The Bahamas became my second home.
The worst part?
I didn’t want to leave, and to be honest, I really felt like I was missing something.
And these 13 awesome locals in Nassau that I’m going to mention?
They are the reason I felt that the Bahamas became my second home.
It’s when I delved myself into the Bahamian culture that things started turning out for the better. It was when I exposed myself to the Bahamian people that I started receiving positive feedback.
It was until then:
I felt at home with my new friends that belong in my heart.
I set a goal prior to my trip to Nassau.
It was my first time taking a trip to the Bahamas, and I only knew the obvious.
- One-of-a-kind beaches that sparkle like crystals.
- The towering water park that brings a popular conspiracy story into life – Atlantis.
- Conch: the delicacy of the Bahamas.
But here’s the kicker:
I wanted to know more. So, I reached out to the locals and they took their time to share the true Bahamian culture with me.
The best part?
I actually left with more information than I showed up with. The even better part? The information that the locals shared with me are facts that tourists don’t know about! You can’t even find them on Google!
13 Friendliest Locals in Nassau
1. Kemp: The Chillest Taxi Driver at the Airport
Kemp’s phone number: +1 242 455 2739
He allowed me to share his contact information in hopes that he will be able to meet new travelers as well!
You may even come across him at the airport! He offers cheap fares, and I can say that truthfully because I was staying at the complete opposite side to where the airport was and it was still fairly cheap.
He has children and he loves to talk about them. You can ask him any questions you have about the Bahamas, from things to do in Nassau to finding cheap flights to the Exuma Cays.
The coolest part about him?
Even though he may seem like an introvert, once you get the conversation started, he’s the coolest, most relaxed dude you have ever met.
2. Jeffery: Got Deals?
Meet Jeffery. He’s the ‘honey‘ (Google Chrome extension that finds you deals and coupons) in real life.
He works for Palm Cay as a vendor for water activities.
I wanted to go kayaking, so I came up to him and asked him the price and what not. But I needed a bracelet that the main house gives you that allows you to use the water activities.
Long story short, I came back with bad news because the main house told me that it was $200 for a bracelet! Are you serious?
But here comes Jeffery to the rescue!
He walked all the way to the main house to try and convince them to bring the price lower, but they wouldn’t budge.
So, what did he do instead?
He cut the original price of renting a water activity from $60 to $20!
That’s my dude! He hooked it up!
Plus, he’s a really cool guy to hang out at the bar with. Nothing but jokes and smiles from him.
3. Perry the Chef (Not the Platypus) 😉
Chef Perry brought Bahamian tradition to every table.
He worked in Vegas serving numerous people food that waters your mouth more than the rain when you stick your tongue out.
Why is he back in the Bahamas?
Because like he always says, “there’s nothing like being back at home, and home is the Bahamas.”
And he was right. As crazy as it sounds, I felt like I was home too. Even more so, when he was cooking up the food, we did it together.
We shared the same distinctive smell of freshly caught fish being seared on the pan, shared the same touch of the glass cup being clinked together as we cheered, and shared the same feeling of love for the Bahamas.
He wasn’t just the cook, he was apart of the family.
4. Charlot: The Lovely Aquarium Expert
Here we are, the Atlantis Water Park/Resort.
To be honest:
I didn’t think I was going to meet locals here. The Bahamian locals aren’t going visit this overly priced water park. Even if they do, all you see are tourists drinking alcohol with their toddlers running around the pools.
But I had a different mindset.
I wanted to have my fair share of the Bahamian culture.
And some of you may be thinking:
“Why didn’t you just wait until after your visit to Atlantis to meet locals in the Bahamas?”
Well, I wanted to challenge myself.
While everyone is ignoring the Bahamian people in Atlantis, I wanted to be different and instead of paying attention to the colorful, tropical fish, I sought to learn about the locals that worked there.
And I’m glad I did. I owe credits to kindness.org for that.
There was a tip that they shared with the community that really inspired me to deliver this act of kindness.
To connect with people that serve others.
So while people were touching the alien-looking animals with two fingers, I was chatting with this lovely worker named Charlot.
Charlot traveled around the U.S. but frequently visits New Jersey because her 2 daughters live there.
She loves New Orleans, Louisiana. She loves the horseshoe crab.
Why is the extraterrestrial marine animal, horseshoe crab, so dear to her?
Because their blue blood is used for cancer treatment research. She hopes that one-day cancer will be cured because of these lovely anthropoids.
Her passion is what really astonished me. Behind that robotic, working voice was her love for finding the treatment to cancer.
5. Clinton: The Security Guard for Atlantis!
Guardians of the Galaxy? Nah my boi’s, we got Clinton! Guardian of the Resort.
Interestingly enough, he’s popular among his co-workers as being the funny guy. And it didn’t surprise me.
I was getting hungry and I wanted a local’s recommendation of where to eat on Paradise Island, so I came up to Clinton.
With curly hair and a soft smile that warmed anyone who talked to him, he recommended Seafire Steakhouse. A formal, modern steakhouse that sits on the Village on Paradise Island.
He frequently dines at the Seafire Steakhouse, and it’s one of his favorite places to eat!
6. Funny Streetgoer
Meeting this random street-goer, whom I didn’t get the name of, was a really funny guy.
And in all honesty:
I’m really glad I didn’t get his name.
Because it goes to show that no matter where you are in Nassau, you will come across random locals that express nothing but fun and joy.
They don’t need to be friends. They are so friendly that, in the Bahamas, you don’t even need to really go out of your way.
That’s the Bahamas.
But here’s the kicker:
Even if you’re that lost traveler that doesn’t know where to go, I guarantee, you will find someone that’ll come up to you to try and help.
How do I know?
Because it happened to me. I was trying to figure out how to cross the bridge back into the main island, which turned out to be a bad idea, and this random street-goer came up to me asking if I was lost. Certainly, I was, so he said to follow him because he knows where to go.
According to other locals, it will take 30 minutes to cross the bridge by walking, so we asked him how long it’ll take.
He was a cool guy. He said, “For me, 5 minutes, for you, 20 minutes!” And we all started laughing.
He was himself. He made jokes that really brought all of us together.
Like @itsbetterinthebahamas always says, “Making new friends is easy in The Bahamas!”
7. Maxine: The Chef’s Right Hand
From Day 1 we were strangers to Day 7 when we became family.
Maxine was quiet and reserved for the first few days, but when I started to talk to her more about food or about her life, she became so open and so lovely.
During our stay, she actually left a few days early because she was doing a round trip tour of the United States! So, I asked if she was going to visit California and her response was perfect.
“You aren’t going to be there! If you were, I would visit you guys!” LOL.
Even more exciting is that I showed her my popular post about the 10 best places to visit in Cancun, and she absolutely loved it!
She even wanted my number so that she can let me know when she’s going to Cancun so that we can meet up and hang out!
8. Ursula: The Queen of the Kitchen
Ursula is the Queen of the Kitchen.
She can cook up some of the best fish burgers you have ever had, make the tastiest fries, and dance behind her station while Bahamian music plays.
She’s the perfect person to ask if you want to know a list of authentic Bahamian food. Scorched conch, Bahamian macaroni and cheese (favorite among locals), and seared, fried, and raw fish.
Ursula LOVES to dance and was even dancing while she was cooking!
9. Shanni & Bridget: The Two Friendliest Ladies in the Straw Market
Heading over to the Straw Market?
Approach these ladies for a chat. Shanni and Bridget are the nicest ladies in the Straw Market.
When I entered the historical masterpiece, the Straw Market, I was baffled at the fact that most of the local vendors weren’t super friendly like the rest of the Bahamian people I met.
I was confused.
Most of them just wanted your money and when I tried talking to them, they would just short answer me and wouldn’t really ignite the conversation like I had hoped.
It was like that until I met these two ladies.
They made jokes with me, laughed with me, and even sparked a conversation with me.
I even made sure I came back to buy something from them because of how nice they were. They showed transparency and made me feel like a part of their sisterhood.
Make sure you know this:
Choose your new friends selectively. I know that’s obvious, but don’t just try to befriend anyone when you travel. Make sure your personalities blend, and most importantly, make sure you guys are equally comfortable with each other.
And that’s how I felt with these ladies, and I thank them for showing me happiness in the many wonders that are held inside the Straw Market.
10. The Awesome Guy from the Straw Market
Why is he the coolest guy in the Straw Market?
What really drew me to him was his energy. He was beating his Bahamian drums with a smile on his face and trying to carry a conversation with people that walked by.
He hooked me up with an awesome deal, and honestly, became my new friend in the Straw Market.
I used to collect souvenirs, but now I collect memories and stories with people I meet along my travels.
And while I bought a souvenir from him, this picture resonates with my heart even more because I know that behind this picture beholds a memory full of laughter, smiles, and stories that made us both laugh and smile!
11. Philip: The Taxi Driver that Once Protected Nassau
Meet my new brother! LOL.
We met him when we were crossing the bridge to Nassau from Paradise Island, and he stopped the flow of traffic just to get us into the car.
He was the coolest guy and he told me that he really wants to reach out to other travelers. He gave me his business card, and if you’re ever in Nassau contact him at:
Philip Don Wilson: 242 448 8802
He used to be a police officer in Nassau, and he has so many stories to tell! So if you ever ride with him, ask him about his history in the police force.
What was even cooler was that I called him to take us to Downtown Nassau, and he remembered me!
He said, “Hey! I remember you, my friend!” And he gave me a handshake. It felt good because we were friends! More than friends!
We are brothers!
12. The Funniest Cab Driver
After walking downtown, we needed a ride back to Palm Cay. So we looked around for a cab driver, and we found one!
But that’s not all…
We got lucky! He was the funniest, most out-going cab driver so far in the Bahamas.
Want me to prove it to you?
Watch this video:
There’s not much to say, the video explains it all!
13. The Famous Waiter in Nassau
I keep this photo close to my heart in the sea of memories in the Bahamas.
I wish I could explain this photo better, but I can’t utter any words that’ll describe it any more than this photo can.
He was a waiter for Palm Cay, and he made me laugh so much that I thought he was a comedian.
What I really liked the most about the friendship that he and I shared was the fact that we messed with each other as if we had been friends for years.
At the end of the day, Nassau has become a very special place to me.
The people never ceased to amaze how friendly and hospitable they can be. I exchanged nothing but happy and enjoyable moments with the Bahamian people.
My only recommendation to you is to put yourself out there and talk to the Bahamian locals as much as you can because before you know it, you will be making friends left and right.
I love you Nassau, and I can’t wait to come back and meet more people!
Do you have a story you would like to share? Please let me know in the comments below! I would love to hear from you guys.