Beaches in the Bahamas: Swimming Pigs and Other Surprises

It was by chance that we were fortunate enough to come to such an exotic place as the Bahamas. We were delighted by the fact that every day we saw something new that captured our imagination!

Young men near air plane Bahamas

Amazing Bahamas islands view

We stayed there for five days and we managed to visit one extraordinary location each day. The Exumas actually consist of 365 islands and the locals joke that if you stay here for a year, you could visit one island per day!

Adorable little pigs on Pig Island

What impressed us first and most vividly were…pigs! Swimming, feral (but very friendly) pigs! The small heavenly islet that’s home to these animals is affectionately called Pig Island. (The official name of the island is Big Major Cay.) There are several theories about how these creatures appeared here. According to one story, some pirates brought them in as foodstuff but they somehow managed to survive. According to another version – a more realistic one – these pigs were bred simply to attract tourists. But now their origin doesn’t really matter - they are so cute that people feel excited just coming here and feeding and playing with these animals.

Funny pigs nose

These cool pigs were so successful in settling in that they have grown large and round. In hot weather, they can chill out in the shade on the white sand but, as soon as they notice an approaching boat or ship, they immediately rush into the water to greet the newly arrived guests. They swim really well and are fearless, even trying to get into the boats as they reach them so that they can enjoy the treats brought for them as soon as possible.

Pig Major Cay in the Bahamas

Thanks to freshwater springs on the island, the pigs look wonderful, with healthy shiny bristles. Tourists love holding the small piglets in their arms, and the adult pigs even know some commands like "Drop" or "Sit". This exotic island with such extraordinary residents is especially memorable. It is, perhaps, the only place in the world where you can swim with funny pigs!

Relaxing in the Bahams beach

Bahamas beach view

But this is only one of the surprises the Bahamas have in store for you.

Relaxing on the beach

Couple under water in the Bahamas

We were also struck by one of Compass Cay Island's services - swimming with sharks. This was not a shark breeding site where they grow tame and accustomed to being caressed. No, these were genuinely wild sharks that just come here for a massage! In fact, they really like being stroked although their skin (or hide) felt like asphalt. To tell the truth, this activity is not for the faint-hearted and it requires a good deal of courage to overcome your fear and go into the water, which teems with these sharks. Yes, they were the most harmless of sharks, nurse sharks, but they are still wild animals so nobody can give you a 100% safety guarantee which makes it pretty exciting. For thrill-seekers, it’s a great place!

Relaxing after snorling

Thunderball Grotto – an islet of extraordinary beauty - is a popular place for divers and amateur snorkellers. It is not surprising then that the Grotto became one of the favoured filming sites for James Bond movies. It is absolutely stunning; coral reefs, illuminated by the sun’s rays piercing through the opening in the grotto and shoals of colourful fish...

Enjoying surfing in the Bahamas

Sunken plane in Staniel Cay

Another unusual place is the sunken plane, which was shot down long ago because it was carrying narcotics. Eventually, algae covered the plane in a very picturesque manner and different tropical fish became its inhabitants - this site is likely to soon become another good idea for a film shoot. Staniel Cay is the location of the underwater wreck.

Enjoying wonderful view

Delicious fruits in Bahamas

We visited one more unusual island - the Island of Iguanas - Bitter Guana Cay. This is an island of uncommon beauty and its inhabitants are also pleased to welcome guests in the hope of getting some fresh fruit.

Happy woman in the Bahamas

Of course, there’s far more to these wonderful islands than these experiences so the only thing you have to do – but the most important one – is come here!

Take me there!

How to get there:Fly to Miami. From there, Staniel Cay Island is accessible by boat, regularly scheduled flights, charter airplanes and private planes.

Where to stay:Staniel Cay Yacht Club offers beautiful waterfront bungalows starting from $185 per night for two people.

When to go:The Bahamas enjoy more than 300 days of sunshine a year so there really isn’t a bad time to go. To avoid the crowds, go between May and September which is offseason there.

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Written by

I’m a professional photographer and while I mostly shoot for stock, I really enjoy travel photography. All the best trips I’ve taken in my life were on a motorbike.  There is something great about hitting the road on a motorcycle. I believe that only by travelling on two wheels can you feel all the vibes of the country you’re visiting.

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