WELCOME TO

BAHAMAS

“Forward, Upward, Onward Together”

A fond welcome to locals and visitors!

 Each and every visit to the Caribbean is like no other. There is always something new to learn, places to go or things to do. Sculpted by nature, the islands are ever-changing and evolving. With so many islands to choose from it is never easy to decide on where to stop.
We want to introduce you to our beautifully unique islands. Make sure you stay a while, take your time! In the Caribbean there’s no rush, let’s just ‘go with the flow’.
The more you learn, the more you will want to know, so relax and discover

the wonderful islands of the Bahamas

BAHAMAS-FLAG

The black symbolises the strength and force of a united people.  The triangle pointing towards the body of the flag, represents the aspirations and determination of the Bahamian people, to develop and possess the rich resources of sun and sea symbolised by gold and aquamarine stripes respectively.

 

Information adapted from Bahamas.gov.bs

The Bahamas’ coat of arms is a composition of things indigenous to these islands, while the motto “Forward Upward Onward Together” heralds to the direction and manner in which the Bahamian nation should move.

The crest of the arms, a light pink conch shell, symbolises the marine life of The Bahamas. The top of the crest is composed of wavy green palm fronds, symbolic of the natural vegetation. The Santa Maria, flagship of Christopher Columbus, appears on the shield of the coat of arms. Wavy barrulets of blue symbolise the waters of The Bahamas.

The shield is charged with a radiant sun to signify the world-famous balmy resort climate, and it also represents the bright future of these islands. A flamingo, the national bird, and a silvery blue marlin support the shield. The national motto is draped across the base of the coat of arms.

There was a national competition to produce the motto for the coat of arms, and the competition was won by two 11-year-old schoolchildren – Vivian F. Moultrie of Inagua Public School and Melvern B. Bowe of the Government High School in Nassau. Bahamian artist Hervis Bain prepared the preliminary design of the coat of arms.

Information adapted from Bahamas.gov.bs

“March On, Bahamaland!” was selected as the winning entry in a national competition, and was adopted on independence July 10, 1973.  Both the lyrics and music were made by Timothy Gibson. Since Bahamas retains the British royal family as their head of state, their royal anthem, God Save the Queen, is used as the royal anthem of the Bahamas as well.

Lift up your head to the rising sun, Bahamaland,
March on to glory, your bright banners waving high,
See how the world marks the manner of your bearing;
Pledge to excel thro’ love and unity.
Pressing onward, march together, to a common loftier goal;
Steady sunward tho’ the weather hide the wide and treacherous shoal.
Lift up your head to the rising sun, Bahamaland,
’til the road you’ve trod lead unto your God, March on Bahamaland.

 

SIR CORLENIUS A. SMITH

GOVERNOR GENERAL
 
 

DR. HUBERTH MINNIS

PRIME MINISTER

Governor Generals

SIR MILO BUTLER

TOOK OFFICE: 31/07/1973 – LEFT OFFICE: 22/01/1979

 

SIR GERALD CASH

TOOK OFFICE: 09/1979 – LEFT OFFICE: 25/06/1988

 

SIR HENRY MILTON TAYLOR

TOOK OFFICE: 26/06/1988 – LEFT OFFICE: 01/01/1992

 

SIR CLIFFORD DARLING

TOOK OFFICE: 02/01/1992 – LEFT OFFICE: 02/01/1995

 

SIR ORVILLE TURNQUEST

TOOK OFFICE: 03/01/1995 – LEFT OFFICE: 13/11/2001

 

DAME IVY DUMONT

TOOK OFFICE: 13/11/2001 – LEFT OFFICE: 30/11/2005

 

PAUL ADDERLEY

TOOK OFFICE: 01/12/2005 – LEFT OFFICE: 01/02/2006

 

SIR ARTHUR DION HANNA

TOOK OFFICE: 01/02/2006 – LEFT OFFICE: 14/04/2010

 

SIR ARTHUR FOULKES

TOOK OFFICE: 14/04/2010 – LEFT OFFICE: 08/07/2014

 

DAME MARGUERITE PINDLING

TOOK OFFICE:  08/07/2014 – LEFT OFFICE:  28/06/2019

 

SIR CORNELIUS A. SMITH

TOOK OFFICE:  28/06/2019 – INCUMBENT

 

Prime Ministers

 
 

LYNDEN PINDLING

(1929–2000)

TOOK OFFICE: 10/07/1973 – LEFT OFFICE: 21/08/1992

 

HUBERT INGRAHAM

(1947–)

TOOK OFFICE: 21/08/1992 – LEFT OFFICE: 03/05/2002

 

PERRY CHRISTIE

(1942–)

TOOK OFFICE: 03/05/2002 – LEFT OFFICE: 04/05/2007

 

HUBERT INGRAHAM

(1947–)

TOOK OFFICE: 04/05/2007 – LEFT OFFICE: 08/05/2012

 

PERRY CHRISTIE

(1942–)

TOOK OFFICE: 08/05/2012 – LEFT OFFICE: 11/05/2017

 

HUBERT MINNIS

(1954–)

TOOK OFFICE: 11/05/2017 – INCUMBENT

BAHAMAS MUST STOPS

  • POMPEY MUSEUM
  • EXUMA CAYS
  • DEAN'S BLUE HOLE
  • JOHN WATLING'S DISTILLERY

The Pompey Museum is named in honour of a courageous slave, Pompey, who lived on the Rolle Plantantion on Steventon, Exuma, Bahamas. Historic Vendue House, or the Bourse as it was known, was built some time before 1769 and continued to function as a marketplace until the late 1800s. Enslaved Africans and other commodities were sold at Vendue House during the 18th and 19th centuries. Pompey became a museum in 1992.

 

Information courtesy of Bahamas.com

The 176-square-mile Exuma Cays Land and Sea National Park, created in 1958, was the first land and sea park in the world and is one of the most successful marine parks. It is the first “no-take reserve” (all fishing is prohibited) in the wider Caribbean. This stretch of pristine water, land and beaches is an ecological preserve and wildlife refuge famous for its breath-taking marine environment.

Scuba diving and snorkeling are popular here, and you can encounter nature first-hand by feeding the endangered Bahamian iguanas or catching a glimpse of the elusive hutia, with the assistance of one of the professional guides.

Information courtesy of Bahamas.com

Dean’s Blue Hole is said to be the deepest blue hole in the world, and the second largest underwater chamber. This warm salt-water swimming pool dips some 663 feet (203 meters) into the ocean floor right offshore. At the surface it is 80 x 120 feet (25 x 35m) but opens out after 60 feet (20m) into a cavern with a diameter of at least 330 feet (100 m).

A school of tarpon hang in the shadows at 65 feet and friendly turtles and tiny sea horses sometimes come into the hole for a break from the ocean currents. The coral caves and sand banks on the side of the entrance, harbour all kinds of tropical reef life, from tiny shrimps and colourful tropical fish to groupers and snappers.

It is located northwest of Clarence Town and is the site where the Free diving World Record was set in April 2007.

Information courtesy of Bahamas.com

The John Watling’s Distillery is located on the historic Buena Vista Estate in the Downtown Nassau area. Overlooking the harbour and offering panoramic views, the estate is situated on more than two acres of lush tropical gardens with century-old black olive trees.

Antiques and prints dating back more than 300 years, showcase the rich history and heritage of The Bahamas. On the grounds is a 200-year-old water well, supposedly carved out of solid limestone by slaves prior to the abolition of slavery in 1833.

You can take a free and self-guided tour of the estate, with the storehouse providing an intimate view of how the rums are bottled – the old-fashioned way, by local hands.

Official Website: www.johnwatlings.com

Information adapted from Bahamas.com

History of Bahamas

The Bahamas is comprised of 700 islands sprinkled over 100,000 square miles of ocean, starting just 50 miles off the coast of Florida.

The original inhabitants of the island were the Lucayan Indians, who arrived from other Caribbean islands such as Cuba.  In 1492 Christopher Columbus landed in the New World in the Bahamas.  The 40,000 Lucayans living on the island were an easy target for enslavement, due to their easy going nature.  Within 25 years the Lucayan population had been wiped out due to disease and the hardships that slavery brought.

The first English settlers on Eleuthera shipped braselitto wood to Boston, to thank the people of Massachusetts for the support they had given. The proceeds from the sale of this precious wood was used to purchase the land for Harvard College, which eventually became Harvard University. 

The 18th century slave trade brought many Africans to the Bahamas. Their descendants constitute 85 percent of the Bahamian population.

In the early 1950s the island flourished due to the success of tourism and later, offshore banking.

On July 10, 1973, The Bahamas became a free and sovereign country, ending 325 years of peaceful British rule. However, The Bahamas is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and we celebrate July 10th as Bahamian Independence Day.

Information adapted from Bahamas.com and Princeton.edu