Everyone knows what a trip to The Bahamas entails: fruity cocktails, yummy seafood, and beaches galore. Basically, it’s relaxation to the max, but what everyone doesn’t know is that The Bahamas is a unique and colorful country with a distinct culture.
From museums and forts to The Bahamas resorts, culture junkies like me will find that there’s plenty to discover on this Lucayan Archipelago.
1. Visit the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas (Nassau)
Just a short walk from Nassau’s bustling Bay Street is the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas—a must-see museum displaying the history and culture of The Bahamas through their art exhibits, sculptures, ceramics, textiles and photography.
This is a great way to step out of the sun and into the glorious AC while infusing your day with some of the island’s uplifting treasures. Entry is $5-10 (kids under 12 are free!).
2. Visit the Junkanoo World Museum & Arts Centre (Nassau)
What’s Junkanoo? Glad you asked! Junkanoo is the island’s national festival and a huge part of the Bahamian culture and identity. This street parade embodies everything a good festival should have: music ✅, dance ✅, food ✅, and incredible costumes that represent the community ✅.
With that said, the Junkanoo World Museum & Arts Centre is a small hidden gem where you can learn about the history of the festival from the friendly staff and also peruse the stunning costumes on display (you can even try some on!).
3. Local Noms on Your Trip to The Bahamas ??
Ok, museums are all well and good, but if you ask me, there’s truly no better way to experience a new culture then tasting some delicious local cuisine.
You’ll find plenty of finger-licking bites as you explore The Bahamas, but there are a few things you definitely don’t want to miss out on. Your vacay won’t be complete unless you have conch, fish fry, rum cake, and of course, rum-filled tropical drinks to stay fresh.
Check out Dina’s Gourmet Conch Salad roadside stand for the freshest conch you’ll ever have.
4. Walk Through the Forts of The Bahamas
Throw on a pair of comfy shoes and get ready for some hands-on history by visiting the 18th century forts of The Bahamas.
You don’t have to venture far from your hotel to step foot on old colonial grounds, in fact, the British Colonial Hilton Resort is a historic landmark itself that sits on the ruins of Nassau. And just a few minutes drive from the resort are Fort Charlotte—where you can catch some of the best views of Nassau from atop the elevated limestone structure—and Fort Fincastle’s historic complex.
5. Sandpiper Arts and Craft Boutique
Take a bit of Bahamian culture home with you at the Sandpiper Arts and Craft Boutique—the perfect shopping destination for authentic local crafts and handmade goods from the community.
You’ll find a nice assortment of souvenirs, from cute Ts and hand prints to locally-made art and collectable pottery—all of which reflect the heritage and love of island life. Closed on Sundays!
Don’t be afraid to venture off of Nassau! Bimini is another island in the Bahamas teeming with culture—with the Hilton Resort in Bimini walking distance from even more destinations to explore.
If you know where to look, a trip to The Bahamas has more to offer than its world-class beaches, water sports, and fruity drinks. Just a few steps from your cozy Bahamas resort is a country brimming with culture and tradition. Hop on a golf cart and go see it!