Big Noch is the nickname of an Exuma taxi driver and owner of the bar and restaurant of the same name in Rolle Town Exuma.
The bar has been open for some years but more recently it has gained a good reputation for their food. Like many bars on island, it started catering to the local Bahamians, but now its appeal has spread to the tourist trade. Their dining area is small and very basic (but adequate). Their big growth is in their take out trade.
Based just a two minute drive from Harbour View, our rental guests have phoned Patrina and placed an order for collection some 20 minutes later. The fare is traditional Bahamian with fresh produce including fish and lobster in season.
As an example, cracked conch is priced at $15. A peppered steak is $15. Your options range from chicken, pork, some curried dishes and fresh caught fish, conch and lobster.
While Big Nochs does not have a seaview it certainly is convenient to have some fresh food available on our doorstep. Give Big Nochs a try. 242 345 5013 and place an order with Patrina.
Which beach is the best in Exuma? I suggest that Pretty Molly Bay is top of the long list.
Pretty Molly Bay is located on the northern shore of Little Exuma, just before Forbes Hill when motoring East. It has long been one of our favorite beaches. Its charm is the fact that it is a curved soft sand pristine beach with rocky outcrops at the sides. So its shape provides protection from the Ocean and the water remains a calm blue color even when the wind is strong.
Years ago there was a plan to build three cottages on land by the bay. Construction started but never finished and over time the half finished cottages deteriorated and building debris littered the approach to the beach.
Well now for the good news ! The ground from the Queens Highway to Pretty Molly Beach has now been cleared. Now there is a designated parking area, and a footpath that leads directly to this picturesque location.
I can guarantee that as you walk down the short path and Pretty Molly Bay’s beach comes into view, it will get a “Wow” and have you reaching for the camera.
Be aware that all beaches in Exuma are open to the public from the Ocean to the high water mark. Private property starts above the high water mark. So explore the many beaches that Exuma has to offer and see if you agree that Pretty Molly Bay is the best.
WOW !That is the reaction as you drive over the brow of the hill and Blu On The Water first comes into view.
If I was given complete freedom on choosing a location for a restaurant it would be right where Blu On The Water is located, it’s that perfect !
Blu is the brainchild of Ty and Sam (with a little help from their daughter Kylee) who have been catering to Exuma customers for some years. Firstat what used to be Sam Grey’s restaurant at the marina in George Town, then later over on Stocking Island at Lumina Point.Now they have their own location.
So Blu On The Water is in Rolle Town.Between Master Harbour and Rolle Town settlement, about five miles East of George Town. As you arrive at Blu your reaction will also be “Wow”.The view that faces you is the restaurant on your left, but your eyes will be drawn to the Ocean. It’s truly is a World class setting,it’s stunning. To your right is Man O War Cay and directly in front is one of Exuma’s favorite tourist attractions, the Large sandbar that appears at low tide and extends for about half a mile. Left of the sandbar the Ocean colors change from white to pale blue to darker blue, as your eye travels westward you look into Elizabeth Harbour and its tantalizing line of offshore islands. ….The view is simplystunning !
Having taken the obligatory photos, it’s time to turn you attention to the restaurant.As you enter this new building you will be greeted by the friendly smiling staff and shown to one of dozen or so tables, all with views of the Ocean. Sip your favorite cocktail or a cold beer while you study the menu. The cuisine is international fare and prepared in the brand new kitchen under the watchful eye of your host Ty.
Blu on the Water is open daily from 11.30 through till 10 pm. I personally recommend you pick a time when the light allows you to fully appreciate the view. If you want a quality souvenir of your visit, there are tee shirts and labelled Tiki insulated mugs.
If you are staying with us at Harbour View then you are a five minute drive away.
Ty and Sam we wish you every success in your new venture. Phone 242 807 9265
Nelson Alexander Ranger, the owner of IMAGES by Alexander, Exuma’s best known photographer, is also a strong voice and advocate of positive actions that effect the Out Islands of The Bahamas and Exuma in particular. His Facebook page is avidly followed with great interest by over 5,000 viewers, many of whom live on our island paradise.
Born in Hatchett Bay Eleuthera, he moved with his parents to Exuma as a youngster and grew up in The Ferry settlement on Little Exuma.
After leaving school he started as an interior designer in Nassau, while spending as much time as possible on the golf course perfecting his new interest in golf. By the age of 19 he won his first tournament as an amateur and set his sights on a golf career.
With the help of a scholarship from the Lyford Foundation and The Bahamas Golf Federation, Nelson studied at the Golf Academy and got a job at the prestigious Butch Harman Golf Academy with locations in Las Vegas and Freeport . Like all newbies, he started at the bottom rung, hand washing 1000s of golf balls each morning ready for the future stars to work on their game.
Nelson’s career, and his game, flourished, and took him to many prestigious clubs, like the Commonwealth Club in Virginia where he was Director of Instructions for 5 golf courses, the Ocean Club in Nassau, The Maddison Club in Palm Springs, Gozzer Ranch in Idaho, Yellow Stone Club in Montana and the Country Hills Club in Chicago where he worked in a total of 5 different states as a Golf Professional/ Director of Golf Operations. Eventually he returned to his Bahama roots and settled at The Four Seasons course here in Exuma as the Golf Director.
To give back for receiving so much, Nelson created the Nelson A. Ranger Scholarship Fund in Memory of Andrew and Kerry Bowe who introduced him to golf. This fund has assisted 11 Exumian high school graduates to college over the last 10 years that they have been functioning. He runs bi-weekly Golf and Tennis camps for kids 7-17, offers academic awards to encourage more educational excellence, host an annual Golf, Tennis, Reading, Music and Music camp as well as sponsor the annual Spelling Bee.
Throughout his golfing career Nelson had developed an interest in landscape photography, specializing in golf course landscapes.
The event that spurred his current career as professional photographer was the birth of his daughter Denell. He wanted a photographic record of her life, an interest that still inspires him today some 30 years later. Before long he was getting requests from family and friends to record their children, their daily events, their weddings. And so it grew to where he is today. Flitting from Exuma to other Bahamian islands, to the US, to photograph some of his old golfing buddies, to receiving bookings for celebs, sometimes not even knowing who it is till he arrives. For example the time he was hired to film the wedding of the drummer for the band Queen.
Another time he set up his equipment and all he knew was it was a wedding. A famous celeb walks in in golf togs, introduces himself (which was hardly necessary as everybody recognized him), returns minutes later in full wedding attire, snap, snap, snap, and the groom is back onto the golf course after a quick change.
So, if you have a special occasion coming up, be it a wedding, an anniversary, or just a souvenir of your vacation. I suggest you contact “IMAGES by Alexander“.
The results will be hanging on your wall for years to come.
Congratulations Nelson, you are an inspiration to the younger generation.
A lot has been happening in Exuma this summer, especially at the Peace and Plenty Hotel. Peace and Plenty Hotel is the oldest hotel in Exuma. Originally it was a customs house, then it was converted to a home for the Minns family. Then the Minns sold to Stan Benjamin who with the help of his sons, converted the property into the hotel so many have come to enjoy.
It was about two years ago that the hotel changed hands. The new owners updated the property and have built a great reputation for hospitality and cuisine.
Then this summer we heard that Peace and Plenty had taken over the luxury resort on Stocking Island known as Lumina Point. Currently closed for hurricane season and therefore receiving a new coat of paint and some modification ready for another busy season.
But it doesn’t stop there ! Now P&P have taken over the eco friendly resort of Higgins Landing, again on Stocking Island. While the cottages are being renovated, the new P&P Beach Bar has been constructed. With a fully stocked bar in the capable hands of Wizard, and the BBQ ably controlled by Jerome, and the whole enterprise managed by Greg. So great burgers and generous drinks at reasonable prices, What more could you want? How about the softest, safest white sand beach you could imagine with sunbeds and umbrellas and rental paddleboards to explore. All this in the protected calm waters of Elizabeth Harbour.
Take the water taxi or rent a boat from Minns Water Sports and have a fun day out, Sun, Sand, Music ( a little on the load side for my tastes, but I’m an old fart!).
So welcome to the Peace and Plenty Beach Bar, keep the Kaliks cold, the burgers hot and the beach pristine. Good Luck Guys! May you prosper and grow like Dora-Lee from years ago
Every year from November onwards cruising yachts start arriving in Elizabeth Harbour in Exuma. Then over the next two months we get a daily intake, weather permitting, of more yachts until we have a fleet of around 400 cruising yachts in Exuma.
The boats arrivals coincides with the end of hurricane season and on a calm day you will see a line of sails on the horizon approaching the entrance to the harbour.
Each yacht will fly a flag at the stern of their boat, the flag of their country of registry. So you will see mainly US Stars and Stripes, Union Jacks, and Canadian maple leafs. Amongst that fleet will also be boats from many Europian countries and probably some Australian. As they arrive they will fly a yellow flag from the spreaders which indicates that the yacht has yet to check in with customs and immigration.
Some yachts are live-aboard cruisers, whose boat is their home, many of them will live on board for several years and some have children aboard. Some are snowbirds, heading south to escape the winter weather others will be cruising the Caribbean islands.
The boats vary in size and design, from 30 foot monohulls and catamarans, to 100+ foot mega yachts. With 400 boats that equates to over a thousand persons, which obviously plays a significant part to the local economy. The social life of the boaters is pretty hectic with daily volley ball matches, mass organized dinghy trips to various beaches and restaurants and culminating with week long festivities at the cruising regatta. Events will include competitions in: The round-the island-yacht-race, talent shows, treasure hunts and sand sculptures.
Each morning the boats will listen to their vhf radios for weather forecasts and if there is a threat of strong winds in the future days then they often move their vessel to a more sheltered location, which is easily done in a large harbour that encloses many smaller islands.
The season starts in November and runs through to Easter, when many either start heading North to their summer home, or head South to continue their Caribbean or even their circumnavigation.
This coming winter is expected to be busier than ever due to the devastation in the Northern Bahamas caused by hurricane Dorian. This monster storm ravaged The Abacos and Grand Bahama islands. Two of the islands that many cruisers visit. So where will they go this year? Only time will tell, but many are expected to head on down to Great Exuma thus increasing the boat count for 2019-2020, and some years to come.
On November 9th 2019 the fifth annual Exuma marathon will take place. This year will be special as much of the funds raised in this non profit event will go to a special cause. That special cause will be comfort and education of the 40+ students living and studying in Exuma, who are displaced from their homes in Abaco and Grand Bahama.
These young people, a sample of the future of The Country, watched their homes ravaged by hurricane Dorian with over 200 mph winds for an unbelievable 40 hours non stop. Many escaped and were rescued with only the clothes they were wearing.
The race organizers have pledged at least $5000 towards the fund, with the Bahamian Government adding a further $3000 prize money. Spectators who line the route are being asked to provide items that benefit the students.
The Exuma Marathon caters for all skill levels. From a 2k dash to half and full marathons. There is even a 50k ultra marathon. So November 9th looks like a busy day.
Travel Tip created by Don at Harbour View Exuma in association with Vacation Soup
After living in Exuma for many years I am convinced the coolest beaches in Exuma are to be found on Moriah Harbour Cay.
Why do I make that claim? Well the beaches on this deserted island are so pristine, so varied and so many, that whatever your tastes, be it exploring, be it observing the unspoiled beauty, or just laying on the soft powder sand and listening to the Ocean lapping at the shore, it’s all there on Moriah Harbour Cay.
There is one more factor that adds to the islands charm. The difficulty of getting there. Rental boats are not permitted to travel that far. Privately owned boats either have to access the open Ocean or know how to navigate the shallows in the area known as “The Haulover”. So few visitors get to reach Moriah Harbour Cay. Consequently guests from the nearby rentals, such as Harbour View, who can paddle a kayak across the sheltered waters from Hartswell, almost always have the entire 16,800 acres to themselves.
If I have had a stressful day my favorite way to unwind is to get in a kayak, paddle for ten minutes across the flat calm Ocean on my way to Moriah Cay. Then I have tons of options;
I can walk in a clockwise direction along the edge of the water until I come to the gap between Man O War Cay and Moriah Cay and here I can float in the crystal clear blue waters and let the current take me for some distance parallel to the shore.
Then we reach the North shore which is one long pristine soft sand beach. Here is where you unwind and forget the stresses of modern living as you watch a Ray lazily glide through the Ocean, or a tiny crab building a new nest. Now its decision time, I can either cut back across the island and return to the kayak (about a one hour total trip) or I can continue following the beach for a mile or more then head South and come to the lagoon in the center of the island. As you then walk back to the kayak you will almost certainly attract the attention of one or more of the baby sharks. Usually about 9 inches long, they are drawn by the noise you make as you walk the shallows and these inquisitive creatures will follow in the hope that you disturb a meal..
Can you imagine any better way to commune with nature?