Eleuthera and Harbour Island, Bahamas
It might only be 80 kilometres from Nassau, but Eleuthera still slips through the net of many visitors to the Bahamas – although the residents probably like it that way. They may be as effusively friendly as many neighbouring islanders, but there’s little doubt they covet their sunrise walks along a pristine pink beach on which they won’t see another soul. At 110 miles long but little more than a mile wide in places, Eleuthera has a spindly profile, meaning there's reams of coastline to go around. At Glass Window Bridge – so named because the once-natural bridge forms a see-through ‘window’ through the island – the land gets so thin you can compare the deep blue Atlantic with the clear, calm Caribbean Sea. It’s a real best of both worlds scenario, with spear fishing in turquoise waters to be had on one side, some of the best surfing in the Bahamas on the other. Just to the northwest is Harbour Island, home to Dunmore Town, one of the Bahamas’ oldest surviving settlements. Like Eleuthera, Harbour Island has kept its New England-style houses of whitewashed timbers and gabled roofs, a legacy of 18th-century British loyalists who settled on the islands. With their nostalgic looks and pink beaches, both islands are truly rose-tinted places – without the need for the glasses.
When to go
The most popular time to visit is between March and May, when temperatures are warm but the summer rains haven’t yet set in. From May to October, the islands are quieter and warmer, but they do tend to see a lot of rainfall during this time.