Eleuthera is covered with hidden beaches at the end of sandy roads, great shallow waters for shelling and fantastic reefs for diving and exploring. We’ve spent years driving to these beaches and rediscovering why we love Eleuthera Island.
Tarpum Bay is the town “settlement” closest to Winding Bay. It is a five minute drive from the house and very picturesque. During the 1800s, Tarpum Bay was a leading pineapple shipping center. On fair weather days, local fisherman return from their trip around 3pm, and you can head to the pier to buy snapper, conch, grouper and lobster. The pier is a great spot for sunset as well. “Berts for the Best” is a convenience store located in Tarpum Bay. Say hello to Delphine for us!
Rock Sound, Eleuthera is a larger town to the south as you drive along Queens Highway. The Market is in Rock Sound as is the liquor store, hardware store and local farmer’s market. Rock Sound is home to “Ocean Hole” park. Ocean Hole is a great place to feed the fish and study island geology. Take bread and feed the fish. Several shops in Rock Sound sell local art.
The southern tip of the island is where you will find the famous Lighthouse Beach. It is one hour by car from the house. The beach road is terrible for the final three miles, but hang in there, it’s worth it. To get there, follow the signs to Bannermantown and keep bearing to the left all the way South. What you will have upon arrival is one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, caves to explore, and an old lighthouse on the cliff. It is a long trip, but well worth it if you are adventurous. Try to arrive there right before or at low tide. There are many shallow reefs for exploring and on a clear day, you can see Little San Salvador and Cat Island. We recommend packing food, water, snorkel gear and backpacks (if you have them) to help bring your items to the beach.
Deep Creek and Cape Eleuthra
North from Lighthouse Beach you can drive through Deep Creek and to Cape Eleuthera. The Powell Pointe/Cape Eleuthera development is located there. There is a fine, deep harbour marina and the Island School (www.islandschool.org) is nearby. The Island School is a school which offers semester programs to high school students from all over the world to study aquaculture and learn about sustainability in the context of out-island living. They also do research projects in conjunction with a variety of universities in a variety of ecological fields. They welcome visitors.
Beyond Tarpum Bay: Heading North
Heading North on Queen’s Highway past the town of Tarpum Bay you will pass the entrance to Windermere Island. Windermere is a beautiful island with many, very nice private homes. It is gated, so it is more challenging to get on the island and enjoy the beautiful venue with famous homes.
Ten Bay Beach is further north, a 25 minute drive from Point o’ Vue. It is on the Carribbean side and the entrance is 14.2 miles from the house. Park nearby and go to the beach. Shelling is good there, particularly as the tide goes out. Also, it may be the BEST spot on Eleuthera to watch a sunset.
Palmetto Point is a small settlement as you head to Governor’s Harbour. There are several good restaurants and nice beaches.
The quaint village of Governor’s Harbour is further north and was the original capital of the Bahamas. There are several good restaurants and shops and Cupid’s Cay is very picturesque. The town is very charming and definitely worth the trip. There are also several good restaurants and bars along Banks road not far from the town.
A delightful stop along Banks Road next to Banks Deli is a visit to the 25-acre Leon Levy Nature Preserve where you can walk trails and see well marked indigenous plants, trees and flowers of the Bahamas. There you will discover a Medicinal Plant Trail used for bush medicines, a Mangrove Boardwalk and Coppice Trail with its diverse broadleaf forest, the kind that welcomed Christopher Columbus in 1492. Also check out beautiful and quaint shop called “Treasures of the Sea” along Banks Road. They have great shell crafts, earrings and necklaces, all handmade by local people.
If you choose to head north of Governor’s Harbour, contact Marty for details and information. We highly encourage a visit to the Spanish Wells and Harbour Island. We recommend overnight stays for these trips and are happy to help with these plans as needed.
Go to www.eleutheramap.com to study maps of Eleuthera and read additional information. The Publication “Eleuthera Visitors Guide” is found at the airport, and has maps and information to reference as well. We tend to believe, however, that some of the descriptions in the Visitors Guide are a little overstated. On the right side of the entertainment center at Point o’Vue, we have an entire section of Bahamas books that you can reference. Please be sure to return these books upon departure. Last, if you are interested in a brief history of South Eleuthera, go to www.bahamapundit.com.