Have you ever been so scared your legs start shaking? Your hands get clammy, your throats gets dry. And what seconds before seemed like a great idea, suddenly seems foolish and irrational. A scream erupts deep in the dark tunnel and then a flashing light turns from red to green. I cross my legs, fold my arms, close my eyes and scream. The water pounds on me as I slide down the Leap of Faith through a dark twisting tunnel into a transparent tunnel surrounded with hungry, swimming sharks. It’s over, it’s not the end. And suddenly what seemed scary and frightening a few seconds before now just seems trivial.
The Atlantis Resort is located on Paradise Island, roughly a ten-minute ferry ride or 15-minute taxi trip from Nassau, Bahamas. The entire island has been sold 5 times, once by Donald Trump and also went through a name change from it’s original Hog Island.
Our boat docked into Nassau early morning and we did not look out our windows until after 9am. The view was so much prettier than the sullied views that made up Freeport, Bahamas.
Both kids had chosen to be in Kids Club today so we dropped them off at 10am and Josh and I got off our cruise ship to check out Nassau. The port was crowded with other tourists. 4 giant cruise liners were in port and it seemed all tens of thousands of people had decided to enjoy the beautiful day on Nassau.
We followed the crowd into a small entrance hall where we were hounded to buy a tour, take a taxi, ride a boat. The hall was filled with people on laptops. Free wifi can do that to you. Having decided that we wanted to check out the waterpark on Atlantis we decided on a boat ride to get us to Paradise Island.
The boat was $4 per person and they led us through the markets to the ferry. Our guide was very entertaining pointing out Nicholas Cage’s home, where Anna Nicole Smith died and a yoga retreat, which he did not recommended because it had 4 rules, which made vacationing dull – 1. No eating meat. 2. No smoking. 3. No drinking and 4. No sex.
When we reached the island we had to walk a fair way to find the casino where tickets were for sale. The tickets were $125 each! This got you a tour, entry to the aquarium and access to all the beaches, slides, towels and sun chairs. It was expensive and children 4 – 10 were $80. We were glad the kids had opted to stay onboard today.
A walk through The Dig, which is set up like an archeological underwater labyrinth, took you through to the pools and slides. This place was enormous and we didn’t even know where to begin. But once we spotted a slide going through a shark tank we knew that was where we wanted to begin.
Usually when we visit theme parks and waterparks one adult stays with the children and the other goes on the slide by themself. It was exciting to finally be able to get double tubes and go on the slides together. Also its important to note that the height restrictions on all slides is 46 or 48 inches, so my 4 & 2 year old wouldn’t have been allowed on any.
Our first slide was on a double tube that went through a dark and twisty tunnel and then shoved you into a transparent box. This box allowed your tube to float gently through while fish and sharks swarm around you. At the end a strong current pushed you down through a waterfall and out into the exit pool. It was awesome. Almost as awesome as the Leap of Faith, which I described above.
They had slides that took you up, that’s right no climbing stairs here. They had river rapids, which were fun and exciting. They had slides that took you straight down, through tunnels. They even had slides that shot you down and then pushed you up. It was an amazing waterpark, really top notch. And at every turn was another pool, more deck chairs or a beach with white sand and crystal-clear ocean that you could see through to the bottom.
The resort itself was also amazing, offering scuba diving, snorkeling, dolphin interaction. The presidential suite over the arch is rented for $25,000 per night with 4 night minimum stay. Oprah, Michael Jackson, Elton John, Bill Clinton and more have all stayed in the suite. The layout and design were immense and it’s definitely a spot I would love to come and stay at. You could spend days in that place. We only had 3 hours.
After we went on as many slides as we could and floated the rapids and swam at the beach we decided on a Taxi ride back for the same price as the boat $4 per person. It took us through the "real part" of the Bahamas. The run down houses and abandoned cars. This section is known as “over-the-hill”, where the folks are considered poor. The economy has been pretty shattered since the GFC.
We raced back to the ship to collect our kids so we could avoid a repeat of yesterday’s bad parenting (read previous post) . Josh and Caius both hit the sack and were asleep in seconds, while Mia and I opted on some pool time.
Have to say I love Nassau and want to come back. Perhaps you would like to pay for us to stay in the Atlantis presidential suite? You know, for research purposes? :)