We are often asked what are our favorite places so far on the trip. One of them is Hope Town Harbor, Elbow Cay, Abacos, Bahamas.
It has all the elements; safe enclosed harbor from all but hurricanes, beautiful views from your boat (the candy striped lighthouse is amazing), fantastic beaches, quintessential cottage village, good restaurants and bars. It's in a word - charming!
It is possible to anchor, although there's not much room, but the moorings are only $20 a night so we hook on with pleasure. There are marinas too but our boat draft (6.5 ft) makes that impossible at present (the new marina being built, visible from the pictures below, may solve that problem).
|There are so many little details to love about|
|Scott, Diane, Peter, Julie and Graham at Cap'n Jack's|
|Blooming onion, perfectly cooked for an appetizer|
|Looking out the window on the way up|
|The entrance to Hope Town harbor from the lighthouse|
|Panning right from the above shot|
|Looking over the Harbor from the lighthouse, continued (panning right)|
|The Fresnel lense|
One night we decided to dress up and go out for a special dinner. The Abaco Inn on White Sound, a few miles south of Hope Town, was the perfect destination. We made a reservation in advance as they come in a van to pick you up. The small resort is perched on a narrow bluff between the ocean beach and White Sound, the other shallower bay mid way down Elbow Cay. From the welcoming bar you can see the ocean and the Sea of Abaco. We had drinks on the terrace and watched the sun go down. Then followed with a very nice meal in the restaurant. The food was good and the service attentive - the view amazing.
We also enjoyed Cap'n Jack's right on Hope Town Harbor. One night we stopped for a beer and ended up staying for appetizers and Bingo! Haven't done that for awhile. It was $1 per board and we all tried it for awhile - no winners in our group however.
The village is so attractive with narrow lanes that wander all over. One day we started out from the north end of town and many miles later circled back, having made it to the end of the island past lots of lovely homes.
Of course we explored the famous candy striped lighthouse on the far side of the harbor. It's a long climb up the narrow staircase to the top. A narrow balcony circles the tower below the light. This is one of only 3 manual lighthouse left in the world. It has a spring mechanism that must be hand cranked every few hours. The lens is a first order Fresnel, built in separate sections mounted in a frame to make it lighter and thinner than a regular lens. It's beautiful!
We stayed here for three nights until a weather window opened up and we left for our trip back to Florida.
By the way, entering and leaving the harbor is harder for us due to our 6.5 ft. draft. We had to wait until two hours before high tide and that was just barely enough water for us.
|Scott, Peter and Graham dressed up for our big dinner out -|
and don't they look fine!
|Julie, Heather and Diane in their Sunday best|
|The Abaco Inn pool hanging over the ocean beach|
|Sunset over White Sound, Elbow Cay|