In the last story I suggested how to spend a morning on a Minns rental boat exploring Elizabeth Harbour. I left you feeling hungry and on the south side of Stocking Island. Well, we are spoilt for dining choice !
We can go to Chat and Chill, anchor off their soft sand beach, and visit our host KB and wife Kwanza, at the bar and enjoy a drink and meal, or stroll along the beach to the Conch Shack. Here we have a conch salad, a Bahamian speciality, which we can enjoy while we watch the family of Sting Rays that live offshore and are waiting for your conch scraps.
Alternatively we can sit down in the restaurant and experience a wider selection of fare at St Francis Resort. Run and owned by George and Jillian
Recently the Peace & Plenty Hotel in George Town set up a beach bar. Again we anchor just off their soft powder sand beach, listen to some Bahamian music and down a Kalik, the local and highly rated beer, while waiting for a wholesome burger from their BBQ.
If we are in the mood for something a little more fancy, with a touch of luxury, then we would go into the Eastern hurricane hole and tie up at the dock of Kahari Resort Restaurant. Your not limited here to just burgers, their cuisine is more exotic, and delicious.
Before closing the book on eating on Stocking Island. Let me remind you that you don’t have to rent a boat to dine there. You can get the water taxi from Town to take you to any of these welcoming spots.
So we have quenched our thirst, downed some food and we are ready to continue exploring the Harbour. Next stop is about a mile west where we find a dock. Now for some exercise. Those of us who are fit and able start the path that climbs through twists and turns, and is steep. Eventually you come out at the monument on the highest point on Stocking Island (maybe the highest in all Exuma !). Stop. Catch your breath and admire the 360 degree view.
The monument was build centuries ago as an indication to passing ships that salt was available. Return to the dock and energy permitting, walk along the beautiful beach to a deserted building which marks the start of the footpath that takes you over to the Ocean. Tide permitting, you may be able to walk and explore some of the rock pools and search for some attractive shells.
All aboard ! After a leisurely swim in the 80+ water we will head across the Harbour, traveling southwest and skim past the February Point development and on towards Flamingo Bay where we can pass under the “Bridge to Nowhere”. This elaborate structure, built in the Italian style, was originally planned to provide access from Great Exuma to the planned development of Crab Cay. I related in a previous story how Crab Cay was bought by the Murphy Family, the largest pig farmers in the US. Their plan was to build an Italian style village with restaurants and top end health facilities and then multi-million dollar villas, plus a marina capable of docking some of the Worlds dream yachts. After a couple of years of expense the construction came to a holt. All we have left to record the sad story is the Bridge to Nowhere.
Want to see more? or do you want to just sit on one of the many beautiful and deserted beaches and relax in the blue tropical waters?
Time is marching on and I suggest we head back. Skipper the boat through Kidd Cove, so named after the famous pirate Captain Kidd, who was reputed to have spent some time in Exuma (he did not stay at Harbour View although a few of his doubloons would have been appreciated). Slow down as we approach the low bridge we have to pass under to get into Lake Victoria. Don’t slow down too much or the strong current will take over and steer you off course. So engine up, under the bridge and back to Minns dock where their efficient staff will refuel the boat while you complete the paperwork in the office. You will be pleasantly surprised at how little fuel you have used. So an eventful day, hope you enjoyed it.