When we arrived in Grand Bahama we went right to the beach. We were staying in Freeport, the largest city on the island, situated on the west end. Instead of getting a hotel room for $200+ a night, we were staying in a decently sized apartment we found on AirBNB. A ten minute walk to Taino Beach, a beautiful beach with white powdery sand and crystal clear waters located on the south coast of the island, it was a great find for only $70 a night. Our host had graciously picked us up from the airport, and given us plenty of tips of good beaches to check out. We’re adventurers, so we yearned for something more. Something off the beaten path. A challenge. I scoured the internet every night, and finally, after three days of searching for something, I found it.
Owl’s Hole is a naturally formed fresh water cave that most locals aren’t aware of. It’s a 25 minute drive from Freeport, via the Grand Bahama Highway, which runs East/West across the center of the island. Tour services offer to take you there, but unless you want to pay $100/person, there’s a better way. With the help of either REALLY good directions, or a GPS device, you can find your way with a rented scooter or car.
Taking a look on TripAdvisor, people heavily discourage the rental of scooters in the Bahamas. They all warn that they’re a hazard, but don’t specify why. It seems that all over the internet, renting a car in the Bahamas is highly recommended over renting a scooter. We went with the scooter option. For $50 a day you can rent a one person scooter. They specifically warn you against bringing two people on the scooter, but we found that two regular sized adults can ride comfortably. We did end up seeing a scooter accident with a person who looked pretty banged up, lying on the roadway, and shattered glass everywhere. That being said, riding a scooter can be done safely. You must be aware that there are potholes scattered throughout the road, many of which will definitely kick you off your scooter if not avoided. Always watch ahead for the potholes, and when in doubt, slow down and avoid. Driving on the left side of the road is a bit confusing at first, especially roundabouts, whose directions are the reverse of North American roundabouts.
We set out to find Owl’s Hole, and after a few wrong turns, and a bit of backtracking, we did eventually find it. It’s better than photos can do it justice, and it’s incredible to see and experience first hand. We were wary of jumping right into it, so we stepped down into the water by climbing down the ladder that has been permanently chained to the entrance of the cave. After swimming around for a bit, and jumping from the ladder a couple times, we took the plunge and jumped from the opening. It was truly an amazing experience, and would highly recommend it to anyone visiting Grand Bahama.