A Cat Island
One of the outer islands of the Bahamas, Cat Island is a quiet vacation
destination for those who are really looking to relax. Among its varied
pleasures and activities, a little exploration will turn up a historical
oddity or two that add to the individual character of the place. Beautiful
beaches in natural settings welcome the nature lover and peace seeker
The Hermitage is a bit of an historical oddity, fascinating and strange.
The hike up to see this religious site will take visitors through small
villages along beautiful trails, full of island flora and fauna. It
is located at the top of Mt. Alvernia, which is 206 feet above the sea
and the highest point in the Bahamas. The Hermitage itself is made from
the limestone of the cliffs, with each piece painstakingly extracted,
shaped and set by hand by the Canadian mule-skinner turned Anglican
turned Roman Catholic priest known as Father Jerome. The Father built
the structure to scale, designed it to fit his rather diminutive form.
Beloved by the island people, the priest passed away in 1956 after reaching
the ripe age of 80.
Other historical sites include an Arawak cave, found at Columbus point,
and plantation ruins, left over from the islands efforts at joining
the worlds cotton growers. Deveaux mansion was once the residence of
Andrew Deveaux of the US Navy, who participated in the 1873 battles
to get Nassau back from Spain. Another well known ruins is the remains
of the Ambrister plantation, near Port Howe.
For those interested in water sports, the Cat Island Dive Center is
the place to contact. They operate out of the Greenwood Beach Resort
and have a variety of diving and snorkeling packages available, and
there are many fine areas to explore, offering a wealth of marine life
and fascinating geological formations. They also have water sport equipment
Cat Island is the sixth largest island in the Bahamas, and boasts extraordinary
beaches. There are literally miles and miles of virtually undisturbed
beaches, where swimming and relaxing can be done in near complete privacy.
Fine meals can be had at several locations on Cat Island. Hawk’s Nest
Resort and Marina serves a variety of dishes, but among the best are
the fresh, grilled fish and the roasted rack of lamb. Fernandez Bay
Village is the place to go for creative and delicious native dishes,
served either in the dining room or a patio table by the beach. Greenwood
Beach Resort’s Bahaman cuisine is complemented by their marvelous breads,
which are baked every day.
Cat Island is an excellent choice for vacationers who are seeking a
natural beach experience, and enjoy a peaceful and very laid-back atmosphere.
The island can be explored at a leisurely pace, which is a much better
way to enjoy the local flora and fauna, as well as to enjoy the local
culture. Because it is so much smaller in population than many of the
other islands, it’s easier to get a real feel for the people and their
way of life. Cat Island is an interesting place that will make a lasting
impression on its guests.
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