After sailing across the Caribbean Sea overnight under a moonlit starry sky, we arrived in the Bahamas at 8am. We decided to have breakfast at Cabanas buffet (good decision) and watch as the ship docked at Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas. Maneuvering the huge ship into its docking slip was fascinating as we actually backed into the dock, sort of like parallel parking a car.
Our shore excursion for the day was an hour long, narrated bus tour of the city, followed by a stop at the Ardastra Zoo and Gardens. The zoo is known for its large flock of free roaming Caribbean Flamingoes, the national bird of the Bahamas and the largest of the five species of flamingoes. The males stand over five feet tall.
The bus was a small, air-conditioned mini bus that could hold twenty passengers. Our driver was born on the island and had a wonderful Bahamian accent, which sometimes made him difficult to understand over the speaker. As he pointed out, Nassau has about 250,000 residents and about 400,000 cars and trucks! They drive British-style on the left side of the road and the streets are very, very narrow and congested with traffic and parked vehicles. Very few bicyclists were around; people were either driving or walking to their destinations.
We drove all over Nassau as he pointed out national buildings (parliament, art gallery, etc.), statues (Christopher Columbus), native trees and plants with edible fruits, took us to the historic Fort for a short walking tour and to admire the views of the turquoise ocean, and then on to a straw market. Elly bought a conch shell ($5) and Caroline got a very pretty tropical patterned long dress ($20) to wear to dinner that evening.
The Andastra Zoo and Gardens was fun. Most of the animals at the Zoo were colorful birds, especially parrots. They herd the flamingo flock onto the parade grounds at 2pm and walk them around, sort of in formation. That’s something we’ve never seen before! You could volunteer to join the flamingoes on the grounds (Elly did), and they would come up to you and check out anything sparkling, like rings or hair beads. It was so much fun.
There were a group of women selling handmade straw bags and other items in a stall by the gift shop. It was interesting talking to them and watching them sew with colorful straw on all sorts of items. Elly bought a straw placemat with two pink flamingoes on it and they sewed her name on it for her.
They also have a large flock of Lorikeets that you can feed apple slices to several times a day. The birds were so gentle and tame, and so polite, chirping softly while nibbling on the apple slices in your hand. 🙂
We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program (Fall 2013/Spring 2014) and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.
We included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.
Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.