Few things are as exciting as stepping onto a new port during a cruise vacation. Fun, relaxation, and delicious cuisine await just steps from the dock. And a Bahamas cruise excels at delivering these iconic vacation experiences. A cruise to Grand Bahama Island promises vacation memories you won’t soon forget. For example, Freeport, the main city on the island of Grand Bahama, is known for gorgeous beaches, endless shopping, snorkeling and diving, and plenty of outdoor activities. What more could you wish for on your next island getaway? If you are shopping for the best tropical cruise itineraries, here are just a few things you can do during a cruise stop on Grand Bahama Island.
1. Swim with the Pigs
You've likely already seen countless photos of the adorable swimming pigs on Grand Bahama, so why not join them yourself? You can book an excursion that will take you to Deadman's Reef at Crystal Beach, where you can enjoy some friendly interaction with these swimming pigs.
2. Tour Lucayan National Park
Lucayan National Park is one of the best attractions on Grand Bahama. This park contains around 40 acres of mangrove swamps, expansive beaches, sand dunes, as well as a palm and pine tree forest. One of the best ways to explore Lucayan National Park is on a kayak, where you can spend time learning about this ecologically important area.
3. Go Bottom Fishing
Grand Bahama is a haven for serious anglers. Even if you've never been fishing, reef fishing, or bottom fishing as it's known in the Bahamas, is a great way to try your hand at it. The best thing about booking a bottom fishing excursion with Norwegian Cruise Line is that our operators will help you learn the proper way to reef fish. Some fish varieties you might find here include triggerfish (turbot), jacks, snappers, hind, and porgies.
4. Explore Grand Bahama's Diverse Marine Life
If you think Freeport and Grand Bahama are beautiful from above the water, you need to see the magic that awaits snorkelers and divers. Grand Bahama is home to the third largest reef in the world, and that means a world of adventure is waiting for you under the sea.
If you aren't comfortable in the water or are not certified for scuba diving, don't despair. You can still explore Grand Bahama's magical underwater world by booking an excursion on a glass-bottom boat. The Ocean Wonder is a 60-foot double-deck glass-bottom boat that takes you on a three-hour tour of Grand Bahama's local marine life. Your crew will point out important coral formations and describe some of the fish and other marine life you encounter on your trip.
5. Relax on Some of Grand Bahama's Best Beaches
Grand Bahama is home to some of the Caribbean's best beaches. If you want to relax on your port day in Freeport, consider one of these beaches:
- Lucaya Beach: Lucaya Beach is a great option for travelers who want to combine their beach time with plenty of nearby action. This beach is near Port Lucaya Marketplace, with plenty of restaurants, bars, and shops.
- Xanadu Beach: Xanadu Beach is the closest to the Freeport cruise port. This spot is ideal for people who want a quick beach trip with time left over to explore Freeport. It's also a great family beach because it's located in a sheltered cove that helps protect visitors from strong winds. The water is shallow, so it's a good option for parents with young kids.
- Taino Beach: Taino Beach is another easily reached option from downtown Freeport, and you'll find what seems like an endless stretch of white sand beach here.
- Smith's Point Beach: If combining your beach time with delicious seafood is on your list of things to do, head to Smith's Point Beach, which is known for great local fishing. You can relax on the beach and then have a locally caught seafood meal. Depending on when you visit, there may be a weekly fish fry or other event taking place.
6. Live Like a Bahamian
For a truly unique experience, book the My Bahamian House excursion that allows you to spend the day in a local waterfront house. How you choose to pass the time is up to you. You will have a personal host, chef, and bartender on-site waiting to help. You can relax on the beach-rimmed cove, stroll around the area, or take out the kayaks and paddle boards.
Once you're hungry, your chef will prepare an authentic Bahamian meal. You can dine inside or alfresco in the garden — the choice is yours. Be sure to try one of the local cocktails your bartender can prepare. One recommendation is the iconic Bahama Mama, which is made with a blend of fruit liqueurs and rum and garnished with a pineapple wedge and cherry.
7. Enjoy Luxury Sailing Trips
Explore Grand Bahama from aboard a 50-foot luxury sailboat. You'll pass iconic spots like Taino Beach and likely anchor at a prime swimming and snorkeling spot. You might spot a loggerhead turtle or beautiful blue parrotfish, yellowtail snapper, or four-eyed butterfly fish. You'll also be treated to a delicious Bahamian buffet. The menu varies, but you can expect local specialties, seasonal fruit, and garden-fresh salads. Because seafood is an important part of the cuisine here, you can also expect at least one seafood dish in the buffet.
At a loss on how to spend your time in Freeport? Book a Best of Bahamas excursion that gives you a look at all the things that make Grand Bahama so special. You'll spend five hours exploring the hidden wonders of the island, plus you'll have some free time to go exploring on your own.
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