I’ll be honest the Bahamas weren’t a destination super high up on our places we must visit list … although beautiful we aren’t exactly island travelers. If we are going to go to a beach I prefer Mykonos or Positano where we can take private excursions hiking, boating, etc. vs resort excursions. The Bahamas being so close to the US is both a pro (for the flight time) and a con (for the food). It’s also not a cultural area I learned about growing up or was particularly interested in. All of the local food seemed to be fried, which I wasn’t a huge fan. That being said when you have an unbelievable deal to visit a gorgeous island- you go! And it truly was a beautiful and relaxing island.
The trip was only 5 days, 4 nights which was just enough for our winter getaway trip- a tradition we started after we got married. (The previous two years we visited San Antonio/Austin and Miami). Since we have a few trips planned this year, including two weeks in Europe, we definitely didn’t want to take more than 2-3 days off work. We, by the way is me and my husband Pat in case you didn’t figure that one out or are a new reader. PS Check out my travel page if you’re into trip recaps 🙂
Our first day we arrived late afternoon to our resort… yes we stayed at the super touristy Atlantis but again that was thanks to casino comps 😉 It was a really huge and impressive resort… definitely a lot to do in one area, felt very safe, absolutely stunning, etc. We had agreed to make this a super low maintenance relax only, try not to spend a ton of money trip (except for our Valentine’s day dinner) and I think overall we did really well. FYI I had done a lot of research about the Bahamas and Atlantis in particular and read that the food is pretty Americanized and super expensive. Every single thing has 7.5% tax and 15% gratuity… a large water bottle at the airport was $8, enough said, haha. So I had taken the liberty of packing many snacks including various bars, oatmeal cups, and a few other things. I’d say we ate about 70% of what I packed so that was good.
After a quick stop in the room to change we headed off the resort to the “downtown” area. We had missed lunch and were starving so we ordered a few of the local dishes off the menu including the well-known conch fritters. Gross. I’m all for some fried foods- cheese, calamari, and some others but these tasted like hush puppies and I was not a fan. Pat loved them though, go figure. We tried the local beer (gross again) and I decided dinner the next night would have better options, lol. We grabbed another drink back at the hotel and explored the entire resort by foot, trying to get a lay of the land for the next day. One of the unique highlights were all the aquariums.
The marine life here is amazing… aquariums are literally everywhere, both in door and outdoor. I seriously think we spent so much time watching all the fish which is funny since neither of us are huge animal/nature people. It was so cool to see the sharks swimming with other fish, and the watching the stingrays glide around. Pat’s favorite was checking out the saw and hammerhead sharks every time we walked past this area, but if I’m honest we pretty much spent time at every aquarium at the resort.
I woke up early (per usual) the next day and planned on getting in a short run/workout. I decided to head to the fitness center and Pat joined me. I ran a few miles and then met up with Pat on the basketball court for some shooting around, so fun! Afterwards we headed back to the room for a real breakfast (we had fueled our workouts with Lara bars) of oatmeal on the balcony.
Time to head out to the pool… there were flags on the beach that indicated the safety of the water and at that time it was red aka not safe (due to waves/roughness I believe). But the pool was actually a better set up any because we had a server to get our drinks, a table to keep them on, and the chairs were more comfortable. Plus since it was still early (and technically the offseason) it was practically empty.
I’ll spare you the details of my reading, sleeping, chatting, drinking routine during the day and just let you know that it was relaxing and the perfect temperature. We ventured over to another pool in the afternoon and eventually headed back around sunset to shower and head to dinner. We did one of the buffets that night per my request (I wanted lots of options)… It was $65/person which wasn’t super unreasonable compared to most prices for a standard meal. I had a cheese plate, salad, pizza, roasted veggies, and sampled several of the desserts. Pat really enjoyed the pick your protein stir fry and tried about a million other things. After dinner we did more exploring and headed back to the room for an early night and some relaxing. I believe I fell asleep watching Dear John. Lol.
Up bright and early the next morning for a solo 6 mile run. Really can’t believe these views although I definitely had to do a lot of zigzagging to create a long enough route. But I’ll never complain about running alongside the beach, especially when there’s a sidewalk and I can avoid the sand.
We decided to make this day our water ride day so we did the slides, the rapid river, etc. I used to really love water parks and I’m not sure if the novelty has worn off in at the ripe age of 30 but I strongly preferred reading and relaxing on my lounge chair. One of the really cool slides (which I didn’t get a picture of) was this one that the slide tube was enclosed in glass and you were surrounded by sharks. You got an up close view of them but were safely separated. That was Pat’s favorite.
Dinner that night was our fancy dinner to celebrate Valentine’s Day at one of their fine dining restaurants. There are something like 30 restaurants on the resort and we had chosen 77 West which fuses South American cuisine with a taste of the Caribbean. This was actually a positive experience with trying some local cuisine. We shared a ceviche flight to start- where can I get one in the US!? Pat ordered the Bahamian cracked lobster with creamed corn, shrimp, sofrito duo, herb oil, and cilantro. I had the grouper filet moqueca with coconut milk, onions, tomato, garlic, cilantro, and arroz con coco. As always we shared and both were fantastic. I also enjoyed my hibiscus prosecco with dinner and we shared a couple desserts- guava tart and coconut flan. It was really a delicious meal with fantastic company 😉
We stayed out that night and gambled for a bit, enjoyed a drink or two. The casino lacked a poker table which is my game of choice but Pat won $150 playing blackjack for an hour. It definitely had me wanting to take a trip to AC soon for some serious gambling.
On our last full day we slept in a bit before heading out to the beach. The water is just so stunning; I just love that super clear blueness. We did a bit of snorkeling in the water and found some fish but it was a hard work… those waves weren’t gentle. This reinforced that I will never sign up for a triathlon with an open water ocean swim.
I tried a drink served in a coconut which was a little strong and had me missing our daily pool drinks. So after eating some lunch we headed back the pool and played some word games on my Kindle. We had both finished our books and since Pat’s basically the smartest person I know it’s fun to play alongside him instead of against him in any games. We actually ended up making friends since we were playing out loud. These super friendly Long Islanders even got us a round of drinks, holler. We enjoyed watching the sunset on our last day and headed to the Marina after showering/getting ready. Pat and I grabbed a quick and easy dinner, plus a rum cake, and hit up the shops along the water. Most of them were of the super preppy and expensive variety so not exactly my taste but it was nice to listen to live music in the center square while we shopped. We had one last drink outside before turning in and ending our vacation. The next day we basically woke up and left. Overall such a beautiful and relaxing trip.
Have you ever been to the Bahamas? Are you a resort person or prefer to venture more out on your own?
Thank you for allowing me to Think Out Loud and recap my trip!