Bahamas for Spring Break?

Discussion in 'Cool Places to Fly' started by jdfrey1, Nov 6, 2019.

  1. jdfrey1

    jdfrey1 Pre-Flight

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    I'm sure there are multiple threads on this but a quick search didn't uncover any recent ones so I thought I'd ask the question. I'd like to fly the family to the Bahamas soon. We've been talking about it for years but we always end up somewhere in Florida on Spring Break. We like to have a mix of relaxing beach time but still have the opportunity to explore and adventure. I think we would be bored if we spent the whole week on an isolated island somewhere. It seems like on most beach vacations we spend about every other day relaxing on the beach and the others exploring or doing touristy things. I'm actually considering making my first trip to the Bahamas to an all inclusive resort and then potentially do a day trip or two to explore the Bahamas a bit. So I'm looking for recommendations. Have any of you flown into the Bahamas and stayed at an all inclusive? Where did you go and would you recommend it? Did you rent a car or just take taxis? Any other experiences and thoughts would be appreciated.
     
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  2. Computerjim

    Computerjim Pre-Flight

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    Try these sites
    https://www.bahamas.com/things-do/p...MI0-SAmKzd5QIVCGyGCh3tsgnPEAAYAiAAEgIJ0vD_BwE
    http://caribbeanflyingadventures.com/

    There are many great places to fly into in the Bahamas. Right now Grand Bahama and the Abacos are off the list for the near future due to extensive hurricane damage. But Nassaua, the largest city, Harbor Island, Eluthera, Exhuma, an the other islands are open for business. Due some web surfing and see what interests you. Many resorts will give up to a $300 credit to pilots flying in. This a a credit from the Bahamian Government.
     
  3. 455 Bravo Uniform

    455 Bravo Uniform En-Route

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    @Radar Contact has some vids of a trip they made down there.

    It’s a testament to the freedom of aviation...and always gets me wondering why I don’t retire early and get out of this cold weather.
     
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  4. Initial Fix

    Initial Fix Pre-takeoff checklist

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  5. Sinistar

    Sinistar En-Route

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    +1.

    I like @Radar Contact's multi part series to the Bahamas (310 pilot on Youtube). There are several Steveo videos where he goes to the Bahamas and talks about the customs reqs, etc. I did like the one with MsMindy the best....because they fly a Skylane :)
     
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  6. Radar Contact

    Radar Contact Pattern Altitude

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    We didn't do an all inclusive. We did an island hopping adventure and LOVED it. All I did was get the AOPA flying Bahamas book and follow it (customs sticker/eAPIS/POE/etc). I highly recommend Ft Pierce as exit/entry. The tiki hut FBO has all the paperwork you need, good food, floatation rental, customs right next door, relatively cheap gas). We enjoyed mixing it up and getting a feel for a few different islands...they are all so unique. We just walked or taxied everywhere and it worked great. I won't go over the details of the trip because that would be easier with the videos but if you don't want to watch them or have any questions about non-all inclusive's, let me know. The Bahamas are made for general aviation. :)
     
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  7. KaiGywer

    KaiGywer Line Up and Wait

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    Having only been to Bahamas once, I wanna go back and experience more. What's the price level of food, hotels etc on the out island? We only went to Atlantis in Nassau and luckily it was all inclusive or I wouldn't have eaten that week (we had to sign our receipts even though we didn't pay). Definitely a bucket list item to island hop down there sometime.
     
  8. ktup-flyer

    ktup-flyer En-Route

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    I second Ft. Pierce
     
  9. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I didn't go to an all-inclusive, and I don't think I would. We flew over Sandals on our way home and it was just nowhere near as nice as the place we had just been (Cape Santa Maria). We also did a split week, half lounging on the beach at Cape Santa Maria and the other half in Freeport doing touristy stuff.
     
  10. hindsight2020

    hindsight2020 En-Route

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    I made the mistake of doing sandals all inclusive for a homeymoon (well, and the mistake of marrying my ex, so it follows lol) and the place was a dump. not only that, but they made us stay indoors for filming commercials in the property. now how u like that irony? I thought it was rather fitting. Avoid the place, I'd avoid Nassau as well.
     
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  11. jdfrey1

    jdfrey1 Pre-Flight

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    Thanks so much Kevin. I love your videos. Your recent series made me want to go to the Bahamas even more. If you are ever on the other side of Lake Michigan and want to get together let me know.
     
  12. whiskeymike

    whiskeymike Filing Flight Plan

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    I'm a little late to this party, but thought I'd add a comment seconding the "no all-inclusive" position. To me, the charm of the Islands is personified by the small Out Island resorts such as you find on Eleuthera, Cat Island, Long Island, etc.
    You could pick a centrally located stop such as MYLS (Stella Maris on Long Island) and do day trips to the others as well as Exuma, San Salvador, etc. from there. The big advantage of MYLS is that they have fuel. If you stay at the Stella Maris resort, you can be at the airport quickly.
    A few miles further north on Long Island is Cape Santa Maria with one of the prettiest beaches I've seen.
    Many people used to do this sort of thing from Nassau, but, for the time being, you can't do much going north of Nassau since Grand Bahama and Abaco are still rebuilding from the hurricane.
     
  13. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Pro-Tip: If you split the time between resort and adventure, put the resort portion at the end of the trip.

    I don't know whether it still exists, but you used to be able to stay at a property next to Atlantis (Best Western ?) and get day-passes rolled into the rate. Lowers the expense from mind-boggling to eye-watering. I believe there is a Riu all-inclusive joint next to Atlantis where you can combine the experience of dealing with the all inclusive alcoholics with the expense of Atlantis.

    For out-islands, my experience is limited to central Eleuthera and Harbor Island.
    HI has a great beach and vacation infrastructure, but things are expensive as #### and the service you get isn't always proportional to the expense. In a way, they don't really care whether you are there or not.
    In central Eleuthera you'll have more of the adventure aspects. Your rental car is just someones car that they rent to you. You may have to order meat for the next day at the grocery store. Power may be out for a few minutes now and then.
    Further south towards Rock Sound it's more of a frontier experience.
     
  14. whiskeymike

    whiskeymike Filing Flight Plan

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    The resources we have available to us now compared to when I started going to the Islands 30+years ago are mind-boggling.The web site listed above from the Bahamas Tourist site shows the resorts which give the Private Pilot Discount. Pretty much all of them can be found on YouTube with a professional segment ; of course, there will also be amateur postings from tourists which will be helpful.
    The Internet gives many sources of info from resort web sites to travel sites with user ratings, etc.
    I concur that Harbour Island is very expensive. I've stayed there once but have flown there ( North Eleuthera airport) a number of times for lunch and just wandering. If you stay on Cat Island or Long Island, it's a short hop and well worth the day trip.
     
  15. Morgan3820

    Morgan3820 Pattern Altitude

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    One of my concerns about a longish stay in the Bahamas, or anywhere else near the ocean, is corrosion. Could I enjoy myself, while my plane slowly starts to dissolve. I work on Navy aircraft and corrosion is a constant battle.

    Thoughts?
     
  16. GMascelli

    GMascelli En-Route

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  17. whiskeymike

    whiskeymike Filing Flight Plan

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    When I would fly there frequently, I had a C182 of the vintage that was not well protected at the factory. As soon as I returned, I went to my mechanic and we washed the airplane thoroughly. He then sprayed the inside of the wings with a corrosion inhibitor ( I don't remember the name). Seemed to work just fine.