There are 700 islands in The Bahamas, but you could fit all of them into the large archipelago that is known as Andros. Consisting of three islands: North Andros, South Andros, and Mangrove Cay, it is 104 miles long and about 40 miles wide at its widest. Andros is an ecological marvel containing many small islands, tidal creeks, bights, wetlands, mangrove forests, and tidal flats where the bonefish roam – their bodies blending into the surrounding sand. There are more blue holes on Andros than anywhere else in the world. If that’s not enough, the third largest barrier reef on Earth lies along the eastern side of the islands where you can dive on dozens of sites. This was apparently a favorite destination of Jacque Cousteau. Beyond the reef the color of the water changes drastically as the depth drops from a few feet to 6,000 feet in what is known as the Tongue of the Ocean. Small Hope Bay Lodge and Andros Beach Club are two dive lodges to consider if you’d rather swim with the fish than catch them.
Shoreline seaplanes can transport fly fishermen or spin casters to their favorite fishing lodges where excellent professional guides can be found. Some of our favorites include Flamingo Cay (on the west side) Kamalame Cay (also a great wedding venue), Broad Shad Cay and Tiamo Resort (all on the east side).
Although the land mass may be the largest in The Bahamas, there are only about 8,000 inhabitants on the island, mostly on the eastern side. The Androsians are a very hospitable people and quite willing to share the natural wonderland that is their home. Many make their living by the sea, and others use the resources of the island to earn their trade. Androsians are known for their baskets and batiks, and you’ll find their wares throughout the islands. Androsia batiks are colorful fabrics that incorporate images from the island such as turtles, dolphins, flowers, shells, and seahorses. I once made a wedding quilt for friends who live in the islands from a variety of Androsia squares. We can fly you into Fresh Creek where you can rent a bike and head over to the shop where they produce and sell the material.
Much of the western side of Andros is made up of national parks designated to preserve the many species found there, including the endangered Andros Rock Iguana. You’ll find nurseries for fish, lobster and conch hidden in the protected tidal creeks and wetlands, as well as many species of colorful orchids and about 200 species of birds. On occasion you may even find a flock of flamingos feeding in the flats.
It is about a one-hour flight from southern Florida to this amazing island group. Grab some friends, give us a call, and let’s plan an adventure.
Shoreline Aviation – Providing Seaplane Services and Adventures Since 1980