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Regardless of your direction of approach to Elbow Cay, your first sight will be the Elbow Reef Lighthouse. Commonly referred to as the Hopetown Lighthouse due to its location in Hopetown, this candy-striped classic can be seen from as far away as 17 miles. Originally built in 1864 to guide sailors, it was rebuilt in 1934 due to damage caused over time by various hurricanes which frequent the Bahamas. Although the lantern itself is only 89 feet from the ground, its location high on a hill provides for an overall height of 120 feet above sea level, allowing for the great visibility.
Admission is free, although donatons to the Lighthouse Preservation Fund are requested and appreciated. You can climb the 101 steps to the lantern, and out onto the 360 degree viewing platform for an amazing view of Hopetown, the Harbour, and many of the surrounding cays.
And if you've read Jimmy Buffett's latest, A Salty Piece of Land, it's believed he got the inspiration for the book after visiting Hopetown and seeing the Lighthouse. In fact, he spent a couple of days researching with Dave Gale, a local resident and director of the Lighthouse Preservation Fund.
Written Sep 18, 2005
Address: In Hopetown
Abaco Inn sits on the beach near the south end of Elbow Cay, behind it are the road (there's only one) and White Sound, the other harbor on Elbow Cay (besides Hope Town Harbor). The restaurant is an amenity of the Inn but is open to all and has a full menu of steaks, lobster, etc.
Favorite Dish: Surf & turf.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Address: Oceanside of the road
During our full-day trip with Dive Guana, our lunch stop was the Reef Bar & Grill at the Hopetown Harbour Lodge. It is located high on a dune, overlooking the rolling waves of the Atlantic Ocean. The patio is a fair size, but I think we ended up in the last 4 available seats. Even by Bahamian standards, service was pretty slow, but the excellet food and beautiful location certainly made up for any inconvenience.
There is also a salt-water pool, which gave the kids a great opportunity to go and play while we were waiting (and after), with did away with any more 'Can we go yets?' we may have otherwise heard.
Favorite Dish: My husband and thoroughly enjoyed our Blackened Mahi-mahi with Peas 'n Rice - it was delicious! Our eldest had another Grouper BLT (his Island favourite), and the youngest settled for a hot dog with fries. Everything was great.
Updated Sep 18, 2005
Address: In Hopetown, just ask.
Iggy Biggy almost defies description. Its a funky little shop filled with local Bahamian crafts, wall art, jewellery, local CDs, flipflops, clothing, tableware..........
Unfortunately, lunch ran late, and we only had a couple of minutes to shop before the dive boat left. But, even if you're pressed for time, as we were, you'll be sure to find some things to your liking - we ended up with 3 bags full!
They have 2 locations, the one we visited in Hopetown on Elbow Cay, and the main store in Marsh Harbour on Great Abaco.
What to buy: I think my favourites were the various pieces of decorative art. They had everything from hand carved geckos, to margarita-glass table lamps and beautiful wind chimes. But my personal favourite was the 5' wall-mounted pink flip flop! If only I could have figured out a way to bring that back home....................
What to pay: Surprisingly, the prices at Iggy Biggy were very reasonable. Some were expensive, like the margarita table lamp, which was around $90, but most prices were in line with what you would pay elsewhere.
Written Sep 17, 2005
Address: In Hopetown