Saturday, May 26, 2012


Woke up the next morning and headed to the domestic side of the Nassau Airport for an 8 AM flight to Staniel Cay. While waiting to board the woman from the airline announced that boarding would be delayed one hour "due to late arrival of equipment".  Then a few minutes later I saw this same woman board eight or nine fellows some who looked like they might be government officials. Looked to me like our plane was commandeered and we would board after the plane returns from dropping them off. Oh well, it is the Bahamas. One hour later we and seven Bahamian workers board a plane that looks way too small for all of us but, fit we did and made the 30 minute flight to Staniel Cay:

"Staniel Cay is a small Bahamas island in the middle of the Exuma chain, where neither the temperature nor population rarely rises above 100. A mere dot on the map, it is one of the best kept secrets in the travel industry. There is no bank, no ATM, no super department store, no big hotel. A rental car is a golf cart. There is incredibly clear water, world-class snorkeling, diving and fishing, deserted beaches and a friendly native village." - Chaos to Serenity

We booked a one night stay at the Staniel Cay Yacht Club before getting on our chartered boat. The Staniel Cay Yacht Club is a major stop for boats cruising the Exhumas.

It has certainly been expanded over the years as this photo from 1961 shows:

Here are the docks as they look today:

I took a little walk down the docks and my attention was drawn to the numbers on this fuel pump which is another reason a lot of boats stop here.  Fuel stops are limited in the Exumas:

Yes, that's an almost a six thousand dollar fuel bill on the meter. Seeing this made me glad I've got a sailboat even better that I use electric propulsion and will never see a fuel bill like this in my lifetime.

Over the years some note worthy celebrity sailors have stopped here like Walter Cronkite:

Also scenes from the James Bond Thunderball film were shot nearby:

Another reason the Staniel Cay Yacht Club may be so popular boaters is because it has pretty well stocked liquor store on the premises:

As well as dark waterfront bar/restaurant whose ceiling is filled with yacht club pennants on the ceiling  and an obligatory pool table:

The Staniel Cay Yacht Club also has a few rental cottages on the property.We booked the Key Lime Cottage which had much more room than we needed. Which was similar to this one:

It was the only cottage that was available when we booked it. It had a very pleasant waterfront view on both the first floor:

and the upstairs bedroom:

When renting one of the cottages you can also rent one of the Staniel Cay Yacht Club skiffs to fish or check out some nearby Cays and during your stay. They are located on electric lifts on docks near the cottages:

There is also a nice little beach near the cottages too if you just want to take a quick dip:

As far as entertainment goes. The highlight of the day occurred near the docks after the local fishermen came in and started cleaning the days catch of fish and conchs which will soon find their way to the on premises   restaurant:

Of course there were others waiting around the dock for morsel or two to come there way:

After watching the show at the fish cleaning station I had a sun-downer drink from the bar and waited for the dinner bell to ring. Once again Conch was on my plate and I have to admit it was one of the most succulent Cracked Conch I've tasted. After dinner I enjoyed a night cap back at the cottage on the deck. Then it was off to bed for tomorrow we board the catamaran and head out to explore the waters of the Exumas.

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