The Bahamas is the textbook definition of a Caribbean paradise, with hundreds of islands to explore, and miles of white-sand beaches fringed with glittering waters and swaying palm trees. Here are some options for island-hopping tours from Nassau.
Bay Street,Bay Street Nassau, Nassau, Bahamas
At the Straw Market, you can grab a hat to protect yourself from the sun or pick up souvenirs. In addition to hand-crafted merchandise, the Straw Market also offers other items like jewelry and toys. Shopping at the Straw Market also offers a chance to bargain; never accept the first offer, and have fun seeing how low you can go. Guided island tours typically include a stop at the market.
Things to Know Before You Go
Bring cash, as credit cards are not accepted by most vendors. US currency is accepted in Nassau.
The market can be crowded and cramped, and you’ll be on your feet while you explore, so it’s best to wear comfortable shoes and clothing.
To successfully bargain with vendors, don’t start with a too-low offer; instead try taking 30–50 percent off of the vendor’s initial price.
The market is difficult to navigate with a wheelchair.
How to Get There
The Straw Market is located downtown, on Bay Street, which runs along the northern coast of Nassau. It’s a short walk from the cruise terminal and about a 15-minute drive from the Atlantis resort. The market is close to popular attractions like Señor Frog's, Fort Charlotte, and the botanical gardens.
When to Get There
The market is open every day from morning through late evening. For the fewest crowds, try to visit the when there are no (or very few) cruise ships docked at the island. Mondays and Thursdays tend to be less crowded than other days. The Bahamas’ high season, which runs from November to mid-April, also brings crowds. You’re likely to score the best deals off-season, from spring through early fall.
The Queen's Staircase
Before (or after) visiting the Straw Market, head to the nearby Queen’s Staircase, 65 steps carved from solid limestone. The attraction—which was named in honor of Queen Victoria—is one of the island’s most popular spots and is featured on most guided tours of Nassau. Keep in mind that the climb is steep, so wear comfortable shoes if you plan to visit.
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