Southern Boating

Bimini Weekend

The concrete ship SS Sapona south of Bimini's south island is a popular snorkeling and diving spot.

One Destination, Two Islands, Three Experiences

There are a certain amount of bragging rights that go along with long-distance cruising. However, not all boat owners have the desire or capability—boat size, fuel capacity, budget, vacation time—to cross the Atlantic or island-hop the Caribbean. Luckily, less than 50 miles from Miami lie the two islands that make up Bimini, Bahamas, and if you leave just after breakfast you’ll arrive in time for a delicious lunch of conch salad and locally baked Bimini bread. But in spite of its small size and depending where you dock, distinctly different experiences await.

The first rule of thumb when cruising to Bimini—or anywhere in The Bahamas for that matter—is to ensure your charts are up to date since the ocean side of Bimini is lined with reefs and sandbars. Nv charts, for example, recently released their newly updated chart set for Region 9.1 for 2015/2016 in paper and digital format, which includes Bahamas Northwest⎯Bimini and Berry Islands, Nassau to Abaco, and Grand Bahama.

Bimini Sands Resort & Marina on the south island offers direct ocean access to a deepwater marina, where updated floating docks have water and power. The family-owned resort’s amenities include onsite Customs & Immigration, a fuel dock with the only diesel fuel on the island, and a new infinity-edge swimming pool where guests enjoy unrestricted sunset views. Two-story rental cottages line the marina—bring your own beach towels. For an even more laid-back and remote experience, the Bimini Beach Club Marina at the far south end of the island offers the easy-going vibe of a beach club and private beach but with the convenience of a pool, Mackey’s Sand Bar, and restaurant with a sushi bar—order the Bimini Sands roll.