Terrance Roberts

Destination Update

November 17th, 2005
Contact: Terrance L. Roberts
Bahamas Ministry
Grand Bahama Island
(242) 352-8044

Three weeks following the visit of hurricane ‘Wilma’ on October 23rd, the Grand Bahama community’s restoration efforts are well underway and the return to normalcy is evident. The tourism infrastructure continues to meet the needs of the market and resorts continuing to offer quality vacation experiences.

All but few of the more than sixty visitor attractions, activities and tours are available daily. Due to the effects of the recent storm a small number of rooms are temporarily unavailable at some properties including some located along the southwestern coast of the island.

Four days following ‘Wilma’s’ brief visit, Grand Bahama hosted thirty-five meeting planners, as well as hundreds of jazz festival enthusiasts.


• Water – fully available island-wide
• Electricity – Over 90% of customers are re-connected
• Access Roads – all main access roads are clear and side streets are being cleared on an ongoing basis
• Telephone – service for residential, commercial and cellular phones are fully operational.

Grand Bahama International Airport

• Operational Schedule – 7a.m. to 7 p.m.
• All carriers are operating close to pre-storm schedules: American Eagle, Bahamasair, Gulf Stream/Continental Connection, AirTran Airways five days weekly from Baltimore; and Delta Connection and AirTran daily from Atlanta. Continental Express from Newark, and U.S. Airways daily from Charlotte, with weekly non-stop service from LaGuardia, NY and Philadelphia, PA on Saturdays.

Lucayan Harbour Cruise Facility

Benefiting from unscheduled calls, the Lucayan Harbour Cruise Facility at Freeport Harbour has suffered minimal damage due to tidal surges attributed to Hurricane Wilma.
• The Berthing Schedule thru December record that twelve ships have requested to make 26 calls on Grand Bahama Island for an increase of 8 calls over the same period last year, not including daily cruise ferry calls by Discovery Sun. Calls are to be made by: Westerdam, Fascination, Constellation, Celebration, Fantasy, Liberty, Palm Beach Princess, Voyager of the Seas and Grandeur of the Seas. More than 62,000 cruise passengers are scheduled arrive through to the end of the year, matching the arrival numbers over the same period last year.
• Additionally three ships will call overnight including Canadian warships: The Moncton and Summerside from November 18 – 22; and the Costa Magica December 17th and 18th, 2005.


• The Isle of Capri Casino is open for gaming daily from 10:00 a.m.


• The Lucayan Marina – 150 slips - fully operational
• Port Lucaya Marina – 80 slips – fully operational
• Xanadu Marina – 72 Slips – fully operational
• Old Bahama Bay Marina – 72 – reopens December 23rd, 2005
• Ocean Reef Yacht Club – 55 slips – fully operational

Pirates of the Caribbean Two/Three

The Disney movie production of Pirates of the Caribbean Two and Three is ongoing at the Bahamas Film Studios located at Gold Rock Creek, which offers one of the world’s largest open water filming tanks.

Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer not one, but two sequels starring Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley, the multi-million dollar trilogy are considered to be the largest motion picture project in production outside of Hollywood, California. Now past the half-way point, the combined crew of 600 local and international persons are busy on location here in Grand Bahama. The production team will break for the holidays at the end of November and return in January 2006. Pirates of the Caribbean Two is expected to be released in June 2006.

Special Events

The 2nd Annual GBI Jazz, Rhythm & Blues Festival featuring Lou Rawls, the Stylistics, Roy Ayers and Angela Bowfill was held – October 27 – 30th; and the 20th Annual Conchman Triathlon – November 5th. Upcoming events include:

• Endura Half Marathon – November 19th
• Annual Tabernacle High School Invitational Basketball Tournament – November 23rd – 27th
• 3rd Annual GB Junkanoo Jam – NCAA Division 1 Women’s Basketball Tournament – George Washington, Purdue, South Carolina, Texas, Iowa State, North Carolina State, North Florida and Rutgers - November 24th – 27th
• Annual Wahoo Fishing Tournament - November 30th - December 3rd
• Castaways 2006 – Celebrity guests and performances by Floetry, 112 and Raheem Devaughn - January 13 – 15th

Hotel Accommodations

• The Westin/Sheraton at Our Lucaya Beach and Golf Resort – 1010 available rooms – minor repairs required.
• Viva Wyndham Fortuna Beach Resort – 264 available rooms – minor repairs required.
• Pelican Bay Hotel and Suites at Lucaya – 182 available rooms – minor repairs required.
• Port Lucaya Resort and Yacht Club -160 available rooms –
• Flamingo Bay Resort – 66 available rooms


• Xanadu Beach Resort and Marina – 38 available rooms – some structural damage.
• Island Palm Resort –143 available rooms
• Best Western Castaways Resort – 118 available rooms – minor repairs required.
• Royal Islander Hotel – 100 available rooms – minor repairs required.
• Royal Palm Resort – 48 available rooms

West End

• Old Bahama Bay – 48 rooms – minor repairs required to landscaping and marina, reopens December 23rd, 2005
• Bootle Bay Bone Fishing Lodge – closed.
• Paradise Cove – closed.

East End

• Bishop’s Bone Fishing Lodge – extensive damage - closed
• Ocean Pearl Resort – 10 available rooms - minor repairs required
• Pelican Point Beach Lodge – 5 available rooms
• Deep Water Cay Lodge – 10 available rooms

Time-Share/Vacation Clubs

1. The Ritz Beach Resort – 109 available units
2. Ocean Reef Resort – 63 available units
3. Freeport Resort and Club – 50 available units
4. Island Resort and Golf Club – 31 available units
5. Viva Wyndham Fortuna Beach Resort – 30 available units
6. Mayfield Beach and Tennis Club 10 available units
7. St. Tropez Resort – 7 available units
8. Lakeview Manor – closed
9. Woodbourne Resort – closed
10. Xanadu Vacation Club - closed


Port Lucaya Market Place – All 59 shops, 23 restaurants and bars are fully operational. Port Lucaya Market Place has created a uniquely designed area for destination weddings and vacation photo opportunities.
Garden of the Groves – Currently undergoing refurbishment – no announced opening date.
International Bazaar – 34 shops, restaurants and bars remain open.
Rand Nature Center – open for guided tours - minimal landscaping damage.
Lucayan National Park – open for guided and non-guided tours.


1. The Reef Golf Course – redesigned by Robert Trent Jones Jr. 18-hole Par 72 PGA rated golf course.
2. Lucayan Country Club – designed by Dick Wilson 18-hole championship course.
3. Jim McLean Golf School opens daily from 8a.m – 6p.m.

4. Lucayan National Park Kayak Nature & Cave Tour (6 hours) Safe in any weather – no dangerous creatures, suitable for all ages – beginners welcomed. Kayaking portion of trip is approximately 90 minutes of light to moderate paddling in inland creek through a mangrove forest. Lunch on private, shady beach; time for swimming or beach combing; guided nature walk and visit to caves.
5. Peterson Cay Kayak Snorkel Tour (5 hours) Only 30 minutes paddle to lovely beach on tiny Peterson Cay, the Bahamas’ smallest National Park. Spectacular snorkeling only yards off beach. All snorkeling tours are guided. Instructions for beginners are provided. Lunch on Peterson Cay
6. Biking, Sightseeing and Beach Tour (5 hours) ride an historic trail that early settlers walked. Stop at ruins of one of the island’s first settlements.
7. Bahamas Jeep Safari (5 hours) drive your own 4 x 4 open top Jeep in a convoy. Travel excellent roads with little traffic as well as off-road through Pine forest and along a scenic coastal trail.
8. Heritage Trail Biking Adventure (off road) 5 hours) ride a historic trail that early settlers walked. Stop at ruins of one of the island first settlements. Your guide will share the islands history with you.
9. Power Snorkel Experience-self-propelled power units (6 hours)
10. Half and full day Birdwatching Experience - Grand Bahama offers over 200 bird species. Many Bahamian Specialties and Endemics that do not occur in the US, Canada or Europe.
11. Super Combination Tour, a 3 hour excursion that takes you from Flora and Fauna, the suburbs, to the commercial business center.
12. West End, a tour that will introduce you to the Island’s history and folklore.
13. Snorkeling Tours 1 ¾ hour tour enables everyone from the “Novice” to the “Old Pro” to snorkel and explore the variety of marine life found at the shallow coral reefs.
14. Glassbottom Boat Tours 1 ½ hour trips. Shallow coral reefs of Grand Bahama aboard the “Ocean Wonder” a custom built 60ft double-deck glassbottom boat that offers both sun and shade.
15. Grand Bahama Day Trip, experience the cosmopolitan flair of Freeport Lucaya and the quiet charm of East and West End.
16. Sea Safari Snorkel Tour Catamaran includes: Reef Snorkeling, Shallow Reef, Waterslide (30ft open), and Rock Climbing wall (20ft). All on a 72ft Double Deck Catamaran. Available fish feeding, Bar & Grill.
17. Deserted Island & Beach Party takes a personalized tour on a 45ft catamaran with comfort and ease along the shoreline to 1 1/2 acre National Park, Peterson Cay. Where a sandy beach, more snorkeling, bird watching, swimming, sunbathing & your deserted island dreams come true. Includes lunch, beverage, snorkel gear & instructor.

H.Forbes Charter

18. Bonfire on the Beach, experience the sunset on the beach combined with live Music and sumptuous All U can eat Bahamian Dinner including unlimited drinks. Sundays Taino Beach & Tuesday & Thursday Out Riggers, Smith Point.
19. East End Cave Tour, half day guided tour of 42 acres Lucayan National Park, near the Eastern End of the Island to the world’s longest explored underwater cave system. The Lucayan Indians lived in these caves before Christopher Columbus discovered the Islands of the Bahamas.

Executive Tours Ltd.

18. Undersea (Seaworld Explorer semi-submarine) Coastal Cruise, Treasure Reef.
19. Barracuda and Nurse Sharks Fish feeding show.
20. Bahama Mama Sunset and Dinner Cruise & Show

East End Adventure

21. Island Hopping Safari to quaint seaside village (8 hours) Mc’Clean’s Town, Sweeting Cay etc.
22. Blue Hole Snorkeling Safari, take the local boat ferry to some of the most abundant snorkeling sites off Grand Bahama (4hours).
23. Jeep Trailin’ Safari-travel through dense pine forests and along bumpy trails to an inland freshwater hole. Visit the native village of High Rock where you will be treated to a grilled lunch. Hike through the Lucayan National Park and see the longest underground chartered caverns in the world!! Then sunbathe on the breathtaking Gold Rock Beach before returning home. (3.5hours)

Reef Tours Ltd.

24. Parasailing - soar through the air, up to 350ft above the water for a spectacular view of Lucaya.
25. Yamaha Wave runners
26. Wine & Cheese Cruises a romantic evening sail off the shores of Lucaya is enhanced by the cheese and wine provided for your enjoyment.
27. Bottom/Drift Fishing - try your hand at bottom fishing. Catch a variety of small reef and shallow fish like snappers, porgies and jacks to name a few, using light tackle. Bait, tackle, ice and coolers included 3 ½ hour trips.
28. Sailing & Snorkeling - view coral formation and a variety of marine life as you snorkel the reefs. Then sit back and relax to the sound of the wind in the sails as you cruise the Lucayan shores. 12:45p.m. – 4:15p.m.

Pat & Diane/Fantasia Tours

29. Steak and Lobster Dinner Cruise (3hours) 72ft Double deck catamaran along the shoreline and canals.
30. Mango Tango Evening Cruise dance to variety of music or just layback sipping unlimited Bahama Mama, wines & non-alcoholic punch. Includes Hors d’eouvers. Cultural demonstrations.

Paradise Cove (closed)

31. Snorkel where the reef glitter with color and fish are abundant Paradise Cove Beach Resort is just a short 20 minute drive to a secluded beach in Deadman’s Reef. Snorkel, swim, kayak, relax, enjoy the music…and even have a light lunch! Full Day & Half Day.

Smiling Pat’s Adventures’

32. Unique flavour that celebrates Grand Bahama’s special natural beauty, culture and traditions in beach parties, water cruises, spear fishing, Bahamian tea parties, blue hole excursions and high speed day trips to Abaco.

The Dolphin Experience

33. Close Encounter a ferryboat ride takes you to Sanctuary Bay, home of The Dolphin Experience once there; you’re invited to sit with your feet in the water as the dolphins swim around you. Take your turn and step onto our shallow platform to actually touch these amazing animals!
34. Swim with Dolphins an intimate encounter with one of the Ocean’s most fascinating creatures! The ferry takes you to swim with the dolphins in the protected waters of Sanctuary Bay. Our staff is there to teach you about the animals and guide you through a perfect mix of trained behavior and relaxed swimming. Only minimal swimming skills are required. Life vest are available upon request.
35. Snorkel with Dolphins an exclusive opportunity for skilled snorkelers to free dive in the open sea with dolphin! The ferry will take you to the crystal clear water of the shallow reef where a pair of bottlenose dolphins will meet you. For experienced snorkelers only.
36. Assistant Trainer Program for those who have always dreamed of working with dolphins! Team up with our staff for a day of dolphin care and training. From food prep to swimming with the dolphins, even participating in open ocean training.

Underwater Explorers’ Society

37. Dolphin Dive – UNEXSO is world famous as a pioneer in
Scuba diving. Interact and dive with the dolphins in the open ocean along a coral reef on this exciting and very unique dive.
38. Night Dive – A whole new underwater world is yours.
You’ll see brilliant colours and a variety of marine life not normally seen during the day.
39 Ben’s Cavern – Named after UNEXSO legend, Ben Rose,
a dive into Ben’s Cavern is a visit into the ancient past.
40. Wreck Dives – A variety of shallow to deep wreck dives,
the most famous which is Theo’s Wreck.
41. Reef Dives – A variety of colourful reefs teaming with
tropical fish with depths ranging from 30 to 80 plus feet.
42. Shark Dive – UNEXSO pioneered this exciting dive over
20 years ago and was the first to offer shark diving on Grand Bahama Island.

Xanadu Undersea Adventures

43. Experienced Divers – Unlimited dive sites and day or
night, deep or shallow dives, including Shark Alley Dives and Nitrox Dives and Courses.
44. Learn to Dive in 4 hours – Qualified Instructors offer
certified PADI courses, open water referrals and specialty classes.

Caribbean Scuba Diving

45. Variety of Dives – offering resort classes, certification
courses, underwater camera and equipment rentals and private charters.

Exotic Adventure

46. Snorkeling in the warm and beautiful tropical waters of the Bahamas National Park, a land/sea wildlife preserve.
47. Captain’s Dive – have your captain dive, spear and prepare you a fresh fish lunch cooked over on open fire with savory Bahamian Seasonings.
48. Catch your own lunch, we also offer light tackle 2 deep sea fishing.
49. Explore 2 shell hunt for miles on secluded white sand beaches.
50. West End Adventure – available upon request

Tranquility Shores

51. Tranquility Shores Beach Day, relax on the beach or dabble in the ocean or enjoy one of the many non-motorized water sports available from kayaks, to pedal boats, to floats and snorkeling gear.
52. Native Show – island songs, limbo and fire dance in the finest local tradition.

Water World Enterprises Ltd.

53 . Two 18-hole upscale miniature golf course
54. 24 lanes Bowling Alley.

Horseback Riding

55. Pine Tree Stables – ride through wooded trails on a 2-hour eco-adventure.
56. Trikk Ponies – When you ride with Trikk Pony Adventures, you get a relaxing experience with a personal touch. Small groups have a maximum of four persons.

Fish Fry

57. Smith’s Point – Enjoy delicious fried fish, potato bread, conch salad and more every Wednesdays
58. Sunset Village – Closed.