With more than 700 islands and cays to explore, The Bahamas are an adventure seeker’s paradise. With Airbnb Experiences, guests, guided by local experts, can deep dive beyond the crystalline waters to uncover hidden gems and centuries-old traditions that provide a unique glimpse into the culture and history of the islands.
From exploring blue holes where alligators once roamed, to harvesting fresh pineapples on the island of Eleuthera – the launch of Airbnb Experiences in The Bahamas provides a unique opportunity for local culture curators to share their knowledge of the islands and what it means to be uniquely Bahamian.
Airbnb’s recent Entrepreneurship Lab, an Office of Healthy Tourism initiative held in conjunction with the Tourism Development Corporation held in June, attracted dozens of potential Experiences hosts. Hosts are eager to share their knowledge and expertise of the islands through diverse, people-powered experiences that are local, authentic, sustainable, and drive economic growth in the community. The hosts highlighted are some of the entrepreneurs who launched Experiences after attending the Entrepreneurship lab.
The legend of the chickcharney, a mischievous, bird-like dwarf with red eyes said to inhabit the forests of Andros has a deep history rooted in Bahamian folklore. In parallel, the family farm bearing this Bahamian legend’s name has a deep history as well.
Third-generation farmer and entrepreneur Chavara grew up on her family’s farm on the island of Andros. For 48 years, her family has worked the farm, growing native fruits such as sapodilla, mangoes, soursop, and breadfruit. Years ago, Chavara expanded her farm’s operation to New Providence, delivering fresh produce to restaurants and locals.
Today, she operates two farms and Chiccharney’s recently opened farm store. People can get a taste of the islands with homemade farm to table products including ice cream, juices, jams, and locally brewed ‘bush’ teas. The Chiccharney Experience invites guests on a gastronomic adventure, serving a buffet of traditional seasonal jams, jellies, and treats including banana bread, potato bread, and the locally loved guava duff. To culminate the Experience, guests will enjoy a tea tasting featuring ‘bush teas’ steeped from traditional bushes and herbs foraged from the local pine forests.
The islands of The Bahamas are vivid, sweeping views with bold colour palette of blues, pinks, purples, and oranges. Now imagine becoming a life-size representation of the island’s boldness, hand-painted by a well-known Bahamian body painting artist and photographer. With this unique Experience hosted by Monty, guests can become a living work of art immortalized in limited edition art photographs.
Well known for his painted Junkanoo nymph series, Monty’s body paintings enhance and celebrate bodies.
Paintings take place on a docked 46-foot boat overlooking Nassau Harbour and Paradise Island. The detailed body-paintings are then carefully photographed to produce high-resolution photographs suitable for large prints. Truly an unforgettable experience.
From her childhood home on iconic West Street, Arlene shares her love of Junkanoo with guests from around the world. An avid “junkanoo-er” since the tender age of four, she, along with her husband Silbert have created a unique museum celebrating the centuries old tradition much loved by Bahamians.
Brought to the islands by slaves from Africa, the vibrant festival features brightly coloured handmade costumes, some as tall as fifteen feet, paraded through the island’s main streets and amplified by live music including cow bells, goat skin drums and horns.
With the most elaborate stagings of the parade occurring in Nassau on Boxing Day (December 26) and New Year’s Day (January 1), Arlene and Silbert provide an interactive Experience that allows guests to discover and explore the spirit of Junkanoo throughout the year. Beyond learning about the national cultural festival of The Bahamas, guests can make their own masks using traditional Junkanoo materials and dance to Junkanoo music.
Experiences align with Airbnb’s mission of creating a world where anyone can belong anywhere. They also ensure that as tourism becomes a larger portion of economies around the world, local people and the communities they live in are the primary beneficiaries. On August 9 from 10am to 2pm at the Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association, Airbnb provided additional one-on-one support for entrepreneurs interested in becoming Experiences hosts.
Join Airbnb Experiences today by applying online.