The Exumas are an archipelago of 365 tropical islands. With so many places to stay in Exuma, you are spoilt for choice. One of these islands is the real star of the show – Staniel Cay. Often referred to as the Jewel in the Crown of the Bahamas Islands, Staniel Cay is the true authentic Bahamian experience, cementing it’s position as the best place to stay in Exuma.
You can’t go wrong with a vacation to the Bahamas; stunning white sandy beaches and turquoise blue waters await! Did you know that the Bahamas is made up of over 700 islands? And one small constellation of islands is the Exuma Cays – a spectacular chain of islands.
Our top pick island amongst this huge selection is Staniel Cay. Without a doubt the best place to stay in Bahamas, for many reasons. But the overriding emotional feeling that one gets from visiting Staniel Cay is the “small island experience”; a sleepy place where a sense of community trumps opportunistic tourism. Where seclusion breeds spectacular, away from the main crowded tourist trail or built up resort hotels.
Why Staniel Cay is the Best place to Stay in Exuma
Staniel Cay – a true paradise island in the Exuma Cays. Not just a stunning island to stay on, but a gateway to the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park, a protected area of the Exuma Cays. Gateway to adventure, sunsets and exotic wildlife.
An island free from large scale resorts and chain hotels, Staniel Cay has managed to retain it’s family owned and run boutique hotels and vacation rentals. And this is what the Bahamas should be about – authentic experiences that forge memories of a lifetime!
With proximity to the famous Bahamas Swimming pigs at Pig Beach (Big Major Cay island) and many other exciting Exuma attractions, like the Swimming with Sharks at Compass Cay, Staniel Cay has an enviable location within the Bahamas Island, making it the best place to stay in Bahamas.
Where is Staniel Cay?
Staniel Cay is about 100 miles south of Nassau, New Providence the capital of the Bahamas. It’s part of the Exuma Cays. It has an airport on the island, making it a perfect hub for travel into the Exuma Cays.
Why visit Staniel Cay?
The most popular attraction at Staniel Cay are the Bahamas Swimming Pigs that live on Pig Island (Big Major Cay). These famous Exuma Pigs can be visited on tours to Pig Beach with Bahamas Air Tours.
Only a short 10 minute boat ride away from Staniel Cay, the Bahamas Swimming Pigs are one of the top reasons for picking places to stay in Exuma. The Exuma Pigs that live at Pig Beach are the number one attraction in the Bahamas. Visitors can travel here on Day Trips from Nassau or Florida. But Day Trips only allow restrictive visiting opportunity and a short time window for going swimming with Pigs. By staying at Staniel Cay accommodations, guest have the ability to visit the Swimming Pigs at any time of day – especially a time of day that is quiet, away from the large tour groups that visit by speed boats from Nassau.
In the surround islands of Staniel Cay there are many exciting things to do in Exuma. These include Swimming with Sharks at the Compass Cay Marina. Their Pet Nurse sharks, that are harmless to humans, have become a very popular attraction to visit in the Exuma Cays. Compass Cay is a small island 30 minute boat ride north of Staniel Cay. The island is quiet and doesn’t have any hotels or resorts, but it does have vacation homes, making Compass Cay a unique places to stay in Exuma!
Staniel Cay itself has some very scenic spots and places of interest. These include the stunning white sand beach “Ocean Beach” on the eastern shoreline of Staniel Cay. There are large private Staniel Cay rental villas perched on the cliffs that overlook Ocean Beach. With the eastern side of the island receiving the Atlantis ocean swells, the sea can be very picturesque with crashing waves. The western shoreline of Staniel Cay in comparison is so calm, it’s almost like a lake.
Just off the coast line is a sunken underwater plane wreck from the drag trafficking era of Pablo Escobar in the 1970’s. Because of the shallow waters that surround Staniel Cay, this is one of the most accessible Bahamas plane wrecks. Guests can go on snorkeling tours to the underwater plane wreck with Bahamas Air Tours. Just another reason that Staniel Cay is the best place to stay in Exuma!
Places to stay in Exuma Staniel Cay
1. Water Villas at Staniel Cay
Our top selection for best places to stay in Exuma – the Water Villas at Staniel Cay are 3 luxury villas on the waters edge of Staniel Cay lagoon. With direct water access, these stunning villas are perfect for guests who want to cruise the Exuma Cays by speedboat whilst resting in luxurious Staniel Cay accommodations.
With large living spaces (1,400-sq ft) constructed with high ceilings and tall floor to ceiling windows. Each villa has a unique 2 bedroom configuration with king beds and private bathrooms. A full sized kitchen is kitted out for self catering or use with their private chef services. Perfect for families of all sizes, along with the 2 bedrooms, each villas as a sofa bed, therefore accommodating upto 6 persons per villa.
Other services and features include complimentary continental breakfast, daily housekeeping, wifi internet, home entertainment system, air conditioning and the list goes on. But the main reason you want to choose the water villas as your preferred places to stay in Exuma, is the outdoor living space; a private splash pool and decked outdoor lounging area with stunning views across the Staniel Cay lagoon.
Book your stay at the Staniel Cay Rentals Water Villas with Bahamas Air Tours and choose our concierge travel service including flight bookings, private chef service, boat rentals and golf cart rentals. All to make the perfect Bahamas Vacation!
2. Staniel Cay Yacht Club
Established in 1965, the Staniel Cay Yacht Club has been at the beating heart of Staniel Cay island since the very first days when visitors began travelling to the Exuma Cays. A boutique hotel with 16 private bungalows, all with sea views, the SCYC is one of the more exclusive places to stay in Exuma. Each of the bungalows is individually styled inside and externally each has a unique shade of color. With direct water access, the majority of bungalows have their own jetty with boat hire included.
The only Staniel Cay Resort style property on the island, the Yacht Club features many popular services with locals and visitors alike; The Yacht Club restaurant and bar is very popular with boaters and day trippers. For guests staying in this unique Staniel Cay accommodations, the Yacht Club has a swimming pool and a lounger area and bike rentals for exploring the village. Certainly, one of the most expensive places to stay in Exuma, their services and attention to detail is worth the price.
With a full service marina (fuel available), the Staniel Cay Yacht Club attracts some of the very best Super Yachts and luxury boats that travel in the Caribbean. During the peak seasons you will find the marina completely packed out.
3. Embrace Resort
A uniquely eco-friendly resort that is family owned and operated. Located in the heart of Staniel Cay, close to the airport, it has 7 private villas, each designed after an island in the Bahamas. Surrounding a tranquil swimming pool and water feature, the Embrace Resort is spacious and peaceful. It’s one of the most affordable places to stay in Exuma. The staff at Embrace Resort are very experience in weddings, honeymoons and special group bookings.
How to get to Staniel Cay in Exuma
Bahamas Air Tours operates flights to Staniel Cay from Nassau and Miami Florida. This allows guests a convenient and luxurious way to travel to the Exumas.
Book the best places to stay in Exuma at the Water Villas Staniel Cay for an enjoyable and adventurous Bahamas Vacation.
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