I can’t think of a better time to reminisce on gorgeous Caribbean vacation than while sitting at my desk overlooking a snow covered backyard in -7C temps (awaiting the next snow storm). In the next series of posts I’ll take you through our week in The Bahamas, telling you everything you need to know while visiting New Providence (where Nassau is situated) and Paradise Island.
In this post I’ll focus on how we got there and our accommodations. Oh, the we is me and my boyfriend, Tom, in case you were wondering. I didn’t have much time to plan/research this trip beforehand, it came together very quickly as Tom found out he had an extra week off during Christmas break and we wanted to spend it together. Being as we’re both fire signs we knew we wanted to head somewhere warm to relax and soak up some rays before I started school and he went back to an intense work schedule.
Thanks to Tom’s mom, our accommodations were free so that really sealed the deal for us. She has a timeshare at a resort on Paradise Island (more about that soon) and very generously let us use it free of charge.
I booked our flights through Expedia but after doing some comparison shopping, every site had the same prices. We decided to take a connecting flight (which saved us $200 each vs. flying direct). We flew US Airways from Toronto Pearson to Regan National in Washington, DC. This was also the smallest plane either of us had ever flown in (13 rows of seats, 4 seats across) so thankfully it was a short flight (less than 2 hours) as it wasn’t all that comfortable. Tom swears he’ll never fly through Regan again, they bus you from the tarmac to the terminal and then you’re bused again to another terminal. It was a painless experience although a bit annoying but thankfully we got right on our connecting flight to Nassau.
The remainder of the travel was fine but I will point out the Nassau Airport is really nice, there’s even a 3 piece band playing to welcome you! From the airport you have to take a cab to your hotel as the airport is located a fair distance from Nassau. A cab ride to Paradise Island will cost you $35 (you can use American currency here, it’s on par with the Bahamian dollar and both can be used interchangeably).
The cabbies we encountered were friendly and are glad to point out attractions along your drive, don’t be shy to ask them where the best beaches/restaurants are. What I noticed about The Bahamas is that it is very Americanized. It’s almost as if it’s an extension of the States and locals and tourists are very intermingled, there’s no separation as you might find in other Caribbean countries.
After about 30 minutes you’ll arrive on Paradise Island (don’t forget to bring $1 bills, there’s a $1 toll to get onto the island and it’s not included in your cab fare). The first thing you’ll notice is Atlantis, which dominates the skyline and about 1/3 of the small island.
The resort we stayed at is the Club Land’or, which is conveniently located right next to the incoming island bridge. I’m going to preface this by saying that this timeshare resort suited our needs well because we didn’t spend much time here other than to sleep, shower and get ready to go out.
I’ll also say that at one point in time this resort was probably among the nicest in the area. But that time has passed. Tom’s opinion of the place:”It’s a dump.” My opinion is that it’s dated (reminds me of 70’s Miami Cuban chic), but it was fine for what we needed.
And the price was right, free! (Except for the extra $25/day housekeeping charge that was not optional). I didn’t take many pictures of the place itself but here’s a link to their photo gallery if you’d like to take a look.
The best part about staying here was it’s proximity to everything. We were right beside the Atlantis Marina, which should be known as Billionaire’s Row because the yachts (or personal cruise ships as called them) were incredible. (I googled one of the boats, which happened to be a rental, one week aboard will cost you $275,000.)
In my next post I’ll tell you more about Paradise Island and my favourite place to relax, the beach!