Nassau/Paradise Island is the capital of the Bahamas. Explore Parliament Square, the government center that dates back to the early 1800s or check out the port's vibrant night life, including more casinos, theatres, and fabulous cuisine than you could possibly fit into a short stay. During the day, there's plenty of golfing, tennis, and swimming.
What to do in Nassau, BahamasWhen you think of Nassau Cruise Port and “the Bahamas,” you think of the beach. There are plenty of opportunities to enjoy Nassau’s white sands and warm waters. Equally exciting, however, is the rich Pirate history and other exciting influences on Nassau’s culture. Top it off with some beautiful ecology, and Nassau has something to offer for everyone.
Beaches and Water ActivitiesAn obvious choice when in Nassau is to visit the beach. The most popular beaches are Cabbage Beach and Cable Beach. Cabbage Beach is located on Paradise Island about 15 minutes from the port. Cable Beach is a 20 minute drive west on the main island. Also very popular is Junkanoo Beach due to its proximity to the cruise port. You can walk there in roughly 10 minutes, so it’s typically crowded. Check out our section on nearby beaches for more details and options on beaches in Nassau.
Downtown NassauThe downtown area of Nassau is literally across the street from your port (Prince George’s Wharf). Walking around the downtown area could yield hours of enjoyment. You’ll come across many cultural landmarks including the Historical Society, National Art Gallery, Christ Church Cathedral, Government House, and Pirates of Nassau attraction. Other interesting activities include a visit to the Distillery or the Zoo.
Ecosystem ToursFor our nature loving cruisers, you’re in luck. The Ardastra Gardens Zoo and Conservation Center is a short walking distance from your port. You’ll find pigs, big cats, reptiles, lemurs and tons of birds. Speaking of birds, Nassau has many interesting feathered friends. You’ll find multiple tour options catered to our ornithologist friends.
FishingYou bet there’s some great fishing here in the middle of the Caribbean. Jump on a chartered tour for some light tackle fishing or some deep sea options. You’ll hook everything from Yellowtail Snapper to Tarpon depending on your chosen excursion.
CuisineConch, Rum, & cigars… need we say more? Ok, yeah we probably do. Nassau is known for its seafood, particularly conch. We encourage you to make a conch-stop to indulge in this local delicacy. After that, why not fully treat yourself with a glass of rum and fine cigar. You’ll find options to purchase both throughout the island. If you’re looking to get the full story, try a rum-tasting or cigar-rolling shore excursion.
Cultural ActivitiesDid you know that the Bahamas was Columbus’ first stop on his way over? Oh, and that the Bahama Islands were once a hotbed for pirates. Well, they have the stories to prove it. The “Pirates of Nassau” attraction is located within walking distance of the port. If you’d like to get a fuller history and feel for the culture, you have numerous other options. At the Historical Society, you’ll find 500 years of history for a ticket price of just $1! Or find paintings, photography, textiles and more at the National Art Gallery. You won’t be able to miss the huge, pink Government Center where the Governor has lived since 1801 (not the same governor).
Shopping in Nassau, BahamasNassau is popular amongst shoppers is that they make it so convenient to spend your money. As soon as you get off of the ship, you’ll find yourself in the brightly colored “Festival Place.” It’s made to look like a local swap meet, with vendor stations lining the walls. Here you’ll find plenty of souvenir options, but we’d recommend expanding your search outside of the terminal. Unless you’re in a hurry, you’ll be better off in the downtown markets.
Bahamas Crafts MarketIf shopping the Marina Village, you’ll have to take a walk across the street to check out the Bahama Crafts Centre. The brightly-colored plaza holds over 100 booths selling locally crafted souvenirs. You’ll find paintings, blown glass, conch items, straw features, rum cakes, and hand-made jewelry. This is the best option for finding “authentic” gifts for those back home… or a keepsake for your self.
Marina VillageMarina Village Shopping Center is located on Paradise Island and next to the famed Atlantis. The outdoor retail strip offers big, named brand stores, restaurants, and other forms of entertainment. You’ll find parades, art walks, and beautiful yachts all here at Marina Village.
Bay StreetThis is Nassau’s main strip and a haven for shoppers looking for big brands or small local dealers. You’ll find clothing, jewelry, local souvenirs and just about everything else you can think of here on Bay Street. While shopping, you’ll stumble upon other entertaining venues like the Straw Market and the Pirates of Nassau attraction. You could truly make a full day of shopping on Bay Street.
Straw MarketSituated in the middle of Bay Street, the Nassau Straw Market is a favorite amongst cruise passengers. If you’re looking for hand-made goods like bags, hats, blankets, and niche jewelry, here’s where you’ll want to be. Bring your cash and negotiating skills, as bargaining is common at the Straw Market!
Beaches in Nassau, BahamasThe Caribbean is infamous for its beautiful beaches, warm sun, and clear waters. Fortunately, you have plenty of beach options within walking distance or a short cab ride away from the Port of Nassau. Here are the best beach options to consider.
Cabbage BeachYou’ll find this popular option just over the bridge on Paradise Island. A 10 minute cab ride will leave you among the two miles of beach coastline. Like Cable Beach, this option is free. Though you’ll find vendors selling food and water-sports activities (jet ski, snorkel, etc) if interested.
Cable BeachLocated roughly six miles west of Nassau Cruise Port, you’ll find Cable Beach. Nearby this free beach option, you’ll find plenty of hotels, restaurants, and more. If you’re looking for eating / drinking / shopping options in between sandcastles, this is your beach. As an option, you can pay a fee to use one of the resorts features (pools, wifi, showers, bar, etc).
Junkanoo BeachThis is your closest beach option to Nassau Cruise Port. A quick, 5-minute walk will get you to this smaller beach option. It’s popular due to it’s location and also in that it provides public restrooms and changing amenities. If you’re looking for the most convenient beach, Junkanoo is your pile of sand.
Best cruise excursions in Nassau, BahamasWe've analyzed tens of thousands of cruise tours to find your ideal attraction while in port. Based on these reviews, here are the Best Cruise Excursions in Nassau, Bahamas
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