Discover the joys of tranquil adventure and history at San Salvador Island, which is located in the Bahamas. The Lucayan Indians originally called the island Guanahani and Christopher Columbus – when he visited it on October 12, 1492 – renamed it San Salvador (Christ the Savior).
The British buccaneer George Watling, however, took over the Island and renamed it Watling’s Island. In 1926, the San Salvador name was restored to the island, which is about 200 miles southeast from Nassau. With a population of around 1,200 inhabitants, San Salvador (which measures 5 miles wide and 12 miles long) is described as the exposed peak of a mountain that rises 15,000 feet from the Atlantic Ocean’s floor.
The island boasts of a wealth of beautiful beaches, undulating hills, saltwater lagoons and fascinating reefs that surround most of the island. San Salvador is also home to some of the Bahamas’s most unique landscapes. The reefs protect the island and a large break near the island’s capital, Cockburn Town, provides boats access to the island.
Despite being one of the Bahamas’s out islands, you can still enjoy what San Salvador has to offer. With tourism as the island’s main income earner, the locals provide activities like guided tours, sailing, diving and fishing.
San Salvador is known for great diving adventures, with over 50 dive sites on its lee side, which also include shipwrecks and ruins for a more visually appealing diving adventure. The more unusual yet captivating dive sites include French Bay (with staghorn and Elkhorn coral) and Devil’s Claw and Vicky’s Reef (with sharks and stingrays).
Another San Salvador attraction is the Great lake Preserve. Located in the middle of the island, the lake has been declared a protected area to preserve its natural beauty. Stretching for the entire island’s length at 2 miles wide and 10 miles long, the lake connects all of San Salvador’s major settlements.
If you fancy a bit of history, you may be delighted to find a cross at Long Bay. The cross marks the spot where Columbus visited and it is one of the island’s most photographed spots.
At San Salvador, you can stay at a wide variety of seaside resorts – one of them being a Club Med resort, which is just north of Cockburn Town. You can also enjoy other man-made island attractions like shipwrecks and lighthouses.
If you want to enjoy a historical and cultural adventure, you will discover that a San Salvador Island vacation is one of the best places to start your journey.