Ocean swimming on Harbour Island

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We were so excited to return to one of our favorite resorts! The Dunmore Resort on Harbour Island, Bahamas is everything I thought it would be and much more, even during the pandemic. Pristine pink beaches, great food, wonderful people and exquisite accommodations – this is luxury travel at its best. Today I am detailing our trip we just returned from, how to get there and what you should do to explore Harbour Island, Bahamas. I’m also giving you all relevant travel updates based on what we experience during the pandemic. The good news is the Bahamas are open to travelers! Get ready for tons of pictures and lots of travel information. And get your swimsuit ready… you’ll want to go!

Traveling in 2021: Harbour Island is alive and well! The Bahamas are open to travelers and depending on where you are coming from, you will have to do a little paperwork before your departure. Click HERE for information related to entering the Bahamas. For us, we had to apply for a health visa two weeks before our departure. You will not be admitted into the Bahamas without it so be sure to plan ahead. When you leave the Bahamas, the U.S. requires that you have a negative Covid test taken no more than three days from your departure date. Pete and I took ours the day before we left. The Dunmore Hotel is happy to arrange this for you or you can simply head down to the main dock on Harbour Island and test there. It’s a rapid test and only takes 10 minutes. The cost is $50 per person and they only take cash. Hold on to your paper test results as you will need to present them when checking in to your flight. As of the time of this writing (August 2021), federal regulations mandate that you must wear a face mask in all airports and on your flights. We also found that everyone working in the service industry in the Bahamas were still wearing face masks.

Harbour Island is a small 3.5 by 1.5 mile island located approximately 1.5 miles east of the northern coast of Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas. Travel to the Harbour Island is via North Eleuthera (ELH) airport followed by a 5 minute cab ride to the dock and a 10 minute water taxi ride. It’s known for having one of the Best Bahamas Beaches according to many travel magazines and is famous for its three and a half miles of hard packed picture perfect pink sand beach. The pictures I posted on my Instagram don’t even do it justice – it’s so gorgeous in person! The rich history of the island dates back as far as the 1700’s. You cannot help but be absorbed by the colorful architecture and beautiful makeup of the island. The people are absolutely delightful! I can see why. Life is good – at a much slower Bahamian pace.

Pete and I were there for 6 days/5 nights, which is exactly what we did the first time we visited in January 2020. Since its a connecting flight and a little boat ride to get there, we always give ourselves a little extra time to enjoy this beautiful resort. I will say that the island had a much more laid back feeling in the summer months. If you want to see the journey in pictures and video, be sure to click HERE to watch my IG Story highlight ‘Dunmore 2021’.

We had so much fun exploring the small island on a golf cart, eating at wonderful restaurants, and simply relaxing at the most glorious resort – The Dunmore. Our stay was perfect in every way! I am detailing everything below throughout the many pictures, so be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom of this post for all the details about the island itself. Please note that The Dunmore Resort is closed from August 15 – November 4 for hurricane season. We had beautiful weather daily with a high of around 85 degrees. That ocean breeze is absolutely glorious any time of year!

GETTING THERE: Here is how we routed on American Airlines. Dallas to Miami (non-stop) and then a connecting flight to North Eleuthera (ELH). The connecting flight is a regional jet so no worries about getting on a puddle jumper. Once you land in North Eleuthera, you will take a short taxi ride to the boat dock. Then it’s a quick 10 minute boat ferry over to Harbour Island. The Dunmore Resort can arrange the taxi and ferry for you or you can do it on your own. We opted to have The Dunmore resort  arrange our round-trip transfers and it was well worth it.  A staff member meets you at the airport and escorts you to the Dunmore Resort. They help you with our luggage all the way and it goes directly to your room. This costs around $95/per person round-trip and is well worth it. Note: On the return trip, we routed North Eleuthera to Charlotte, Charlotte to Dallas on American Airlines.

STAY: The Dunmore Resort is luxury at its finest! Hats off to General Manager Omari for the amazing hospitality! We stayed in one of the partial ocean view Coconut Cottages and it was magnificent! Located on the first or second floor, the Coconut Cottages offer private entrances plus 190 additional square feet of oversized balconies/porches with partial ocean views, overlooking the 5 private residences. Each has a beautifully appointed master bedroom with an alcove that can be used as an additional guest room with two twin beds. It can be reserved on its own or in conjunction with the Garden View Cottage below (great option for families wanting to travel together). If you want a quick room tour, click HERE.

I did get to tour one of the 5 private residences that are the ocean front houses on the property. Each house has a name and we ventured through SITTING PRETTY. Y’all, these homes are magnificent and are available to rent. It’s a perfect solution if you need a full house, want to entertain or have a large family. Or, how about a fun Girls Trip? Any takers?

With amenities like luxury linens by Downtown Company Luxury Bedding, Molton Brown bath products, bottled water, snacks and a Nespresso machine in your room, a rainy day wouldn’t be terrible. We woke every morning to a rooster crowing as chickens roam free on the island. They are sort of like the unofficial pet of Harbour Island. Be sure to check out the logo for The Dunmore. Somehow I think the roosters are on island time because they never crowed too early. It was the perfect wake-up call!

The Dunmore Resort also has a wonderful restaurant, pool, pristine pink beach, tennis court and pickle ball courts as well as a lovely Club House. The privacy and charm of this property is what will draw you in. The boutique hotel would be completely full at 100 guests if everything (including the residences) were occupied. It’s quiet, relaxing and tranquil. And it’s what will keep you coming back!

DO: The staff at the Dunmore will be happy to arrange any excursions for you. You can go scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, horseback riding on the beach, sailing or charter a private boat for your adventure. The resort will also arrange a massage even though there is not an official spa onsite. You can even take a boat to visit the pigs on Spanish Wells island. They swim out to you in the ocean while you stand there feeding them. While we initially were going to do that so that I could get the picture for Instagram, we decided not to. To me, pigs shouldn’t be swimming in the ocean. Am I right? Ultimately, we chose to relax on the pink sand beach as much as we could!

TRANSPORTATION: OK, this was the most fun part of the trip. The mode of transportation on Harbour Island is the golf cart. We had the Dunmore arrange for our rental and they cost around $63/day. This is how you get to other restaurants and shops. Technically, you could walk to those spots, but riding in a golf cart was way more fun! Plus, it provides a nice, open-air breeze as your ride to your destination.

WHERE TO EAT: We had breakfast, lunch and dinner at the Dunmore restaurant and all three meals were delicious! If you want to venture out, there are plenty of options. For such a small island, there were endless places to eat and drink. I want to thank my dear friends Leslie A. and Tricia B. for all the wonderful recommendations. We highly recommend The Landing for breakfast and grab a casual lunch at Dunmore Deli (or get sandwiches to go). In fact, we went to both locations twice during our stay! I am also enclosing Leslie’s list in case you want to venture out more (scroll to bottom).

Have the Ricotta Hotcakes with honeycomb butter and bananas at The Landing for breakfast. I made every effort to only have a bite for the sake of staying on Keto, but that was impossible. Worth every carb!

WHAT TO WEAR: The Bahamas are laid back and Harbour Island is no exception.  By the way, I had on 50 SPF sunscreen the entire time, especially while laying out at the beach Additionally, I always wear a large hat to keep the sun off my face. If you are wondering why I look so tan, it’s because I spray tan with Whitney at GLOWW. Mine always lasts a week and I ask for a darker color when I am heading to a beach destination.

Would we go again? ABSOLUTELY! We highly recommend it and can’t wait to get back. Click HERE to book your stay.

xoxo – Tanya

P.S. I’ll be back later this week with all of my outfits and how I packed for this trip.

photo: Pete Foster

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The Dunmore Resort

Tanya Foster at The Dunmore 2021

Living room at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

The beautiful Club House makes you feel right at home.

Lead Image The Dunmore 2021

 

Breakfast at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Tanya and Pete Foster in a golf cart -The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Tanya Foster at the Dunmore pool

Pool at Dunmore Resort\

Massage table at Dunmore resort

Sean and Pickleball at the Dunmore Resort

The Dunmore Resort pool is a relaxing oasis. The covered cabana features a small workout facility, a private area for massages and a sitting area complete with backgammon table. The Dunmore Resort has also just built a larger workout center which includes infrared sauna, Peloton, workout weights and outdoor showers. Equally fun, The Dunmore Resort has two Picklball courts as well as a tennis court. Sean, the resident pro, was amazing and Pete learned to play. He even payed doubles matches with other guests. So fun!

The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas morning coffee

Dining Room at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Lunch at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

The dining room features a beautifully decorated interior. There’s also a covered outdoor area where you will enjoy the ocean breeze. If you are an early riser, a self serve coffee and baked goods buffet is set up for your enjoyment.

The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Private Residences: This is the kitchen of the SITTING PRETTY residence. If a full home is what you are looking for, The Dunmore Resort offers five beautifully decorated luxury ocean front residences.

Lunch at The Dunmore Resort

Pink sand beach at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Dinner at The Dunmore Resort and Harbour Island, Bahamas

Margaritas at the Dunmore Resort

The Dunmore Resort 2021

The Dunmore Resort, Harbour Island

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Harbour Island, Bahamas

Ricotta Pancakes topped with bananas at The Landing, Harbour Island

Breakfast at The Landing in Harbour Island

Breakfast at The Landing was scrumptious. We highly recommend the Ricotta Pancakes topped with bananas. It was so good, we went there twice! This was well worth us breaking our Keto diet.

A & A Hidden Treasures on Harbour Island

A & A Hidden Treasures on Harbour Island

For the best local shopping, go to A & A Hidden Treasures. I suggest going the first couple of days you get there. Alice will customize your bags for you and you can pick them up the next day. Follow her on Facebook or e-mail her (strawbagsbyalice@hotmail.com). She will ship your order! How cute are these bags that I bought for me and my assistant Laura!

Tanya Foster having coffee at Bahamas Coffee Roaster and Bistro

Pete and I loved exploring the island on our golf cart and stopping at various places. This spot is Bahamas Coffee Roasters and Bistro. The local guy that runs the place is from Canada and is so nice. Be sure to have cash on hand. He does not take credit cards.

Da Vine on Harbour Island, Bahamas

All the restaurants, hotels and shops have these adorable signs. It reminded me of Carmel-by-the-Sea. 

Harbour Island, Bahamas dock

Sunset on the opposite side of Harbour Island. In the distance you can see Eleuthera.

Tanya and Pete Foster at the Dunmore bar

How cute is my travel photographer?!? We did an IG LIVE from the resort one night. You can see it HERE.

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Travel Guide: Harbour Island, Bahamas

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Harbour Island recommendations

RESTAURANTS:

Dunmore Deli: In town; casual but nice patio for quick breakfast or lunch (can get sandwiches to-go for beach)

Bahamas Coffee Roaster: In town; good coffee

Arthur’s: Bakery in town; good breakfast sandwiches and pastries; also have sandwiches at lunch 

Queen Conch: On the bay side; roadside stand so very casual but known as best Conch salad in the Bahamas. Super casual!

Sip Sip (currently closed due to the pandemic): On the beach side; best lunch on the island so either get there right around opening (11:30) or expect a wait in peak hours; lobster quesadillas are a must and margaritas are great. Also has a cute gift shop!

Coral Sands Beach Bar: On the beach side; also really good lunch and typically easier to get into than Sip Sip

Valentines: On the bay side; casual lunch, happy hour, or dinner. We enjoyed a casual dinner and drinks here.

Acquapazza: On the bay side; Italian food open for dinner and lunch; more casual than other dinner places but good food and lower prices than other dinner spots

The Landing: On the bay side; amazing breakfast; a little on the pricier side for dinner but great atmosphere and service. This is our first stop for breakfast! 

The Rock House (currently closed and being renovated): On the bay side; lunch and dinner. Good happy hour location for a goombay smash cocktail

Da Vine Wine and Sushi Bar: On the bay side; really good sushi (only served at dinner)

Ocean View Club: On the beach side; great dinner but can be hard to get a reservation 

BARS: 

Gusty’s: Definitely a hole in the wall but very fun. Watch out for young spring breakers depending on time of the year

Daddy D’s: A little more “upscale” than Gusty’s, but again could have lots of spring breakers depending on time of the year 

Valentines: Sometimes have live music at night; fun and casual 

The Landing: Small but great atmosphere 

Coral Sands Bar: Recently remodeled; good bartenders 

SHOPS:

Blue Rooster: Women’s clothing and accessories. This is my absolute favorite shop on Harbour Island, The ladies are so nice!

A and A Hidden Treasures: This is where our customized bags came from

Shine: Unique jewelry and some home goods and clothing; owner is really nice

Dilly Dally: Souvenir shop with good T-shirt’s and hats

Sugar Mill: Pretty upscale for the island but fun to look around 

Princess Street Gallery: Art gallery with some jewelry and other gifts

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