A Vacation Spot Not To Miss!!! Paradise Cove aka Deadman's Reef on Grand Bahama Island
The SightsYou Will See At Deadman's Reef
Have you ever been to a place so beautiful, that just looking at it makes you stop, so you can pinch yourself just to make sure you are not dreaming?
Paradise Cove, aka Deadman's Reef is just that place.
This past fall I booked my first ever tropical vacation. I had never been anywhere where the waters weren't mucky, or brown. I have never even imagined such beauty could be found here on earth.
I always figured those Corona commercials, or postcards were airbrushed to beauty. I never in my life knew that I could seriously step right into a postcard. Yet here I was Paradise Cove.
Paradise Cove is the home to Deadman's reef. It is on the far west end of Grand Bahama Island, and even though we were a good 40 minute taxi ride away from Paradise Cove, I knew it was something I wanted to do.
According to quite a few reviews I came across on Tripadvisor, many had minor complaints about how far out the reef was from the shore.
Now I will admitt, the swim is a good distance, but to be quite honest, if you take things slow, and just drift along the surface, taking in the sights below, you will be floating atop the reef in no time at all.
First though I will say that we got quite a deal when it came to touring Deadman's Reef.
At our hotel (Viva Wyndham), we were given a list of activities to do. Paradise Cove Tours was on that list. For $35 we got transportation to and from Paradise Cove, lunch, snorkel equipment, and 6 hours to romp about the sea as we wished.
Now we encountered an issue when it came to transportation, because the tour bus did not want to come that far out just to pick up 2 people. They will only come if you have a group of 6. Instead we had to take a taxi cab up to Port Lucaya, where the tour bus picked us up.
Once there, you go up a small not so steep hilly path, where you sit down at a beach hut to listen to the tour guides explain exactly what to expect.
The explanation is pretty much a 15 minute speech on what fish to avoid due to poison, and where the fire corals were, and to be sure not to step on ANY coral. Fire or not.
We were also told we could not take any shells. So I decided to take pictures of some instead. Hehe.
Anyhow, the speech felt endless simply because just 20 feet from the white sandy beach laid the most gorgeous glowing blue body of water I had ever seen. I was daydreaming about what types of fish, and coral I would see.
Anyhow, after the speech, I put on my mask and snorkel and headed to the beach. Before darting into the water though, I wanted to make a comfy spot for myself on the beach, so I headed back up to the beach hut to rent two beach chairs for my boyfriend and I. Each chair came to $2.00 for the day, so it's no big deal.
I advise you bring your own mask and snorkel if going on vacation in Grand Bahama Island. Rentals are expensive, and they are cheap masks.
Anyhow, after setting up my chair, I headed to the water. I wanted to see what Deadman's Reef had to offer.
Now the next thing I will advise is to be very, very careful when entering the water. I came across a 10 foot sting ray sitting just around 1.5 feet out shore. Now they are harmless, but hey, after the whole crocodile hunter thing... I simply advise to stomp carefully.
Once in the water, and mask and snorkeling place I took a look around. I could see the bottom of the sea as clear as day. The first 10 feet or so is filled with nothing but white sand and some lovely sea shells. After that you will drift across a beautiful sea of weeds poking up through the sand. Occasionally a small fish, or tang will fly by you curiously poking around to see what you are up to.
Take a really good look while swimming in the weeds, because you will see hundreds of live sand dollars collecting weeds o hide themselves in. I don't know how they go about doing it, but the weeds sort of stick to them. It's good camouflage, so look closely, or you might miss such a spectacular sight.
After swimming a good 20 feet or so deeper, I noticed large patches of sandy hills. In these sandy patches look closely, you will see that just below you lies a huge pit of dead sand dollars. There are literately hundreds of them, and you will see ones as big as your hand.
I tried picking a few up, but many of them crumbled the moment I touched them. A few though are fresh and hard, and make for great souvenir's...only you can't take them! So snap a shot, and move on, because the reef is just ahead.
Now the reef was not as spectacular as the reefs over at the resort we were staying at, but they were remarkable nonetheless. The reefs here have huge dips, which seem to create almost mini blue holes. The holes are deep, and intimidating at first, but if you relax and take your time looking around you will have nothing to fear.
For those of you who fear sharks, fear not, because during our 7 day stay on the island we saw not a single 1. And mostly, the sharks that occasionally frequent the waters are not the dangerous man eating machines that many mistake them for. When you see one, drifting about the waters, they are pretty small and will vanish away quickly when they see you, so don't even worry. That is if you do see one. We however saw none.
Anyhow, in Deadman's Reef I came across quite a few neat looking fish; fish we had not seen swimming anywhere else on the island, and we also saw a bunch of Bahamian Lobsters! They have no claws, and I actually felt bad for the little guys because they really don't have much of a defense mechanism when it comes to predators.
Hovering over the reef I came across quite a few amazing looking jellyfish. They are so cool because they look like they have a four leafed clover inside of them.
All in all, Deadman's Reef at Paradise Cove is not to be missed. If you are planning, or have been thinking about planning a trip to Grand Bahama Island, I will say this, and only this...
You will never ever forget the sights you see.