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A Beloved Bahamas Vacation Spot: San Salvador

The island's unique history consists of landmarks, monuments & reminders of colonial development

In 1891, the Chicago Herald Monument was erected by the Chicago Herald. The simple white cross commemorates the first landfall of Columbus on October 12th, 1492. The Mexican Monument, which housed the Olympic flame in 1968, is also at this location. After the erection of the UNESCO Monument, San Salvador was declared a “Monument of the Quincentennial,” acknowledging it as the geographical starting point of the “new American epoch.” Furthermore, the Nao Santa Maria Monument commemorates the Japanese effort to recreate Columbus’ flagship journey.

Watling’s Castle, located in Sandy Point, is a late 18th-century loyalist plantation house named for George Watling. Its remaining ruins include the three-story Greathouse, kitchen, slave quarters, barns, and boundary walls, while the restored Lookout Tower overlooks French Bay.

The Great Lake Preserve served as a major waterway in days past. Located in the center of San Salvador, it has been designated a protected area to preserve its natural beauty.

At low tide, it's easy to wade out to Cut Cay, located across the shallow off North Point.

At Pigeon Creek, archeological excavations have uncovered evidence of the indigenous people of The Bahamas, the Lucayan/Taino Amerindians.

The Bahamian Field Station operated as a U. S. Naval Base for many years. Once used as a center for academic research in Archaeology, Biology, Geology, and Marine Sciences, it now provides accommodations, meals, and air transportation for students studying the island’s unique environment.

Landmarks of Rum Cay

The HMS Conqueror, a 101-gun warship, was built in 1855 and served in the Crimean War. It lies in 30-feet of water in a staghorn gully where it sank off Rum Cay in 1861. Currently, the wreck serves as an underwater museum and is the property of the Bahamas Government. None of the ships' contents can be removed, but adventuresome divers can still find the shaft, anchor chains, and hawser holes of this infamous vessel.

The deep reefs and drop-offs surrounding San Salvador were once a pirate haven. There's staghorn coral at Summer Point Reef, diving at Pinder's Point, and 60-feet of coral wall that almost reach the surface at Grand Canyon.

When it comes to San Salvador, a Caribbean vacation doesn't get any better. This thriving eco-travel and wedding destination features some of the most beautiful beaches in the world.