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Need help!

Which Nassau hotels are on sale?
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Chicago, Illinois
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Need help!

We booked our trip from December 23-30.Where to stay in Nassau ? We do not want ' all inclusive' .I am traveling with my husband and 17 year old son. He do not want snorkeling. My trip plan is like this-

ON 24th-Blue lagoon or Rose Island ???

ON 25TH-Zoo and Beaches ???

ON 26TH-Harbour Island by air.

ON 27TH-Exumas cays by POWER BOAT ADVENTURES.

ON 28TH-SANDAL TOES OR Abaco ???

ON 29TH-Beaches.

Any changes and advice Please ???

Thank you in advance.

Nassau, New...
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1. Re: Need help!

Wow, you will need some serious vitamins to have enough energy to manage all that! The first 2 days starts out ok, then goes frenetic.

First things first, many hotels will be completely booked during your dates, so finding a vacancy at a price you can afford will be your first big hurdle. Do you plan to stay only in Nassau, or are you looking to do some out island stays? Either way, your priority now is to find a place to stay before you even think about activities.

Your Blue Lagoon, Sandy Toes and Powerboat Adventures trips all leave from Paradise Island, so staying in that area might be best. You can also take a fast ferry on a day trip to Harbour Island from there. If you choose to fly to Harbour Island, you will need to take a taxi to/from the airport at roughtly $36 each way, plus tip.

Flying to Harbour Island is into North Eleuthera airport, then taxi and water boat to Harbour Island. The ferry goes directly there from Nassau and is an easy day trip.

Abaco is not really a day trip -- by the time you get there, you'll have time for a quick look around then have to be back at the airport again.

Personally, I think you're trying to do way too much for a short visit. Pick two islands at most, then go from there. I would suggest a few days in Nassau, then a few days in Harbour Island. That will make your stay a lot less frantic and give you more time to enjoy the surroundings.

Another thing to keep in mind -- Christmas and December 26 (Boxing Day) are public holidays in the Bahamas, so you are not likely to find much open unless in the big hotels. Also, many businesses close 1/2 day on December 24. You have picked one of the busiest times of the year to visit, so are not likely to find bargains in either hotel or airfare.

Chicago, Illinois
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2. Re: Need help!

LOL! I like your quick and thoughtful reply! We are going to have rest days on the 25th and 29th. Maybe I can put the Harbor Island trip on the 29th, the sandal toes on the 26th, and have a rest day on the 27th. I am flying from Chicago. We have already booked flights. I am going to book hotels tomorrow. How are the Hilton and Sheraton hotels?Thank you.

Nassau, New...
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3. Re: Need help!

Hilton is very nice -- primarily a biusiness hotel, but increasingly popular with tourists -- at the heart of downtown with all the shopping just steps away. Also water taxis over to Paradise Island nearby.

Sheraton technically doesn't exist any more, as it has been rebranded as a Melia hotel. Not sure what iimpact that will have on the place for the future, but it has really fallen in appearance and upkeep, IMHO. The rooms are much cheaper than the Hilton, but you get what you pay for. Plus, being on Cable Beach, you are out of the way from most of the activities you mention -- except being <15 minutes from the airport.

Personally, I would go with the Hilton. Nice hotel, nicer rooms, good location downtown, yet not so urban that you can't enjoy the surroundings, steps from shopping and restaurants, and <10 minutes from Paradise Island.

Again, remember December 26 is a public holiday here, so you may find that Sandy Toes or other tours may not be operating. Afterall, everyone will be at Junkanoo that night!

Chicago, Illinois
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4. Re: Need help!

We just booked a room with a water view at the Paradise Island Resort.I read a lot of negative reviews,but we are only staying for a little while.We are still looking at the Hilton for last minute deals. The above dates are so pricey.Thank you for your information.

Belleville, Ontario
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5. Re: Need help!

You don't mention Atlantis at all. Not interested? If you were I would recommend Comfort Suites on Paradise Island. Close to everything and includes breakfast, WiFi, and access to all Atlantis. My teens loved it. We also did Blue Lagoon Dolphin Encounters and enjoyed the day. Good luck with your trip.

Edited: 07 December 2013, 15:18
Chicago, Illinois
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6. Re: Need help!

Comfort Suits and Hilton are full. In Hilton -Only king bed available .We want to take day pass for Atlantis .My son wants to do Dolphin Swim.

Which one is better?Blue lagoon or Atlantis?

Nassau, New...
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7. Re: Need help!

I don't think you have to do Atlantis - there's lots more to do - as you've already discovered! Just remember, the day pass to Atlantis is not always available, it can sell out from cruise ship sales and/or when the hotel is full they restrict sales.

Are you asking which is better for a day - to spend it at Blue Lagoon vs Atlantis waterpark, or which is better for the dolphin experience? If it's the latter, then I'd go with the Blue Lagoon one - it's a scenic boat ride out and back, and on an island where you can spend time & explore, with a more natural looking pen for the dolphins than the one at Atlantis. Just my 2 cents worth!

As DT mentioned - it's a peak time when you'll be here - you should book everything in advance that you want to do, or risk having to seek other options e.g. for your Exuma trip you could also go with Island World, and for Rose Island have a look at Flying Cloud or Barefoot Sailing Cruises.

Have a Great Trip!

Edited: 09 December 2013, 03:23
Chicago, Illinois
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8. Re: Need help!

Thank you! We are booking Dolphin swim in the Blue lagoon.When we contacted them they told us that we do not need to buy observer tickets, so we are buying tickets for ride which includes lunch.We want to skip Harbour Island trip.We want to watch Junkanoo parade.Do we need to buy tickets in advance?

Nassau, New...
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9. Re: Need help!

Hi PG! You can watch the Junkanoo parade without buying tickets. If you do want tickets, then you should buy them in advance. Here's my "take" on it...

For Junkanoo, if it were me, I might not buy tickets. It gets very crowded and so yes, if you have tickets, you will have a place to sit BUT after about 2am until 6am it may be very difficult for you to leave to go back to your hotel, because the ticketed seats are more in the center of the parade, and did I say? It gets very crowded :) Assuming you want to leave, but it does go on all night!

Instead of tickets, what I have done is stand to watch (for free). You will not be able to sit, but you can stand. From one end of the parade route, either coming from the East or West end of town, I go in along the route maybe 50m along the road, and find a place to stand up against the barricade. I go early, right after the fireworks, and stay in my spot to wait for the parade to begin. Then I am quite close to the 'exit' to leave the blocked off (no car) area to head home. I usually stay about 2 hours, and this is not enough time to see all the groups, but is still fun.

The Junkanoo start time, I think, is 1am. It may start on time, but more likely it is 30 mins. or an hour late to start. I think it is great to see - there are 100s if not 1000s of participants, with floats and costumes, music and dancing. It will last probably until 11am or noon the next day. It used to end at 5am or 6am but now it is so big it lasts longer. There are teams, doing a competition, there are judges at Rawson Square (the center of Bay Street) and I believe that each team (the teams have 100s of members, or at least a lot) must go around the whole route 3 times.

SO, also you could go early in the morning, but it is better to see in the dark. And, you can stay and watch all night, if you want to stay awake.

I hope this helps and have fun watching the "rushing"....!

Edited: 13 December 2013, 00:32
Nassau, New...
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10. Re: Need help!

Another thing, if you want to spend more money, and be up, and away from so many people, there will be places upstairs with a balcony where you can buy tickets and they will include food and drink. The tickets are probably about $200pp. Or more...

These places I can think of are Skans Café, Athena Café and Iguana Café.

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