Friday, June 10, 2016

The Wild Life at Staniel Cay

Staniel Cay is a wonderful place to explore the Exumas. If I had to recommend just one place for a Bahamas holiday, I'd say go to Staniel Cay.

It has nice accomodations, the Yacht Club, Thunderball Grotto, and the Piggies! There are lots of great places to swim, snorkel, eat, drink, or just lay on the beach and relax. You can even rent a little boat and do your own exploring if you fly in.

Our first excursion was to see the Piggies. They say you need to bring food or water, but we went empty handed and still enjoyed our visit. The Pigs are quite calm and act like big spoiled puppies begging for scraps. They let you pet them and scratch them, and when you run out of food, they simply wander off. It was a very interesting experience.

Later we watched the nurse sharks that hang out under the docks and then joined our friends for dinner at the Yacht Club. The restaurant is filled with yacht club burgees and memorabilia from the James Bond movie that was filmed there in 1964.

The Bahamas are perched on a huge limestone plateau that is riddled with caves and sinkholes. (Remember Dean's Blue Hole?) Here at Staniel Cay there's a little island that has a grotto that was featured in the James Bond movie "Thunderball". We had to visit that, so off we went before breakfast one morning because that's when the tide was right.
Currents can be fierce in this part of the Bahamas, making entry and exit to the grotto downright dangerous at certain times, so its best to time your visit at slack water. By 9:00am we had swam back and forth through the grotto three times and decided to get our buddies and some breakfast and go through it a few more times.
My Internet is too sketchy to upload videos right now, so if you want to see the Grotto, just Google "Thunderball Grotto" and you will learn all about the movie and the grotto.
After we all swam through, around, in and out of the grotto every possible way, we finally hauled our anchors up and started our short passage to Highborne Cay; our jumping off point for crossing the Banks to Nassau.

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