My family of four recently visited Grand Bahama Island for some family fun during the kids’ summer break. We used Bahamas Air non-stop flight from Richmond to Freeport and in just over two hours, we were transported from the mid-Atlantic to the warm and hospitable Bahamas. The trip started out perfectly; we departed and arrived on time – just the way we like it! Upon arrival, there were plenty of taxis available to take us to our resort, the Radisson Grand Lucayan.
The check-in process at the resort was a little slow, but I believe that was due more to a challenging family checking in ahead of us than to the front desk staff. The staff was pleasant and we were treated to fresh lemonade while we waited.
We had a comfortable marina-view double room with a balcony overlooking the harbor, the Pelican Bay Resort, the tennis courts and the Marketplace. Our only concern was that the air conditioning unit was rather noisy; however, we were rarely in our room so this did not bother us.
The Grand Lucayan has several onsite restaurants, and a pool bar called Hammerheads. We snacked at the coffee shop, toured Willy Broadleaf during a manager’s reception and dined at Iries (Caribbean influence). We also ate at the Marketplace directly across the street from the resort. It has numerous restaurants with all kinds of food, local craft stands, jewelry and clothing stores and rum punch stands! They all had a very casual, laid back vibe. One afternoon we hiked a brief way down the beach to Billy Joe’s, basically a little shack on the beach, for the most delicious conch fritters. It was quite a lively party scene down there!
We loved the lovely pools, one of which goes right up to the sand so you can sit at the pool and have the sensation that the ocean is right below you. The water temperature was very refreshing and the color was a gorgeous blue. The giant chess sets on the resort grounds were a lot of fun and very popular with guests. My 11 and 15 year olds enjoyed the water volleyball and my husband enjoyed playing basketball. One day a water trampoline was available at the beach, but other days it was not out due to yellow flag warnings. Beach vendors approved by the resort were available to arrange banana boat, glass bottom boat or snorkeling and scuba trips, and there were numerous water sports options available at the marketplace as well.
A special highlight was a visit to UNEXSO (Underwater Explorer’s Society) for a Dolphin experience. After a short boat ride from the marina to the dolphin training facility (included in the price), we met Coral, one of the protected dolphins. Our trainer was fantastic and taught us a lot about the dolphin. Coral had lots of personality, we got to pet her and my daughter even got to feed her! By some standards, the $82 price per person was a bit steep, but we loved it and thought it worth every penny. Other dolphin experiences where you swim in open water with the dolphins are also available.
Overall, this was a very convenient and economical way for our family to relax together in the stress-free Bahamian atmosphere. There were interactive activities for all ages and everyone was very friendly and very laid-back. They would tell you – relax, you’re in the Bahamas!
If you are ready for a hassle-free getaway to welcoming Grand Bahama, contact Covington Travel’s vacation experts to plan your trip today.
All photos graciously provided by Laurie and may not be republished without expressed consent.