The Ministry of Tourism operates tourist information booths at the airport, open daily from 8:30 am to 11:30 pm, and at the Welcome Center (Festival Place) adjacent to Prince George Wharf, open daily from 9 am to 5 pm. The Ministry of Tourism's People-to-People Program sets you up with a Bahamian family with similar interests to show you local culture firsthand.
Ministry of Tourism (242/302–2000. www.bahamas.com.)
People-to-People Program (242/324–9772. www. bahamas.com/peopletopeople.)
If You Have 3 Days
We're guessing you came to the Bahamas to get some sun, so don't waste any time. Decide whether you'd prefer a secluded stretch of sand or a beach right in the middle of the action, such as Cable Beach —New Providence has both. After relaxing on the beach, check out the downtown bar-and-club scene. Spend Day 2 taking in the markets, gardens, and historic sites of Nassau. A good starting point is Rawson Square, in the heart of the commercial area. Do your shopping in the morning, hitting Bay Street, the capital's main street, and Festival Place at Prince George Wharf. To avoid the afternoon heat, visit the National Art Gallery, checking out the colonial architecture along the way. Head to Arawak Cay (the Fish Fry to locals) for dinner; pick a shack and order an authentic Bahamian meal of grilled snapper (served whole) washed down with a cold Kalik or Sands beer. On your third day, tour Paradise Island. Try your luck at the Atlantis casino or explore the giant aquariums (non–resort guests will have to pay a hefty $39 for adults or $29 for kids under 12). For your final night, book reservations at one of Atlantis's fancier restaurants; Nobu, Mesa Grill, or Café Martinique will serve up a last supper to remember.
If You Have 5 Days
On Day 4, consider a day trip to one of the Out Islands. Quaint Harbour Island is just two hours away on the Bohengy ferry (242/323–2166 www.bahamasferries.com), or book seats on one of the large speedboats that will take you to a private island in the Exumas. For your final day, rent a car or scooters and head to Western New Providence, stopping for lunch at Goodfellow Farms on your way to the Clifton Heritage Park.
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