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What better way to spend a winter holiday than enjoying the wonders of the Bahamas Keys north of Great Exuma Island. The Bahamas offers some of the best ocean kayaking locations in the world. In the Exuma area you get to be up close and personal with the beautiful islands and reefs. Experience this secluded tropical paradise and see for yourself what it’s like as we island hop our way between the various Cayes North of Great Exuma. Great paddling, great snorkeling, great camping! Enjoy the beautiful sand beaches, warm shallow waters with their sapphire blue colour. Our Trip Starts and ends on Great Exuma Island. The Exumas are an archipelago of 365 cays and islands, beginning just 35 miles southeast of Nassau. Once called Yumey and Suma (names of Amer-Indian origin). The islands are now divided into three major areas—Great Exuma, Little Exuma, and The Exuma Cays. Each one offers its own unique experience. Since contact the islands have gone through many changes and their rich history is evident. In recent history, they were first settled by British Loyalists with their slaves following the American Revolution, and remnants of that storied past remain.
(Note: this is a suggested itinerary only, conditions on each trip may vary)
Day 0: We will meet in Georgetown, Exuma on March 22, for orientation, food shopping, gear selection etc
Day 1: We’ll grab the boats and gear, shuttle to the north end of the island and begin our Kayak Trip. The distance of travel on day 1 will not be great and will depend not only on our exact departure time but also on wind/weather. We would hope to be paddling before mid day. The start area is somewhat protected from wind so we’ll head across to the 1st Cay (about 1km) and then begin working our way island hoping north. Campsite occur every couple of km in this section. We’ll make stops for lunch as well as some snorkeling.
Depending on our progress we may stop at Lee Stocking, Leaf or Norman’s Pond Cay. The Cays near Norman’s Pond Cay host endangered Rock Iguanas, top-notch snorkeling, a cave inland that you can snorkel in and a large pond accessible at high tide. If we are slow there are options to stop earlier. Likely we’ll have a nice sunset and stars at night.
Day 2: After Norman’s Pond we continue our northward paddle. We’ll pass the beautiful Bock Cay archipelago on our way up to Lignumvitae Cay which is an excellent campsite and always protected. There is good and easy snorkeling here, maybe folks will fish.
Day 3: We could decide to spend two nights on this beautiful cay and enjoy day paddles up to the German Castle, or we could continue north for another day, or we could continue our northward trek. Maybe we’ll stop and have a meal at TY Sunset Grill and then Camp on Great Guyana Caye.
Day 4-6: We’ll head back south on Day’s 5 and 6, retracing some of our paddle, though we will stop on different Cays and paddle different channels. From Norman’s Pond Cay though, we will cross over to a secluded and kayak-only accessible stretch of cays known as the Brigantines. Because the water around the Brigantines is extremely shallow, regular boats can’t access these exotic cays. Mangroves run all along these beautiful cays and provide a safe haven and nursery for baby fish of all kinds, baby sharks, sting rays, turtles and much more. These cays also have a few deep channels and shallow rocks that are great for snorkeling.
From the Brigantines we are only a short paddle back to the mainland. After a final breakfast we will pack up camp one last time and start our journey home. Once back on the mainland, we will unpack our kayaks and get ready to haul everything back to town. Once we are back with the gear in George Town we will unpack and sort out everyone’s gear and luggage. After everything is sorted out, you will be taken to your hotel where a nice hot shower and air conditioning await you!
End of Kayaking trip, March 28. (Participants responsible for 1st & last nights accom.
Group size: Min 4 – Max 12
Trip price includes: Guides. Single and/or double kayaks, all kayaking gear, tents, sleeping pads, cook gear and group gear, transportation to and from your hotel to start and finish of trip.
Trip food costs, shopping and prep are shared by the group.
Guests are responsible for bringing their own sleeping bags &
Accommodation: You are responsible for hotel accommodations/meals pre and post trip in Loreto.
* Please note: It’s the nature of remote travel that uncontrollable factors like poor weather, pilot judgment, forest fires, and mechanical problems can affect our schedules and cause delays. We regret these situations but cannot accept responsibility for hotels, flight rebookings, and other costs you may incur.
Additional Information for all Trips:
Remember these are shared food trips. We will assign each member of the group there share of meals. On Day 0 in GEORGETOWN we will all meet and go shopping
MEALS & ACCOM:
Remember you are responsible for your own food and accommodations in Georgetown.
Bring sunscreen! Sunshine with pleasant temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 Celsius is the norm. In March it starts getting even warmer. but a two season sleeping bag is still not a bad idea . Water is very pleasantly warm. Sometimes the wind can blow strongly. On these days, we paddle sheltered waters or partake in land activities.
We will be paddling a mix of single and double sea kayaks. No kayaking experience is necessary, though we insist that you know how to swim and have a good level of fitness. We supply dry bags, and all cooking and eating equipment. We encourage you to bring snorkeling and fishing gear if you have it. You provide your own personal clothing and sleeping bags.
This trips starts and finishes in Georgetown Bahamas (Great Exuma Caye). Accessible with regular flights through USA or Nassa Bahamas.
A visa is not necessary, Don’t forget your passport. It is best to bring American dollars ($20). Don’t bring Canadian dollars. MOST places take credit cards.
I was hoping that you could thank [Brian and Matt] again for us and let them know what a remarkable experience they facilitated for my wife and I. We will certainly remember it for a lifetime. We had so much fun that we can hardly decide what trip to do next.Jeremy MillerThe meals!! Exceptional, varied, delicious and nutritious come to mind. Meals are never an ‘afterthought’ with highlights including such as sushi on the river bank featuring freshly caught Arctic char, cheese fondue, chocolate fondue ... each meal offers something to look forward to at the end of a hard paddling day.Merrilyn Lindsay business ownerI have known and paddled with Shawn since 1974. He is an amazing guide and canoeist and I have canoed with him from Northern Ontario to the far Arctic, east to west coast. I lead my own local Ontario canoe trips every year, but when I want a guided remote wilderness adventure, there is none better than Shawn and Wanapitei Canoe to take me there.David Wilkie, DVM professor and veterinarianI did my first big canoe trip with Wanapitei in 1980 and had a wonderful experience. I have done many since and always have enjoyed the good leadership, organization, and company on each one, not to mention the great rivers.Peter Milliken, PC lawyer and politicianPaddling the Hess River with Shawn this summer was a thrill and the adventure of a lifetime. The river, country, wildlife, and as important, the people on the trip were all a superb. The whole experience was first rate and an inspiration to do more.Didier Maclaine Pont invester/paddlerAfter not having canoed since my teen years, I was excited but nervous about taking up my paddle again in midlife. Shawn's skill and experience made my trip with him one of the best I could have imagined. I highly recommend his trips.James Gardner vp - marketingI had an incredible time—nothing short of amazing! I'll be back, as they say.Chris Cunningham author