THE CRUISE - NASSAU

Tropical breezes, steel drum music and fabulous activities are just a couple of the many highlights of Nassau. There's something for everyone in Nassau, and the Bahamas are easy to reach to escape a chilly winter.

Imagine a destination that offers sultry days and beautiful starry nights. That's the Bahamas, where temperatures average 70 to 80 degrees (F) daily.

Nassau is the capital city of the Bahamas, popular with visitors since pirates Blackbeard, Henry Morgan, and Anne Bonney made Nassau's sheltered harbor famous. Colonial architecture, friendly people, great shopping and attractions, and a welcoming climate make this an ideal vacation spot for couples, families, and individuals.

Nassau is easy to get around, no matter where you stay. Remember that Nassau developed under British rule, and cars drive on the left side of the road. You can rent a car if you like, but why bother? Most of Nassau's best attractions are in walking distance--or a quick taxi ride--from the ship.

The nearby Versailles Gardens are most noted for their deliberate landscaping and ornate classical sculptures. The long shadows of late afternoon add drama to the Gardens, and it's a fine way to conclude your day in Nassau.

The Bahama Islands are magnificent, and Nassau is their crown jewel. Whether you go there for the many attractions or simply to relax on a beach overlooking perfect turquoise waters, Nassau is an ideal place for your vacation.

Port of Call excursions are NOT included in your 'What's Included', and may be an additional fee. Pricing may vary depending upon the type of excursion. Contact the Celtic Thunder Reservations Department for full details and booking @ [email protected]cruise.com

THINGS TO DO IN NASSAU -

DISCOVER ATLANTIS

The Atlantis on Paradise Island in the Bahamas is the only resort in the Caribbean that is a destination unto itself, and millions of visitors to Nassau (many of them day-trippers from cruise ships) take a quick taxi or water-shuttle ride to experience the resort's casinos and restaurants.

However, while throwing down some cash on the craps tables or roulette wheel may satisfy some visitors, others -- especially families -- are drawn across the Paradise Island bridge by the Atlantis' aquatic allure, specifically the resort's spectacular "lost world" themed water park, dolphin encounter program, beaches, and the underground mysteries of The Dig, a walk-though exploration of the Lost City of Atlantis.

Given the hordes of visitors to the Atlantis on a daily basis, it's not surprising that the resort limits access to some of these attractions -- notably the Aquaventure pool and water park area -- in order to preserve the experience for hotel guests. However, that does not mean that day-trippers can't visit the Atlantis attractions, including Aquaventure; you'll just have to pay a bit for the privilege:

Discover Atlantis Tour: This tour is the best-known to day-trippers, in part because it is sold as an excursion on cruise ships. Expert "Navigators" guide visitors through the ancient city streets of Atlantis during a visit to "The Dig," a faux-but-believable archaeological exploration of an 11,000-year-old lost continent. The attraction is full of interesting artifacts and hieroglyphics, along with great water effects and glimpses of exotic sea life, including piranha, moon jellyfish, venomous lion fish, and a resident manta ray.

A Discover Atlantis Tour wristband allows visitors to explore The Dig and its exhibits as well as the Ruins, Predator and Water’s Edge Lagoons -- but not the water-park. Wristbands can be purchased at the Temple of the Moon in the Atlantis casino or at any Discover Atlantis Sales Centers located throughout the property.

Atlantis Beach Day The Atlantis Beach Day program that provides all-day access to the exclusive white sandy beaches of the Atlantis resort, with lounge chairs and towels provided. Also includes access to the marine habitats and lunch at an outside venue. Beach Day tickets may be purchased at any Discover Atlantis Sales Centers located throughout the property.

Your guided tour also includes a visit to Predator Lagoon, fittingly named for the sharks, barracudas and many other creatures form the deep that live there. As you make your way through the maze of underground passageways, have fun discovering archaeological artifacts and hieroglyphics while surrounded by a stunning civilization of sea animals. Expert guides will lead you through the ancient streets and help you to decode the legend of Atlantis as well as providing fascinating information on the habitat and behavior of the marine wildlife.

Please note: Access to the pools, slides and beaches is not included in the tour. A shuttle bus will return you to the ship; information on the bus timetable will be provided before arriving at Atlantis.

GLASS BOTTOM BOAT

A glass bottom boat excursion allows visitors to witness the marvelous undersea environs off the shores of the Bahama Islands in a convenient manner. There’s no need to get wet on a snorkeling trip. You don’t have to go through the extensive scuba certification process to view the breathtaking wonders beneath the surface. These are especially convenient tours for families who have young children or elderly members along with them on vacation in the Bahamas. The comfortable and leisurely ride out to view the wonders of the coral reef habitats is a one-of-a-kind sightseeing experience that cannot be missed. It is a great way to bond with your kin while on vacation.

Experience the exhilaration of diving without getting into a wetsuit!  On this informative and picturesque tour on the waters off the shores, you and your whole crew will become captivated by the beauty of the island's underwater world.

Start your tour with a narrative tour of Nassau’s harbor. Here your tour narrator will point out to you historical sites, homes of the rich and famous and also general information of Nassau and the Bahamas. Once the vessel is positioned over the reef, you will be guided down to the viewing deck. Here your glass reporter will give you an informative briefing of all that you see through the glass. Afterwards you will enjoy a slow cruise back through the harbor to the Port while listening to music. A complimentary rum or fruit punch will be served.

JEEP TOUR

Have yourself some pure unadulterated fun on this self-drive tour around the city of Nassau and New Providence Island, with a beach break to look forward to at the end. On leaving the ship, a quick walk from the pier will first be followed by an orientation drive through Nassau en route to the staging area for an initial briefing on driving a 4x4.

Once you have been issued a vehicle, you can then choose whether to share the driving or let just one person take to the wheel when you board the 4-seater with your friends. Drivers have to be in possession of a valid driving license, which will naturally be checked beforehand. To ensure every guest can listen to the instructions and information provided by the guide leading your convoy, each vehicle is equipped with a walkies-talkie.

The touring route then takes you out of Nassau and into the island’s lovely interior. Enjoyable views will entertain you on the way to the beach portion of the trip. This is where you can have a break, relax on the sand and go for a revitalizing swim before you reform a convoy to head back to your starting point, with more wonderful views of the countryside to see on the way. Once back in Nassau, the tour ends and leaves you to take a stroll back to the ship at your own pace.

Please note: as this is a self-drive tour, guests wishing to drive must be at least 25 years of age and be in possession of and present a valid driving license. Vehicles must remain with the group at all times; any itinerary changes will be made only by the driver/guide in the lead vehicle. Traffic and delays must be expected. You are recommended to bring a towel, swimwear and sunscreen. In the interest of safety, a children’s car seat (please reserve in advance) must be used for children under 8 years of age. Jeeps are fitted with an automatic gearbox.

ATHOL ISLAND - SNORKELING

Snorkeling is the practice of swimming on the surface of the water while equipped with a diving mask, snorkel (tube extend from the mouth to about six inches above the water) and swimming fins. A wetsuit or a dry suit will be required if you are swimming in cooler water. Swimming on the surface equipped with snorkeling apparatus allows you explore the beautiful coral reef and exotic fish.

Tropical coral reefs are among nature's most diverse ecosystems, composed of thousands of species of fish, plants, corals, invertebrates, and microorganisms. Their natural beauty attracts thousands of tourists and divers each year. Coral reefs built up slowly over time by algae and corals which leave behind calcified deposits. Coral reefs are found in the warm, clear, shallow waters of tropical oceans worldwide. Reefs have functions ranging from providing food and shelter to fish and invertebrates to protecting the shore from erosion. Revenue generated from tourists attracted to the beautiful coral reefs can be a significant source of income for local communities in these areas.

You can swim amongst the bright colorful corals, observe a vast variety of beautiful tropical fish in there natural environment and the vibrant marine life. Some of the most abundant species of tropical fish on the coral reef are angel fish, anthias, basslets, bat fish, blennies, box fish, butterfly fish, cardinals, clown fish, damsels, dart fish, dotty backs, dragonets, dwarf angels, eels, filefish, frog fish, goat fish, gobies, groupers, grunts, hawk fish, hogfish, jaw fish, lion fish, puffer fish, rabbit fish, rays, sea horses, sharks, snappers, squirrel fish, tangs, triggerfish and wrasses.

The most common species of corals are brain coral, bubble coral, carpet anemone, clubbed finger coral, club-tipped anemone, cup coral, elkhorn coral, flowerpot coral, green anemone, lettuce coral, purple base anemone, red cauliflower coral, sea fan, sea mat, sea whip, staghorn coral, star coral, sun coral and torch coral.

ATLANTIS AQUAVENTURE

A huge, 97-acre water park, Aquaventure offers a highly themed Mayan atmosphere, lush landscaping, unique water rides and attractions, and opportunities to interact with animals. While the ingenious "transpotainment" system that connects all of the Power Tower attractions doesn't eliminate lines, it allows guests to remain in their inner tubes and immersed in the water while they float from one ride to the next. "Water escalators" even convey riders up to the tops of the tube slides. The mile-long Current ride, which incorporates four-foot waves for a more-than-lazy river experience, also floats through a tropical jungle and caves.

Other attractions include the Leap of Faith speed slide and the Serpent slides. These body slides are built into the side of a Mayan temple and send riders zooming under the water in clear tunnels where they float past sharks.

Note that the Power Tower and Mayan Temple slides have 48-inch height requirements. There are children's pools for younger guests. Atlantis also offers Slashers, a children's interactive water play structure with smaller slides, soaking devices, and a dump bucket.

Water Park Features:

"Transpotainment" system uses flowing rivers, water escalators, and other conveyance means to transport guests to the slides in inner tubes.. Riders can go from one ride to another without ever leaving their tubes. Other features: uphill water coasters, action river, speed slides, tube slides, body slides, interactive water play structure with dump bucket, and children's pools.

Notes: There is a considerable amount of walking on this tour and guests must be at least 48 inches tall to ride the water slides. Lounge chairs, towels and life jackets are provided. Non-motorized water sports are available for rent. Lockers available at extra cost. No cash, only credit card at outdoor facilities. Return to the ship is on a shuttle basis. Shuttle bus timetable will be communicated before arriving at Atlantis.

NASSAU 360°

Experience the history, highlights, and tropical beauty of Nassau during the Ardastra Gardens, Zoo & City Tour excursion.

Begin your excursion by traveling by air-conditioned bus to your first destination, the hub of downtown Nassau, known as Rawson Square.  Here you will see the House of Parliament, Supreme Court, Public Library and other historical buildings central to the life of the Bahamas and its people.

From there, continue towards Government House, home of the Governor General, representative of Her Majesty the Queen of England.  Along the way, pass churches built in the 1800s, where local residents still worship today. Continue West, and pass the Graycliff Restaurant and Hotel, a place rich in history, having housed guests such as the Duke and Dutchess of Windsor, various Lords & Ladies, and Winston Churchill.

Disembark the bus at The Ardastra Gardens & Zoo, a peaceful retreat, to enjoy over 4 acres of lush tropical gardens and over 200 birds, reptiles and mammals. The Ardastra Gardens are home to a collection of endangered land animals and features the Bahamas National Bird, the beautiful and exotic Caribbean Flamingo.

Participate in the “Flamingo Experience”, a unique show of the glory and antics of these incredible creatures together with an excellent narration of their story. You will also hand-feed the colorful and playful South Pacific Lory Parrots and have numerous photographic opportunities with “Toby” the Cockatoo, “Jackie” the Snake and “Freddy” the Peacock. Walk the gardens and enjoy the tropical beauty of the Caribbean. Make a pit-stop to enjoy a refreshment or purchase a souvenir.

Guests will have the perfect opportunity to take photographs of the natural beauty of The Bahamas at Aramark Cay before arriving back at the pier.

Notes:

You will spend approximately 1.5 hours at the Ardastra Gardens and 1.5 hours on the city tour.

There is some walking involved.

A hat, sunglasses and sunscreen are recommended.

Advise the Shore Excursion team should you have any walking difficulties prior to purchasing this tour.

ATLANTIS DOLPHIN CAY

Dolphin Cay is an extraordinary environment; its 14-acres and 6.6 million gallons of crystal clear seawater, it’s one of the largest and most sophisticated marine habitats and dolphin rescue-rehabilitation facilities anywhere in the world. It’s a place where swimming with dolphins has been redefined.

Vacationers have the opportunity to share in the playful shallow water antics of truly charismatic creatures or experience the speed and agility of the ocean’s most remarkable inhabitant’s first-hand in deeper water, where the dolphins of Paradise Island invite guests to share in their fun.

SHALLOW WATER INTERACTION
It’s time to venture into the crystal blue waters of one of the world’s largest marine habitats. There’s no better place for Caribbean Vacationers to meet a new aquatic friend. As a resort guest, you’ll enjoy an unforgettable experience as you engage Paradise Island’s resident Atlantic bottle-nose dolphins and discover just how playful they can be. In Dolphin Cay’s Shallow Water Interaction area, you’ll wade in waist-deep waters to enjoy these magical creatures as they show off their amazing athletic abilities. Then you’ll get nose to bottle-nose for an unparalleled, up-close adventure of touching, hugging and even kissing a new dolphin friend.

Limited to just 10 guests, this intimate interaction begins with an orientation and includes 30 minutes in the water. Wetsuits, personal lockers, beach towels, and non-alcoholic refreshments are provided, along with all-day access to Dolphin Cay’s private beach.

This family favorite is open to guests of all ages and swimming abilities.

Children under 10 years of age must have an adult family member or guardian participating with them in the shallow water.

DEEP WATER SWIM
In the crystal blue depths of Atlantis Paradise Island’s Dolphin Cay, a one-of-a-kind aquatic adventure awaits. The Deep Water Swim allows guests to glide alongside a dolphin with a hand-held water scooter or swim side by side with swim fins experiencing their underwater world. Then enjoy our signature “foot push,” where you’re propelled across the lagoon by a dolphin for a rush unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. This unforgettable interaction will begin with an orientation and include 30 minutes in the water with the dolphins. Wetsuits, personal lockers, beach towels will be provided and you’ll enjoy all-day access to Dolphin Cay’s luxurious private beach.

Limited to just six guests, this exciting dolphin scooter experience begins with an orientation and includes a 30-minute in water experience. Wetsuits, personal lockers, beach towels, and non-alcoholic refreshments are provided, along with all-day access to Dolphin Cay’s private beach. Participants must be at least 10 years of age and be able to swim in deep water without support vests or assistance.

ULTIMATE TRAINER FOR A DAY
Experience what it’s like to interact with exotic marine animals during Atlantis’ new ULTIMATE Trainer for a Day program. Work alongside professional animal trainers and Aquarius as you interact with dolphins, sea lions, sharks and rays. This customized thrilling experience brings you behind the scenes to learn what it takes to care for over 50,000 sea animals. It’s the “ultimate” day of discovery and fun!


Spend a Day with a Marine Mammal Specialist

Experience customized dolphin and sea lion training sessions, including our exclusive double dorsal tow and signature Dolphin foot push

Come in contact with and feed predatory nurse sharks and experience their unique feeding behavior

Hand-feed gentle cownose stingrays in waist deep water, then snorkel in the Seagrapes Lagoon with the stingrays and hundreds of other tropical fish and sharks.

Take a behind-the-scenes tour of our world-class facilities and animal hospital to learn the basics of animal care, feeding and diagnostics

Enjoy a private lunch with our Atlantis marine specialists

All-inclusive Day with a Sea Animal Trainer & Professional Photographer

You'll receive a gift bag complete with snorkel gear, fish guide and Ultimate Trainer for a Day T-shirt
Memorable moments and special images from your day will be captured by a personal professional photographer and downloaded to a 1GB flash drive that's yours to keep

Participants must be in good physical condition and be at least 10 years old.
Guests under the age of 13 must be accompanied by a paid “Trainer for a Day” adult as part of the program.

Additional Dolphin Cove events are for registered Guest of Atlantis Resort Hotel. Please visit the Excursion Desk for full details on available events at Dolphin Cay.