The Southern Islands Fact Sheet

Acklins & Crooked Island, Mayaguana, Inagua And Ragged Island Fact Sheet

Acklins & Crooked Island, Mayaguana, Inagua and Ragged Island are all situated in the southernmost part of The Bahamas. These islands are smaller, less developed and populated by communities of only a few hundred people, making them a window into the truly authentic island life. These are the “deep out” islands of The Bahamas and appeal to travelers who appreciate fishing, bird watching, hiking, kayaking and of course, unspoiled beaches. Across these islands, travelers can get a glimpse of Caribbean history from the archeological sites of Lucayan villages and sweet-water wells to the coastal armaments of the pirate era and one of the few remaining kerosene powered lighthouses in the world. These rustic islands are home to over 140 species of birds, majestic sea turtles and roughly 80,000 American flamingos – outnumbering Inagua’s human residents by more than 80 to 1. The abundance of wildlife and nature reserves makes this the ultimate destination for an island-style safari.

HISTORY

From harvesting sea salt on Inagua and cotton on Crooked Island to pirates on Ragged Island and Mayaguana, the southern out islands are rich in history and in culture.

ABOUT THE SOUTHERN OUT ISLANDS

  • Town/Settlement:
    • Acklins & Crooked Island: Colonel Hill
    • Mayaguana: Abraham's Bay
    • Inagua: Matthew Town
    • Ragged Island: Duncan Town 
  • Size:
    • Acklins: 76 sq. miles
    • Crooked Island: 120 sq. miles
    • Mayaguana: 110 sq. miles
    • Great Inagua: 596 sq. miles
    • Ragged Island: 9 sq. miles
  • Population:
    • Acklins & Crooked Island: Approximately 750
    • Mayaguana: Approximately 300
    • Inagua: Approximately 1,000
    • Ragged Island: Approximately 72

ACCOMMODATIONS

Acklins & Crooked Island

  • IVel's Bed & Breakfast – This quaint, seaside retreat embodies the beauty and tranquility of Acklins. This family owned and operated bed & breakfast offers four plush bedrooms, six suites, a spacious family-size cottage and an apartment. IVel's Bed & Breakfast is a non-smoking, alcohol-free facility.
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  • Top Choice Bonefish Lodge – Located in Mason’s Bay on Acklins Island, Top Choice Bonefish Lodge offers a unique, relaxing atmosphere with all the comforts of home. The lodge is the perfect destination for anglers due to the proximity to water and great local bonefishing. Guests can enjoy jaw dropping sunsets, self-serve beer, tasty dinners and homemade desserts.
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  • Crooked & Acklins Trophy Lodge – This boutique lodge is located off the beaten path on a white sandy beach and is operated by a friendly Bahamian couple. It offers five large double rooms, spectacular fishing and a variety of local specialties on the menu.
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  • Crooked Island Lodge – Crooked Island Lodge is located at the northernmost tip of Crooked Island overlooking emerald waters and powdery beaches. This fishing-friendly lodge offers eight air-conditioned rooms, a restaurant, bar and library. It also once housed the first post office in The Bahamas, which is now a historical landmark on the island.

Mayaguana

  • Baycaner Beach Resort – This 16-room, oceanfront hotel is the only resort on the island, offering guests a tranquil escape from everyday life. The hotel staff are able to arrange fly-fishing, scuba diving, snorkeling, nature walks, and family picnics during your stay at the resort.

Inagua

  • Enrica’s Inn – Located on Great Inagua Island, Enrica’s Inn sits on a beautifully landscaped corner in Matthew Town and offers a total of 15 rooms, spread out over three cottages with amenities such as cable, refrigerators, microwave, and full kitchen.

ACTIVITIES

The southern out islands are an active Caribbean traveler’s paradise with authentic, off the beaten path destinations and activities including ecotourism, fishing, snorkeling and diving. Birdwatching is also a popular activity on islands such as Inagua, which is the birding capital of The Bahamas and home to over 140 species of birds.

POINTS OF INTEREST

Acklins & Crooked Island

  • Turtle Sound – One of the natural wonders of The Bahamas, this nine-mile long waterway is referred to as an inland river. Mangroves, marine and bird life can be found there.
  • Lucayan Indian Sites – One of the largest Lucayan Indian settlements in The Bahamas sits along Pompey Bay Beach on Acklins. Archeologists from the National Geographic Society unearthed ten ancient Lucayan sites on Samana Cay alone.
  • Crooked Island Caves – The cliffs and hills of Crooked Island hide numerous beautiful caves filled with magnificent limestone formations. Some of the more popular island caves include Macki Cave at Macki Bluff, a large Cave at Gun Bluff, Preacher’s Cave in Thompson’s, and Gingo Hill Cave at Turtle Sound.
  • Bird Rock Lighthouse on Crooked Island – This magnificent structure stands 112 feet above sea level and is situated on a cay just off Pittstown Point. It is the most northwestern point of Crooked Island and serves as a beacon at the northern entrance of the much-traveled Crooked Island Passage.
  • French Wells/Gun Point – This area derived its name from the wells that were dug by French pirates who used this site as a hideout during the years of piracy. As you approach French Wells, you will find remains of fortifications near the shoreline, including old cannon.

Inagua

  • Great Inagua National Park – This national park is home to the national bird of The Bahamas, the West Indian Flamingo, which outnumbers human residents of the island 80 to 1. The wetland sites created during salt production have made this the largest nesting ground for West Indian Flamingos in the Western Hemisphere.
  • Union Creek Reserve – This reserve encompasses 4,940 acres of an enclosed tidal creek on the northwest shore of Great Inagua. It serves as a captive research site for sea turtles, especially the Green Turtle, to protect the habitat where they lay their eggs.
  • Great Inagua Lighthouse – The Great Inagua Lighthouse is now one of only three remaining kerosene-burning lighthouses in The Bahamas and has resident lighthouse keepers who tend its flame and hand-crank it every two hours.

Mayaguana

  • The Pirates Well – The buccaneers that roamed Mayaguana in the past dug this well for drinking water and it gave the settlement of Pirate's Well its name. Today, the well is a popular sight for visitors touring the island due to its historical significance and beauty.

Ragged Island

  • The Lighthouse Tower – Completed on May 31, 1922, the Lighthouse Tower was built to aid Ragged Island boats in transporting goods traded with Cuba, Haiti and Nassau.
  • Salt Ponds – These salt ponds are remnants of the thriving salt industry that formerly existed on the island. The ponds continue to produce salt, which is harvested, packaged and sent to market in the nation’s capital.

INTRIGUING FACTS

  • 45% of Great Inagua is national park land and wildlife reserve, which protects the island’s 140 species of birds and unique animal species.
  • Because Ragged Island’s population is so small, the three religious denominations on the island get together at the same church each Sunday and celebrate as one community.
  • Turtle Sound, a nine-mile long waterway on Acklins & Crooked Islands, is a wonder in The Bahamas because there are no actual rivers anywhere in the country.

AIRLINE SERVICES

Spring Point Airport (AXP) on Acklins, the Crooked Island Airport (CRI), Mayaguana Airport (MYG), Matthew Town Airport (IGA) on Inagua and Duncan Town Airport (DCT) on Ragged Island are the airports that service the southern out islands in The Bahamas.

(954) 359-0320

Service to Ragged Island, Mayaguana & Inagua.

(954) 351-9313

Service to Inagua & Ragged Island.

(242) 344-3169; (800) 222-4262

Service to Mayaguana, Inagua, Acklins & Crooked Island.

(954) 772-3363; (954) 295-0681

Service to Ragged Island, Mayaguana, Inagua, Acklins & Crooked Island.

(242) 377-0039

 

Service to Mayaguana, Inagua, Ragged Island, Acklins & Crooked Island.

(954) 359-9942; (800) 444-9904

Service to Ragged Island, Mayaguana, Inagua, Acklins & Crooked Island

(242) 338-0360; (242) 472-8888Service to Ragged Island.

(242) 377-2356

Service to Ragged Island.

(877) 281-305; (954) 359-0059

Service to Inagua, Ragged Island, Acklins & Crooked Island.

(305) 741-0489

Service to Mayaguana, Inagua, Ragged Island, Acklins & Crooked Island.

(954) 267-0707

Service to Inagua.

(954) 961-8485; (844) FLY-TRITON

Service to Ragged Island.

(954) 771-0330

Service to Ragged Island, Acklins & Crooked Island.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • U.S. currency is accepted and is interchangeable with the Bahamian dollar.
  • Temperatures range from 68 to 86 degrees during the day and 62 to 70 degrees at night, year-round.
  • Seawater temperature ranges from 73 degrees in February to 82 degrees in August. 
  • The entry requirement for U.S. and Canadian residents is proof of citizenship, in the form of a passport. All U.S. citizens and foreign nationals traveling to the United States from The Bahamas, are required to present a valid passport or another secure document accepted by United States Customs and Border Protection.

ABOUT THE BAHAMAS

With over 700 islands and cays, and 16 unique island destinations, The Bahamas lies just 55 miles off the coast of Florida offering an easy fly away escape that transports travelers away from their everyday. The Islands of The Bahamas have world-class fishing, diving, boating and thousands of miles of the earth’s most spectacular water and beaches waiting for families, couples and adventurers. Explore all the islands have to offer at www.bahamas.com or on Facebook, YouTube or Instagram to see why It’s Better in The Bahamas.

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PRESS INQUIRIES

Anita Johnson-Patty

General Manager, Global Communications

Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation

ajohnson@bahamas.com

 

Weber Shandwick

Public Relations

Bahamas@webershandwick.com