HARBOUR ISLANDOne of the locations in The Bahamas that is loved by locals and tourists alike is picturesque Harbour Island. Treasured for its unique pink sand beaches, quaint colonial architecture and post-card like gardens; it's the one place that almost every Bahamian artist has painted at one time or another. It is an idyllic location filled with beautiful pastel-coloured colonial cottages on narrow lanes bordered by breathtaking gardens filled with a rainbow's array of bougainvillea and hibiscus; lush with palm trees and surrounded by the sparkling azure sea.
Harbour Islands' history is rich and intriguing and is still a strong influence today. Originally settled by the Eleutheran Adventurers, the islanders were originally wreckers and boat builders, in addition to farming pineapples and harvesting ambergris. When the War of Independence broke out in America, the Governor of Virginia fled to The Bahamas where he was made Governor and was awarded the title of Lord Dunmore. In central Harbour Island, Dunmore Town is the governor's legacy. He laid out the plans for the original settlement at Dunmore Town and kept a summer home on the site where the red and white Dunmore Cottage stands today.
Vacationing on Harbour Island is not for those who are looking for the flashy commercial casino and activity rich locations like Nassau and Freeport. It is a lazy and comfortable existence that wraps you in its warmth and charm. It's a place where you can take a stroll to the local bakery for a coffee and pineapple muffin; where you can find anybody from the local straw vendor to royalty – yes there is a member of the royal family that lives here! Down at the dock you can buy fresh fish at the end of the day or wander down the beach and encounter the world famous driftwood tree that has been featured in many a postcard and fashion shoot.
The elegant Pink Sands and Coral Sands Hotels are world-famous for their incredible rooms, cottages and opulent state home rentals. Day-trippers can catch the "BoHengy" fast ferry from Nassau for a round-trip fare of about $100. The 2-hour trip is a great excursion and highly recommended.
Whether you are staying for a week, a weekend or are just visiting for the day, Harbour Island will stay fixed in your heart for the rest of your life. It is truly one of the most beautiful locations in the world!