Bertram’s Destination of the Week: Staniel Cay, Exuma, Bahamas
The Exuma chain of islands offers some of the best cruising and fishing anywhere. With hundreds of islands to explore, it’s perfect territory for shallow draft boats like the new Bertram 35, and the offshore fishing can be terrific. It’s almost overkill to mention the hordes of bonefish that live there.
Staniel Cay is located roughly halfway down the Exuma chain between Nassau and Georgetown. The Staniel Cay Yacht Club (www.stanielcay.com) has been around since the early ‘60s and is a favorite haunt of small boaters and megayachts alike. Staniel is the home of the famous Thunderball cave—a great snorkeling spot. With quaint and comfortable accommodations and one of the best bars in the islands, the Yacht Club makes a perfect base for Exuma exploration.
Staniel is a two-day run from south Florida, but Nassau makes a great first stop, and the kids can do the water slides at Atlantis while you’re there. Then you can explore the Exuma chain on your way down to Staniel, checking out popular stops like Leaf Cay, where wild Bahamian iguanas come scurrying out to meet you on the beach; Wardwick Wells Cay, the headquarters of the Exuma Land and Sea Park; the Rocky Dundas, two large rocks in the middle of Conch Cut with more great caves for snorkeling, and Pipe Creek, a maze of shallow channels that run through a vast area of breathtakingly beautiful tidal flats (that hold quite a few bonefish) just south of Compass Cay.
Is there a particular harbor you’d like to share with us? We’d love to hear from you.