BringFido's Guide to The Bahamas

Posted by Billy Francis

The Bahamas is a tropical pet-friendly destination just 50 miles off the coast of Florida, renowned for year-round hot weather, crystal clear water and sublime stretches of sand. While more than 700 islands make up the archipelago, there are only a few serene spots for visiting pups and their owners to discover, but they’re worth the trip!

If you’re planning on bringing your furry best friend to The Bahamas, you’ll need to apply for a pet permit before your travels. When you arrive, be on the lookout for stray dogs known as “potcakes.” Named after the leftover rice in the bottom of a pot which is often fed to stray dogs on the islands, these pups are usually friendly but have been known to tag along with tourists.

Things to Do

Dog meets pig. Photo by

Fido can join you on a boat trip to meet pigs, hang out on a pink sand beach and even play off leash on this unique island chain.

Experience an Atlantic Adventure

Surrounded by the gorgeous blue ocean, The Bahamas are best explored by boat. Pups who miss the local dog park can make different four-legged friends on an excursion with Triple A Adventures. This pet-friendly tour company will take you and your dog around The Exumas, a chain of 365 islands within The Bahamas. Here, you’ll stop to meet pigs and iguanas lounging on the sand on Big Major Cay, then you’ll swing by Thunderball Grotto to see where James Bond was filmed. Or, join Uncle Rob’s Great Adventures on a trip to the famous ocean swings off Coco Plum Beach instead.

Call in at the Caves

While The Bahamas is home to 14 national parks, Lucayan is one of the only national parks that welcomes dogs to explore. Fortunately for Fido, it’s also one of the most unique and interesting. This park protects one of the world’s longest charted underwater cave systems, but it’s also home to a variety of pet-friendly boardwalks and trails that wind through pine forests and mangroves. After hiking the trails, head to Gold Rock Beach to stroll across the pristine sand together.

Time to Take the Stairs

Take a walk with your dog to the Queen's Staircase, also known as the 66 Steps. Carved by slaves to create an escape route from Fort Fincastle in 1793, this stunning structure is one of the most photographed landmarks in The Bahamas. As soon as Fido is finished posing on the limestone staircase, head to nearby Hillside House for a refreshing cocktail on the pet-friendly patio.

Paradise is even sweeter with you. Photo by Conch and Coconut

Hang Out on Harbour Island

Dubbed “Nantucket of The Caribbean,” Harbour Island is home to Dunmore Town, one of the oldest settlements in The Bahamas. Cruise with your canine to the island on board the Bo Hengy III, operated by Bahamas Ferries from Nassau. When you arrive, rent a pet-friendly golf cart from Conch and Coconut and coast to the island’s best pet-friendly attractions. Stop at Princess Street Gallery to see art inspired by Bahamians, park up at Pink Sands Beach for a sunset stroll along three miles of bright pink sand, then take the long way around to Preacher’s Cave, used by shipwrecked Christians to conduct sermons in the mid-17th century.

A Stroll Through the Gardens

Guide your Goldendoodle on a lovely walk through The Garden of the Groves, a pet-friendly botanical garden in Freeport. The park’s picturesque trails wind through native flora, next to cascading waterfalls and up to elaborate fountains that make a “pawfect” backdrop for Fido’s photoshoot. Along the way, make a pitstop at the picturesque chapel, take part in walking meditation around the sacred labyrinth and swing by the Garden Cafe and Bar for lunch on the pretty patio.

Paws in the Sand

The Bahamas are widely considered to have some of the best beaches in the world. Pups under voice command are welcome to play off leash at Cabbage Beach, a quiet stretch of perfectly powdery sand with clear blue water on The Paradise Island near Nassau. Then, keep it local with the four-legged love of your life at Love Beach, a mile-long stretch of golden sand on New Providence Island that is sloped for pups who love to paddle.

Places to Stay

"Let’s go inside!" Photo by BringFido/Eywa-Dagon

Spend the night high above the Atlantic or in a relaxing spot on Cat Island during your Terrier’s tropical trip.

Skip Stones With Fido

A Stone's Throw Away is perched above the ocean in Nassau, located near Queen’s Staircase, and offers gorgeous garden view rooms for people visiting with pets. Four-legged guests can hang out on the porch overlooking the Atlantic for a continental breakfast, chill out with their owners next to the rocky swimming pool and sunbathe in the shady tropical garden all afternoon.

360 Degrees of Deck

For a truly tropical experience away from the crowds, reserve a stay at this romantic roundhouse in Central Eleuthera. The unique property littered with coconut, papaya and passion fruit trees features a 360-degree deck, private beach cabana and hardwood floors throughout. Guests are invited to go on an adventure in one of the house ocean kayaks and clean up sandy paws at the outdoor shower.

Come to Cat Island

Visitors to Spirit House on Cat Island will discover a “tropical wood home set in a pristine Bahamian wilderness” at the end of a private three-mile road. This beautiful home is solar-powered and features a fully equipped kitchen, a 300-gallon saltwater aquarium and three large decks to lounge on with your Labrador. Adventurous pups can join you on the paddleboards provided in nearby French Bay or trot by your side around the beautiful gardens filled with fruit trees and seasonal vegetables for your enjoyment.

“Who wants to play coconut catch?” Photo by

Go All Inclusive

Fido will be welcomed to Small Hope Bay Lodge on Andros Island by resident diving enthusiast and canine concierge, Hope. While Hope shows him the ropes, check out the all-inclusive amenities on offer like kayaks, paddleboards, hammocks, lounge chairs and more. Once you’ve unpacked in your spacious pet-friendly cabin room, go for a self-guided nature tour, relax on the beach or plunge into the water from the dock.

Lagoon Livin’

If you’ve ever stayed in a luxury Airbnb, you’ll know they go all out to provide comfort and relaxation for guests. Zion, a private waterfront estate, is no different. Pampered pups can experience what it’s like to have their own private beach and lagoon to explore at their own pace. On the beach, there’s a volleyball court for daytime fun and a stone fire pit for after dark. Guests are free to explore the very private waters in a glass-bottomed kayak or on a paddleboard.

Villa in Freeport

People and pups heading to Freeport to indulge in shopping, relaxing and sunbathing will love making this 4-bed villa their hub. The colorful house, located on an inland waterway near a white sand beach, features a private tiki bar on the water’s edge. Pups can play a game of fetch on the palm-lined lawn, and then join you for an evening of fun at the tiki bar and dock.

Dog-Friendly Restaurants

Chillin’ in the big chair! Photo by Santanna’s Bar & Grill

Cocktails With Your Cockapoo

Diners with dogs can “taste the flavor of the islands” at Santanna's Bar & Grill in William’s Town. Grab a brew and devour some fresh seafood in a unique fritter batter while your pooch enjoys the shade of an umbrella or a seat in the giant chair.

Who’s a Pretty Boy, Then?

If you’re looking for a laidback breakfast, lunch or dinner, head on over to the Greek Parrot in Nassau. Canines can call in at this bustling restaurant to relax on the spacious patio and keep their owners company while they enjoy pancakes to start the day, a juicy burger to keep it going or fresh fish tacos for dinner.

Catch of the Day

Visitors to Cat Island can refuel at Hidden Treasures Seafood and Sporting Lounge, a popular dining spot for locals. Bring your pooch to the patio where you can request plain fish for her to enjoy while you sample dried fresh conch, jerk chicken or a fresh fruit smoothie.

Touring all the big chairs in The Bahamas. Photo by Big D’s Conch Spot

Big Dogs at Big D’s

Find a picnic table, sun lounger on the sand or a spot on the dog-friendly waterfront deck at Big D's Conch Spot and savor some local flavors with your furry best friend for company. The diverse menu features seafood, burgers, wraps, chicken wings and a choice of freshly made sides.

Chill on the Courtyard

Studio Café in Nassau invites guests with pets to eat together in the downstairs courtyard. Fill up on Bahamian conch fritters and creamy seafood chowder, or go all out with a seafood platter for two, and maybe a few sneaky bites for Fido as well.

Dinner With a View

Situated in secluded Spanish Wells, The Shipyard Restaurant and Bar provides some of the best views for dinner with a dog in The Bahamas. Dig into a plate of Conch n' Chips over the crystal clear Atlantic Ocean and wash it down with a signature cocktail.

Would you like to visit The Bahamas with your dog? Leave a comment or tweet us @BringFido!

Banner photo by BringFido.