Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, is a popular destination for cruise travelers. If you’re taking a cruise to the Caribbean, there’s a good chance your ship with stop in Nassau. Finding the right thing to do in Nassau for your family can be tricky if you have young kids and/or if you’re on a budget. This guide about things to do in Nassau with kids will help you decide the best things for your family to do at the Nassau Bahamas cruise port.
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1. Take a Stroll Around Downtown Nassau
After visiting Nassau a few times, walking around is one of my families favorite things to do in Nassau. Downtown Nassau is filled with local shops where you can grab affordable souvenirs, some local cuisine, and take advantage of some amazing photo ops. Go for a walk and experience the beauty of Nassau from off the ship. Walking around a foreign country can seem scary, but dont let the fear of the unknown stop you. Walking around a foreign country without a guide can seem scary, especially if youve never done it before. But don’t let that stop you. Just keep a map handy and stay within the downtown tourist area.
Pro Tip: If you’re not from a major city like New York, you may feel overwhelmed by the peddlers. Don’t stop walking, avoid eye contact, say no thank you, and keep going. They’ll realize you aren’t interested in what they’re selling and leave you alone.
One of the most iconic attractions in Nassau is Atlantis Paradise Island. You don’t need to be a guest at the resort to enjoy its wonders. A day pass lets you explore Atlantis’ amenities as if you were a guest. Atlantis offers a range of family-friendly activities like the Aquaventure Water Park, which features thrilling water slides, lazy rivers, and a fantastic kids’ pool area. Don’t forget to explore the marine exhibits at The Dig, home to fascinating sea creatures.
3. Spend the Day at the Beach
Nassau is renowned for its beautiful beaches, and Cable Beach is a prime spot for families, if you’re willing to take a 20 minute taxi ride to get there. With its soft, powdery sand and calm waters, it’s ideal for building sandcastles, snorkeling, and swimming with your kids.
Junkanoo Beach is a free beach, within walking distance from the port. In all honesty, we weren’t impressed by it. It is a very small beach with no free loungers, and seaweed. There were some great views of the ship though. If you’re looking for something free to do, close to the port, then it’s worth checking out.
However, if you have money to spare, I recommend taking the trip to Cable Beach or buying an excursion or a day pass to a private beach.
Margaritaville is Nassau’s newest resort, which opened in 2021. Our family had the pleasure of spending a day there in 2022. It ended up being the perfect activity for our family. The water park has a lazy river, a large zero entry pool, four slides- two for adults and two for kids, and a private beach with free loungers and more.
3. Visit the Ardastra Gardens, Zoo & Conservation Centre
If your family loves birds, a visit to the Ardastra Gardens & Wildlife Conservation Centre is a must. Located less than a 10-minute taxi ride from the cruise port, this zoo is home to a variety of animals, including flamingos, parrots, and lemurs. The highlight is the famous “March of the Flamingos” show, where these elegant birds parade in a synchronized fashion.
If your kids love all things pirates, you’ll want to take the short walk to the Pirates of Nassau museum. This interactive museum takes you on a journey back to the golden age of piracy in the Caribbean. Kids can dress up as pirates, explore a pirate ship, and learn about the colorful characters who once roamed these waters.
5. Discover the Queen’s Staircase and Fort Fincastle
For a dose of history and adventure, take your kids to explore the Queen’s Staircase, a historic site made up of 66 steps carved out of solid limestone. Nearby, you’ll find Fort Fincastle, an 18th-century fortress with fantastic views of Nassau. Kids can climb the fort’s ramparts and learn about the island’s history. Both places are free to enter and are about a 5-minute taxi ride or a 15-minute walk from the cruise port.
Nassau, Bahamas has plenty of options for your family while you’re at port. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation on the beach, or educational experiences, Nassau has it all. From the thrilling water parks at Atlantis to the enchanting world of Ardastra Gardens and the rich history of the Queen’s Staircase, there’s something to delight every member of your family. Make your cruise stop in Nassau a memorable one by exploring these family-friendly activities with your kids.