Bahamas' Abaco Beach Resort an easy choice for families

The resort’s Boat Harbour Marina is the starting point for a number of fishing excursions.
The resort’s Boat Harbour Marina is the starting point for a number of fishing excursions.

Sometimes when traveling with family, you just want easy. Abaco Beach Resort and Boat Harbour Marina in the Bahamas certainly delivers in that regard.

Let me count the ways.

The resort is only a 50-minute plane ride from many of Florida's east coast airports (Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach), making traveling with short-attention-span children doable.

Abaco has some of the most diverse ecosystems in the Caribbean, making kayaking and biking trips ideal for high-energy kids, like mine, who love to be outside and in nature. With six national parks, Abaco has plenty to see in terms of wildlife, bird life and topography.

The state-of-the-art marina is the starting point for some of the best fishing in the world, perfect for spouses like mine who love to spend the day on the water. Whether the goal is to hook a bonefish or to tangle with some big game while deep-sea fishing, the guides and charter boats here are top-notch, and it's a rare angler who comes home disappointed.

That leaves me to relax on white-sand beaches, overlooking the beautiful Sea of Abaco, knowing everyone in the family will find something to do to make them happy.

Abaco Beach Resort is the largest property in Marsh Harbor, with 89 oceanfront rooms, suites and villas, each with its own veranda or balcony. The suites are perfect for families, as they feature a king bed; a large connecting living room with a pullout sofa bed; and a full kitchen.

One of the things that made the resort stand out for me was the Bahama Buddies program ($30 per child, per day, which includes lunch, a T-shirt and a CD containing photos taken during kids' time at the club). Kids go on hikes, bike rides and snorkeling excursions and learn skills such as how to catch, clean and cook fish or extract milk from a coconut.

I loved it when, at the end of the day, the kids couldn't wait to share all their stories about camp and what they did and learned.

It's important to have good activities for adults, too, and the Abaco Beach Resort had plenty of those, as well. Paddleboarding, kayaking, diving, snorkeling, tennis courts, a fitness center — the resort has a host of amenities for grown-ups.

They even have a new Turtle Crawl experience, which includes two days of a guided stand-up paddleboard ecotour. On the tour you'll see the flora and fauna of the region, including mangroves, sting rays and the highlight: the elusive Abaco turtle.

Angler's, the resort's on-site restaurant, offers fresh lobster, grouper and other island favorites. And nearby Marsh Harbor has a number of family-friendly dining options.

Rooms start at $290 a night in low season.



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