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If You Have 3 Days
Make your base in Marsh Harbour, the largest settlement in the Abacos, and where you'll most likely fly in. Spend the first day exploring the city or a nearby beach, then have a leisurely dinner at one of the local restaurants, overlooking the busy harbor. If you arrive on a weekend you can probably find a bar with live island music. On Day 2, get up early and take the 20-minute ferry to Hope Town, the Elbow Cay settlement often considered the most lovely in the Abacos. Here you can rent a boat and take a snorkel trip out to the reefs, take a historic walk, kayak, stroll the beach, or rent a golf cart and explore outside the settlement. Day 3 brings a choice: for another dose of Loyalist history, take the ferry again, this time to Man-O-War Cay, the boatbuilding capital of the region; or stay put and book a diving or fishing trip out of one of the Marsh Harbour marinas.
If You Have 5 Days
On Day 4 drive to Treasure Cay and hit the links, where the 18-hole course is considered one of the finest in the Bahamas and Caribbean. After, catch the ferry to Green Turtle Cay, your base for the next two days. Stroll through New Plymouth, wandering through the sculpture garden and the Albert Lowe Museum. After lunch spend the afternoon at a beach, then dress up for a fancy dinner at one of the two fine resorts on White Sound. On your last day rent a small boat and visit some of the uninhabited nearby cays, where the snorkeling and deserted white-sand beaches are sublime.
If You Have 7 Days
On Day 6, head back to Marsh Harbour and take a ferry to Great Guana Cay, which has some of the most gorgeous beaches in the Abacos and one of the best party-scene restaurants, Nippers. On your last day, back in Marsh Harbour, rent a car and explore the southern reaches of Great Abaco Island, perhaps searching for the endangered Bahama parrot at the Bahamas National Trust Sanctuary, or checking out the bronze sculptures at Pete Johnston's Foundry in Little Harbour.
If all that sounds like too much work, consider experiencing life like a local: bring some books, sunblock, and a few swimsuits; rent a cottage, a dinghy, and a golf cart, perhaps on Elbow Cay or Great Guana Cay; and learn to practice the fine art of relaxation.
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