The expression “when pigs fly” falls flat when it comes to the pigs in Exuma – they really do swim there! Join these extremely clean but boisterous oinkers with a swim in an unforgettable experience.
SWIMMING PIGS ON MAJOR CAY
The slowly expanding herd of around 20 feral pigs and their offspring live on an otherwise uninhabited island known as Major Cay (or Big Major Cay, or Pig Island). The island is located between Sampson Cay and Staniel Cay in the Exumas and is within easy reach by private boat or on a tour from your luxury villa at Grand Isle Resort & Spa on Great Exuma. There is also a smaller colony of pigs located near the middle of Exuma’s archipelago, making for a shorter trip.
Don’t worry, your guide will know exactly where to go. The swimming pigs have indeed exploded into one of the most photographed and talked about attractions in the whole country. A new film has even been made about it – When Pigs Swim – and you can watch it on the movie’s official website.
There are various accounts of when and how the pigs first arrived. Some say the pigs were dropped ashore by sailors who intended to return and eat them. Others say the pigs were survivors of a shipwreck, hence their newfound ability to swim.
Either way, the pigs are thriving, as they are being fed by visiting tourists and locals, or devouring excess food dumped from passing boats.
WHAT TO EXPECT ON A TOUR TO THIS ISLAND
Boat excursions from mainland Exuma regularly include a visit to Major Cay as part of a day trip. Alternatively, boats leaving from Sandals Emerald Bay or Grand Isle Resort & Spa, for example, often cut that trip in half and visit the pigs nearby.
Even before your boat reaches the island, you will spot pink and black dots, the swimming pigs, powering their way to your boats. They have been well trained from the countless tourists. They prove to be extremely capable of paddling at speed towards the boat, snouts aloft, with just one thing on their mind – food!
Their favorite food is apparently hot dog sausages (turkey of course!) and visitors pop them into burger buns and toss them towards the noisily grunting animals. The swimming pigs certainly live up to their reputation, greedily gobbling the food up while looking for more. Once it’s clear the food is gone, the pigs turn tail and return to their island paradise.
SWIMMING WITH PIGS INDEPENDENTLY
Swimmers can jump into the warm, waist-deep water and hand-feed the pigs, but keep your fingers well clear and watch out for those flailing trotters. More timid visitors may prefer to feed the pigs from the boat and take photographs of this surreal sight.
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