The best tours in the Bahamas incorporate distinctive island experiences and creative storytelling, which compel you to buy into their full package. My rule of thumb: If a tour guide cannot add more value than Wikipedia then I visit the attraction on my own. The tours on my list below have trained guides who make the tour worth every penny of the cost. They also stand out in the way they appeal to your culinary senses, artistic sensibilities, and cultural curiosity. If I had to preference an experience, my advice, particularly for those staying in Nassau, would be to make a special effort to island hop to one of the many other destinations in the archipelago (the conjoining Paradise Island not included). Not all of islands are close enough for a day trip, but Exuma, Andros, and Eleuthera are great candidates for a short excursion.
Once a year, the leading art galleries join together for a sprinting festivity, curating individual exhibitions around a common theme. As a group, they offer a one-day gallery hopping tour that immerses participants in the art and culture of the Bahamas. This is known as Transforming Spaces, an event that sells out every year—so buy your tickets early.
Powerboat Adventures is a neatly-packaged bite-sized way to experience the Exuma Cays. It will cost you $200 per adult, but it is an all-inclusive day tour that is worth its price. Along with frequenting the open bar and the buffet lunch table, you will have packed into your day a feeding frenzy for the wild iguanas, stingrays and sharks.
Islandz Rum Runners Passage
Four words will tell you if Islandz Tours is the company for you: Think Outside the Beach. The company’s slogan truly speaks to its philosophy of exposing tourists to the cultural and historical side of the Bahamas. Their signature Rum Runners Passage walking tour transports you to a time when Nassau was a haven for rum runners and pirates. You will have rum tastings on this spirited tour, so eat first to reduce the risk of leaving inebriated.
Tru Tru Bahamian Food Tours
You will be able to savor the taste as you sample Bahamian delights and other ethnic treats on this even-paced food and cultural tour. The Bahamas has a large immigrant community that adds diversity to its culinary offerings. The Tru Tru Bahamian Food Tour embraces this multiculturalism with stops at seven restaurants, which include Bahamian cuisine and international fare.
In Delancy Town, a traditional African township from the era of colonial Bahamas, you will find the EduCulture Bahamas Junkanoo Museum. Junkanoo is a traditional Bahamian street festival, dating back to a freedom celebration put on by enslaved Africans in the Bahamas. The artifacts in this cultural archive are sourced from an exclusive family collection. During a hands-on guided tour guests learn the history and culture of the Bahamas, and practice beating a goatskin drum and shaking cowbell to make traditional Junkanoo music.