BAHAMAS -- A TROPICAL DREAM COME TRUE
The islands of the Bahamas consist of more than 700 islands covering over 500 miles of clear blue water with a total land area of approximately 5,382 square miles. Although the islands make up an archipelago containing the world's third largest reef system, only 14 of the islands are considered to be "main" islands -- yet all 14 are a different mix of cultures, customs and history. For more on the Bahamas in general, visit the official Bahamas website or other travel-information websites like geographica.com
History History notes that it was Christopher Columbus himself who named the Bahamas in 1492 after the phrase "baja mar" meaning shallow water or sea. The majority of Bahamians are descendents of West African slaves brought to the islands to work the cotton plantations. The Bahamas are also populated by descendents of English settlers who came to the Bahamas in 1647 and Loyalists who fled the United States during the American Revolution. Today tourism is the major economic resource for the Bahamas. For more on the rich history of The Bahamas, visit The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism website.
Location The closest Island of the Bahamas is Bimini, which is just 40 miles off the coast of Miami, Florida! The most popular island is Grand Bahama, home to Freeport the second largest city and port of entry in the Bahamas and is about 105 miles from Miami. Paradise Island is about 185 miles from Miami, and here you'll find the capital city of Nassau. Maps to check out include one from the World Atlas website and an interactive map from Maplandia.
Climate The Islands of the Bahamas are fortunate to have a temperate climate that offers year-round travel. You can plan on weather in the following ranges:
- 80 to 90 degrees with high humidity in the summer months
- 70 to 80 degrees during the winter months
- evening temperatures average 5-6 degrees cooler
- sea surface temperatures vary from 74 to 84 degrees, depending on the season
- hurricanes are not frequent but the possibility exists during June November
- rainy season is May through October