Just 90 miles off the southeastern tip of Florida lies the largest in the archipelago of the Bahamian islands; Grand Bahama Island is a family-friendly and affordable destination that offers a tropical getaway via a stamp on one’s passport without the exhaustive flight and even more exhaustive budgetary drain.
Although Atlantis is undoubtedly the most easily recognized resort in the Caribbean island chain, Grand Bahama offers economically reasonable alternatives with a similar look and feel.
Formerly and informally referred to simply as “Freeport” after the main city on the island, Grand Bahama Island has spent the past decade cultivating a safe, inviting, kid-friendly atmosphere in the Lucaya area, filling it with gracious resorts, boutique hotels, pristine beaches and a series of UNEXSO (Underwater Explorers Society) experiences such as the dolphinarium, which allows close encounters and actual contact with dolphins in a controlled but kind environment.
A popular spring break destination in March, Lucaya is anchored around Count Basie Square, an open-air shopping and dining center with local shops and restaurants. Snorkeling, SCUBA, parasailing, spa experiences, casinos and duty-free jewelry shopping are all available in the beachfront haven as well.
Replete with Bahama Mama cocktails, Kalik beer, fresh fish and conch dishes, Grand Bahama Island offers a delicious, sun-drenched vacation for families and couples in need of fuss-free fun.
Daily flights to and from the island via Miami International Airport are less than half an hour in duration.
Photo credits: author’s archive (x4) and Pelican Bay Hotel (night photo)