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WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN SPENDING THE HOLIDAYS IN THE BAHAMAS

Deciding to vacation in the Bahamas over Christmas or New Year’s Eve has many benefits, the most obvious being the near-perfect weather.

It is a great way to get out of the cold and avoid the craziness that always seems to accompany this particular time of year. Not only will you be spending your days relaxing on the beach and soaking up some much-needed sunshine, but you will also be able to decompress and participate in local festivals with family and friends.

In fact, the best time of year to visit the Bahamas is December through April. The islands get very little rain during these months, which means you are pretty much guaranteed good weather. Think daily temperatures of 75 to 85 degrees, a light breeze and an island bustling with like-minded people. The only downside to spending the holiday season in the Bahamas is that you won’t be the only person wanting to escape the snow and frigid temperatures. However, escaping to your Grand Isle villa allows you to get away from the crowds whenever you like, enabling you to celebrate Christmas, New Year’s Eve, or both, in the warmth of Great Exuma.

Below you will find more information on what to expect when spending the holidays in the Bahamas.

JOIN IN THE CELEBRATION OF BAHAMIAN CULTURE AT THE JUNKANOO FESTIVAL

If you are planning on spending Christmas in the Bahamas, you must attend the Junkanoo Festival or you will not be experiencing all the islands have to offer this time of year.

Celebrated on Boxing Day (December 26th) and January 1st, this festival is perhaps the best way to celebrate the local culture. Junkanoo is a celebration that is in place to remember the freedom that slaves used to receive this time of year, and it is characterized by Bahamian music, costumes, and unique styles of dance. This is an excellent way to get a taste of the local scene, and it’s the time of year when everyone on the islands comes together for this incredibly joyous occasion.

Keep in mind that this is an extremely popular holiday and a busy time of year for the islands, so it is a good idea to reserve seats on Bay Street in Nassau ahead of time so that you don’t miss out on the festivities. Additionally, be sure to visit the Junkanoo Expo, a waterfront museum dedicated to showcasing the most innovative artistic creations from past festivals.

HOPE TOWN LIGHTHOUSE: A TROPICAL KIND OF CHRISTMAS TREE

The Hope Town Lighthouse (located on north central Elbow Cay Island) is another must see over Christmas. Every year, this structure is decorated with lights from the bottom of the lighthouse all the way to the observation deck. Intended to resemble a Christmas tree, the lighthouse can be viewed from many of the surrounding restaurants and shops. Something unique to note is that the preferred mode of transportation on this island is a festively decorated golf cart.

EMBRACE THE NEW YEAR, BAHAMAS STYLE

Whether you are opting to spend either Christmas or New Year’s Eve in the Bahamas, or both, you won’t be disappointed. At New Year’s Eve, you can expect festive meals at the local restaurants, usually involving seafood, and there is always a fireworks show. The fireworks are displayed between Nassau and Elbow Cay and can be seen far and wide. However, the best place to see them is from the southern beach of Elbow Cay.

Beyond all the festivities on the islands for both Christmas and New Year’s Eve, you will have plenty of time to relax on the beach, play games, scuba dive, fish or whatever your heart desires.

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