bimini or Florida?

Jul 9th, 2003, 09:14 AM
  #1  
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bimini or Florida?

We are planning to use 2 free R/T via SWA in Oct. & thought about flying to Florida & hopping over to Bimini-- for a quick/ cheap Caribbean trip.
We like to swim, snorkle & explore. Don't mind laid- back.
Bimini SAnds? Or The Big GAme Club?
North or South Bimini? Any recommendations?
Would the Florida PAnhandle-- be nice? Is it quiet or very populated?
Thanks for any insights.
Liz
lizzybirdy is offline  
Jul 9th, 2003, 10:06 AM
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If you are looking for laid back type vacation Bimini would fit the bill perfectly. The beach there is really beautiful and if you have read any Edgar Casey, you know that the "road" leading off Bimini is heading to Atlantis. Actually remains of an VERY ancient civilization were found in the Bahamas a few years ago, currently being explored, Atlantis? maybe, but it sure makes the story interesting.

I think I would choose the Big Game, so you have a nice pool area, are close to town and not far from the beach. Good snorkle spots all around the island. One tip DON'T swim off the docks there, the fishermen throw leftovers into the water there, and I saw a 6 foot shark lazily swimming around the boats.

One thing interesting about Bimini is the bread. Everyone bakes bread on island and you can smell it in the early am and it's wonderful, fresh and tastes so good. There's also a straw market and a few restaurants and a couple of nite spots. Not much else other than relaxation.

Have a great time.
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Jul 9th, 2003, 11:22 AM
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Wantsomesun just watered my appetite to return to Bimini. We rented Bimini Ocean Villas in North Bimini to do some reef surveys last summer. It is a beautiful, newly built villa with kitchen, polished wood floors and AC. It is owned by Barbara Checkley and is at the end of Queen's Highway (a sand and coral mixed with cement road where two golf carts can barely squeeze past each other), with complete privacy. Get the villa facing the beach, for the view is picturesque and incredible snorkeling 10 feet offshore. Both Barbara and her husband, who is the police chief of Bimini, have some royaty designation and they live 100 feet away, so you're guaranteed a safe time!! Both are really friendly people. Rent a golf cart and explore out of Alice Town, through Bailey Town, to the remote areas up north...more incredible snorkeling! The Bimini Road is offshore, too. Bring your snorkeling gear!!! Robert
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Jul 9th, 2003, 12:08 PM
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Robert,
It's been over ten years since I've visited- Are panhandlers still a nuisance at Bimini?
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Jul 9th, 2003, 12:27 PM
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As of last summer, no problem at all. My wife and I drove a golf cart to the isolated sections north of Bailey Town, and walked freely about in Alice Town as well. I was approached once to buy some drugs once during our 9-day stay there by a man on a bike, and he didn't hassle me when I declined. We shopped in the poor sections of Alice Town and Bailey Town, and never had a problem. All were very friendly at Manny's Dell, Bimini Bakery, the Compleat Angler, Red Lion, End of the World Bar, and Blue Water. The island was crawling with DEA agents, though. Maybe that's why I wasn't hassled more for drugs. Robert
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Jul 9th, 2003, 04:01 PM
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Thanks for the glowing reports.It sounded great to both of us.
I posted this under USA "Florida " also & got a very different opinion. However, both people had not been since early 90's.
THe only clincher is that the lowest fare I've found is $230 R/t. We can fly coast to coast for that. I was hoping it would be less since it's so close.
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Jul 9th, 2003, 06:24 PM
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Lizzybirdy; Yes, Chalks airlines is pretty expensive for a 20 minute flight. But, it's exciting to buzz Bimini and land in the harbor of Alice Town, watching the building zip by, then roaring overt the King's Highway onto the airport tarmack (60 ft. X 60 ft. cement slab). They fly the same Grumman seaplanes as Jimmy Buffet's. Robert
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Jul 10th, 2003, 05:09 AM
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lizzy, I was one of those who posted on the US site. I enjoyed my stay at Bimini in 1990 but it did have its negative aspects. I wouldn't trade my week there but I'm in no hurry to return. If you've seen the movie ISLANDS in the STREAM, based on the Hemingway novel set in Bimini (actually cobbled together by his widow and editors as it was not completed before Hemingway's unfortunate death in 1961),
and think Bimini is going to look like where the movie was filmed (which was in Hawaii), you will be sadly disappointed.
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Jul 10th, 2003, 05:50 AM
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lizzybird; On the Atlantic side of North Bimini is an area called Radio Beach. It is one of the most beautiful beaches I've snorkeled off of. It is pristine, with few people, and palm-tree lined. When I snorkeled there with an underwater video camera, over 50 reef fish were Id'd. The Bimini Big Game Club is nice, but it has no beach. If you like to island explore, rent a golf car and go girl! Re-read my other post. True, the town is not for the tourist who wants a 4-star hotel, except for the Bimini Big Game Club, but our villas on the more remote side of Bimini (Atlantic side) was incredible: A/C villa, Radio Beach and snorkeling reefs at doorstep, island exploring all the way north past Bailey Town, etc. I've rarely run into island with remote beaches and great snorkeling like Bimini. Robert
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Jul 10th, 2003, 06:03 AM
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Radio Beach had not been built when I was on Bimini in 1990. Humorously, I remember riding a rented moped to the north end only to chased back to town by a guard dog.
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Jul 10th, 2003, 07:40 AM
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If you are looking to relax and find pristine beaches where it's just you for miles you also might want to look at Eleuthera.

The island is about a 15 minute flight from Nassau and feels worlds away. The island is 110 miles long and not many people live on the island full time, so even during the "high" season the island is not very busy, it still has not been really discovered and there are lots of houses to rent right on the beach.

Have a great trip wherever you decide to go.
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Jul 10th, 2003, 07:51 AM
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I had a much better time on Green Turtle Cay in the Abacos. Stayed at the New Plymouth Inn. Breakfasts and dinners included. The little island had scuba, a very good bonefishing guide, boat rentals and a few other higher dollar hotels and places to eat. The beaches were cleaner and bigger than on Bimini. The population was much more friendly. Green Turtle reminded a lot of coastal North Carolina, where many on Green Turtle actually originated from.
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Jul 10th, 2003, 08:19 AM
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Radio Beach has never been "built." It is a natural area on the Atlantic side of North Bimini, although it looks manicured by a landscape artist, which it isn't. I think that damn dog you're talking about is still there. Robert
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Jul 10th, 2003, 11:21 AM
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2 questions, Robert. 1) Do underwear and bras still cover the walls at the End-of-the-World bar? 2) At the bar at the Compleate Angler, is there a photo of two fishermen holding up, as if they had hooked a large tuna, an upside down topless woman with a knock out body?
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Jul 10th, 2003, 11:40 AM
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Totally unrelated to the topic... I onceknew a Lizzybirdy. You wouldn't happen to have lived in C. Estado?
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Jul 10th, 2003, 12:53 PM
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Mariarosa-- Never heard of the place, sorry.
Robert makes the place sound perfect for a little R&R. We are not considering anything further, like the Abacos, since this is sort of a "bonus'trip and we didn't want to spend a lot on airfare & extras.
So, were still debating the $450 puddle jump, as exciting as it may be, and checking out the Keys.
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Jul 10th, 2003, 03:04 PM
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Huwmorgan; yes the end of world bar has many more panties, underpants, bras, and some things I don't know what they are. In response to your second question, my reply is "No", but you must remember my wife sometimes reads my posts. Lizzybird; I'm going to Great Guana Cay next week to do an underwater video reef survey. Yes, Abaco's are nice, especially the Sea of Abaco with a rental boat, but interestingly, we just talked the other day about returning to Bimini. So easy to get to, and when you explore and discover all the neat reefs along the shoreline, you just have to come back. I have a 5-minute video of a 5 ft. baracuda following me around Radio Beach. Robert
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Jul 10th, 2003, 09:29 PM
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We were on Great Guana about 2 years ago. It was Oct. & many of the beaches were windy and much too rough for snorkeling. So we took a boat trip to other spots. Went out with "Froggies" something or other. Talk about a laid back place.It was remote & quiet &there were no secrets on that island.Hope Town was quaint & somehow more appealing to me. I do remember reading about Green Turtle Cay, Eleuthera. So many places...
Well, we were just hoping to sneak in a little slice of Caribbean, or something closely resembling it with our free round trip.
5Ft. barracuda? Tell me most of the fish were wildly colorful & under 3 ft.
Fish with teeth still unnerve me.
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Jul 11th, 2003, 04:16 AM
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Going bonefishing in Green Turtle, I realized how close humans are to aquatic wildlife. At the shallow bonefish salt holes, sharks often just bask in the sunny water and it is neat to see them up close just off your Boston Whaler. Bonefishing off quieter beaches we also saw barracudas only ten-fifteen yards away from swimmers. If only the swimmers knew who was observing them swim.
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Jul 11th, 2003, 05:07 AM
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Well, baracuda are basically harmless, and are very curious. Divers note they follow them around like dogs. One snorkeler, however, was attacked from Green Turtle Cay several weeks ago. He was with Brendal's Dive Center, and they went to Manjack Cay, just east of Green Turtle Cay. The attack came quick and left him with dozens of stitches. The barracuda attacked the flashy watch; no offense intended, a case of mistaken identity. Just don't go snorkeling or diving with flashy jewelry. Yes, the beaches and reefs off GTC are beautiful. Robert
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