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Destination Travel: BAHAMAS

p_1827-w270-h270.jpgp_2234-w270-h270.jpgp_7233-w270-h270.jpg A light Vancouver rainfall dripped from my umbrella as I crossed the street to enter the Rosewood Hotel Georgia. I was wishing I could be enjoying the blue skies, turquoise seas and white sand beaches of the islands of the Bahamas but no matter how many times I clicked the heels of my chic black boots together the grey sky of Vancouver was still shedding rain drops. Maybe if I'd worn red shoes instead of the boots... but then on the other hand maybe I would have landed in Kansas, instead of the Bahamas.

Luckily, from mid-December, Vancouverites will not need magic slippers to transport themselves directly to the island of Grand Bahama, because Sunwing Airlines will be offering new direct flights between Vancouver International Airport and Freeport, on Grand Bahama Island.

Starting from  November 1st for seven Saturday Vancouver departures, Sunwing will fly via Calgary to Freeport. From December 19th through to April 10th, 2015 flights will depart Vancouver on Fridays for a non-stop flight to Freeport. The Memories Bahama Beach Resort on Lucayan Beach, Grand Bahamas, opened earlier this year. Combined air and hotel packages are an attractive option.

p1150793-w500-h500.jpgp1150795-w500-h500.jpgThe Ministry of Tourism of the Bahamas hosted an event to launch introduce this new direct service and spread the word about Grand Bahama as a great holiday destination. The Bahamas Minister of Tourism, Mr Obediah Wilchcombe, the Director-General of Tourism, Mrs. Joy Jibrilu, and  Director of Tourism Grand Bahamas, Ms Betty Bethel, were present to welcome the guests.

My only visit to the Bahamas was on a cruise several years ago, where we enjoyed a brief stop at Nassau, so I  was interested to learn more about this destination. The Commonwealth island nation of the Bahamas has over 700 islands and 2500 cays in the archipelago, lying  within 100,000 square miles of the western  Atlantic Ocean north of Cuba and south-east of Florida. The land area occupies only 5,382 square miles. Seventy percent of the population live in the capital city, Nassau, on the island of New Providence.

bahamas-w710-h710_0.jpgThe word Bahamas is derived from the Spanish words baja mar - shallow seas -  and it's the shallow waters around the borders of the islands that give the water that crystal clear turquoise shade.

This map from Mapquest.com shows how sprawling the archipelago is, as well as it's proximity to the United States and to Cuba.

 Grand Bahama is the fourth largest island, lying just 55 miles off the Florida coast. For those who enjoy water sports- snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, boating, kayaking... and those who just want to soak up the sun, this is the perfect relaxed and laid-back destination. Golfers, and those who enjoy tennis or horseback riding will also  find lots of opportunities to indulge.

My interest is more along the lines of exploring the plethora of seafood and learning more about the foods of the Bahamas and Grand Bahamas is now on my "to visit" list, specially now that there is a direct flight to Freeport.

For more information about vacationing in the Bahamas visit the website of Bahamas Tourism  and you will find information about the new direct flights from Vancouver to Grand Bahamas at Sunwing Vacations.

Visit and you will see why "It's Better in the Bahamas." I hope to do so soon.