White sandy beaches, crystal blue waters, pink and orange daiquiris, multi-colored fish, and radiant sunsets. In the Caribbean Paradise is spelled B-A-H-A-M-A-S, and this archipelago off the Florida coast provides the perfect escape from life on the mainland. During the day indulge in snorkeling, scuba diving, boating, and other tropical adventures. When your energy level wanes, stretch out on a lounge chair, slurp up a tropical beverage, sample some conch fritters, and soak up some sun. But when that sun sets, it's time to get moving again. Expend your energy at the beach bars and outdoor dance floors. On the islands the days are short and the nights can get very, very long.
Whether you are arriving in the Bahamas via airplane or cruise ship, most travelers make Nassau their Caribbean jumping-off point. Nassau is the capital of the country and the biggest city on New Providence Island. Just west of the city is Cable Beach, New Providence's principle resort area. When not camping out on a boat most travelers will stay here or on Paradise Island, which is just over the bridge from Nassau center. In addition to being the most popular island in the Bahamas, Paradise is home to one of the world's premier megaresorts, the Atlantis.
No matter where you're staying, there's a great run that's just outside your door. BTG's Tour of Paradise is best for those staying on the namesake island, and the Atlantis Adventure is a great short route by which you can check out the island's largest complex. On New Providence Island the Cable Beach to Arawak Cay run is aimed towards those staying at resorts on the western shores, and the Coastal Cruise will be most enjoyed by those hopping off cruise ships to stretch their sea legs.
- Cars: One taxi driver informed us that the Bahamas is home to more automobiles than individuals. This certainly seems to be the case during busy times of day. Cars clog the small streets of Nassau, and their exhaust is more than likely to choke the runner caught unawares. Try to avoid the streets on either end of the Cable Bay and Coastal Cruise routes during rush hour.
- Non-Traditional Rush Hour: The Bahamas is one of the world's primary tourist destinations, and therefore its work shifts revolve on a slightly different schedule. Roads might be busy at 3 p.m. as the morning workers on Paradise Island trade places with those who run the night. On the other hand, 5 p.m. might be a quiet time to take a late-afternoon jog.
- Uneven Sidewalk: This won't plague you too much on Paradise Island, but it is something to keep your eyes open for on New Providence Island.
Did you know? See that bridge that connects the two Royal Towers at Atlantis Paradise Island? The Bridge Suite, located at the top of it, is one of the most expensive hotel rooms in the world. Spending the night there costs around $25,000.