What better place for a Bahamian getaway than just around the corner? The Bimini Islands, a haven for beachgoers and water sports enthusiasts, are a mere 50 miles from Miami Beach. Located right in the middle of the Gulf Stream, Bimini attracts hundreds of marine animals and pleasant temperatures year-round. Though relatively overlooked in the Caribbean, the Bimini Islands have always been popular with deep-sea fishermen. Here’s everything you need to know in the ultimate Bimini Islands travel guide!
What to Expect in Bimini Islands
Bimini is the westernmost chain of islands in the Bahamas, located about 50 miles east of Miami. Bimini is made up of three islands: North Bimini, South Bimini, and East Bimini. The largest islands are North Bimini and South Bimini, so you’ll most likely stay on one of the two!
North Bimini is about seven miles long, and home to Alice Town, a collection of shops, restaurants, and bars on a road known as “The King’s Highway”. Scuba diving and snorkeling are popular activities, because there are many shipwrecks in the area that make for fun diving experiences!
South Bimini is home to the airstrip, South Bimini Airport, and offers a quiet alternative to the lively nature of North Bimini. There is a small community of homes on South Bimini known as Port Royale, and an epic nature trail.
Language: The official language is Bahamian English, so it is quite easy to converse and talk with locals!
Currency: Bahamian dollar– same value as the USD!
Credit Cards and Banks: The majority of retailers and restaurants accept debit card as payment, but it’s always a good idea to carry some cash with you. Some larger resorts may except credit cards. But keep in mind when visiting this small island destination, cash is king!
Climate: Bimini has a warm and tropical climate– averaging 70 degrees in the winter and 80 degrees in the summer months. The rainy season in the Bahamas runs from May to October, and October and June are the wettest two months.
Getting Around the Bimini Islands
The best way to get around the beautiful 7-mile North Bimini is with a golf cart or bicycle. Shuttles are usually on “island-time” and not the best option for cruising down King’s Highway for some snacks or souvenir-shopping.
Taxi: Bimini is so small that cars are limited. Taxi service is available by telephone, radio (VHF Channel 68), or you can flag one down on the street.
Boat: There is a daily ferry between North and South Bimini.
Bicycle: You can find a lot of bike rental spots on the islands.
Golf Cart: The main form of rental transportation available on North Bimini is a golf cart. You can also rent a bicycle to get around. Pedestrians should remember to first look right and then left before crossing streets. For maximum mobility, pick up a golf cart ($75-90 per day) first thing in the morning before they sell out.
Resorts World Bimini
This Hilton resort’s impressive grounds span a whopping 750 acres and boast a multitude of restaurants, bars and lounges. Choose from over 480 townhouses or villas, enjoy a sundowner at the swim-up bar, or take a sailboat out for the afternoon from the marina.
Location: Alice Town, North Bimini
Accommodation: 4-Star Hotel
Price Range: $$
Bimini Big Game Club Resort & Marina
Bimini Big Game Club is an average resort, when you take into account the service and restaurants, but the rooms are clean and comfortable. Manage your expectations—don’t come expecting a luxury experience, this is a fishing resort with an Old Bahamas vibe, so embrace it!
Location: Alice Town, North Bimini
Accommodation: 3-Star Hotel
Price Range: $$
Stuart’s Conch Stand
The Conch Salad is Bimini’s main claim to fame–a tasty mixture of tomatoes, green peppers, onions, raw conch, orange and lime juice spiced with Scotch Bonnet peppers. Nobody does it better than Stuart’s, a beachside wooden hut and favorite with the locals. I’ve also heard that Joe’s Conch Shack is another great option!
What to Order: Stuart also offers vegetable and lobster salads, which he makes readily and you can scarf down with Cuban rum.
Edith makes the magic happen with lobster pizza. Edith’s offers up extra large pies as well as traditional local specialties like chicken-conch pizza and cracked conch. All outdoor seating so bring the bug spray!
What to Order: Seafood Pizza!
Don’t be discouraged by the “side of the road” shack and wooden benches—this is the real deal. Come for the amazing bbq and smoked meats and the friendly chef, Sam!
What to Order: The jerk chicken, jerk pork and smoked lobster!
Sherry's Paradise Beach Bar
Sherry’s is simple and to the point! A small family-run kitchen with the title of best Conch Fritters on the island.
What to Order: Get yourself a pina colada and some conch fritters!
1, 2, 3 Floor Bar
This new sports bar is open from noon to two A.M., offering happy hour prices every day. With pool, foosball and Tuesday karaoke, there‘s no better place to chill on Bimini until the wee hours.
Snorkel with Sharks
The Bimini underwater is a rich playground for snorkelers and divers. The crystal-clear water makes for unforgettable swims with fish and coral–not to mention the sharks!
Snorkel at the Sapona Wreck
Dive down to the floating Prohibition-era liquor cargoship, which ran aground in a 1926 hurricane. The tip of the boat is visible above water, making it perfect for snorkeling. You’ll find every form of coral, sponges and lobsters here!
Dive with Great Hammerheads (Seasonal)
The best time to visit Bimini is in February, the month when huge hammerheads collect off the coast of Bimini. This is the only time of the year you can swim with these shy animals–so don’t miss your chance to get up close and personal! Join a qualified diver for this fun and unique dive of a lifetime. If you’re lucky, you’ll even catch the shark feed at Triangle Rocks Reef.
If you don’t have your own sailboat, you can rent one from the marina and take it out for the afternoon.
On the Bimini Nature Hiking Trail you’ll learn a lot: ecology, wildlife, history. Guided tours are led by professionals. You’ll find birds, iguanas and the endemic Bimini Boa that call the islands home–plus local plants like gum elemi and poisonwood.
Lie on the Beach
Of course, what would the Caribbean be without the beach! The islands’ top three are Radio Beach, Blister Beach and Spook Hill Beach, plus a handful of interesting cays to the south.
Sunset at Gallant Lady shipwreck on North Bimini
The once-magnificent Gallant Lady now rests, rusting and rotting, on the southern tip of North Bimini. For years it’s been decaying. A cemetery overlooks the eerie wreckage. The red hues of the ship are stunning on the white sands and in a caribbean sunset.