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Worth a visit
Rating 1.1 (167 votes)

Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park

Listed under Beaches in Bahamas.

  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
  • Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
Photo of Gold Rock Beach, Lucayan National Park
Photo by Jenny Fowler
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At low tide, wave-ribbed sand stretches as far as you can see. The world's bluest water turns a deeper shade of indigo where it meets the sky. A few people stroll in the distance, or wade in the pools left by the retreating tide. A visitor from Alaska spreads a blanket on the fine warm sand above high water mark and relaxes, soaking up the sunshine.

Film-set perfect, the south facing beaches of Grand Bahama feature strongly in the Pirates of the Caribbean series. This, the very best one, Gold Rock Beach, falls inside the boundary of the Lucayan National Park so it's more than just a beautiful beach. Behind the beach itself, the natural environment of dune, mangrove and palm forest is undisturbed. Biodiversity is high with flowers, birds and butterflies flourishing, and fish sheltering in the protection of the mangroves.

The National Park is about a 45 minute drive from Freeport, the capital, along a quiet road which runs through pine woods. I had a rental car but tour buses go there too. When you reach the National Park, there is plenty of space to park by the road. A path invites you to explore the palm forest and mangrove areas on the way to the beach. Environmental information is posted on display boards giving details of the different ecosystems. I met a park ranger who told me more about the plants and animals of the reserve.

The walk is beautiful, and the only man-made structure on the way is a board-walk to cross the mangrove area. After this the land becomes sandy and rises into a dune, then leads you down to the wide expanse of beach and sea. It's worth taking a mask and snorkel if you have them. I didn't, but I met a group who had been snorkeling just in the shallow area off the beach. They'd had a really good time, enthusiastically describing the marine life they had seen. So on land and in the sea this is a great place to visit, whether you are interested in the environment and its biodiversity or just want to laze on one of the world's most perfect beaches.

Written by  Jenny Fowler.

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