Famous spots at Staniel Cay

Our next stop was Staniel Cay on the Exumas which is the name of a district of the Bahamas with 360 islands. They begin with the island of Georgetown and end 35 miles south of Nassau.

Staniel Cay is one of the most popular places at the Bahamas. You have got the Thunderball Grotto and the Big Major spot of the swimming pigs.

First we would like to point out the Grotto. It is an underwater cave system which took part in the James Bond movie "Thunderball" (1965) as well as its unofficial remake "Never Say Never Again" in 1983.  There are several entrances where you can swim through the holes to get into the cavern inside. Be sure to go at low tide so you don't miss the almost hidden entrance. At high tide it can be very dangerous for snorkelers as the current is very strong. There are holes in the ceiling and in the sides which lead to a beautiful light spectacular in the grotto and underneath the water. You can see hundreds of fish swimming peacefully together and inviting you to their world. It was an unbelievable moment to be snorkeling there.

The Big Major's Cay with the famous swimming pigs was a bit disappointing. The pigs there were only interested in getting food and seemed to us not friendly but more aggressive. We had one pig that was swimming towards our dinghy and was a very good swimmer that it followed us far away from the beach. We stayed in the dinghy and fed him with our "old" bread from this secure distance... Claudi was so delighted to have met the other more friendly pigs from White Bay Cay first.

Next to the pig beach was another separated small beach where other sailors have put some chairs and tables to have a comfortable place to chat for a while. You could feel free to decorate something. We changed our anchorage position closer to that spot so that our dinghy ride to the beach wasn't that long. We went there several times and had nice afternoons with other sailors until sunset began. In this area we saw a few luxury yachts - some also with a slide going directly into the water.

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