December 2013 – We visited Nassau during an eastern Caribbean cruise. We were the first people off the boat and immediately set out on our walk to the Colonial Hilton. We had somehow missed the early morning (whispered) announcement on the intercom warning us about recent crimes in the area and advising us to stay in groups. We are always alert when traveling, however, and had no issues walking completely alone to the hotel for our day pass. We checked in at the front desk and were given instructions about the amenities that we had access to for the day.
We headed out back, down the path, to the deserted beach. It was not the nicest beach because it was very close to the marina and had a bit of a grimy feel to it. The sand and chairs were clean, however, and we could see an island with a lighthouse directly across from us. We had the beach completely to ourselves for about an hour before hotel guests began filtering down.
Our day pass included a $30 meal and beverage voucher, so we ordered a couple of quesadillas and daiquiris. They were pretty good, but they seemed a bit bland compared to some of the meals and drinks we’ve had before in the Caribbean. We took our last drinks to go and walked the grounds of the resort then walked out onto the street. We headed off to the Pirate Museum, which charged an admission of $13 each. We found this rate to be a bit steep considering we went through the whole museum in about 30-45 minutes. It was interesting, but it really was not worth the admission cost.
After the museum, we went down the block to a bank to exchange money (we like to take home a little bit of the currency for each country we travel to). The bank tellers were incredibly nice and helpful, and the bank was heavily guarded. We actually saw quite a heavy police presence during our entire visit.
It was close to time to board, so we meandered through the shopping centers at the port and headed back to the ship. I had heard mixed reviews regarding Nassau. Some thought it was dirty and ugly, while others thought it was nice and pretty. We were in between. It definitely was not the nicest place we’ve been in the Caribbean, but it wouldn’t be a bad place to spend a couple of days in the future.
We never felt as if we were in any danger, but as with any public area, be aware of your surroundings while visiting.