In The Bahamas, spring heralds the arrival of regatta time and fishing tournaments. Weather is still crisp with low humidity for clear, gorgeous skies.
Cruisers will want to point their compasses to Georgetown, Exuma, for the 61st National Family Island Regatta in picturesque Elizabeth Harbour April 22-26. This event is the granddaddy of Out Island Regattas—the tradition started in 1954 and today it’s one of the oldest regattas in The Bahamas. Inter-island Bahamian boat builders and sailors compete to be the best in their class with five days of sailing featuring beautiful, native Bahamian sloops. A regatta village is filled with food, arts and crafts, and live island music—highlighted by the Royal Bahamian Police Force Band. Contact Commodore Danny Strachan (242) 336-3766 or Ken “Iceman” McPhee (242) 524-0865; Exuma Tourist Office (242) 336-2430. nationalfamilyislandregatta.com/schedule
While you’re cruising the Georgetown area, check out two recently opened cruiser-friendly restaurants that have garnered rave reviews. The 180 Gourmet Restaurant is located within the new Turquoise Boutique Hotel (the former Peace and Plenty Bonefish Lodge) at Little Ferry—a 20-minute dinghy ride from Elizabeth Harbour. Visa and MasterCard are accepted for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Info: (242) 357-0329; email@example.com; Facebook: Turquoise Cay. For authentic Italian cuisine, The Frangipani is in Rolletown, seven miles from Georgetown and 25-30 minutes by dinghy. With just six tables, a bar, and an alfresco lounge, this wee gem is owned and operated by folks hailing from Rome. Credit cards are not accepted. Both restaurants have new dinghy docks. Advance reservations are highly recommended by phone, e-mail, or Facebook message. Info: (242) 524-4915 or firstname.lastname@example.org; Facebook: Frangipani Restaurant.