Wonders of the Bahamas
The low-lying, comparatively small Bahamas are quite a popular destination for mass tourism. Most people enjoy here complete relaxation without bothering too much about traveling around and researching the intricacies of local history and nature.
Interested visitors though will be rewarded with many wonders of nature and also several exciting cultural attractions. Islands are rich with legends including stories about unusual creatures looming in the wild forest and swamps.
Islands consist of limestone of the former coral reefs elevated above sea level. Here have formed thousands of sinkholes and similar formations. Most of them are small and often the indigenous Lucayan people used them as "flowerpots" for cultivated plants in the past. Some sinkholes though are large and unusual. Many large sinkholes and cave systems are connected to the sea and during the tides can be observed either incredible funnels sucking out the water (even a boat can disappear in these funnels) or giant bulges from the incoming water. Even more exotic are black holes – these formations are unique in the world as they contain bacterial layer which generated heat – heating the water up to 40°C hot!
Map with the described wonders of Bahamas
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Top 20 wonders of the Bahamas
300 m wide and up to 47 m deep round water filled sinkhole with a layer of violet jelly layer of bacteria at 18 meters depth. Microorganisms have heated up the water to 40°C.
202 meters deep sinkhole in the sea, only 25 – 35 metres across.
Unusual natural monument – some 0.8 km long geological formation that resembles ancient man-made linear structure, located in 5.5 m depth. For a while it was considered to be a unique megalithic structure. There are several more similar sites in the Bahamas – f.e. Andros "Temple".
Beautiful underwater cave – sinkhole under the limestone cliffs of small island near Staniel Cay.
Cave with 2 tunnels, one unexplored tunnel leads to the sea. Contains Lucayan petroglyphs.
One of the most impressive cave systems in Bahamas, 460 m long, contains beautiful dripstone formations and ancient Lucayan artefacts.
Church’s Blue Hole
140 m wide, beautiful, almost perfectly round water filled sinkhole, one of the many in this area. Covered with 18 m thick layer of freshwater. Sea water starts below it.
Rounded sinkhole filled with sea water, for most part up to 30 m deep. It experiences sea tides as it is connected to the 300 m distant sea with underground passages. At the southwest corner is located very deep, unexplored hole – possible entrance in such passage.
The Healing Hole
Unusual, mineralized spring coming up from the cave in the salt marshes of North Bimini. Considered to have unique healing powers, although this seems to be largely exaggerated.
Amazing blowhole that can be seen from the calm lagoon. Limestone hills hide the Atlantic Ocean and the lagoon seems to be calm – but nevertheless from the cliffs rises a fountain of sea water. This blowhole is created by the wave energy on the other side of the island.
Underwater cave system with three known entrances – Mystery Cave, Angelfish Cave (both in the ocean) and the Bottomley’s Blue Hole on the island. The total explored length exceeds 3 km, some tunnels are very large. Contains large amount of endemic species of sea organisms.
East Plana Cays
The only island where survived Bahamian Hutia (Geocapromys ingrahami). Population of these large rodents on this narrow, 10 km long island could reach 12,000. Later hutia has been introduced to several more islands of Bahamas.
Large niche – burial site of early Lucayans from the 8th century AD with several petroglyphs. First home of European settlers in Bahamas in 1640.
Seaside cave with the carvings, possibly even writings of Lucayans.
Architecture wonders of Bahamas
St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Long Island
Beautiful Art Deco style church built after 1946 by Father Jerome Hawes.
Atlantis Paradise Island
Enormous resort complex with the first highrise building in this island country. In many respects this building symbolizes contemporary Bahamas. Built in 1997 – 2007, impressive Postmodern architecture.
Sites of legends
Big Blue Hole of Cat Island
Legendary lake – here supposedly lives a monster that devours horses. Deep karst sinkhole, well connected with the sea through underwater cavities. Strong sea induced currents may bring objects from the lake into the sea.
Mysterious bird in Andros Island – forest of Andros Island. According to tales of locals in the forest of this island lives approximately 1 m tall creature that resembles an owl. There is a possibility that here survives the flightless owl Tyto pollens. This amazing bird was 1 m tall and was last reported in the 16th century.
Grey Lady of Great Isaac Cay
Small island – site of legends, reputedly haunted by a spirit of mother deceased in shipwreck nearby and looking for her child. Rich with other stories as well.
Lusca – giant octopus of Andros blue holes
There are numerous stories about giant squids that reportedly live in the sinkholes near the coast of Andros. According to these stories this monster is up to 23 m or even 60 m long.
The Bahamas exists in extremes: travelers come to find both secluded beaches and vibrant parties on the sand; to dive dramatic wrecks and barrier reefs and glide in sailboats across crystal waters; to try a traditional fish fry or savor delicacies from all across the world; to stay in a cozy inn or a flashy new resort. Our travel experts help visitors navigate must-see destinations and tucked-away gems so they can escape the everyday and absorb the region’s diverse culture.
The accurate easy-to-read color charts are based on original hydrographic research and 45 years of local knowledge, and they are the only charts that show locations of submerged power lines and “do not anchor zones” in the central part of Abaco.