First established as a national park in 1977, Lucayan National Park covers 40 acres of breathtaking land, and it can boast itself as one of the biggest underwater cave systems in the world. In fact, you have two different caves made available to the general public, but the local management prohibits people from swimming within the caves. In addition, you will need a special permit to dive. Still, the nature trails and boardwalks into a new and diverse ecosystem makes it worthwhile. You might also stop to have a picnic with friends and family on the beach.
Main Attractions of Lucayan National Park
Why should someone visit Lucayan National Park? This lush, green location has been filled with pine, mangrove and palm trees. The island boasts some of the loveliest and most private beaches in the Bahamas. For example, you have a wide and long dune-covered stretch with a wooden pathway. It takes you through a forest of trees. Some of the most sought-after things to do in Lucayan National Park include:
- Ben’s Cave (world’s largest underwater cave system);
- Gold Rock Beach(filmed in the two of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies);
- Mangrove(nature trails and entrances to prohibited caves);
- Peterson Clay.
1. Ben’s Cave
A cavern that has become a time-capsule with ancient strata and limestone to display fossils from over one million years ago. For those who have the diving experience and the permit, it’s worth every penny. This is one of the two inland blue holes found in Lucayan National Park.
2. Gold Rock Beach
Easily one of the world’s most beautiful and secluded beaches, Gold Rock Beach became the picturesque place to film Pirates of the Caribbean. You begin with a brief walk through a mangrove, and you will cross a bridge. From there you walk along the soft white sands, and you even have a wonderful opportunity to view some of the local wildlife. You have turquoise waters nearby, and you can walk a different route back through the mangroves if you want. Along the way, you have two historic caves where the Arawak Indians once lived, and you can learn the history of how it came together. Under the waters, there’s plenty of tropical fish for your viewing pleasure.
Other Things to Do at Lucayan National Park
1. Kayaking in Nature
Outside some of the main activities, you have plenty of other things that you can do to pass the time while in Lucayan National Park. One of the activities you might take on includes kayaking. You can choose a full 90-minute guided tour, and the advantage of this is how it remains eco-friendly. Two-man kayaks have become a popular choice, and you also have a third seat so that an infant can come along. The advantage of a tour is how the guide will share the local knowledge of the area.
2. Deep Sea Fishing
One of the most beautiful things that you can do while in Lucayan National Park is to go sightseeing along the southern coastline. You have a double-deck glass bottom boat that will give you crystalline views of the aquatic wildlife, and the friendly crew will point out some of the coral formations. In addition, you will have the chance to reel in the “Big One.” The local guides will point out what is needed, and they can talk about how to catch some of the local fish like the Blue Marlin, the Tuna, Wahoo and Sailfish.
3. Go Birding
Lucayan National Park has plenty of local birdlife to see. In fact, a few expert guides are around the islands, and some of them are certified tour guides for birding who come with years of knowledge and experience. A birding guide can take you some of the prime places in Lucayan National Park for birding. You can choose to go with either a half-day of birding, or you could choose an all-day birding tour. This gives you a chance to catch a glimpse of some of the unique species like the olive capped warbler, thick-billed vireo and Bahama swallow. The summer bats also can be found in some of the caves of Lucayan National Park.
Where to Stay in Lucayan National Park
Viva Wyndham Fortuna Beach, located 12.7 miles from Lucayan National Park, breakfast is included, and you have a pool to cool off in. You might also choose to go to Flamingo Bay Hotel and Marina, which is 15.7 miles away. Get a pool and a room with air conditioning and some absolutely picturesque scenery. Everything here looks clean and well kept, which makes it an ideal place to stop. For those who have problems with climbing stairs, we don’t recommend the Flamingo Bay Hotel and Marina.
How to Get to Lucayan National Park
To get there, you will first have to hop a plane from the United States. Buy two to three months in advance for the lowest price. Another option is how a lot of people take cruises to get here, which is one of your more leisurely choices. For example, you might take a Carnival cruise to Freeport, Bahamas. After you have arrived there, you will want to rent a car. Taxi is another options, but it’s expensive and not always dependable because Lucayan National Park is located in the middle of nowhere, and you don’t know if they will be there when you leave the park.
If you have the time and money, Lucayan National Park will imprint itself on your memory. You have picturesque scenery all around, and you have the chance to view some of the most spectacular wildlife from here. You also have a wide variety of activities available to you based on the things that you want to do. Every year, five to six million American tourists visit the Bahamas, and you will find the lifestyle here as more superior to some of the other choices around.