Exumas, Bahamas (Issues to Do, The place to Keep +Extra)


At solely a few miles lengthy and with a inhabitants of round 100 residents, Staniel Cay could also be small, nevertheless it packs a punch! Should you’re in search of a peaceable, but enjoyable trip, learn on to be taught every little thing you must learn about Staniel Cay within the Exumas.

Initially, we have been planning on spending 5 nights on the cay. It’s so small, we didn’t assume there can be all that a lot to see and do there. We have been fallacious!

travel to staniel cay
Our 10 day journey to Staniel Cay was unbelievable. We might have stayed longer

The truth is, we ended up extending our keep to 10 nights and will have simply spent 2 weeks on and round lovely Staniel Cay — there’s simply one thing magical about this place.

Identified for the well-known swimming pigs, the Thunderball grotto, pristine sandbars and a lot extra, it’s no shock individuals come from all all over the world to go to this little piece of paradise.

On this information, I’ll share every little thing you must learn about visiting Staniel Cay within the Bahamas.

Attending to Staniel Cay

To start with, the place is Staniel Cay and the way do you get there?

The place is Staniel Cay?

This little cay is positioned within the Exumas, principally in the course of the Bahamas. It’s round 120 kilometers (75 miles) south of Nassau and 400 kilometers (250 miles) southeast of Florida.

There are 365 islands (cays) within the Exumas district of the Bahamas, with Staniel Cay being one in all them.

how to get to staniel cay
That is the place Staniel Cay is positioned

How Do You Get to Staniel Cay?

Except you’ve got your personal boat and are crusing or cruising across the Bahamas, one of the best ways to get to Staniel Cay is by flight.

There is a mailboat that leaves from Nassau and heads to Staniel Cay as soon as per week, however that takes 12 hours and all the locals we spoke to stated they wouldn’t take it now that there are flight choices.

From the United States, you’ll be able to fly direct to Staniel Cay on a flight with Makers Air from Ft. Lauderdale. Or, take a industrial flight from Florida to Nassau after which a direct, 30-minute flight to Staniel Cay with Flamingo Air.

There are quite a few flights per day.

how to get to staniel cay makers air
We flew with Makers Air from Ft. Lauderdale direct to Staniel Cay

We flew with Makers Air in a 9 seater aircraft from Ft. Lauderdale and the journey was comfy and protected. We arrived on the hanger on the Government Airport in Ft. Lauderdale simply 1 hour earlier than the flight was because of take off and loved espresso and snacks within the lounge.

The flight was two hours and fifteen minutes, together with a cease on Andros Island to finish immigration. The view from the aircraft was unbelievable!

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What a view! The surroundings on the flight to Staniel Cay was superb

As soon as we arrived in Staniel Cay, we have been greeted by Natajia from Embrace Resort and after a 2-minute golf cart trip, we arrived at our lodging.

This was the simplest flight day we’ve ever had. Attending to Staniel Cay is straightforward.

The place to Keep in Staniel Cay

There are only some lodging choices on Staniel Cay, together with dear trip properties, bungalows, and the Staniel Cay Yacht Membership. We spent 10 days at Embrace Resort and advocate it — we felt like household throughout our keep.

About Embrace Resort

The resort, which consists of simply 7 vibrant villas, is owned and operated by an all-female, native group. The employees actually made our keep memorable.

The proprietor (Nikki) and her daughter (Natajia) have been each born and raised on Staniel Cay! They know every little thing there’s to know concerning the space and are pleased to share their residence with guests.

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The great girls of Embrace Resort (Natajia, Nikki, Dexi and Gracie)

The Villas at Embrace Resort

The rooms showcase Bahamian tradition, and every villa is known as after one of many islands within the nation.

We stayed in each Cat Island and Andros villas. Cat Island is a cute studio bungalow good for a pair, whereas Andros is a 2-level villa with 3 bedrooms, good for households or a gaggle of buddies.

The villas include a microwave, espresso maker, kettle, and mini-fridge. Within the case of the 2-level villas, there’s a full kitchen as effectively.

You’ll additionally discover a flatscreen TV and as a bonus, a cooler (icebox) to make use of in your day by day adventures! Plus, there’s an ice machine on the property. Click on right here to be taught extra and seek for the most recent costs.

embrace resort staniel cay accommodation
The colorful villas at Embrace Resort

Facilities

Embrace Resort is positioned proper by the airport they usually have their very own personal dock proper close to the resort. This makes day journeys on the boat or renting your personal boat actually handy.

The property isn’t oceanfront, however there’s a good pool that the villas face. The onsite restaurant is predicted to be full this summer time, adopted by a present store, health club, and convention room. Plenty of issues occurring right here at Embrace!

pool at embrace resort in the bahamas
Embrace Resort isn’t oceanfront, however there’s a pool and since the cay is so small, seashores are simply minutes away!

Presently, you’ll be able to e book excursions, lease golf carts, and lease a ship on-site with 3N’s Exuma Holidays.

Lastly, in the event you want a unfavorable antigen take a look at on your subsequent vacation spot (ie: the USA), Embrace presents this service. The directors of the take a look at are professionally educated and first-aid licensed.

We personally had two COVID assessments every at Embrace Resort and the assessments have been pain-free, fast, and straightforward.

Issues To Do in Staniel Cay

We have been by no means bored throughout our 10 day journey to Staniel Cay. Relaxed? Sure. Bored? By no means. These are the highest 5 issues to see and do in Staniel Cay.

1. Be part of a Day Journey

The easiest way to see the principle highlights round Staniel Cay is to affix a day journey. We booked this tour with 3N’s Exuma Holidays and it was a lot enjoyable!

The spotlight was the well-known swimming pigs of the Bahamas, however, the tour presents a lot greater than the piggies.

famous swimming pigs in the bahamas
Seeing (and swimming with) the well-known pigs within the Bahamas was so enjoyable

The highlights embody: seeing the pigs, swimming with nurse sharks at Compass Cay, exploring Thunderball Grotto, stepping foot on the beautiful Pipe Creek sandbar, snorkelling over a sunken aircraft, and visiting the Bahamian rock iguanas at Bitter Guana Cay. There’s additionally a lunch break on the tour.

I might have listed all of this stuff to do in Staniel Cay as separate gadgets, however this present day journey covers all of them and is certainly worthwhile!

Take a look at our video of the AWESOME day journey!

Becoming a member of the highlights day journey is without doubt one of the greatest issues to do in Staniel Cay. Discover out extra right here, or e book on Viator in the event you’d favor. Professional tip: in the event you keep at Embrace Resort, you obtain 30% off the tour.

2. Hire a Boat and Uncover Hidden Spots

Renting your personal boat is feasible within the Bahamas! Rent a ship and be a captain for the day.

staniel cay boat rental in the bahamas
Renting our personal boat for the day was an absolute dream – a should whereas in Staniel Cay!

The water across the Exumas is calm and protected. We had a 17-foot Whaler boat for 3 days throughout our keep in Staniel Cay and had a blast discovering hidden coves to name our personal. Our favorite space was in all probability the sandbars close to Sampson Cay — what an absolute dream.

We discovered so many superb sandbars and empty seashores. It was a whole lot of enjoyable mooring up, studying our books, suntanning, after which shifting on to the subsequent lovely spot. Converse to your lodging about renting a ship.

3. Discover by Golf Cart

One of the distinctive issues about Staniel Cay is the truth that individuals get round by golf carts right here.

renting a golf cart in staniel cay
Getting round by golf cart in Staniel Cay is the very best

Hire a golf cart with 3N’s Exuma Holidays and discover. The golf carts are electrical, which is so good because it makes for a peaceable means of getting round.

Seeing Staniel Cay by golf cart is the best possible means. Pack the cart along with your seaside gear and a cooler stuffed with meals and drinks and set off for a enjoyable day of exploration.

Golf Cart leases are $70 for twenty-four hours ($60 for Embrace Resort friends). Be taught extra and e book your cart right here.

4. Lounge on the Seaside

For such a small place, Staniel Cay’s seashores are different and delightful. We visited in February and had many of those beautiful sandy spots to ourselves.

Deliver your towel, a e book, some meals, and drinks, and benefit from the day. There aren’t any services on any of those seashores.

Don’t miss Public Seaside (City Seaside), Pirate Seaside, Ho Tai Cay Seaside, South Seaside and Ocean Seaside. Extra on the very best stretches of sand under.

5. Watch Sundown

The sunsets on Staniel Cay are magical. Seize a sundowner and head to your favorite spot on the west coast to witness the solar dip in direction of the ocean.

Our prime sunset-watching spots have been from the Yacht Membership on the finish of the jetty, and from Public Seaside.

Greatest Staniel Cay Eating places

There are solely a handful of Staniel Cay eating places, which is why it’s so nice that Embrace Resort is opening up a brand new one quickly. Replace 2024: Embrace Resort has opened up a brand new restaurant known as “the Flyin’ Pig Cafe” – which is nice as there aren’t that many choices on the island!

You possibly can see the menu right here – the meals and drinks sound unbelievable!

The Yacht Membership

That is the principle restaurant on the island. Right here you’ll be able to take pleasure in breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Or, simply sit on the busy bar and sip on a drink whereas chatting with different travellers.

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There aren’t many Staniel Cay eating places, however the yacht membership serves actually good meals!

Be sure that to strive the peanut colada, you’ll be able to thank me later!

For lunch, I like to recommend the contemporary fish of the day, the burger, and the Asian tacos. For dinner, you’ll be able to’t go fallacious with child again ribs, lobster, or lamb.

For dinner, you could order upfront on the identical day earlier than 4:00pm. Nonetheless, be sure that to position your order as quickly as you’ll be able to, as you might not get a desk.

Yow will discover the menu right here and reserve your spot by emailing: reservations@stanielcay.com.

Barbie’s Kitchen

Barbara (aka Barbie) and Tameka are a neighborhood mother-daughter group who serves up fabulous lunches on the weekend. We have been fortunate sufficient to reach on a Saturday and had fried grouper with tartar sauce, potato salad, rice, inexperienced beans and plantain for dessert.

staniel cay restaurants local food
This meal from Barbie’s kitchen was contemporary, reasonably priced and attractive!

Ask at your lodging for instructions and the menu of the day.

Massive Canines

It is a chilled-out native bar with a pleasant environment. The meals right here is Bahamian and is scrumptious. We ordered a lunch of stewed hen with rice and peas and corn and weren’t disillusioned! Discover Massive Canines on the map right here.

Cook dinner for Your self

Our villa at Embrace Resort had a full kitchen so we have been in a position to prepare dinner for ourselves. It’s all the time extra enjoyable to dine out, however you possibly can whip up a fast breakfast, and for lunch possibly some pasta, soup and sandwich, or one other easy meal.

Greatest Seashores in Staniel Cay

Contemplating it’s a cay, it’s no shock that there are some fairly stretches of sand right here. What stunned us, nevertheless, was that more often than not we had the seashores fully to ourselves!

Not one of the seashores have any type of facilities, so be sure you use the bogs earlier than beginning your seaside day, and convey meals and drinks.

These are the 5 fundamental public seashores on Staniel Cay — in fact, you possibly can all the time seek for your personal hidden seaside!

Pirate Seaside

Situated within the north of the island, it is a lovely seaside. The Pirate Seaside presents comfortable, powdery sand and there’s some shade right here as effectively. At low tide, you’ll be able to stroll across the bend.

pirate beach staniel cay sand
Pirate Seaside is a magnificence!

Remember that there’s a channel of dashing water offshore (it’s very noticeable), so don’t swim out too far. Discover it on the map right here.

Public Seaside (City Seaside)

This stretch of sand is positioned subsequent to the Staniel Cay Yacht Membership, and whereas there are generally small boats moored up right here, we nonetheless actually beloved this spot.

public beach staniel cay
Stress-free on Public Seaside in Staniel Cay

Throughout our keep, there have been 4 lounge chairs obtainable and earlier than we had information on our telephones, we have been ready to connect with the wifi on the yacht membership. We additionally noticed some nurse sharks, rays and turtles right here.

Public Seaside can be an incredible place to observe the sundown.

Ho Tai Cai

That is truly a gaggle of two fairly seashores, which presents some shade as effectively. Should you’re driving a golf cart, you’ll have to park close to the airstrip and stroll throughout the little creek — don’t get the golf cart submerged in water, or caught within the sand!

There are some fundamental wood benches at Ho Tai Cai and it’s a spot the place locals hangout with buddies. Proceed strolling over a small hill and also you’ll arrive on the subsequent seaside…

South Seaside

This was in all probability our favorite seaside on Staniel Cay! There are a number of trip properties right here, however once more, nobody was ever on the seaside after we visited. You possibly can stroll the complete size, after which go for a swim.

best beaches in staniel cay bahamas
South Seaside in Staniel Cay

The water may be fairly shallow right here, nevertheless it’s good and calm. Preserve your eyes open for stingrays — you don’t wish to step on one.

Ocean Seaside

This isn’t a seaside for swimming, it’s extra of an thrilling viewpoint and an incredible place to observe the sundown. When driving in direction of Pirate Seaside, you’ll see a path signal. Park your golf cart and stroll the trail to Ocean Seaside — you’ll be able to’t drive.

Don’t swim right here because the water is tough and there could possibly be undertows and riptides.

Seashores Round Staniel Cay

As I discussed earlier than, among the finest issues to do in Staniel Cay is to lease a ship and discover the close by Exumas. That is the place you’ll discover different beautiful, abandoned seashores…and sandbars!

Head north in direction of Pig Seaside and Fowl Cay, and farther afield to Sampson Cay and Pipe Cay. In these areas, we discovered our favorite seashores.

Facilities on Staniel Cay

Staniel Cay is small and rustic. You received’t discover buying malls, cinemas, gyms, or something like that — which is all a part of the allure right here.

Three small grocery outlets are promoting the fundamentals: The Blue Retailer, Pink Pearls, and Isles Common. For booze, you’ll discover a Laundromat/liquor retailer. Do your laundry whereas sipping on a beer!

There are a handful of eating places (listed above), one church, a publish workplace, a clinic, a library, and a telecommunications workplace the place you should buy a SIM card on your keep.

Is Staniel Cay Secure?

Sure, Staniel Cay may be very protected for vacationers. Because the island is so small, everybody is aware of everybody — you couldn’t get away with something right here.

Folks sleep with doorways unlocked and go away keys of their golf carts and boats, theft and crime aren’t an issue. Tourism is big in Staniel Cay (and the Bahamas as an entire), which means vacationers are effectively taken care of.

The one factor I might be aware of is the solar, dehydration, and doubtlessly getting caught out in a storm on the ocean. However even then, with somewhat widespread sense, you’ll haven’t any points in anyway.

things to do in staniel cay rent a boat
The sandbars round Staniel Cay are lovely

Put on a hat, placed on sunscreen, and drink plenty of water. When renting a ship or taking a tour, guarantee lifejackets are on board, and there’s a radio in case of emergencies.

We by no means felt uneasy as soon as throughout our 10-day keep. The entire locals and vacationers we met have been extremely pleasant and welcoming. Staniel Cay is a really protected place.

Climate in Staniel Cay

The climate in Staniel Cay, Exumas is just about good year-round, with a excessive temperature of round 25 – 30 °Celcius (77 ° – 86 ° Fahrenheit).

We visited initially of February and other than one wet afternoon, we had completely clear skies and temperatures of round 21 – 25 °Celcius (70 – 77 ° Fahrenheit).

If you wish to go to within the low season to keep away from crowds and peak tourism costs, you solely have a number of choices — February, September, October, and November.

Winter Season (December – February)

The winter season runs from December to February, which is the best time of the 12 months. December and January are busy in Staniel Cay.

Spring Season (March – Could)

Spring runs from March to Could. Presently, the climate is extra humid and hotter than within the winter. Spring can be one of many excessive tourism seasons within the space because of Spring Break and Easter holidays in Canada and the USA.

Summer season Season (June – August)

Summer season is from June to August and in contrast to the Caribbean islands within the south, that is truly thought of the excessive tourism season for Staniel Cay. Summer season months see nearly no rain in any respect.

Autumn Season (September – November)

Fall runs from September to November and is taken into account the shoulder season within the Bahamas. Nonetheless, understand that October is the wettest month with round 12 days of rain throughout this time.

Cash and ATMs

The Bahamian Greenback (BSD) is pegged 1:1 to the US Greenback and the Bahamas accepts US {dollars} interchangeably with Bahamian {dollars}.

So, you’ll be able to deliver your US money and spend it round Staniel Cay. Irrespective of which foreign money you spend, you may obtain change in BSD or USD!

Remember that there aren’t any ATMs or banks on Staniel Cay. Be sure that to deliver sufficient money on your keep, or pay for meals, excursions, and leases with a bank card.

Price of Travelling to Staniel Cay

Staniel Cay is a spot to take pleasure in a romantic trip, have fun an vital occasion, or have a enjoyable journey with family and friends. The Bahamas isn’t a funds vacation spot, nevertheless it doesn’t have to interrupt the financial institution both.

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Watching sundown in Staniel Cay is free…and unbelievable

As you’ll be able to think about, since Staniel Cay is a distant vacation spot, principally all gadgets must be imported — both from the USA or “mainland” Nassau. Due to this, the price of items are greater.

On the excessive finish, count on to spend $20 per individual for lunch and $50 per individual for dinner. These costs are inclusive of 10% VAT and 15% gratuity.

I like to recommend budgeting $150 per day for a pair for meals and drinks on Staniel Cay. You possibly can all the time pay along with your bank card in the event you go over that quantity.

For transportation, you’ll be able to lease a golf cart for $70 per day ($60 in the event you’re staying at Embrace Resort), stroll the island on foot, or lease a bicycle.

To affix the swimming with pigs tour from Staniel Cay, that may price $249 per individual (Embrace Resort friends obtain 30% off). Hiring a 17-foot boat for the day prices $250.

Steadily Requested Questions

Listed below are solutions to some generally requested questions on travelling to Staniel Cay.

Is there any nightlife on Staniel Cay?

There aren’t any nightclubs or loopy bars right here on Staniel Cay. After the solar units, everybody appears to congregate on the Staniel Cay Yacht Membership for dinner, drinks on the bar there, and a recreation of pool. When there are sporting occasions, the yacht golf equipment reveals them on the TVs across the bar.

staniel cay yacht club
Many of the nightlife is centered across the bar on the Yacht Membership

Are there any gyms on Staniel Cay?

No, at the moment there aren’t any gyms or health facilities. Nonetheless, Embrace Resort is within the means of constructing one! For train, you’ll be able to go swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding, biking, or strolling.

What’s the distinction between an island and a cay?!

It is a good query. The Bahamas is residence to islands and smaller “islands” known as cays.

Islands are utterly surrounded by water and are fashioned by a volcanic eruption or belong to a continental plate containing a bigger landmass.

Cays are fashioned on coral reefs when sediment strikes throughout the ocean and turns into “caught” on the reef. Over time, that sediment builds up and creates sandy islands, known as cays.

Since cays are additionally surrounded by water, actually the one distinction between an island and a cay is how they’re fashioned.

Staniel Cay Journey Video

Take a look at our video which showcases the attractive cay, in addition to the enjoyable issues to see and do, the place to remain, the very best seashores, and extra!

Get pleasure from Your Journey to Staniel Cay

We met so many pleasant individuals throughout our journey to Staniel Cay — each international and native. What actually stood out was the truth that lots of them returned to this little cay annually. After our 10-day keep, I can see why! There’s simply one thing particular about Staniel Cay.

I hope this information helped plan your journey! Be at liberty to e-mail me with any questions on visiting Staniel Cay and seeing all the highlights of the Exumas.

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