The Abacos of The Bahamas is one of the world’s top boating and sailing destinations
The Abacos is known as one of the world’s best boating and sailing destinations. Its quaint colonial towns, golf courses, and miles of the most beautiful beaches in the world make for a complete Caribbean vacation destination. With a wonderful selection of hotels, the best resorts, restaurants, and bars, you have the option to get pampered or live free, fishing and diving in the Out Islands.
- Elbow Cay Lighthouse in Hope Town
- Abaco Neem Store & Farm
- Treasure Cay Beach
Consisting of 120-miles, many view The Abacos's chain of islands as a mini-Bahamas. Great Abaco Island and Little Abaco serve as the “mainland,” with a string of barrier islands separating them from the Atlantic.
With one traffic light, Marsh Harbour is the bright lights and big city spot of the Out Islands. Enjoy a wide selection of hotels, restaurants, bars, and things to do in The Bahamas. As a charter boat central with several full-service marinas, you can dock your own boat or find a rental – both live aboard sailboats and powerboats are available.
North of Marsh Harbour is Treasure Cay, a hotel, golf, marina and real estate development wrapped around a beach with the whitest, softest sand you’ve ever seen. To the south lies Little Harbour, a picturesque bay where you’ll find a small artist colony based around the Johnston family and Pete Johnston’s Pete’s Pub.
From Great Abaco, set out across the Sea of Abaco, and steer toward the island of your choosing. This is an island hopper's paradise; a place where artist and romantics escape. Visit our Where To Stay page for a list of Bahamas flights and hotel packages on Treasure Cay.
The Cays of Abaco
The Abacos were settled by English colonists who remained loyal to the crown after the American Revolutionary War, which is why settlements like Hope Town on Elbow Cay and New Plymouth on Green Turtle Cay have the look of a New England fishing town complete with picket fences and gingerbread trim – of course with the distinctive Bahamian touch of pastel colors.
Hope Town is home to the famous candy-striped lighthouse. A favorite photo op that caused quite the controversy when it was under construction in 1863. Up until then, the island's residents made a comfortable living by salvaging ships that wrecked on the offshore reefs.
North of Elbow Cay, Man-O-War is another loyalist settlement, a conservative “dry” island. Known as The Abacos’ boat-building center, this protected harbor is lined with boat fitting and sail shops. Next up the chain is the beachy Great Guana Cay, famed for Sunday barbecues at Nipper's Bar.
The Abacos' ferry service makes reaching the Out Islands, up to Great Guana Cay, easy. Think of the ferry as a local bus, but with a much better view and friendlier passengers. To reach Green Turtle Cay, head north on Great Abaco to Treasure Cay where you can catch a boat for the short hop. There, you’ll find a quaint town with a full-service marina, hotels as well as diving and snorkeling services.
Diving and snorkeling are excellent throughout The Abacos with several protected areas such as Fowl Cay National Reserve and Pelican Cays National Park. Massive reefs with swim-through caves are filled wall to wall with silver baitfish. There's even dive spots where you’re almost guaranteed to see Caribbean reef sharks.
Fishing is huge in The Abacos, from the excellent bonefishing in Cherokee Sound and the “marls” to big-game marlin and tuna prowling the Atlantic. They're all within sight of the Out Islands. When it comes to where to vacation in The Bahamas, The Abacos should top every list.