Visit an Enchanted Island Paradise - Bimini
The islands of the Bahamas form a 100,000-square-mile archipelago that extends over 500 miles of the clearest water in the world. It consists of 700 islands, including uninhabited cays and large rocks. Total estimated land area is 5,382 square miles and the highest land elevation is 206 feet (63 meters).
In 1492 Christopher Columbus made his first landfall in the New World on the island of San Salvador in the eastern Bahamas. After observing the shallow sea around the islands, he said “ baja mar “(shallow water or sea) and effectively named the area The Bahamas, or The Islands of the Shallow Sea.
Nassau, the capital city, is located on New Providence Island. This is the commercial and government centre of The Bahamas. The majority of the country’s 300,000 population resides here as well.
Bimini has three islands, North Bimini, South Bimini and East Bimini. It is located 50 miles off the east coast of Florida, across the Gulf Stream.
The larger island of North Bimini is about 7 miles (11km) long and 700 feet (210m) wide, of which only 3 1/2 miles is populated. The water which surrounds Bimini is simply magnificent.
The name Bimini comes from the Taino Native American Indian language of the Caribbean islands, meaning Mother of Many Waters.
Bimini is widely know for its great fishing, and is called the fishing capital of the world, as access to deep water fishing is very close to shore. Ernest Hemingway spent some time on Bimini between 1935 - 1937 and it was here that he wrote his famous novel, Island in the Stream.
Two roads run through North Bimini. The main King’s highway, on the bay side of the island, is lined with shops, bars and marinas for its first quarter mile. The shorter Queen’s highway runs along the western ocean side of the island. A Golf cart or a bicycle is the most comfortable way to get around.
North Bimini is divided in four sections. Alice town is the ‘downtown’ of Bimini with most marinas and bars. Next is Bailey town, a residential area with several grocery stores, variety stores and churches, followed by Porgy Bay. This is a characteristic Out Island fishing village, where every afternoon local fisherman bring in their catch of the day. This is where the WildQuest retreat is situated. The last is Bimini Bay Resort - a controversial new complex with marinas, cottages, townhouses and restaurants.
There’s a Bimini Museum, Bimini Police station, Post Office and Medical Clinic on North Bimini. The best sandy beach runs along the western side of North Bimini and is known by it’s three sections: Radio Beach, Blister Beach and Spook Hill Beach (closest to WildQuest).
There are two main esoteric sites around Bimini. The Healing Hole on East Bimini, is a unique sulphur spring, located in the mangroves on the east side of Bimini which is said to have curative properties; and Bimini Road, also known as the Atlantis road, just off the west coast of North Bimini. This is an underwater rock formation in 18 feet of water said to be remains from the lost continent of Atlantis. Edgar Cayce predicted that Atlantis would rise again near North Bimini.
South Bimini, a short water taxi ride from North Bimini, has the international airport and hosts the Bimini Biological Field Station (aka Shark lab). This is a research facility, founded in 1990, conducting extensive studies on shark behavior. Sometimes known as the “Greenpeace” of Bimini.
Alongside the road from the airport is the Fountain of Youth - sought for in 1513 by Spanish explorer Ponce de Leon. The waters of this well are rumored, to this day, to be endowed with rejuvenating properties.
A new addition is the Bimini Nature Trail, where you can see the plants and animals of Bimini in their natural environment.
Surrounding Bimini are the Cays of Bimini. The larger off-lying cays are Cat Cay, a private resort island, Gun cay with the picturesque Honeymoon harbor and Ocean Cay where aragonite (pure limestone) is dredged from the ocean’s floor to produce cement, fertilizers, glass and other products.
Between South Bimini and Cat Cay lies a popular dive site: The “Sapona”, or “concrete ship”. It’s believed to be left over from WWI. It served as a rum-runner’s storehouse during Prohibition.
There are beautiful deserted beaches for walking, swimming and enjoying the sunrise and sunset. It is small and quiet with few tourists. The Islanders are open and friendly, and the children are delightful.
"This has been a place of magic beyond words..."
- Mikki, Michigan
Please note: The Bahamas are an independent country and you have to have a valid passport to enter. Visas are not required for the Bahamas for most people. You can check with the Bahamian Consulate, your travel agent or www.bahamas.com to see if you require a visa. Please also check if you need a visa to enter the US. Please check Travel arrangements for more details about arranging your travel.