A vacation in the Bahamas is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you will for sure want to make the most of. With that in mind, you may want to plan to spend one or two days exploring the islands outside of the Cable Beach area of New Providence. Ferry transport is an exciting and affordable way to do this. There are several different ferry services, so it can be confusing to figure out which ferry is for you; however, if you break the services down into four main categories it becomes much easier to sort out.
A little less than a half an hour away from Cable Beach by car is Potter's Cay, the town from which the government run Mail Boat program originates each day. From there, they sail on to many of the islands in the chain, including the Abacos, Acklins, Andros, the Berry Islands, Bimini, Cat Island, Eleuthera, the Exumas, Grand Bahama, Harbour Island, Inagua, Long Island, Mayaguana, and San Salvador.
Although primarily used as a frieght service, the Mail Boats have also been outfitted with a comfortable passenger cabin so locals and tourists can make their way around for a low price. It should be noted that these boats are very slow, and some take a full day of travel to get to your destination. Travelers have the most success when they plan to visit two islands near one another.
Created as a quicker alternative to the Mail Boats, Bahamas Fast Ferries shuttles locals and tourists between Potter's Cay, the Abacos, Andros, Eleuthera, and the Exumas. The service has been around for many years and is highly recommended.
Make sure you arrive at the dock by 7:00 a.m. If you plan to use this service. Ferries leave the cay every morning at 8:00 a.m., makes the rounds, and return home at 6:00 p.m.
If you'd like to get out of Cable Beach and explore the Marsh Harbour area, Albury's Ferries can get you there. Albury's has 12 fiberglass boats called "donnies" that offer transportation between Marsh Harbour, Man-of-War, Hope Town, Guana, and Scotland.
Familiarize yourself with the choices for water transportation below.
|0.3 mi. (0.4 km) South West of Paradise Island|
The Pinar del Rio is an international ferry that connects the U.S. State of Florida with the Bahamas every day of the week except for on Wednesdays. The ferry leaves Ft. Lauderdale, Florida and sails for two-and-a-half hours to Grand Bahama at 10:00 a.m., then returns at 7:30 p.m. It can carry 460 passengers and costs just $49.50(USD) each way. Although this may not be the ideal way for tourists to get to Cable Beach, it is an option if you want to see Grand Bahama and New Providence.
During the summer of 2013 a second international ferry out of Miami, Florida was introduced. It is called the Maverick and sails to the Biminis on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 9:00 a.m. It arrives in Alice Town, North Bimini that same day at noon. During the trip, the 350 guests that the boat has been cleared to carry can hang out in the disco, swimming pool, casino, or one of the on-board restaurants. The return trip leaves Alice Town at 5:00 p.m. and costs $49.50(USD).
Along with these four main categories of ferries, there are also numerous small ferry routes throughout the islands that have one specific destination in mind. One of the best examples of this is the Paradise Island Ferry, which offers transportation between the center of Nassau and Paradise Island for tourists staying in one of the resorts there. The trip takes 20 minutes and costs just $3(USD) a person.
Ferries are an important part of life in the Bahamas, and knowing the inns and outs can enhance your Cable Beach getaway a great deal.
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