The Islands of The Bahamas spread themselves out over a geographic area more than 500 nm long!

The Bahamas are not one continuous cruising ground, and are grouped into several different archipelagos and several larger islands, and each one has a unique flavor of cruising. Each offers its own set of cruising destinations. You can choose to visit a single island chain or visit them all.

You can speed your way through the country, moving to a new anchorage every night, or you can slow down to island time and spend months in each place.

Between each island chain lies a bluewater passage to be made. Most trips are in the 40 to 60 mm range, within the bounds of a day sail for most boats. But passage planning and waiting for good weather are essential. Your departure and arrival points usually have narrow, high current cuts to navigate.

The Exuma Cays

Most Instagram pictures of The Bahamas are taken in the Exumas. They are home to gin-clear water, the original and most famous swimming pigs and friendly nurse sharks that like to be stroked. The Exumas stretch from near Nassau until they almost touch Long Island. There are small settlements along the way but what most folks come to see are the unspoiled beaches with dream-like tropical water.

Cruising the Exumas requires a good watch on the weather and moving around. The islands offer few protected anchorages. Most of the popular anchorages are exposed to southwest and westerly winds, making them uncomfortable (and possibly unsafe) in some conditions. The deep blue Exuma Sound borders the cays to the east and the shallow and green Great Bahama Bank to the west. You can hop between the two as needed using the many cuts between islands.

But be aware: Those cuts can be very nasty when wind opposes tide! Plan carefully. Navigating shallow waters with a sailboat sporting a 2.5m draft: a nerve-wracking dance with the depths!

The Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park stretches 22 nm along the upper Exuma Cays and is a destination unto itself. Mooring balls are provided in the favorite spots.

Don’t miss dinghying the creeks of Shroud Cay, hiking the trails on Warderick Wells or enjoying the lagoon and sandbars at Cambridge Cay.

After days of exploring the park, civilization might be a welcome change. Your next stop could be the attractive Bahamian settlement of Staniel Cay.


Eleuthera is by far the most developed of the Bahamian outer islands. Fast ferries come from Nassau and the island is home to several larger towns. Like neighboring Cat and Long Islands, the cruising here is on the west side and the anchorages are entirely exposed from that direction. Many have poor holding as well, making Eleuthera a settled weather destination for most. There is some protection to be found in Rock Sound, Hatchett Bay and near Spanish Wells. The swanky resort community of Harbour Island lies on the eastern side of the island.

In the coming days, I’ll be writing several articles about our top anchorages and most stunning beaches from our sailing adventures in the Bahamas so far. Stay tuned for some salty tales and sandy shores!

Beautiful days with my son Laurence and his girlfriend Jaci!
We discovered some nice Restaurants on the way!

Love, always …… Biggi