The islands of the Bahamas are synonomous with sun, sand and sea but there is a much deeper spirit that runs vibrantly throughout the island chain. The Bahamas is predominantly African heritage with European influences. Bahamians are very expressive people who love nothing more than a reason to celebrate. In addition to our public holidays there are a variety of annual events such as regattas, homecomings, cook-outs, festivals and good old community get together where local art, music and dance is at its best.
At no time is Bahamian culture more alive than on the New Years and Boxing Day Junkanoo festivals held all around the islands. Junkanoo is indigenous to the Bahamas and is an incredibly energetic, colorful parade made up of brightly costumed dancers moving to tribal music made up of cowbells, drums, horns and whistles. It is generally believed that Junkanoo was created by John Canoe, an African tribal chief who demanded the right to celebrate with his people even after he was brought to the West Indies as a slave. On a smaller scale, rake and scrape bands are regularly performing throughout the islands at little restaurants and cafes.
No one will argue that in the Bahamas we LOVE our food. The abundance of sea life, fruits, vegetables sprinkled with a little bit of sunshine has given rise to an entrée of delicious Bahamian specialties like conch salad, peas and rice, smuddered grouper, boiled fish and many, many more. As side you have to try one of our locally produced Kalik or Sands beer, or have Nigel the bartender mix you up a Bahama Mama, Goombay Smash or refreshing Sky Juice.
Before technology and high speed transportation came along, life in the islands was a challenge. Survival was dependent on innovation and sustainability. Bahamians incredible ability to adapt to the environment has evolved in to a number of refined skills like boat building, free diving, carpentry, straw work, farming and sailing. These trades have become signatures for the authentic tourism industry and a strong brand for what the real Bahamas is all about.