This article is part of a directory: Visit The Bahamas: The Bahamas Travel Guide, Things To Do & All-Inclusive Hotels
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As the bustling capital city of The Bahamas, Nassau offers an idyllic blend of urban excitement, historic and cultural attractions, diverse restaurants and bars, and natural beauty in the form of white-sand beaches with a glistening turquoise ocean. Located on New Providence island, Nassau also boasts many of the best all-inclusive resorts in The Bahamas, as well as fantastic shopping opportunities and epic nightlife in the city’s nightclubs.

What’s more, the place is also well-connected to other Bahamian islands and a wide range of incredible tourist activities and attractions, ranging from island hopping and swimming with those adorable Bahamas pigs to fishing, sailing, snorkeling, and scuba diving on some of the best reefs in the Caribbean. With so much going on in this island paradise, it's an essential destination for any Bahamas travel guide, but holidaymakers may feel baffled by all the attractions and tourist activities in Nassau.

Fortunately, for those unsure how to spend a vacation in Nassau, this in-depth guide to the Bahamian capital city answers all questions travelers may ever need to ask. From the ideal time to visit Nassau and what there is to do and see to the top beaches, hotels, and restaurants — and more — welcome to the ultimate guide to the capital of The Bahamas!

Related 12 Things To Do In San Salvador: Complete Guide To This Unique Hidden Gem In The Bahamas

UPDATE: 2023/09/17 18:16 EST BY DYLAN MYERS

What To Do When Traveling To Nassau, Bahamas

Sandy beaches, blue skies, luxury resorts, and colorful cuisine are just a few of the endless offers when visiting Nassau, Bahamas, making it every vacationer's dream destination. This update refreshed the Nassau travel guide, expanding on fascinating things to do such as scuba diving to underwater sculpture parks, wandering through the 'Versailles of the Bahamas,' discovering historical forts and attractions, and so much more. Wanderlusters should read on to find all the info to bolster their ultimate Nassau, Bahamas travel guide.

Top Things To Do

Stunning seascape of Nassau, Bahamas, Caribbean 
Image by pinasmall from Pixabay 
Stunning seascape of Nassau, Bahamas, Caribbean 

Aside from the quintessential Bahamas vacation experience of spending the whole day at Nassau's most beautiful beaches, tourists will find a plethora of other activities and attractions with which to fill the rest of their getaway.

From relaxing to adventurous, there’s something amazing in and around Nassau for every type of traveler to experience.

For beach bums seeking further shores, stomach-growling foodies, curious history buffs, and binocular-and-camera-wielding wildlife enthusiasts, these are some of the best attractions in Nassau.

1 Visit Nassau's Beaches

Montagu Beach, Nassau, The Bahamas
Montagu Beach, Nassau, The Bahamas

Granted, there are around 17 picture-perfect paradise beaches in this part of the Bahamas, all of which are unique and beautiful in their own way.

However, with their powdery sands, vibrant blue ocean, and paradisiacal atmosphere, these five shores are notable tourist favorites, consistently ranking high among the top beaches in Nassau for visitors seeking sublime samples of sun, sand, and sea.

Junkanoo Beach

Junkanoo Festival in The Bahamas is one of the nation’s most energized parties, taking place around the new year annually. If visitors miss the event, Junkanoo Beach is the next best thing.

  • This entertaining beach always has something going on, which is excellent for the more eccentric beach bums seeking fun flair during their day by the sea — but not so ideal for folks in search of peace and quiet.

Visitors falling into the former category will have the time of their lives at this sunny spot, with its lively atmosphere and entertainment roster, as well as plenty of nearby places to grab excellent grub.

Cabbage Beach

No, there aren’t cabbages growing on this sunny shore, but there is almost every kind of water sport imaginable.

As one of the most popular beaches in The Bahamas (which enjoys a convenient location near Nassau Harbor), Cabbage promises a boatload of fun, from water-skiing and parasailing to jet-skiing, snorkeling, and so much more.

With all that water fun comes hungry bellies, and fortunately for calorie-starved beach bunnies, this spot boasts a lot of restaurants, bars, and shops.

Related: Big Major Cay In The Bahamas Is Where You Can Swim With Pigs, And Here’s What You Can Expect

Cable Beach

Cable Beach is always cited as one of the best beaches in Nassau. Clean shorelines, impeccable sand, and crystal-clear water make this beach a top-rated spot among residents and visitors alike.

Its tropical beauty isn’t the sole reason for its popularity, though; this beach is effortlessly close to many of the most upmarket resorts in the Bahamas, with the likes of Sandals Royal Bahamian, one of the most affordable Sandals Resorts, only a stone’s throw away.

Love Beach

Unsurprisingly, one of the world’s most romantic destinations features a lovely seaside spot with a name like 'Love Beach’.

Loved-up couples and honeymooners are known to kindle their romance and enjoy quality time together on this beautiful beach, with its pretty and private ambiance resulting from its superb location away from downtown Nassau’s popular beaches.

Jaws Beach

Jaws Beach earned its name after it appeared in the iconic Hollywood blockbuster movie Jaws. Given its fame, it can see a few more people than other beaches.

However, seeing what this legendary stretch of sand is like in real life, not on the big screen, is always a top activity in Nassau.

While it was a dramatic spot in the film, in reality, it’s another stunning Bahamas beach worthy of Instagram pics.

Related: 10 Best Things To Do In Or Near Freeport, Bahamas

2 Swim With The Pigs In Nassau

 A secluded tranquil beach in Nassau, Bahamas.
Photo by Kedar Gadge on Unsplash

A secluded tranquil beach in Nassau, Bahamas.

There are many reasons to choose Exuma over Nassau, and swimming with pigs is one of them. Even though this activity is synonymous with Exuma, it still remains one of the best attractions Nassau has to offer its guests, as it’s still within reasonable proximity to the capital.

One of the closest pig-swimming options for those staying in Nassau is the Sandy Toes experience on the famous Rose Island on Exuma.

A true bucket list item, the famous swimming pigs of The Bahamas are absolutely adorable, melting the hearts of visitors with their hilarious personalities and cute piggy antics.

  • These creatures are indeed curious and full of awe for visitors, eagerly swimming up to arriving boats as people come to spend the day with these four-legged pink-and-brown-hued swimming island-dwellers.

Related: From Nassau To Exuma: Travel Options To Pig Beach

Many pigs even hang around humans on the beach and in the water in the hopes they’ll receive food gifts, which many Bahamas pig tour operators will recommend people bring.

The trip to see the Exuma pigs is also convenient; visitors take a powerboat from Nassau to the Exumas — a journey that takes only about an hour and a half each way.

  • Recommended Tour: Morning Pig Encounter - Pigs can’t fly, but they do swim!
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Cost: From $199 USD per adult

Book this tour

3 Visit The Atlantis Marine Habitat

The glorious and huge Atlantis resort in the Bahamas.
Photo by Matt Benson on Unsplash
The glorious and huge Atlantis resort in the Bahamas.

The Atlantis Paradise Island is also home to the world’s largest open-air marine habitat. This enormous aquarium houses 14 lagoons, eight million gallons of ocean water, and over 50,000 aquatic creatures in over 250 marine species.

The establishment also showcases daily scheduled marine life feeds, which visitors can watch. Check out the Marine Habitat page on the Atlantis Bahamas website for more information.

Day passes are available for tourists who want to enjoy all the attractions and offers at Atlantis but aren't staying at the on-site resort.

  • Day pass prices: Vary by date and season
  • Hours: 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

4 Book A Food Tour Of Nassau

Indulge in fresh coconut in Nassau, Bahamas
Photo by Viviana Araque on Unsplash
Indulge in fresh coconut in Nassau, Bahamas

Food tours in Nassau are the ultimate activity for foodies! Many are available, but top-rated favorites include the Bites of Nassau Food & Cultural Walking Tour, which combines food and drink with art, history, and culture.

Don’t forget about the Downtown Nassau guided walking food tour, Sites & Tastes of Downtown Nassau, enabling visitors to eat as the local people do and see plenty of sights along the way.

5 Book A Rum Tour Of Nassau

Cruise Ships docking in the massive ports in Nassau, Bahamas
Photo by Robert Linder on Unsplash
Cruise Ships docking in the massive ports in Nassau, Bahamas

To complement a Nassau food tour, a rum-tasting experience makes the perfect pairing. The Rum-Runner’s Passage is a top rum tour in Nassau, taking participants on a journey through a time when The Bahamas’ pirate-plundering and rum-running dominated the islands.

In addition, John Watling’s Distillery offers a popular tasting tour, granting an insight into the Buena Vista Estate and its barrel-aged rum, which guests are welcome to sample.

  • Recommended Tour: Nassau Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tour
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Cost: From $87 USD per adult

Book this tour

6 Go Snorkeling And Scuba Diving In Nassau

Scuba Diving with sharks in Nassau, Bahamas
Image from neverzola on Pixabay
Scuba Diving with sharks in Nassau, Bahamas

Nassau is in no short supply of snorkeling and scuba operators, with whom beginners and seasoned divers can explore some of the best dive sites in The Bahamas.

With its calm, clear, and shallow sites, Nassau (and The Bahamas in its entirety) is one of the world's best places for beginners to learn to scuba dive.

Some snorkel and dive centers in Nassau have been around longer than others and have thus achieved a solid reputation among residents and tourists — one being Stuart Cove’s Dive Bahamas, which offers scuba diving trips, dive courses, snorkeling tours, snuba, and even epic Nassau shark diving.

Located on the southwest side of New Providence Island, Stuart Cove’s Dive Bahamas originally opened up shop in 1978. Since then, the operation has become Nassau’s leading full-service dive center and provider of water-based activities.

Related: Can You Dive Dean’s Blue Hole? Not Without Knowing This

As such, if exploring the best dive sites Nassau Bahamas has to offer (not forgetting others nearby, such as the famous Tiger Beach — one of the world's top shark dive sites!), Stuart Cove is the dive and snorkel king to choose.

  • Recommended Tour: Land and Sea Sightseeing Tour from Nassau
  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Cost: From $149.99 USD per adult

Book this tour

7 Charter A Boat Tour In Nassau

A speed boat cruises by the island in Nassau, Bahamas
Image from Lauren_vdM on Pixabay
A speed boat cruises by the island in Nassau, Bahamas

Booking a private boat tour in Nassau is the ultimate experience if funds are no concern. From fishing trips and beach exploration to snorkeling escapades, exploring Nassau by charter boat is one of the island’s finer things.

Among the chartered boat trip operators is First Strike Charters, which offers numerous excursions ranging from adventurous to relaxing.

  • Recommended Tour: 007 Morning Half-Day Boat Charter - Rose Island
  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Cost: From $132 USD per adult

Book this tour

8 Go Island Hopping In Nassau

Yellow catamaran in Nassau
Photo by Gary Cole on Unsplash
Yellow catamaran in Nassau

Scheduled and private island hopping tours in Nassau are available, many of which cater to all budgets, too. Numerous stunning islands with breathtaking beaches, superb snorkeling, and extraordinary encounters with marine life draw island hoppers into booking such a trip.

Noteworthy spots include:

  • Turtle Cay
  • Rose Island: gorgeous sandy beaches and transparent waters, a quiet, more private island deemed among The Bahamas’ Out Islands’.
  • Blue Lagoon Island: jaw-dropping private island accessible from Nassau. Thanks to its eco-friendliness, the island’s beaches are famed for being immaculate and untouched, where dolphins and turtle sightings just off the coast are a common occurrence.

Related 15 Adults-Only All-Inclusive Resorts In The Bahamas Worth Every Penny

9 Discover The Best Water Parks In Nassau

Clear, turquoise waters in Nassau, Bahamas framed by the impressive Atlantis Resort
Photo by Isabella Smith on Unsplash
Clear, turquoise waters in Nassau, Bahamas framed by the impressive Atlantis Resort

Waterparks in Nassau are perfect for a family day out chock-full of excitement. In particular, Aquaventure Water Park on Paradise Island is among the most popular, where water slides, pools, and a lazy river await some fun under the sun.

  • Prices: Day pass rates vary by date and season
  • Hours: Daily, 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

Baha Bay Waterpark Nassau is also worthy of a visit; this beachfront water facility boasts everything kids and young-at-heart grown-ups could dream of from a water adventure, including a lazy river, a wave pool, water slides, a surf simulator, young child and toddler pool zones, and even an elite beach club.

  • Prices: Day passes from $160 per adult, $65 per child
  • Hours: Daily, 10 AM - 6 PM

10 Visit The Top Historical Attractions In Nassau

Visiting Nassau, Bahamas by local guide
Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash
Visiting Nassau, Bahamas by local guide 

With all the best Paradise Island beaches, top Nassau restaurants, water activities, and once-in-a-lifetime experiences out of the way, it’s time to take a trip down memory lane and discover the historic sites in and around the Bahamian capital.

For those looking for unique things to do on Paradise Island, but who are tired of beaches, water parks, and island tours, the Bahamian island boasts a long and eventful history spanning many centuries, making visiting Nassau’s historical landmarks an enriching day itinerary.

From colonial times to pirating stories of the Caribbean, the following historic sites in Nassau are fascinating and will provide visitors with a glimpse into the country’s hefty history.

Find the best historical attractions when visiting Nassau below:

11 Witness The Queen’s Staircase & Fort Fincastle

The Queen's Staircase in Nassau, Bahamas, surrounded by jungle foliage
The Queen's Staircase in Nassau, Bahamas, surrounded by jungle foliage

The Queen’s Staircase — often referred to as ‘the 66 Steps’ — is held up by an interesting story. The stairs were carved out of solid limestone by slaves between 1793 and 1794, crafted to serve as a direct route to Nassau city from Fort Fincastle.

According to rumors and historical accounts, Queen Victoria of Britain once walked the steps, which were named in her honor.

Today, visitors can see the staircase and take photos of the site, where the encompassing vegetation creates a scenic backdrop.

At the top of the Queen’s Staircase is Fort Fincastle — indeed, one of the most impressive old forts in Nassau out of the main three, which also features replica canons.

  • Built in 1793, the stronghold was erected by a former governor of The Bahamas, Lord Dunmore.
  • Situated on Bennett’s Hill — the highest point in Nassau — the vistas from Fort Fincastle a worth the trip alone.

Related: Snorkel From The Beach In The Bahamas At This Beautiful Cove

12 Explore Fort Charlotte

Cannons at Fort Charlotte, Nassau, Bahamas
Cannons at Fort Charlotte, Nassau, Bahamas

Sitting on 100 acres of land, Nassau’s Fort Charlotte was built in 1788 and houses all sorts of medieval features people normally only read about in history books and fantasy novels.

Think cannons, tunnels, and dungeons — which visitors get to see in real life — and this place delivers some impressive photo ops.

Hiring a local guide is a great way to visit Fort Charlotte when traveling to Nassau, and a guide can help ensure the grounds are open for exploring.

13 Montagu Beach & Fort

Montagu Beach and Fort in Nassau, Bahamas
Montagu Beach and Fort in Nassau, Bahamas

This is a public beach with a beautiful surrounding area full of things to do and see. The historic Fort Montagu is definitely worth a visit and costs around $2 or so per person for admission.

Once visitors have explored the fort, the nearby fish market is a fantastic (and tasty) experience, where fresh conch salads and droves of live conch are available for purchase.

  • Fort Montagu Entrance: $2 per person
  • Note: Cash only

Enjoy easy and free parking just outside Fort Montagu.

Related: This Bahamas Island Has Been Confirmed The Safest As Of 2022

14 Waltz Through Parliament Square In Nassau

Parliament Square in Nassau, Bahamas
Via: Kushal Bose on Shutterstock
Parliament Square in Nassau, Bahamas

Parliament Square in The Bahamas is, quite possibly, one of the country’s most famous areas. Dotted with numerous of the island’s recognizable pink and white government buildings, this part of Nassau, with its Georgian architecture dating back to 1815, is indeed beautiful to the eyes.

Facilities of note include:

  • House of Assembly
  • Office of the Leader of the Opposition
  • Bahamas Supreme Court
  • Senate

Nassau’s Parliament Square is also home to a historical (and sizable) statue of Queen Victoria.

15 Discover The Beauty Of The ‘Versailles Gardens’ In Nassau

The lush Versailles-style Gardens in Nassau, Bahamas near the water
The lush Versailles-style Gardens in Nassau, Bahamas near the water

As mentioned earlier, The Versailles Gardens is a unique medieval garden and one of the best things to do on Paradise Island, if not the most interesting thing to do in The Bahamas, overflowing with rich flora and fauna and deep-rooted in history.

Also referred to as ‘the Paradise Island Cloisters’, this spectacular place is compared to the Versailles Gardens in Paris. The site’s twelfth-century monastery also sits within the ground, which guests are also welcome to explore.

Most visitors can wander Nassau's Versailles Gardens in anywhere from ten to twenty minutes, and it's an excellent stop for a stroll or snapping some lovely photos.

16 Visit The Pompey Museum of Slavery and Emancipation

Pompey Museum on Bay Street in historic downtown Nassau,
Pompey Museum on Bay Street in historic downtown Nassau,

Located in Pompey Square in Downtown Nassau, the Pompey Museum may be small, but it contains a wealth of interesting exhibits and information on the country’s past, making it a great resource for people hoping to learn more about The Bahamas’ history.

  • Hours: Monday - Wednesday, Friday & Saturday 9:30 AM - 4:30 PM | Thursday, 9:30 AM - 1 PM | Closed Sundays
  • Entrance: $3 per adult
  • Location: Bay Street, in front of George Street

17 Check Out Clifton Heritage Park

Virtuoso Man by Willicey Tynes part of BREEF Sir Nicholas Nuttall Tropical Coral Reef Sculpture Garden
Virtuoso Man by Willicey Tynes part of BREEF Sir Nicholas Nuttall Tropical Coral Reef Sculpture Garden

Clifton Heritage Park in the Bahamas is a supreme choice for learning about the history and culture of the country while experiencing first-hand what made the place as it is today.

History, culture, nature, and beauty abound, possibly rendering the park one of the unique attractions in The Bahamas for visitors looking to learn about much of the country in one place.

  • Hours: Daily, 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

The terrain comprises rocks, wetlands, and white sandy beaches, as well as the impressive ancient architecture of the Lucayan people, who were the very first inhabitants of The Bahamian Islands.

Even snorkeling is on the cards at this park; in fact, with its giant underwater sculptures (seriously, bring a camera), Clifton Heritage Park may be one of the best places to snorkel in the Bahamas in terms of uniqueness.

  • Snorkeling Tours: $90 per person
  • Duration: 45 minutes to one hour

18 Explore Bay Street In Downtown Nassau

Bright green bakery storefront in Nassau, Bahamas
Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash
Bright green bakery storefront in Nassau, Bahamas

Bay Street is one of the best places in Nassau for markets, architecture, and people-watching. Many local markets hustle and bustle, while the old buildings invite some beautiful photo opportunities.

Visitors will also find a few good spots to eat and enjoy a drink, too, with the above-mentioned Biggity being one of them.

Bay Street is about 6.5 miles long but is one of the few streets in Nassau with proper sidewalks bordering the street, making for a great stroll to take in all the colorful Bahamian chaos and shopping.

19 Shiver Ye Timbers At The Pirates of Nassau Museum

The red exterior of the Pirates of Nassau Museum in the Bahamas 
The red exterior of the Pirates of Nassau Museum in the Bahamas 

The pirate history of The Bahamas is always a topic of interest, even among folks not so history-inclined. Given The Bahamas once had the largest crop of pirates in the Caribbean, one of the most fascinating ways to learn about the islands’ illustrious pirating past is to check out the Pirates of Nassau Museum.

  • Hours: Monday - Friday, 9 AM - 5 PM | Saturdays & Sundays, 9 AM - 3 PM
  • Price: $14 per adult

Treasure troves of remarkable exhibitions and displays are housed within the establishment, divulging the fascinating stories of the country’s illegal maritime affairs that once posed huge problems for the Caribbean.

Guests can explore the site by themselves or enjoy a guided tour from an animated pirate, and when they’re done, they can check out the gift shop for some pirate-themed booty.

Related: What’s At The Bottom Of Dean’s Blue Hole? & More Answers

20 The Best Time to Visit Nassau, Bahamas

View of lighthouse in Nassau, Bahamas and tourist resorts in the city
View of lighthouse in Nassau, Bahamas and tourist resorts in the city
  • Best Time to Go to Nassau: November to April (peak tourist season, but the best weather)
  • Nassau Hurricane Season: June through November

Similar to many tropical islands in this portion of the planet, the summer is warm and humid and can see rainfall — albeit sporadic, mostly. Typically, hurricane season in Nassau runs from July to October, while the high tourist season spans from November to April.

Related: How To Plan The Best Bahamas Cruise, During The Best Month To Do It

Peak season usually sees the best weather in the Bahamas, with the sunniest, clearest skies and less chance of rain. It’s also windier during this time, making the tropical heat a little more bearable, thanks to a cooling breeze.

However, as with most peak tourist seasons, flights and hotel prices soar, and crowds are much denser.