Avoiding crowded beaches, casino gambling, and throngs of people much like yourself looking to get away from it all are good reasons why you should visit Exuma, Bahamas. But beyond the wide open sun-drenched skies, limitless coral reefs, and small islands just offshore awaiting discovery, the local cuisine is sure to provide plenty of adventure for the palate as well. Here the food hasn’t been as Americanized compared to Nassau or Freeport. The following itinerary will get you started:
Since there are no signs advertising beach access, it is always an adventure hunting down the best sandy stretches. Start out by renting a car (a must for getting around here) and drive north of Georgetown towards Rolleville on the Queens Highway. A couple portions of road in the vicinity of Hermitage are close enough to the ocean to see aquamarine waves lapping against sugar white sands. Further up in Rolleville at Coco Plum Beach, you can stroll along endless sandbars and collect sand dollars. Be sure to refuel at the Cocoa Plum Beach Bar and Grill. Let Dana and Dee Thompson-Wilkinson prepare you a spicy Cajun chicken sandwich and tropical bread pudding while you nurse their signature Panty Drop consisting of 3 different rums and mango juice.
Driving south of Georgetown, you will pass through more remote settlements such as Rolle Town, The Ferry, and Forbes Hill before reaching Williamstown at the southern tip of Little Exuma. When passing through Williamstown, don’t miss Santana’s, a tiny roadside open-air bar. Order a Pain Killer consisting of rum and coconut juice and watch Dee Rolle-Styles prepare cracked (battered and flash fried) lobster or grilled steak behind the bar while you perch on a plank bench chatting with the locals. Another more sumptuous dining venue further north in The Ferry is Peace and Plenty Bonefish Lodge. Sit out on the patio overlooking the waters of Mariah Harbour Cay National Park and watch the sunset fade into complete darkness while dining on chicken souse or blackened grouper. Cap off the evening by watching the owner feed the resident lemon sharks who swim every night up the channel into a lit pool sunken in the outdoor patio.
Stocking Island, visible from the shores of Georgetown, is just a short ferry ride from the Peace and Plenty Inn in Georgetown. It will be the best $10 you ever spend! This is truly an untrammeled paradise complete with cabanas, palm studded white sand beaches fringed with frangipani and hibiscus, and crystal clear waters with coral reefs right off shore to snorkel. The Peace and Plenty Club is the only venue for lunch unless you pack your own. Doralee Roache grills up her specialty tender and spicy conch burgers. These pair particularly well with ice cold Kalik, the Bahamian Budweiser.