Bahamas Aqua Cat Cruises: Aqua Cat
It's the sort of thing that nobody remembers to include in the prenup. You are a diving machine. When you travel, you consider it a sin if your gear ever gets dry. But your significant other is all about eco-touring: sightseeing from a luxury yacht, cruising uninhabited islands; relaxing on a nobody-there-but-you, white-sand beach; and kayaking the mangrove forests. If that's the case, you don't need a lawyer; you need Aqua Cat.
This Bahamas live-aboard departs from and returns to Nassau, a port of entry convenient to many American passengers. And while Nassau offers a full range of island diversions and nightlife, the Aqua Cat cruise heads straight to the Bahamas of yesteryear and to the unspoiled beauty of the Exuma Cays.
The Exuma Cays, at the northern end of the Exuma chain, are so undeveloped that the only other people apt to be seen in that area are explorers traveling via sailboat and snorkelers arriving via seaplanes. The cays and their sugar-sand beaches remain as pristine as they were half a century ago when the first Spanish galleons sailed past.
Enjoying such an area requires guides who know it intimately, and the Aqua Cat is still captained by the same people who first took its helm in 2001. The mate has been with the boat more than four years, the chef nearly as long.
Lemon sharks, stingrays, groupers and more abound around the more than 200 islands of the northern Exumas, where much of the water within diveable depths is protected as a National Underwater Park. Sites here see just a handful of divers per year.
At the end of the day, travelers retire to staterooms that are larger than the typical cruise-ship cabins. The vessel truly is an international path to domestic tranquility.
Aqua Cat is a 102-foot luxury catamaran yacht with a 35-foot beam, carrying up to 22 passengers in 11 staterooms, served by a crew of 10. Nitrox is available and diving is done from the swim platform. A 28-foot tender (the Sea Dog) is available to assist on drift dives and for shore excursions. Kayaks are available, and numerous eco-adventures are offered. For more information: sportdiver.com/aquacatcruises