The land of beautiful beaches, a visitor to the Bahamas will be presented with many choices. From pink shorelines and palm trees, to silky white sands and turquoise waters, the variety is exquisite. There are over 700 islands in the Bahamas, so if you’re spending a week or less on one of these islands, you’re going to want to immediately know which beaches are king.
Consider this your exclusive guide to the best beaches in the Bahamas.
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In this article on the Sandals Blog:
Popular Bahamian beaches with animals
The best beaches in... Nassau, Exuma, Abaco, Andros, Grand Bahama, Eleuthera, Harbour Island, Long Island, San Salvador, Cat Island, Berry Islands, Bimini, Rum Cay, Mayaguana and Inagua.
Protect your belongings
Beach safety tips for the Bahamas
When to go?
Since the Bahamas is home to over 2,000 beaches, we compiled four short lists of the best beaches in the Bahamas - each ranking beaches in a different category. The most beautiful beaches in the Bahamas are sometimes harder to come by, and might not always be a great place to snorkel. Expect beaches that are popular amongst U.S. visitors to be saver, easier to reach, but also more crowded.
Picture: Luxury resort Sandals Royal Bahamian on Cable beach, the Bahamas.
Bringing the kids? Make sure the water is calm and the sand is free of rocks. Also check out if there are restaurants and rest rooms nearby. These family-friendly beaches might not be the best if you are looking for peace and quiet though.
You decide which shortlist fits your preferences best!
The famous swimming pigs of the Bahamas are ready for your visit. Eager to find out what food you are bring with you, they will swim out to you as soon as the boat arrives. The ‘beach babes’ are friendly, a sight to behold and ready for a unique photo opportunity.
You’ve likely never witnessed a community of iguanas quite like the ones that can be found on this island. Described as somewhat domesticated, if you take a boat to this island, the iguanas will greet you by walking right up to you just as soon as you set foot onshore. They are friendly, fun, and photogenic!
Swimming with sharks might sound terrifying to some, but when we’re talking about nurse sharks, this is a risk-free experience. One you’re able to get over your fear, you’ll find yourself swimming with nurse sharks, which are for the most part, harmless. Many divers and snorkelers visit the Bahamas just for this experience.
Horseback riding on pristine Caribbean beaches is a dream that can be brought to life in the Bahamas. One of the best horseback riding expeditions in the Bahamas can be found in Paradise Island, which is located near the island of New Providence in the Bahamas.
Best beach for families with kids.
The best swimming with dolphin’s tour in the Bahamas starts from the Nassau Harbour to Blue Lagoon Island. There you will be able to get up close and personal with friendly dolphins that will (if you’re lucky) perform neat tricks for you and treat you like one of their own! The dolphin swimming program takes about one hour including orientation.
Most popular beach amongst U.S. visitors.
Cable beach is the most popular beach in Nassau, and for good reason! On these beautiful sandy shores you can take advantage of fantastic views, and calm, clear blue seas with water sport adventures in abundance. If you would love to rent a jet ski for a daily dose of adrenaline, this is the place to be. Moreover, it’s a great beach to sip on a cocktail and just enjoy life. Cable beach is quite expansive, so you may need to do some exploring before settling down for the day.
Insider Tip: If you’re looking for an all-inclusive resort right on Cable Beach, all-inclusive resort Sandals Royal Bahamian might be the best way to go. Plus, this resort will give you access to a private island just off the shores of Cable Beach.
Explore this small Bahamian island by boat (about 30 minutes from Paradise Island) and add some excitement to your vacation. Once you get to Rose Island, you’ll find great snorkeling on one side, and swimming pigs on the other! There’s also a beach bar, and plenty of lounge chairs to relax.
In Nassau you can choose whether to take a bus (jitney) or a taxi to get around. Jitneys, the local term for buses, are cheaper to get around, and usually drivers are very helpful about giving directions, and dropping you close enough to where you’d like to go. Lots of people take the local jitney to get to Love Beach, but a regular cab will also take you there. Love Beach features beautiful turquoise waters and white sand shores. Low-hanging airplanes fly over this beach regularly and it’s quite a sight to behold! Don’t forget to visit the Nirvana beach bar for a cocktail or two. Love Beach is convenient, beautiful, and a favorite amongst locals.
Also read: The 12 best beaches in Nassau - for more beaches in this popular vacation spot.
Is this sand or baby powder? You’ll find yourself contemplating this once you set foot on this spectacular beach. That and why on earth such a slice of paradise is named after one of the most terrifying movies of all time! Have no fear; you’re unlikely to see any sharks here. The beach is named as a tribute to ‘Jaws Revenge’, which was shot at this location. Take lots of photos, as Jaws Beach is probably the most picturesque beach in Nassau. It’s not every day you get to bask in the sunshine at a world-famous movie set! Jaws beach is more off the beaten track for its remote location and that is the exact reason why it’s loved by locals.
Cabbage Beach is the most visited beach on Paradise Island and offers a long stretch of sandy shores on the North coast. This place is prime location for well-known resorts and restaurants and can get crowded at some parts. However, the beach is long enough to find a quite spot as well. Cabbage Beach is beautiful and the views on the turquoise waters are amazing. The water can get rough at times, so keep an eye out for the flags that’ll tell you whether it’s safe to swim. This beach is also a great place to race around with a jet ski!
Famous for its Junkanoo celebrations which happen between December and January (annually), it’s quite appropriate that there would be a beach with the same name in the Bahamas. This beach offers plenty of beach bars and restaurants, often playing loud music. Junkanoo Beach is quite a vibe, great for people-watching and has a beautiful view on the cruise ships docking in the port. Since Junkanoo is on walking distance from the cruise port, it can get a bit crowded during peak season.
Most beautiful beach in the Bahamas.
If finding a nice beach with fun water swings is something you’ve dreamt about your entire life, then Coco Plum Beach in the Bahamas is very likely what you seek. This beach is not only one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean, but it is a popular site for kite surfing, wind surfing, and snorkeling. When the tide goes out on this beach, you can walk out almost half a mile on the sand, in water that’s about ankle deep. Many visitors use this opportunity to collect sand dollars, which are in abundance on this beach. If you’re traveling as a family, Coco Plum beach is ideal.
Insider Tip: Sandals Emerald Bay, an award-winning all-inclusive resort in Exuma, is located on a 10-minute drive from Coco Plum beach and is located on a gorgeous stretch of white sand beach. Visitors can also book a tour to the swimming pigs from this resort.
Picture: Sandals Emerald Bay, award-winning all-inclusive resort in Exuma - includes a Greg Norman designed championship golf course!
Tropic of Cancer Beach has become almost synonymous with the Bahamas. You are pretty much guaranteed a good time once you decide to spend the day at this beach located in the Exumas. Once you get here, you’ll see why some people describe it as the most beautiful beach they have ever seen. Of course, you’re not going to want to just stand around in admiration. Slather on some sunblock, take off your beach wrap or t-shirt, and dive into some of the bluest waters on the planet.
Insider Tip: This beach is about a 15-20-minute drive from Great Exuma. It’s relatively quiet, so pack what you need.
The Exumas are blessed with great beaches, and the beaches of Stocking Island are no exception. On this beach with crystal clear waters you’ll get the unique opportunity to feed stingrays! If you can get over your fear (if you have any at all), you’ll find that the stingrays are quite friendly. They may even swim right up to you! Some visitors choose to feed them bits of leftover conch, which can be sources from caretakers. Though this beach is beautiful with lots of attractions, the stingrays are the star of the show!
Insider Tip: There’s often a good beach volleyball game happening on this beach. Don’t be shy to join in!
You may need reservations to get to this island, which features some of the most outstanding private beaches in the Bahamas. Highbourne Cay is located 35 miles southwest from New Providence Island, and here you will find a top-notch marina and high-end cottages. Visitors who plan on visiting this island should make bookings prior to arrival, as the island is extremely popular, particularly for yachtsmen. Highbourne Cay is also known as the gateway in the Exumas!
This beach isn’t known for swimming as much as it is for its swimming pigs. They are absolutely unforgettable! From the moment you approach this beach in a boat, you’ll find that the pigs swim out to greet you. It’s quite an exciting moment, and second to no other experience in the Bahamas. There are pigs of all ages, and you can watch the keepers on the island as they care for and feed the pigs. You can also get up close and personal, and swim with the pigs. This experience is great for families.
Locals love this spot on long weekends, and visitors are catching on. The appeal here includes a beach bar and grill, clean shores and calm waters. Great Guana Cay, the largest Cay in the Abaco Islands, and in recent times has developed the reputation for being the best of both worlds – here you can find a relatively private space, with amenities to keep you comfortable throughout the day.
This island is famous for its 18-hole championship golf course, but of equal attraction are its beaches which have a reputation of being the perfect place to spot sea turtles. You may not even need to go snorkeling to witness the native sea creatures that are known to frequent this top beach. Chances are you’ll spot them bobbing up and down in the seagrass, not too far from shore. If calm waters and a private beach are what you’re after, Winding Bay is perfect.
Don’t judge a beach by its name, except when it comes to Treasure Cay. What an absolute find! This mesmerizing beach will have you wondering why you took so long to plan a beach vacation in the first place! Now that you’re here, waste no time in falling in love with its crystal-clear waters and silky white sands. At low tide you’ll be able to walk across the sandbars and find perfect spot for shelling!
Located on Great Abaco Island, and not to be confused with the picturesque French Polynesian Island, Tahiti beach has its own compelling attributes that draw visitors to its shores. For one thing, there’s a floating restaurant and bar, and to top that off the waters here are warm, shallow, and perfect for floating around or tanning while submerged in the ocean. When the tide is out you may even encounter sand dollars and star fish!
Mermaid Beach on Great Abaco Island is a diver’s paradise – particularly divers trying out snorkeling or scuba diving for the first time. At Mermaid reef, located just off Mermaid Beach, you can spot a variety of fish species, as well as lobsters and rays. The reef is located in a shallow protected area, and people who snorkel here think the fish are especially friendly, as they literally swim to you. This may be because they’re used to being feed by adoring strangers, but one thing’s for sure, you can see a lot, in a short amount of time when snorkeling off Mermaid beach!
Kamalame Cay is known as the beach where socialites and celebrities sip and play all day. Guests can book bungalows on this 97-acre private island and take advantage of miles of deserted beach. Kamalame is getting more popular as an island getaway as it continues to be sustainably developed by the owners. Celebrities who’ve been spotted here include Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem, Mick Jagger, Emma Watson, and Karolina Kurkova. Notably, Serena Williams spent some time on this island while on honeymoon!
Best beach for snorkeling.
Part of Lucayan National Park on Grand Bahama Island, Gold Rock Beach is described as being “as pretty as a postcard”. This high ranking beach is notorious for being one of the filming locations in the Bahamas for the Pirates of the Caribbean movie, and though you’re unlikely to find any pirates on your trip there, you’re bound to leave rested and completed unwound.
Famous Movie Shot Here: Pirates of the Caribbean!
Fortune Beach in Freeport, Grand Bahama Island in the Bahamas is a great place to start any beach hopping expedition. The only drawback is that once you get here, you might not want to leave. Islanders say the beach got its name after a multi-million-dollar shipwreck was discovered here. In any case, the water is calm and shallow, making it a good choice for families, especially those up for a day of adventure and exploration. Fortune Beach is located just about five miles from Port Lucaya Marketplace.
Taino Beach is as beautiful as they come, and the azure waters will steal your heart as you choose from a range of activities to partake in for the day. Whether you’re a fan of jet skiing, parasailing, or simply swimming in the warm waters of the Caribbean, you’re bound to love Taino Beach!
Lighthouse beach on Eleuthera Island is the definition of serenity. Kick back and watch the waves lap against the shore as you regain clarity, peace, and parts of yourself long forgotten in the chaos of everyday life. A 4x4 may be required to get to the beach, as the road is quite rugged, but once you get there, you’ll find that it’s well worth the effort, just as soon as the first sweet smelling sea breeze greets you at the shore. When venturing to Lighthouse Beach, pack everything you’ll need for the day, including food and a cooler packed with drinks on ice!
French Leave Beach is one of the notorious pink sand beaches in the Bahamas. Even with the refreshing Atlantic breeze blowing across this beach, don’t forget to apply your sunscreen. French Leave is relatively quiet, so you’ll want to walk with everything you’ll need for the day.
Insider Tip: There is little to no shade on this beach, so walk with a beach umbrella!
Cotton Bay Beach is located on the southern coast of the island of Eleuthera. If you’re looking to get away from the crowd, this beach is ideal. Just over a half mile away you’ll find the Cotton Bay golf Club. Cotton Bay Beach is also located in close proximity to the seaside town of Rock Sound.
The road to this beach is half of the adventure. If you’re considering heading to Ten Bay Beach, it might be best to head there by boat as even 4-wheel drives sometimes struggle in this territory. Other than that, this is a great family friendly beach, hidden with pretty awesome sunset views. This beach is shaded by lots of trees, and it’s long and winding for a good beachside stroll.
Hang-ten, or simply just hang-out on this beach of sugary white sands. Just two miles south of Gregory Town, the surfing experience at Surfer’s Beach has been compared to that of some of the best locations in Hawaii. This beach is best for strong swimmers, or people who just want a cool place to chill.
One of the exclusive beaches of the Bahamas, James Point is long, wide and definitely worth a visit. On this beach you’ll find an ancient shipwreck, and if you’re willing to walk a few yards, a natural Jacuzzi rock formation, and another private beach! James Point is located to the north-west coast of Eleuthera.
One of the more family friendly locations, Plum Creek located in Deep Creek, South Eleuthera is one of the lesser known beaches in the Bahamas. Here you’ll find calm and shallow seas at low tide, and waves that sweep across the main road during high tide. On the upside, there’s some great scenery at Plum Creek which sets it apart from other more popular beaches in the area.
Insider Tip: You’ll need to schedule a visit to this beach when the tide is low, as the road tends to get flooded with water during high tide, making passage impossible in some cases.
There are many miraculous things waiting to be discovered in this world, and one of them is Pink Sands Beach in the Bahamas. This gem of a beach on Harbour Island is an absolute dream. It’s incredibly popular with honeymooners, and with regular vacationers seeking a convenient beach getaway. To get to this beach you’ll need to walk down a short dirt path through the trees. Once you set foot on its shores, you’ll find little shops selling snacks and drinks to cool you off.
Long Island in the Bahamas is famous for its outstanding beaches. As the best beach on Long Island, Cape Santa Marie is the most highly rated. You won’t be able to stop your jaw from dropping once you get here, but what you will have control over is how quickly you’re able to get suited up on the island, where the clear blue seas await.
You guessed it; Colombus Harbour Beach has something to do with Christopher Columbus. As island history would have it, Colombus passed through this area on his inaugural journey to the “New World.” What he would have found on that journey, was a beautiful beach, about a mile long, with shallow waters, soft white sand, and just the right amount of privacy. This secluded beach is popular with honeymooners, or people who just want a beach that is off the beaten path.
East Beach is the perfect place to spend your beach bumming days while in the Bahamas. It’s somewhat secluded, but you’ll barely notice as there’s so much to take in visually, as well as great snorkeling. Go with a group and enjoy your private beach escape.
Insider Tip: Don’t forget to pack drinks and food!
Half Moon Beach is the ideal place to relax, and sink into island time, particularly if you might have just packed your holiday schedule with way too many activities. The beach is beautiful, the water is clear and warm, and the shore is clean. This is a sure recipe for the most amazing beach day, and to top that off, the beach is also family friendly with its shallow waters. Half Moon is located on the tiny Half Moon Cay, a private island used predominately by cruise lines. Here you can rent out a beach chair and lounge on the sand, or swim with the stingrays.
If you’re a fan of deep-sea fishing, diving, snorkeling, kayaking and paddle boarding, a trip to Shanna’s Cove may be just right for you. Though this beach is relatively secluded, there’s a restaurant and bar where you can indulge while you wait for a picture-perfect sunset. Shanna’s Cove is also great for honeymooners!
Your search for paradise ends at this hidden jewel in New Bight, Cat Island. Here you’ll find amazing views, sand dollars, a bar and restaurant and other amenities close by. Cat Island is located in central Bahamas, and while on island, it’s worth taking some time to explore Mount Alvernia, the nation’s highest point which rises to 206 feet.
Insider Tip: Walk with bug spray!
Shelling Beach is a slice of heaven. Located on Great Harbour Cay, the largest of the Berry Islands, this amazing beach is calm on most days. Shelling beach is best if you’re looking for a private experience, and the great views make it perfect for amazing vacation photos.
Insider Tip: Try to avoid heading to this beach on rainy days as you may have trouble navigating huge puddles.
Named after Doris Dannenberg, a Wisconsin woman who owns a second home on the island, Dannenberg Beach is as beautiful as it is private. Doris received island fame for her community outreach efforts, which included teaching arts and crafts to local children. Pretty much everyone else you’ll find in this area is friendly and welcoming, so you can be assured of a hospitable beach environment once you go. This beach is quite secluded, so take with you everything you’ll need for the day.
Insider Tip: There are lots of cool diving locations in the Berry Islands including The Hoffmann’s Cay Blue Hole, Mama Rhoda Reef, and the Great Stirrup Cay.
Whoever was charged with responsibility for naming beaches in the Bahamas surely had a grand time going about it. Radio Beach, located in the Alice Town Area of Bimini is a charm. Serene and beautiful, Radio Beach is the best beach in Bimini. Perfect and peaceful, you’ll find friendly locals, food kiosks and amazing sunsets!
Like the name suggests, Picnic Bay is popular with locals and tourists looking for a quiet picnic location. Picnic Bay is quiet on most days, but livens up on public holidays. Families with children will appreciate the calm and shallow waters here, and the great visibility, which adds to its snorkeling appeal.
To say that this island is remote is an understatement. In 2010, the population on the easternmost island of Mayaguana was 277! With that said you and your party can take a trip to Mayaguana Beach and have the beach pretty much all to yourself. Mayaguana is a popular location for snorkeling, exploring and picnicking.
Located on Inagua Island in the Bahamas, at Morton Salt’s beach you’ll find plenty of relaxation in the hammocks, gazebo and cabanas on the beach front. This beach got its name because it was developed by the Morton’s Salt Company, as a community outreach effort. Today it is popular for snorkeling, beach parties, and other social events.
Insider Tip: While on Inagua island visit the National Park where you can find wild donkeys and flamingos!
Beaches are overall a liberating space, but while on vacation there are a few things to keep in mind which can make your holiday that much smoother. Unlike some beaches in the United States, there are very few beach rules in the Bahamas, but here are some things you should know.
It can be hard to keep an eye on your belongings when all you want to do is make the most of your time at the beach. Here are a few ways to stay worry free during your beach vacation:
Picture: Sandals Emerald Bay, award-winning all-inclusive resort in Exuma - includes an 18-hole golf course!
The best time to visit the Bahamas for perfect beach weather is in the high season, which is between the months of December and mid-April. If you’re traveling in the high season, it is best to book two or three months in advance to ensure availability of both flights and accommodation.
The shoulder season is the next best time to go, and is between the months of May through July. You’ll find less activities on the island during this time, but more chances of securing your first choice of accommodation with less congested resorts.
The low season is from August to November. Low season travel is ideal for people who’re looking for a less crowded time to visit the islands.
All in all, there’s no bad time to travel to the Bahamas to check out its best beaches. Choose the time that works for both you and your partner, and you’ll be well on your way to the vacation of a lifetime!