EXUMAS, BAHAMAS

April – May

HIGHLIGHTS

  

Get Your Bearings

This chain of 365 cays spread over more than 100 miles in the Bahamas, known collectively as the Exumas, looks a lot like paradise. Sugary beaches, sapphire waters, fascinating wildlife, and boundless potential for adventure.

While the Exumas have some of the most picturesque (or dare we say Instagrammable) places in the world, many are impossible to get to on anything but a boat. This exclusivity has kept the water pristine, the creatures plentiful and curious, and the beaches unburdened by the typical hordes of tourists.

The 176-square-mile Exuma Cays Land and Sea National Park, created in 1958, was the first land and sea park in the world and is one of the most successful marine parks. It is the first “no-take reserve” (all fishing is prohibited) in the wider Caribbean. This ecological preserve and wildlife refuge is famous for its breath-taking marine environment with incredible snorkeling and diving.

Nassau

Guest crew will fly into Nassau and we’ll spend the night in the main harbor across from Paradise Island. Once we get settled aboard Neverland, we can explore the vibrant downtown and waterfront areas of Nassau, or venture out to the resort area for one last dose of civilization!

Nassau to Highbourne Cay

36 nautical miles / 5-7 hours underway / 1 stop

We’ll get an early start for the first big leg of our Bahamas adventure where we’ll cross the shallow Exuma Bank and dodge coral heads on our way to Highbourne Cay. Shortly after departing we can stop at the Lost Blue Hole, one of the most unusual dive site in The Bahamas. This natural hole in the open ocean floor is about 100 feet across and over 200 feet deep.

We’ll then settle in for a quiet and cozy night at gorgeous Highbourne Cay. Odds are good to have a calm and secluded anchorage all to ourselves. There are several beautiful snorkeling areas over colorful coral reefs, including “Octopus Garden” and “Highbourne Rocks”, 

Highbourne Cay to Long Cay

8 nautical miles / 1-2 hours underway

Early birds can watch the sun rise from a picturesque white sand beach looking out to the east over Exuma Sound. After breakfast we’ll head out on a short passage to Long Cay, where we can spend the afternoon chillin’ on the pristine Exuma Sand Bar with a cold drink in hand, or the more adventurous can go for a snorkel or dive in 20 to 35 feet at Hammerhead Gulch to see bountiful nurse sharks, hawksbill turtles, eagle and southern sting rays.

Try your luck hunting for conch and lobster and celebrate your success at the dinner table.

Long Cay to Shroud Cay

nautical miles / 2 hours underway / 1 stop

Along the way we’ll stop at Norman’s Cay where we can snorkel the infamous WWII-era military plane wreck that was once used to fuel Pablo Escobar’s expanding cocaine trade until his pilot ditched short of the runway. We can also go ashore for lunch at the famous MacDuff’s Bar & Grill overlooking the Exuma Bank.

Shroud Cay is an uninhabited island only accessible by boat. Sanctuary Creek in the northern part can be explored by dinghy or by standup paddle board as you wind your way across the island to the gorgeous and secluded Driftwood Beach. The mangroves lining this sandy-bottomed creek abound in sea life and you may spot an assortment of grunts, groupers, schoolmasters, and even the occasional lobster or shark.

Further south are even more quiet creeks which are perfect for paddle boarding as no motorized vessels are allowed.

Shroud Cay to Waderick Wells Cay

19 nautical miles / 3-4 hours underway

Today we’ll raise the sails again and head back out to the depths of the Exuma Sound as we make our way directly to Waderick Wells Cay, which is home to the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park’s visitor center and ranger station as well as a number of other great snorkel sites. We’ll have the trolling lines out and try to catch something delicious for dinner!

Waderick Wells Cay to Compass Cay

3 nautical miles / 2-3 hours underway / 2 stops

Today will be a great day for snorkeling as we’ll visit two of the most popular sites while we make another short hop south into the heart of the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. Our first stop along the way at Halls Pond Cay will give us a chance to snorkel at Jeep Reef, another of the many spectacular dive and snorkel sites in the park with a maximum depth of only 25 to 30 feet. This reef is one of the most flourishing we’ll come across, and is named after an old Jeep at the bottom which has become completely encrusted in coral and developed its own community of sea life.

Our second stop will give us some more great snorkeling at “The Aquarium”, a miniature wall off O’Briens Cay in only 15 feet of water which is filled with colorful sea life. A nearby small plane wreck is also worth checking out.

Once we arrive at Compass Cay, we can explore the “Rocky Dundas”, an ancient, hidden cave in the southern most part of the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. The cave is only accessible by swimming under a partially submerged ledge that will lead you to this enchanted, large open cavern. Ancient stalactites reach down from the ceiling and stalagmites rise up from the floor to greet them. The entire interior of this cave is covered in rich, colorful algae.

Compass Cay to Staniel Cay

10 nautical miles / 2 hours underway / 1 stop

In the morning we may check out Rachel’s Bath, a natural jacuzzi created by the flooding of water through the rocks at Compass Cay from Exuma Sound. Then we’ll depart for a short two hour journey as we island hop our way south to Staniel Cay.

Along the way we can visit Compass Cay Marina which is known for its docile nurse sharks living near the dock in shallow water. We can spend some time swimming with these friendly creatures, all of which have names and are known to act more like lazy cat-fish than man eaters.

Staniel Cay

0 nautical miles / 0 hours underway

There’s so much to see around Staniel Cay, we think it’s worth slowing down and spending two nights here.

Just north of Staniel Cay is the famous Pig Beach at Big Major Cay. How did the pigs get to Pig Beach? No one knows for sure. Some say they were left by a group of sailors who planned to come back and cook them, or that the pigs swam over from a shipwreck nearby.

Wherever they came from, there are now about 20 pigs and piglets on Pig Beach. With daily visits from Bahamians and tourists, the pigs are living the easy life and enjoy the company.

We’ll also visit Thunderball Grotto, a fantastic underwater cave system great for exploring and snorkeling. Teeming with exotic marine life and a kaleidoscope of brilliantly colored coral reefs and fish, like yellow-tail snappers, Angel fish, Sergeant Majors and the like, the grotto’s mystique is heightened by the small, almost hidden entrance.

If you’re in the mood for some terra firma, go ashore to visit Staniel Cay Yacht Club or any of the number of shops, bars and restaurants. Or you can post up on one of the many beaches lining the island.

Staniel Cay is also a great place for divers to explore some of the deeper realms of this area.

Staniel Cay to Cave Cay

26 nautical miles / 4-5 hours underway / 2-3 stops

In the morning we’ll make a stop at Bitter Guana Cay. Jovially known as “Iguana Beach”, the island is home to shallow pools filled with beautiful coral and marine life and countless friendly and curious iguanas who storm the beach looking for treats from arriving guests. Further south are some great snorkeling stops along the way, including the Drake shipwreck and a small plane wreck.

At Cave Cay we can enjoy an easy-going drift snorkel, take a dinghy adventure to a natural rock amphitheater and snorkel with some resident turtles, or visit a nearby Ribbon Sand Bar which is a sliver of sand in the Exuma Bank only exposed during low tide. 

Cave Cay to George Town/Stocking Island

46 nautical miles / 6-8 hours sailing

Wake up early for some breakfast, yoga or a swim and then we’ll head out for our longest sail of the journey. Our long run out on the Exuma Sound will give us a great opportunity to toss out the fishing lines and try to catch some fresh dinner, or spend the day sunning on the top deck. This is the perfect day for interested crew to learn “the ropes” of sailing and take a turn at the helm.

We’ll spend the night at Stocking Island just a mile across Stocking Harbor from George Town. We may go snorkeling at a nearby cave or head out to the beachside bar and grill to meet the resident manta rays and dolphins who call it home.

George Town

After celebrating our final night together, guests can enjoy more snorkeling or lounging in the morning before heading out to catch their departing flights out of Georgetown.

Get Your Bearings

This chain of 365 cays spread over more than 100 miles in the Bahamas, known collectively as the Exumas, looks a lot like paradise. Sugary beaches, sapphire waters, fascinating wildlife, and boundless potential for adventure.

While the Exumas have some of the most picturesque (or dare we say Instagrammable) places in the world, many are impossible to get to on anything but a boat. This exclusivity has kept the water pristine, the creatures plentiful and curious, and the beaches unburdened by the typical hordes of tourists.

The 176-square-mile Exuma Cays Land and Sea National Park, created in 1958, was the first land and sea park in the world and is one of the most successful marine parks. It is the first “no-take reserve” (all fishing is prohibited) in the wider Caribbean. This ecological preserve and wildlife refuge is famous for its breath-taking marine environment with incredible snorkeling and diving.

Georgetown/Stocking Island

Guest crew will fly into Georgetown and we’ll spend the night at Stocking Island just a mile across Stocking Harbor. Once we get settled aboard Neverland, we may go snorkeling at a nearby cave or head out to the beachside bar and grill to meet the resident manta rays and dolphins who call it home.

Stocking Island to Cave Cay

46 nautical miles / 5-7 hours sailing

Wake up early for some breakfast, yoga or a swim and then head out for our longest sail of the journey. Prevailing conditions should make for a fast and comfortable run out on the Exuma Sound where we can toss out the fishing lines and try to catch some fresh dinner, or spend the day sunning on the top deck. This is the perfect day for interested crew to learn “the ropes” of sailing and take a turn at the helm.

At Cave Cay we can enjoy an easy-going drift snorkel, take a dinghy adventure to a natural rock amphitheater and snorkel with some resident turtles, or visit a nearby Ribbon Sand Bar which is a sliver of sand in the Exuma Bank only exposed during low tide.

Cave Cay to Staniel Cay

26 nautical miles / 4-5 hours underway / 2-3 stops

Great snorkeling stops along the way, including the Drake shipwreck and a small plane wreck. Our afternoon stop is at Bitter Guana Cay. Jovially known as “Iguana Beach”, the island is home to shallow pools filled with beautiful coral and marine life and countless friendly and curious iguanas who storm the beach looking for treats from arriving guests.

Staniel Cay

0 nautical miles / 0 hours underway

There’s so much to see around Staniel Cay, we think it’s worth slowing down and spending two nights here.

We’ll take a day trip to Thunderball Grotto, a fantastic underwater cave system great for exploring and snorkeling. Teeming with exotic marine life and a kaleidoscope of brilliantly colored coral reefs and fish, like yellow-tail snappers, Angel fish, Sergeant Majors and the like, the grotto’s mystique is heightened by the small, almost hidden entrance.

If you’re in the mood for some terra firma, go ashore to visit Staniel Cay Yacht Club or any of the number of shops, bars and restaurants. Or you can post up on one of the many beaches lining the island.

Just north of Staniel Cay is the famous Pig Beach at Big Major Cay. How did the pigs get to Pig Beach? No one knows for sure. Some say they were left by a group of sailors who planned to come back and cook them, or that the pigs swam over from a shipwreck nearby.

Wherever they came from, there are now about 20 pigs and piglets on Pig Beach. With daily visits from Bahamians and tourists, the pigs are living the easy life and enjoy the company.

Staniel Cay is also a great place for divers to book a dive trip with the local operator to explore some of the deeper realms of this area.

Staniel Cay to Compass Cay

10 nautical miles / 2 hours underway

Just two short hours underway as we island hop our way north. Once we arrive at Compass Cay, we can explore the “Rocky Dundas”, an ancient, hidden cave in the southern most part of the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. The cave is only accessible by swimming under a partially submerged ledge that will lead you to this enchanted, large open cavern. Ancient stalactites reach down from the ceiling and stalagmites rise up from the floor to greet them. The entire interior of this cave is covered in rich, colorful algae. 

We may also head to Rachel’s Bath, a natural jacuzzi created by the flooding of water through the rocks from Exuma Sound.

Later on we may visit Compass Cay Marina which is known for its docile nurse sharks living near the dock in shallow water. We can spend some time swimming with these friendly creatures, all of which have names and are known to act more like lazy cat-fish than man eaters. 

Compass Cay to Waderick Wells

13 nautical miles / 2-3 hours underway / 2 stops

Today will be a great day for snorkeling as we’ll visit two of the most popular sites while we make another short hop north into the heart of the Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park. There’s great snorkeling at “The Aquarium”, a miniature wall off O’Briens Cay in only 15 feet of water which is filled with colorful sea life. A nearby small plane wreck is also worth checking out.

A second stop along the way at Halls Pond Cay will give us a chance to snorkel at Jeep Reef, another of the many spectacular dive and snorkel sites in the park with a maximum depth of only 25 to 30 feet. This reef is one of the most flourishing we’ll come across, and is named after an old Jeep at the bottom which has become completely encrusted in coral and developed its own community of sea life.

In the afternoon we’ll arrive at Waderick Wells Cay which is home to the park’s visitor center and ranger station as well as a number of other great snorkel sites.

Waderick Wells to Shroud Cay

19 nautical miles / 3-4 hours underway

Today we’ll raise the sails again and head back out to the depths of the Exuma Sound as we make our way directly to Shroud Cay, an uninhabited island only accessible by boat. Sanctuary Creek in the northern part can be explored by dinghy or by standup paddle board as you wind your way across the island to the gorgeous and secluded Driftwood Beach. The mangroves lining this sandy-bottomed creek abound in sea life and you may spot an assortment of grunts, groupers, schoolmasters, and even the occasional lobster or shark.

Further south are even more quiet creeks which are perfect for paddle boarding as no motorized vessels are allowed.

Shroud Cay to Long Cay

11 nautical miles / 2 hours underway / 1 stop

Along the way we’ll stop at Norman’s Cay where we can snorkel the infamous WWII-era military plane wreck that was once used to fuel Pablo Escobar’s expanding cocaine trade until his pilot ditched short of the runway. We can also go ashore for lunch at the famous MacDuff’s Bar & Grill overlooking the Exuma Bank.

Once at Long Cay, we can spend the afternoon chillin’ on the pristine Exuma Sand Bar with a cold drink in hand, or the more adventurous can go for a snorkel in 20 to 35 feet at Hammerhead Gulch to see bountiful nurse sharks, hawksbill turtles, eagle and southern sting rays.

Try your luck hunting for conch and lobster and celebrate your success at the dinner table.

Long Cay to Highbourne Cay

8 nautical miles / 1-2 hours underway

Our last night in the Exumas will be a quiet and cozy night at gorgeous Highbourne Cay. Odds are good to have a calm and secluded anchorage all to ourselves. There are several beautiful snorkeling areas over colorful coral reefs, including “Octopus Garden” and “Highbourne Rocks”, as well as a picturesque white sand beach looking out to the east over Exuma Sound.

Highbourne Cay to Nassau

36 nautical miles / 5-7 hours underway / 1 stop

We’ll get an early start for the final leg of our Bahamas adventure where we’ll cross the shallow Exuma Bank and dodge coral heads on our way to Nassau. Along the way we can stop at the Lost Blue Hole, one of the most unusual dive site in The Bahamas. This natural hole in the open ocean floor is about 100 feet across and over 200 feet deep.

We’ll spend our final night near downtown Nassau, where we can go ashore to celebrate our final night together at one of the numerous waterfront restaurants.

Nassau

Before your departing flight, explore the vibrant downtown and waterfront areas of Nassau, or venture out to the beaches and resort area for one last dose of paradise!

EXPLORE

Have a play around on this interactive map of our route to explore more places and activities available during our trip.

TASTE

We have a passion for creating healthy and tasty meals with a focus on fresh local ingredients. We’ll work with you to understand your culinary preferences and craft a menu to appeal to everyone. Participation is greatly encouraged, whether you’d like to provide your favorite recipe or take over the galley for a meal to wow everyone with your skills!

Here’s a sample of some of our favorite creations:

Breakfast

Everyday Fresh Continental
breakfast pastries, toast, yogurt, muesli, fresh-cut fruit, smoothies, juice & coffee

Smashed Avocado Toast
eggs, tomato & pesto

Shakshuka
a classic North African and Middle Eastern dish made of eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, chili peppers, garlic, and spices

Overnight Oats
vanilla yogurt, berries, granola, flaxseed & cinnamon

Benedict Bar
147° F sous vide eggs with choice of extras & hollandaise

Chia Seed Pudding
fresh fruit, cinnamon & muesli

Tomato & Asparagus Frittata
fontina & side of melon

Fluffy American Pancakes
cinnamon butter, fruit & thick-cut bacon

Mexico City
spiced black beans & cheese folded into a toasted tortilla and topped with eggs, salsa & avocado

Vikasa Yogurt & Muesli
inspired by a dish at a yoga resort in Thailand. Coconut yogurt, honey, granola, slivered almonds, golden raisins, pineapple & pumpkin seeds

Lunch

Caribbean Jerk Chicken
pineapple black bean salsa

Thai Spicy Papaya Salad
grilled prawns & muddled chiles

S.H.A.G. Panini
smoked ham, apple & gouda with summer salad

Mango, Avocado & Crab Stacked Salads
corn chowder & fresh rolls

Tuna Poke Bowl
steamed jasmine rice, avocado, edamame & wasabi-cilantro dressing

Burrata Caprese Stacks & Chilled Gazpacho
with French baguette

Toasted Tuna Salad Sandwich
pepper, tomato, onion & spices

Dinner

Prosciutto & Maple Salmon
crispy lemon & parmesan brussels sprouts

Taco Night
vegetarian spiced black beans & classic seasoned ground beef

Seared Sesame-Crusted Tuna
wasabi cauliflower mash & grilled asparagus

Honey Sriracha Chicken
garlic butter smashed potatoes

Salmon Burger
avocado salsa & cilantro lime rice

DIY Sushi Night
learn to make Maki, Tamaki & Nigiri

Pan Seared Scallops
chorizo, serrano & grilled corn salsa

Pasta Night
robust pepper marinara or hearty bolognese sauce

B.Y.O.Bab
skewers of marinated chicken, sausage, or seafood with onions, peppers & corn

Appetizers

Micro Caprese Salad

Melon, Prosciutto & Mozzarella Skewers

Goat Cheese & Marinara Dip

Spicy Lime Avocado Soup

Liver Pate, Fresh Fruit & Charcuterie Plate

Tuna & Avocado Wonton Cups

Plum Salad with Black Pepper & Parmesan

Baked Brie, Caramelized Onion & Pepper Jelly

Watermelon Fries, Coconut, Lime & Honey Dip

Spiced Goat Cheese Truffles

Chilled Cauliflower Chowder

Desserts

Mango Sticky Rice

Kahlúa Coffee Brownie Cheesecake

Homemade Lemon & Blueberry Sorbet

Gourmet S’mores

Cinnamon & Spice Gelato

Ginger Crème Brûlée

Strawberry Brownie Skewers

Chocolate-dipped Chewy Coconut Cookies

Neverland Libations

Watermelon & Lime Slushies

Cucumber, Ginger, Mint Aqua Fresca

Tropical Pineapple Coconut Fizz

Spicy Grapefruit Margarita

Pineapple Mint Prosecco Punch

Frosé All Day

Pineapple Coconut Mojito

SV NEVERLAND

Amenities & Comfort
  • 6 zone air conditioning
  • 2 fans in each cabin
  • Ensuite bathrooms w/ separate shower stalls
  • Electric toilets with fresh water flush
  • Queen island beds, linens, and cooling gel memory foam mattress toppers
  • Extra wide ocean-view windows w/ shades
  • US 110v electrical sockets w/ USB throughout cabins and salon
  • 4-zone audio system throughout interior and exterior
  • Beverage refrigerator & icemaker in cockpit
  • Flat-screen Smart TV w/ USB, HDMI, Bluetooth, and our library of movies and tv shows
  • Outdoor BBQ grill
  • Upper deck lounge w/ sunbeds and sofa for at least eight guests
  • Adjustable loungers on foredeck lounge, couch, and trampoline
  • Extra-long sofa aft of cockpit
  • 10 person alfresco dining table in cockpit
  • Contemporary furnishings throughout
  • Natural body wash, shampoo, conditioner, and reef safe sunblock
Toys & Water Sports
  • AB Oceanus 13 VST w/ Yamaha 60 hp engine
  • Several action cameras, drones, and other photography & videography gear
  • 2-person tube
  • 2 Lamzac air loungers
  • Subwing Honeycomb Shark
  • 3x stand-up paddleboards
  • 6-person floating raft mat
  • Floating water loungers
  • 2 hanging over-water chairs
  • Snorkel gear – masks, snorkels & fins for all sizes
  • Fishing gear & tackle
  • Hot and cold deck shower
Gear & Gadgets
  • 2 x 75 hp Volvo Penta engines w/ Brunton autoprops
  • 88 lb Rocna anchor w/ 300’ 3/8” G4 high-test chain
  • AB Oceanus 13 VST RIB w/ console, 7 person capacity & Yamaha
    60 hp outboard engine
  • 13.5 kW Cummins Onan 120v/60hz generator
  • 480 watts solar
  • 3 kW Magnum hybrid inverter charger
  • 1,200 AH AGM house battery bank
  • 40 gal/hr fresh water maker
  • 2 x Bluefin LED Hammerhead H16 underwater lights
  • 1,000 watt, 4 zone Fusion and JL Audio entertainment system throughout interior and exterior, including 2 x 10” subwoofers
  • Raymarine eS-127 chartplotter, autopilot, and navigation instruments
  • Raymarine Ray60 VHF w/ 2nd station mic at helm
  • Standard Horizon HX870 floating handheld VHF w/ GPS & DSC
  • Vespar XB-8000 AIS transceiver w/ wifi
  • ACR GlobalFix V4 EPIRB
  • Delorme inReach Explorer GPS & satellite messenger
  • WiriePro 3G/4G/LTE & wifi amplifier and router, plus 6dBI booster antenna
  • Medic first aid kit
  • All required USCG safety equipment for guests and crew

RATES

This trip is offered on an all-inclusive basis with by-the-cabin reservations.

$7,000 per cabin includes:

  • 10 nights accommodation for 2 guests in an ensuite queen cabin
  • Cruising costs, permits, and taxes
  • All meals and snacks on board
  • All soft drinks, coffee, tea, beer, table wine, and a full bar of alcoholic drinks on board
  • Use of all water toys, fishing and snorkel gear, and yacht amenities
  • Yoga and breathwork sessions with Eryn
  • Exuma Cays Land & Sea Park entrance, mooring, and visitor fees
  • Single occupancy rate $5,000 for private cabin

FYI

Arriving flight info: arrive at Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) in Nassau

Departing flight info: depart from Exuma International Airport (GGT) in George Town

Currency: the Bahamian dollar is pegged to the US dollar and both are accepted interchangeably throughout the islands

Electricity: Bahamas and on board Neverland are US 110v

Communications: Neverland has on board wi-fi with basic internet available whenever we’re within range of mobile towers

What to bring: soft luggage, swimwear, sunscreen, beachwear, rain jacket, hat, sunglasses, music, books, camera, personal snorkel/dive gear if you prefer your own

We’ve got you covered: bath & beach towels, shower essentials, snorkel & dive gear

ACCOMMODATIONS

Accommodations include use of the following:

  • 3 queen cabins, each with private ensuite bath with electric toilet, wash basin and separate shower stall. All cabins have ample storage, a panoramic window, air conditioning, two fans, US 110v outlets and dimmable recessed lighting.
  • Social areas include an upper deck lounge with sectional couch and sunbed area with 360 degree view. Forward deck has spacious lounge area with adjustable reclining seating, trampoline and sunning areas. Aft deck offers lounge area plus alfresco dining. Salon offers lounge area with coffee table plus flat screen TV with many movies and USB capabilities.