Abacos has been a bit of a flash back for us. We came here and chartered a boat with friends back in 2011. In the past couple weeks we have hit some of the same spots and also experienced some new ones.
Hopetown Lighthouse – 2011.
Hopetown Lighthouse – 2018.
Nipper’s – 2011.
Nipper’s – 2019.
Here in the Abacos area we met back up with friends from The Loop – Mike & Mary (Forever Friday) and Jay & Barb (The Blessing). We have also reconnected with new friends we met down here back in January when we first arrived – and Dave & Carol (Moxie) and Bob, Meghan and their kids Marin & Leonard (Hemisphere) .
Marin & Leonard (Hemisphere) letting us hang out with them for a bit.
One of the nice things about the Abacos is everything is close by which means you can go back and forth to your favorite spots in just a few hours. It also is very shallow so you can see the bottom just about everywhere you.
Typical travel day in the Abacos
Unlike the Exumas, the Abacos is an easy to get to/popular winter destination so we are now surrounded by not just more cruisers but also more people on vacation. With the popularity we were surprised to find that prices in the Abacos are much higher than those in the more remote islands. We prefer the less populated and clear gin colored waters of the Exumas (as well as Cat Island and Eleuthera) to the Abacos.
The past few days we have been making our way slowly with Hemisphere and Moxie to stage ourselves for crossing the Gulf Stream this upcoming weekend. We will land back in Florida, in Fort Pierce, where we plan to have the boat hauled out for some routine love and attention.
Doing this side trip off The Great Loop is highly recommended as spending the winter in the Bahamas has been absolutely amazing. While the weather often required us to travel only on certain days we saw amazing sea life, swam in unbelievably clear waters, watched colorful sunsets, walked every beach we found, feasted on fresh fish/cracked conch and washed it all down with a few rum drinks.
Highlights from our time in the Abacos –
Visiting the Rum Barge that pulls up to Tahiti Beach each day. Best conch we have had in the Bahamas also came from this floating food/drink boat.
A live conch walking the beach at sunset on Tahiti Beach.
Pete’s Pub in Little Harbor. In our opinion, one of the best low key beach bars in the Abacos area.
Little Harbor, Heartbeat is right in the middle. Photo courtesy of a poster to a Bahamas cruising group we belong to on Facebook.
Opening to Little Harbor, Hemisphere was kind enough to enter and exit first and we followed behind. Photo courtesy of a poster to a Bahamas cruising group we belong to on Facebook.
Heartbeat and Hemisphere getting ready to leave the mooring balls at Little Harbor.
View from atop the lighthouse in Hopetown.
Exploring Elbow Cay on our rusty bikes.
Walking quiet and quaint Man O Way Cay. Almost every Bahamian island’s main road is named the Queen’s Highway. Depending on the island size and width of the road you’ll have only bikes, golf carts or cars on the highway.
Beautiful Gilian Bay on Green Turtle Cay.
The Goombay Smash is a common drink found in the Bahamas. It was created by Emily Cooper, aka Miss Emily, at the Blue Bee Bar in New Plymouth/Green Turtle Cay. The original recipe is a secret, but it is believed to have contained coconut rum, dirty rum, apricot brandy, and pineapple juice.
Miss Emily’s grand daughter currently serves the secret Goombay Smash recipe. We and Mike & Mary (Forever Friday) confirmed it was quite the tasty drink.
We are improving our coconut harvesting skills. On our to buy list – a machete. It makes it a lot easier to get to the coconut water and then to the meat. Thinly slice up the coconut meat and cook in the oven and it tastes like buttered popcorn.
Kent taking advantage of the calm waters for a morning SUP outing.
Beach walking at Powell Cay. This was our favorite anchorage in the Abacos area as it had a long beach for walking, a nice hiking trail to the ocean side, and calm waters for swimming.
Following the hiking trail at Powell Cay.
Heartbeat at Crab Cay. Thanks to Mary on Forever Friday for the picture.
Heather and Penny on the SUP at Crab Cay, 5 minutes after this pic the family on Hemisphere hollered that they were following a huge hammerhead shark so of course we paddled over and followed the shark for a bit.
Here is the 8-10″ hammerhead shark. Kent got a few pics but Mike on Forever Friday had the best one. It was pretty cool to see this animal in such shallow waters searching for it’s meal.