Thursday, June 19, 2008

First Trip To The Abacos, Bahamas (Day 3-4)

Great Guana Cay

On Tuesday, we zipped around the corner of our island to visit Tahiti Beach for a swim and some snorkeling. This beach is at the entrance of Tilloo Cut, which is the passageway out to the ocean from the protected Abaco Sound. We collected some shells and swam on the southern side of the small strip of beach. It was warm on that side, but had cold water on the other, not more than 20 feet away.

Then we decided to go farther than we had the previous day, all the way to Great Guana Cay. We had been told that no trip to the Abacos was complete if it didn't include going to Nipper's on Great Guana.

So off we went, in search of this renowned little beach side bar. We walked up the beach, watching out for the large outcroppings of rock scattered on the shore and found Nippers with no problem (probably due to the colorful wooden signs on the beach pointing the way!!) and climbed the stairs to the boardwalk bar.

There aren't as many tourists in October so the beach and bar were not crowded and we got to chat quite a bit with the bartender without a lot of distraction. No wild parties, no rowdy beach goers, just a nice day by the ocean, watching the waves crash onto the beach.

We saw the prettiest aquamarine water on the way to and from Great Guana that day. It was a beautiful relaxing ride.

Little Harbor

Every morning the Cruiser's Net comes across the VHF radio with local volunteers telling the residents and the visitors what activities will take place that day. We kept hearing a man named Aubry talking about the good food and good times that could be found at Pete's Pub. So on Wednesday we headed south to Little Harbor, a wonderful place hidden away from the little bit of civilization we found in the Abacos.

Floating into the harbor we could see this place was different. After anchoring the boat in the calm waters we waded up to Pete's Pub, a funny looking outdoor bar built right on the sand. A land rover type vehicle was heading up the sandy drive in front, driven by a man in a floppy hat, our first glimpse of the infamous Aubry. Since we were the only patrons, he had a captive audience and he treated us well, telling stories and encouraging us to sign our names on the bar as so many others before us had done.

Aubrey told us where the good snorkeling spot was, just off the fairly protected beach, and we took advantage of the information for about an hour of swimming and snorkeling. Then we walked to the other side of the island where we could see the abandoned lighthouse far up on the hill. We could also see the raging Atlantic Ocean waves crashing over sharp volcanic-looking rocks, a stark contrast to the calm waters in the harbor. We retreated to the other side and kept Aubry company for a while longer before heading back to Lubbers.

On the way back to our cottage we saw the stars - not the ones in the sky, the ones in the water! There are so many star fish in the waters off Tilloo Cay that it looks like a galaxy in the sand. We rode for miles and miles watching the underwater stars appear beneath us, some alone, some in groups.

It was one of the most memorable sights of the trip. Later that evening we watched the sunset from our dock while watching the tropical fish swim beneath it. There is always something to see in this part of the world. All in all a great day.

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