Grand Bahama is the fourth largest island of the Bahamas. In its territory, visitors can enjoy endless attractions that range from submarine caverns to lovely fishermen villages that welcome the people who visit. This is Freeport, which became a very active city filled with restaurants and eco-friendly attractions, beginning in the 50s; that, along with its already famous handicraft markets, are the main connecting point for tourists. Also, it’s one of the entry ports of the Bahamas because it’s home to one of the international airports (FPO) of the community with regular flights daily.
Walking the extraordinary white sand beaches with emerald green water represents the relaxing part of vacationing in Grand Bahama; visiting the Freeport market and parading through its wide variety of shops and restaurants with international ambiance, will add the cosmopolitan touch to your vacation with attractions throughout its 154 kilometers of territorial extension.
The port at Freeport is beautiful; people who come by sea can enjoy the sight of pastel color bungalows and a gazebo where a local band plays music to welcome them. The city has over 50,000 inhabitants and a large amount of visitors who stay there all year long. You can enjoy the surroundings in their natural state, since in many of its areas it has not been touched by man; a good combination of an active commercial center and areas in development that contrast perfectly with the immaculate color of its waters.
Getting around town is very easy and visiting its multiple shops and restaurants is a must-do that allows you to meet its people, savor the local culinary offer, and take advantage of the international commerce that mix together here. There are also paddling boat excursions through the Lucayan National Park, which take you to the shore and also offer beach enjoyment.
Freeport’s main commercial district is connected around The Mall, located at Ranfurly Circus and Churchill Square. To one side of The Mall is West Mall Drive and to the other side East Mall Drive in which are most of the hotels and restaurants. The touristic activity is focus on the south end of the East Mall Drive, around Ranfurly Circus and the International Bazaar. Plus, there is a great amount of restaurants, a straw market and several stands that sell souvenirs. To the east of Ranfurly Circus in the Sunrise Highway, and to the south, on Seahorse road, is Port Lucaya and the hotel area in front of the beach. The weather is ideal to go for a walk, lay to get a tan, sit and drink a cocktail or any other thing you may come up with. You have to visit the market of Port Lucaya and enjoy its colorfulness; another favorite of visitors, where you can view the marina and buy practically everything from jewelry to souvenirs. The area bars and restaurants are always packed and with great vibe, a definitely must-go.
Junkanoo is a colorful festival that takes place at the end of the month of December; starting in the early morning of December 26, and then on January 1 to kick off the New Year. The streets of Nassau, Grand Bahama, Eleuthera, Bimini and Abaco display a colorful event that has its roots in the famous New Orleans’ Mardi Grass. Although the main event occurs in Nassau, Grand Bahama Island also displays spectacular colors and customs you should not miss.
Junkanoo is part of the essence of the Bahamian culture. Its energetic and colorful parade will showcase the local rhythms and the grace of its people. The history of this festival goes back to slavery times when the slaves will get three days off during Christmas time. The slaves, using scary masks, will play hand-made musical instruments (drums and bells) and will walk around freely. This singular event combines historical richness, the African roots and the happiness of the Bahamian people. If you want to participate in the festival, make sure you plan ahead and get there early so you can appreciate the parade better.
At the end of the month of February, the eagerly awaited spring break begins for countries with winter weather. From February to April the festivities won’t end: sports, music, beach parties and more control the calendar and make of this season one full of activity. If you like a good party, you’ll love to visit Grand Bahama during this time of the year. If, on the contrary, you are looking for a refuge of relaxation and tranquility, you should avoid the break.
Freeport has two spectacular golf courses hosts of international tournaments: The Reef, designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr., and Lucayan, designed by Dick Wilson. The Reef has open fairways, tall, even grass that go through huge gorgeous lakes; in holes 13 and 18 the water is part of the game, which makes it much more interesting. This, of course, is not casual, since it’s considered as one of the top 3 courses in the Caribbean. The Lucayan has intense foliage and a mixed terrain with interesting routes and caverns. Here, the most experienced golfers will test their precision and the golf enthusiasts will have fun with the challenge. The route through the 18 holes is very pleasant, as golfers can refuge themselves in the shades of the tall trees it has. Playing golf in Freeport is delicious. Plus, you don’t have to rush while you play; it’s very relaxing! The environment is pretty relaxing, as the amount of golfers isn’t extreme and allows for flexible schedules.
You’ll always count on warm temperatures and a lot of sun at Grand Bahama Island. Throughout the entire year, the weather is favorable for walking, going to the beach, playing golf or simply enjoying a meal outdoors. Despite the fact that it rains any time of the year, in the Bahamas they say that “it will take you longer to cover from the rain, than what the rain would last.” It won’t be rare that it rains during your stay, but because how quick it will go away, you’ll be able to continue your outdoor activities without a problem. What are you waiting for? Freeport has everything you’re looking for in a vacation: from spectacular beaches to shops, from caverns to golf courses; and even a casino. This is a place you’ll never forget.