Among its many attributes, Nassau is a prime sailing destination within the Bahamas. Not only can you make your way to this port internationally, but you can also fly to the island and participate in a sail around the islands for some sightseeing or as part of a fishing, snorkeling, or diving excursion.
It takes only about eight hours to sail between Miami, Florida and Nassau, which is probably why the area sees so much traffic amongst American yachters. Even if you don't plan to stay for your entire trip in Nassau, the town is known for having the best provisioning in the Bahamas (despite the high cost), so many sailors will stop here as their first port of entry, stay for a few nights, and then move on to the other islands.
If you just want to spend some time on the water, without the stress and cost involved with renting a boat you can join an excursion. Take a look at the table that follows to obtain contact information for area boating excursions.
|Barefoot Sailing Cruises||(242) 393-0820||3.1 mi. (5.0 km) North of Nassau|
|Party Cat Cruises||(954) 727-5339||East Bay Street - 3.4 mi. (5.5 km) Northeast of Nassau|
|Seaworld Explorer||(242) 356-2548||Downtown Nassau|
|(800) 879-9832||Stuart's Cove's Snorkel Bahamas - Downtown Nassau|
|Sunshine Cruises||(242) 327-5122||Woodes Rogers Walk - Downtown Nassau|
If you are contemplating chartering a boat, you can call one of these area agencies:
|Amarok Sailing Charters||(242) 477-4471||Nassau Yacht Haven - 0.5 mi. (0.8 km) South of Paradise Island|
|393-0998||Bishop Street - Nassau|
Every marina on New Providence Island is considered an official port-of-entry, so you can decide which marina you'd like to dock your yacht at in advance and sail there directly.
Is your plan to visit Nassau using your own boat, or a boat you charter in a different location? This next chart provides a quick summary of area marinas.
|(242) 394-1816||3.2 mi. (5.1 km) North-Northeast of Nassau|
|(242) 424-7374||Downtown Nassau|
|323-2172||671 Bay Street - Nassau|
|(242) 393-0771||3.4 mi. (5.5 km) Northeast of Nassau|
|394-7085||East Bay Street - Nassau|
|(242) 393-7873||3.3 mi. (5.3 km) Northeast of Nassau|
|(242) 393-5132||3.6 mi. (5.7 km) Northeast of Nassau|
|(242) 393-8173||3.3 mi. (5.3 km) North-Northeast of Nassau|
|(242) 327-6533||West Bay Street - Nassau|
...keep your belongings locked up...
As you sail into port, fly your yellow quarantine flag so that customs will know that you have not yet been cleared. When you pull in, you will be asked to present proof of citizenship, a passport, and another form of photo identification for each passenger on board, then you will be required to fill out an immigration card. Finally, you'll pay between $150 and $300(USD) depending upon the length of your boat. This fee covers the cost of your cruising permit, fishing permit, and departure tax, and is good for up to four people. If you have more passengers on board, you will see additional charges.
After obtaining your permit, you are free to sail around the islands. Once you find a slip to dock your boat at, make sure to keep your belongings locked up at all times, as petty crime against yachters in the area is on the rise. If you have any questions about sailing to Nassau, contact the Port Authority Department at 242-322-1596 or 242-326-7354.
Knowing which options are available to you, you're better prepared to decide how you want to get out to sea when you visit Nassau. Will you sail yourself from south Florida or wait until you get to town and participate in a tour? The choice is your and you can't make a wrong decision.
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