Things to do When Porting in Nassau Bahamas

Port Nassau Bahamas.  I have been to Nassau on three different cruises and have listed things to do to make the most of Nassau's in-port experience. If you are planning a trip to Nassau, I hope you enjoy your time there. If you have already visited Nassau, please comment on what your experience was like in Port Nassau Bahamas.

Shops at port Nassau, Bahamas (Prince George Whaft)
Shops at port Nassau, Bahamas (Prince George Whaft)

Senor Frogs

Senor Frogs is a restaurant and drinking establishment within walking distance from where the cruise ships port.  No matter what your age, Senor Frogs is sure to be a fun experience for everyone in your group.  There will be lots of singing and dancing, as they encourage their customers to become involved in the entertainment.  Staff in clown and giant frog costumes will dance with all visitors and will be seen making balloon hats for everyone.  The food is good.  Tell the staff when you arrive if anyone in your group is celebrating a special event such as an anniversary or birthday, they will be sure to get them dancing and singing before you are ready to leave.

Atlantis and resort and Casino, Paradise Island

Atlantis Resort is a magical experience that is a must-see for anyone who has not been there, but especially for families. It is designed to resemble the 'Lost City of Atlantis'.   Different shore excursions to Atlantis are usually available through your cruise-line, or if you prefer to tour the resort on your own or gamble, you can take a $5/person taxi ride to the resort from right outside the gates of the port where many Taxi Cabs will be lined up to take you anywhere you would like to go in Nassau.  Once you arrive at Atlantis, you can take a wonderful tour of the hotel and casino, shop in the resort shops, or take a  tour of the underground aquarium which is a must-see.  Shore excursions are available through your cruise lines for tours, dolphin adventures, and water park adventures.  There is also a very nice shopping area very close to Atlantis resort where a short walk past ported yachts donned with helicopters will be docked.   Contact your cruise-line for further details. 

Atlantis Resort Hotel and Casino
Atlantis Resort Hotel and Casino

Shopping

The shopping experiences in Nassau are extremely diverse. No matter how high your shopping budget is, there is definitely a place for you in Nassau. Some cruise ships offer a shopping show prior to porting in most ports to guide you through your shopping experience and give you discounts that are only offered to the cruise-lines. Remember also, if you are interested in making a larger purchase in port, Nassau is duty-free.

  1. Nassau's Famous Straw Market: this shopping experience is not the one for me, as the market is filled with shouts from vendors of "buy, buy, buy". I am not particularly fond of pushy vendors, therefore I stay away from the straw market when I visit Nassau. However, if you have great bargaining skills and are on a very limited budget, this is the place for you! The straw market is filled with hand-made crafts, souveniers and fake name brand handbags like Gucci, Dooney & Bourke, and Dolce & Gabbana. The straw market is also very conveniently located within walking distance to the Cruise port.
  2. Prince George Plaza and downtown shops: This area is more for the tourist who is interested in the more typical souvenir type shopping. These shops are more for those travelers on a vacation budget. Famous US tourist shops like Hard Rock Cafe and the Harley Davidson clothing store can be found here. There are also several liquor stores that sell rum at very reasonable prices for those that are interested in taking several bottles home.
  3. Nassau Port shops: There are several market type shops that greet you when you first arrive in Nassau Port. These shops are definitely worth taking a look at, although the bargaining down of these shop owners is not as likely as those at the Straw Market. There are several street entertainers present to greet you to the Bahamas.
  4. Marina village: Located on Paradise Island, this shopping village is a little higher priced with average store prices similar to U.S. Mall prices. Very cute little village with colorful shops align the streets.
  5. Court Shops at Atlantis Resort: The court shops at The Atlantis Resort are high priced stores with names like 'Armani'. For those with a higher budget than most, a bargain can still be claimed if you are interested in buying high priced items with no tax attached.

 

Historical and sight seeing tours

 Many historical and sight-seeing tours can be taken in Nassau.  Glass bottom boat tours are informative and usually point out shore-side homes of famous people along with a trip to paradise Island.  Walking tours of Nassau include tours of government buildings and churches.  A visit to Ardestra Gardens or Fort Charlotte are nice tours for those that are interested in the more historical areas of Nassau. 

New Experiences

There are also many other activities you can try in nassau.  The following is just a short list:

  1. Hair Brading: Everywhere you walk in Nassau there will be women approaching the females of your group and asking if you would like your hair braided for a small fee.  After a visit to Port Nassau, it is common to notice women on your cruise ship with fancy hair braids
  2. Horse Drawn Carriage:  immediately upon exiting the port shops, there will be horse drawn carriages lined up to take you on a romantic ride through Nassau.  A great idea if you are on a honeymoon or anniversary cruise.
  3. Parasailing:  almost all cruise ports offer parasailing adventures. I have never tried this, but it is definitely something I will have to try in the future. 
  4. Water adventures:  including snorkeling and scuba diving.  Check with your cruise line about shore excursions offering snorkeling. 

Beaches

There are several beaches in Nassau.  Some are for public use and others are private use only.  There may be a small fee that you will have to pay to use the beaches.

Comments 32 comments

dohn121 profile image

dohn121 7 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

What a great hub! Although I've never been to the Bahamas before, I did use a on-line photo for my short story, "See You In the Bahamas." The story itself is about infedelity, and well, I rather not give too much away. I hope to one day go to Nassau. Thank you for sharing this!


sheristeele profile image

sheristeele 7 years ago from Siler City, NC Author

will go and check out your story. My pics are ones I took while I was there. Loved your hub about Laos. It looks beautiful there.


compu-smart profile image

compu-smart 7 years ago from London UK

The Bahamas always sounded very exotic, and seem to ve just that!! anither place for me to want to visit when i hopefull travel the world..well, most of it anyway!!


Julie 7 years ago

Wondering if anyone has done the Harley Davidson Ride in the Bahamas that Carnival Cruises offers.


sheristeele profile image

sheristeele 7 years ago from Siler City, NC Author

Julie, I have not done the harley ride.. would be awesome though.


beckykolacki profile image

beckykolacki 7 years ago from Bethlehem, PA

I will be going on a cruise to the Bahamas in May, and I am already planning what I want to do! Thanks for sharing. I will definitely be checking out the Prince George Plaza!


Donna 6 years ago

We will be in the bahamas on Feb. 6 on the Carnival Freedom. We have booked the harley ride in paradise and are wondering how far away from the port is the harley davidson shop. we have to buy shirts for friends and are wondering and hoping that time will permit


bikerbabe43 6 years ago

We took the Nassau in Paradise Harley Tour on our recent cruise. It was GREAT. It is $189 per bike so basically the rider is free. We went all over - alittle city, but mostly countryside and saw a lot of out of the way points of interest. You should be confortable on a bike (we had a Heritage Softtail) because they don't slack on speed and you are driving on the left. Still looking for the solo rider on March 12th-I have pictures for you. Candace


sheristeele profile image

sheristeele 6 years ago from Siler City, NC Author

Haven't taken the Harley ride.. but how fun! AS for the Harley Davidson shop it is within walking distance from the port! THANKS for the comments.


J-Law 6 years ago

My group traveled to Nassau via cruise ship in Nov 2009 to celebrate my mom's 50th bday. We hung out in the area near the port. We enjoyed the little shops and the straw market. However, they were all pretty much selling the same thing. We had a BLAST at the Junkanoo Shack. The staff was friendly and we bonded with other cruisers--with the help of free rum shots. Afterwards we toured Atlantis. All in all it was a great experience.

I'm going back in Feb 2011 but hope to see more of the island.


LPStarr profile image

LPStarr 6 years ago from near my computer :P

I've been twice on two different Honeymoons. The port is the only thing that I've seen twice. I liked looking around at the little shops. Atlantis was DEFINITELY a must-see, snorkeling was a must-do and having Conch was a must-eat.

While researching for my latest hub (which, by the way, I added this hub as one of the related hubs, so you might see my hub as related to your hub as well), I also found that there is a changing of the guard ceremony near the port in Nassau on Saturdays at 10 AM and that also sounds like a tourist attraction not to miss.

J-law, From experience, after having been to the Bahamas in both November and February, Feb was a lot better - in terms of weather and crowds.


Terrie 5 years ago

We will be in Nassau in February, our excursion ends at 12:30 (at the dock) and set sail at 2:00 p.m. Would we have enough time to make it to the Harley store?


Karen H. 5 years ago

Terrie,

Yes, you will have time to stop at the HD store after your excursion. It's very close to where the ships dock. My third trip to Nassau will be this week! Hope you enjoy it too!


sheristeele profile image

sheristeele 5 years ago from Siler City, NC Author

THANKS Terrie and Karen for questions/comments.. i was actually on a different cruise when questions were asked.. Hope you enjoy your trip


Karen d Knoppel 5 years ago

Does anyone know how far Hard Rock is from the port? Walking distance for someone you is recovering from surgery?


Raq 5 years ago

The Hard Rock is quite close to the port. You can see it from the ship depending on where it docks. It's no more than a few blocks.


michalex 5 years ago

So there are things to do if you do not book an excursion with the cruise line or would it be better if you did?


crusinsmg 4 years ago

will be going to Nassua in April and would like to find a harley rental for the day. Any suggestions, phone numbers, &costs would be appreciated...


April 4 years ago

Are there public beaches in walking distance of the carnival port?


hills65 4 years ago

First time leaving inMay any suggestions suggestions what to do/ see first.


Cat 4 years ago

My husband & I did the Harley tour in August 2010 that was offered via Norwegian Cruise Lines -- not sure if it's the same one; our guide's name was Van. It was just the two of us, and we specifically requested that he conduct the tour from a 'native's perspective,' so to speak (as opposed to driving us around doing the 'tourist' thing) -- in essence, "take us to where YOU would hang out." WE HAD A BLAST, and genuinely considered it the highlight of our trip!


Jimmy 4 years ago

Trying to find the best way to see and do a lot without using the cruise lines excursions. Any suggestions?


sheristeele profile image

sheristeele 4 years ago from Siler City, NC Author

Hi Jimmy, There are shuttle taxis outside the pier which will take you to the Atlantis or any of the other sites on Nassau for just $5 per person. To tour the Atlantis is around $35.. it is a little cheaper than going by the cruise line which is $55. The Queen's staircase seems like an interesting site and there are a few other historical monuments along the way and near there; this is within walking distance from the port. The one thing to remember when you choose to do sites on your own is that you must be back to port before the ship departs. If you take a cruise excursion, the ship will wait. This is not a guarantee if you are late returning to the ship on your own.


Jimmy 4 years ago

Goin in cruise hope I have fun


Trish 4 years ago

Been to Nassau once before on a cruise and went to Atlantis. It is beautiful but ever so costly. When walking back we stopped at the Hogan Dos for ice cream and it cost us $17 for 2 cones with one scoop of ice cream. A can of Coke was $5. It was nuts!! We are going again on a cruise and will be getting this port again. This time we are going to do a beach day. I hear great things about Junkaroo Beach.


jking 4 years ago

I wanted to do ashore excursion but didn't want to do with the ship cuz it's soooo expensive can I book a shore excursion outside the ship

when we dock as I have done on other islands


thunter1224 4 years ago

Does anyone know if you can fish from shore,with my own fishing gear... while in port ?


Tom Schumacher profile image

Tom Schumacher 3 years ago from Huntington Beach, CA

Great hub and participation by other Hubbers! I've never been to the Bahamas but have always wanted to. My vacation for this year will include Nassau as one of three preferred destination locations. Thanks again for sharing!


Chris 375 3 years ago

The Bahamas is pretty expensive. Another option is to go to a Beach Front all inclusive resort and purchase a day pass. I know Breezes and Hedonism offers them. You get to, drink, eat, use the beach, pool and all other amenities for about $50 a day.


Ashley 3 years ago

Seriously awful advice! American chain restaurants and tourist traps!


Robyn 3 years ago

Can anyone tell me the best public beach close to the port.


Terry 2 years ago

we are going on the fantasy cruise line and will dock in Nassau. I cannot walk far so I would like to know if there are casinos near the port or is it only at the Atlantis?

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