"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

March 9, 2015

The Abacos

The Abacos are a boomerang-shape cluster of islands in the northeastern Bahamas located about 160 miles east of the south Florida coast and consists of 2 islands and 82 cays. A short one-hour flight or about 18 hours on a slow boat…like The Pearl. The Abacos are the most popular of the "out islands".

North and east of the main islands is a group of barrier cays (pronounced "keys"), occupying the second largest landmass in the Bahamas. The chain of barrier cays is located about two to five miles offshore of the mainland and provides a protected body of water from the Atlantic Ocean, which is called the Sea of Abaco. The Sea of Abaco with its naturally protected waters has helped the Abacos become the sailing capital of The Bahamas. The Sea provides a safe & well protected environment to pursue numerous water activities such as diving, snorkeling, surfing, island hopping, beachcombing or just plain-old relaxing. 

Each cay is charming with a character all its own and different from the next. There are numerous deserted cays, coves, beaches, creeks and bays just waiting for us to relax on or explore in our dinghy. There are quaint fishing villages reminiscent of New England but in pastel colors, a candy-striped lighthouse dating back to the 1800’s and the third largest barrier reef in the world to explore.

The Abaco Cays start in the north at Walkers Cay working their way 100 miles or so down to Little Harbour. For the most part they parallel the Island of Great Abaco and can be thought of as barrier islands as they are what separate the Atlantic from the shallow Sea of Abaco and Mainland Abaco. They consist of limestone with some elevation and are protected on the ocean side by the third largest barrier reef in the world. For the most part the cays are green with mangrove and white sand beaches. Most are uninhabited.

The Atlantic side of these cays is littered with some of the most beautiful coral reefs you'll find in the Atlantic. Shooting up from the depths one can find reefs in waters from 6 to 200+ feet. There are reefs for snorkelers to the experienced diver. There is even a network of well maintained and protected underwater parks with mooring buoys for visiting boaters. Starting tomorrow I’m hoping we can start exploring some of these wonderful little beaches and towns.
The outer islands of Abaco

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