5 Years ago, my family traveled to Treasure Cay in the Abaco Islands. I recently wrote this blog but have yet to share until today. I felt I could never truly portray the beauty and wonder of the islands. However, this morning, in the wake of the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian, I feel I should pay respect to the beautiful islands that we experienced which have now been decimated.
Our plane landed at the tiny airport one could only expect to be be perfectly fitting for a laid back outer island experience. We were greeted by the smell of island air and found it refreshing that the “big city” island was anything but what a city would feel like. Our driver, Sydney Hart, loaded us in the cab and told us up sharing how thankful he was for our call as business had been slow. “My phone ring, and I say Thank You Jesus!” He quickly whisked us the less than one mile trip across the island to the harbor where our boat was waiting. We quickly loaded our bags and kids onto the 24’ fishing boat that would be ours for the next seven days. The manager gave us a quick run dow of the boat, showed us the GPS marked coordinates of previous visitors that had made the trek to Treasure Cay, handed us the key, and told us to enjoy our trip. Since we had ignored all warnings heeded by family and friends to not make the 40 minute trip by boat, but instead take a cab, I asked if it was safe for us to do this. He laughed, looked out at the Sea of Abaco and assured me that it was not only safe, the sea was calm, and there was nothing that could go wrong. So, off we went with the wind in our hair, the smell of salt water in our nostrils, and the sun on our skin. The boat cut through the crystal clear water and we could see the varying depths below us.
We arrived at Treasure Cay Marina unaware of the fact that it was a Sunday and the Marina was closed. After leaving the rest of the family on the boat and wandering around the area aimlessly, I was able to get information from the bartender at The Tipsy Seagull. He informed me just to leave the boat there and come back in the morning to settle up with the marina. We unloaded all of our suitcases and began the 1/2 mile walk across the island to the Bahama Beach Club. The humidity combined with travel clothes, and hauling suitcases made the 85 degrees feel like the most insane heat you have ever experienced in your life!
The Bahama Beach Club was a gorgeous gated community and our condo was situated on the most incredible 3.5 mile white sand beach you’ve ever experienced. The beach itself has been featured in National Geographic’s Top Ten Beaches. The property is comprised of individual privately owned condos, two separate pools (one with a swim up bar and restaurant) and a fine dining restaurant as well. But, the best part was that the pristine white sand beach with lounge chairs, umbrellas, and water toys was just out our door and we could overlook the water from our patio.
The first night after we settled in and dined on pizza from the Tipsy Seagull, we made our way to the beach to relax. We watched the waves roll in as the tide rose and the Supermoon made its debut. In all the shuffle of traveling, we had missed the memo about the historical Supermoon’s appearance. We waded out into the water and watched tiny silver fish swarm around our ankles thinking for some reason that the moon was just brighter and bigger in the Abacos!
The next morning, we jumped up and headed down to Cafe La Florence for what had been described to us as the most delectable cinnamon roll you’ve ever experienced. And, they were right! The sweetest Bahamian lady, greeted us telling me how much she loved the Fedora I was wearing. It was Florence Sawyer, the master cinnamon roll maker herself. She went on to tell us how she had been blessed by God to have this thriving business for nearly 30 years but she and her husband Elmore “Captain Forty” were leaving town at the end of the week for a cruise to celebrate their upcoming anniversary. She assured us that her kids would run the bakery and take good care of everyone. While she whipped up some homemade sandwiches for us so that we could have lunch on the water, she shared that her secret to success was to thank Jesus in prayer each morning and spend the rest of the day loving on the people he sent in her cafe. She loved meeting all the tourists and considered her family blessed for the opportunity.
We hopped back on the electric golf carts and drove (on the wrong side of the road) down the road to the marina where we met our friend Wilson and got the low down on where to fish, what to fish with, and most importantly how to get to Noname Cay to see the swimming pigs. He set us up with everything we needed to catch fish and gave us a tip that we should take our lunch leftovers to the pigs, dump them overboard, and the pigs will swim up to the boat. Our kids, 20, 8, and 5 were so excited for this adventure! We made our way out of the harbour, and into the wide open sea of Abaco. The water was the calmest most crystal clear water I had seen, but what surprised me was how shallow it was. For the most part, we cruised in 15’ deep water, and never saw greater depths than 30. We trolled down to Noname Cay and instantly had a bite. We reeled it in & I pulled the fish identifier card out only to be completely stumped by this one. It was long and skinny like a king mackerel but had some gnarly crooked and wicked looking teeth. Unsure of exactly what type of fish this was, we threw it in the cooler. Wilson would later inform us that this was a “Barracuda Mon” and we should “have a party, feed it to our not good friends and if they didn’t get sick, we could eat the fish.”
As we continued on across the Sea of Abaco following the GPS path set for us, we saw Noname Cay in the distance. The kids’ anticipation was growing and they could not wait to swim with the pigs! As we pulled up to the island, we could see all sorts of formations built on the island for the pigs to play on. There were lean to huts, ramps, boards, and tires all arranged in a hodgepodge mess that reminded me of something that would have been built inThe Lord of the Flies. True to the locals stories, as we pulled up, the pigs started coming out of the bushes. I dumped my scraps in the water as a couple of large piggies swam their way to the boat. The pigs quickly scarfed down the scraps, not concerned in the least that I had just fed them a ham sandwich. The kids decided to jump in and go play with the pigs as they made their way back to the island. I watched as my eight year old chased baby piglets around the island and the rest of us laughed underneath the Bahamian sun as the waves crashed against the boat.
We loaded back up in the boat and headed off to another Cay for more fishing, exploration, and beach combing. As we zipped across the sea of glass, we noticed a swirl and realized it was a giant sea turtle. He circled around as the kiddos grabbed snorkle gear and jumped in for a once in a lifetime opportunity of swimming with a sea turtle. This was the nature of The Abacos. Explore them in their breathtaking unruly atmosphere that begs you to slow down and seize the moment.
This day that threw schedules out the window and caution to the wind, set the precedent for the rest of the trip. We came and went at leisure, hopped from Guana Cay, to Green Turtle Cay, to Hope Town, and every white sand beach in between. We sampled Conch Fritters, Buffalo Lobster Bites, and Rum Punch at seaside restaurants like On Da Beach and Nippers (where we weathered a squall while overlooking the Atlantic). We paddle boarded each morning on the calm Sea of Abaco, fished each day while island hopping, and spent family time with the locals at night. We spent the week soaking up the warmest hospitality imaginable in the most wildly relaxing place of peace one could ask for. The Abacos truly soothed our souls and we left a piece of our hearts there.
Who am I?
Hi! I'm. Brandi, founder of The Power Project. There are a few things I'm passionate about in life, and one of those happens to be my LOVE of travel! We enjoy traveling the world with our kids as well as the continental United States in our motorhome. I hope you enjoy some of our most memorable adventures!