When she’s not writing or researching a story she can be found planning trips to places near and far in a never-ending quest to travel the world. You can follow her on Twitter @JessPadykula

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