Posted on August 26, 2011 by Beth Yost
A day of sun, swim, and surf calls for a shift in gears as the sun begins to set. Enjoying a sweet frozen cocktail with fresh, sun-kissed skin and a relaxed mind makes for a pleasant evening—or you can accidently shift into overdrive as I notoriously do, and have one too many.
I can attest to the following three beach bars. I was there, and I sampled the goods—thoroughly.
Here’s an anecdotal story to tell you just how good they are, in fact.
Two kinds of pinkish drinks severely altered my ability to make a sound decision—The Nipper and The Grabber. They’re metaphorically similar to a “silent but violent” (yes, fart humor). These frozen little thirst-quenchers may be pink, but they are strong, and they sweep over you before you know what’s coming and totally knock you on your ass.
I had about 4 (and shots?) and next the thing I knew I was on the phone trying to change my flight from the next morning to stay through the weekend, as instigated by the bartenders, aka, my new best friends.
Waking up hungover and then remembering you no longer have a flight, is more uncool than drunk-dialing your ex.
Moral of Story: They’re delicious, frozen, and served up oceanfront with a smile. Enjoy at your own risk.
Get a Nipper at Nipper’s Beach Bar and Grill at the Great Guana Cay. It definitely brings out the spring break in everyone. Tacky? Ok, maybe, but intentionally. This bar doesn’t take itself too seriously and doesn’t want patrons to either. It’s one big beach party with loud music, fried food, a pool, lots of dancing, and old hippy bartenders. But I promise, it’s fun for all ages. Huey Lewis was there just to hang out the same day I was. I mean really, he’s Hip to be Squared, so you know it’s cool.
Get a Grabber at–you guessed it–Grabbers! Also located at the Great Guana Cay, Grabbers boasts a more chill vibe with a few hammocks, live music, and a pool, and like it’s competition, Nippers, it’s also right on the beach.
If you make it here, Ricky and Katie are the bartenders, and lots of fun. Please tell them I made it home safely.
My final recommendation for Cocktails rests at the end of it’s own boat dock on Lubber’s Quarters of the Abaco Islands, Cracker P’s. It’s just your classic fisherman’s bar, and the perfect spot to grab that first cold one and some spicy, hot fish dip after day out in the Great Sea of Abaco.
Tucked into a wooded area with beach on both sides, it’s got that just-washed-ashore look. Play bocce ball, or try to hook that damn brass ring. Cracker P’s is a must.
These bars aren’t exactly quaint little beach shacks. They’re popular spots with an agenda to loosen up even the most tightly wound. Everyone is welcome; everyone feels welcome. Simply a good time—even if you wake up in the morning without a flight.
Posted on August 17, 2011 by Beth Yost
Imagine an endless white sandbar blanketed by the shallow and rhythmic undulation of warm, crystal-clear water. It’s not a dream; you are not dead; it’s a beach–a beautiful, peaceful beach.
Wade through the endless sandbar and sink your toes into a white sand that’s so fine it feels grainless. Bring a snorkel and swim out into the deeper parts if you prefer. You’ll find conch shells, clams, colorful fish, an occasional barracuda, and even lobster, but the sandbar alone is worth the trip.
Remember to respect the wildlife, and take only pictures unless you are perusing for dinner. In that case, make sure you’re not taking anything out of season. It’s no coincidence lobsters are frequently mistaken for summer crabs.
Tahiti Beach is at the far end of Elbow Cay. If you’re staying in Hope Town, get there by bike or golf cart, but if you’ve got a boat, pack a lunch, cruise on over, and toss the anchor. It’s a bit off the beaten path, so it most likely won’t be too crowded.
Relax, feel the salty air and sun kiss your skin, and stay awhile. You’re on island time.
Posted on August 8, 2011 by Beth Yost
Mermaid Reef is no secret among locals and visitors alike. It’s a small, protected reef just outside of Marsh Harbor (Abaco Islands, Bahamas) with lots of curious and social fish.
These fish are very accustomed to humans, and especially being fed by them. Like a stray dog on the street, they’ll sniff your pockets for food if you’ve got any in there. (Do fish sniff?)
I blame cheez-whiz.
Posted on August 3, 2011 by Beth Yost
Renting a cottage on the beach is about as cliché as a photo of the sunset, but however trite, I will book that cottage and I will take that photo, and I will love it.
It’s like we’re genetically predisposed to contemplate life, fall back in love, and untether ourselves from the obligations of the expectant and rapid world, just by merely pulling off our restrictive shoes and wiggling our toes deep into the cool sand.
I live far from my family, so we decided to prioritize one week out of this year to meet and play in the Bahamas. I’d like to share how we chose to do it, and some of our favorite spots.
Where: We flew into Marsh Harbor of the Abaco Islands from West Palm Beach, and then caught the ferry to Hope Town, where we rented a small beach cottage.
Hope Town is very private, and when you’re here, you’re left alone, unlike many of the other Caribbean islands. Most cottages seem to be quiet vacation homes or the evidence that some people do abandon traditional life, and this is where they come to live quietly and peacefully.
Renting a boat is an absolute must if staying in Hope Town. A golf cart is nice depending on where you’re staying and where you want to go. We rented a golf cart and a 28′ boat called the Octopussy for the week—just large enough to fit 6 adults and a little tyke (my 2 yr. old niece). Cars are only allowed on the island for residents. Yes, that’s right—The Octopussy.
We rented a cottage from Hope Town Hideaways called “By the Sea”. Our backyard was the beach and the small town was a mere five minute walk. Hope Town Hideaways pretty much has the real estate market covered, and if you can’t find what you’re looking for from them, I’m not sure you’ll find it.
In the evenings we’d make dinner, and sit around the screened-in porch with a beer (Kalik is the local choice) or one of my special frozen concoctions. We’d catch up on life, embrace the endearing and innocent things my niece would say, and like most families, we’d end up poking fun at one another for something–all with the natural ocean soundscape reminding us that we didn’t have anywhere else to be, or anything else more important to do.
I love the Bahamas–from the accent, and the slimy conch, to the slow service, and lady that keeps bugging me to “get cha hair braided, giirl.” I love that the bank is only open on Tuesdays from 10am to 2pm, and I can go for at least three days without washing my hair and somehow it looks naturally nice (and a little gritty).
In the next few blogs I’ll be posting my favorite places to snorkel, the best beach, how I got nipped and grabbed, what’s in the mystery sauce, and how much I was willing to overpay for novelty, so stay tuned.
- Blane Bachelor on Carnival Triumph: Epic Media Fail on the High Seas
- Gerard ~ GQtrippin on Carnival Triumph: Epic Media Fail on the High Seas
- Beth Yost on My Guiltiest, Ugliest Travel Confessions
- Beth Yost on Hot Mess Monday: A New Year’s Eve Cabin Rental … With a Full Septic Tank
- jeff on Hot Mess Monday: A New Year’s Eve Cabin Rental … With a Full Septic Tank