From 20000 feet, much of Andros Island looks like swirls of chocolate in a partially melted hot-fudge sundae. The chocolate swirls are actually drifts of sand carried along by swift flowing water in the many creeks and inlets. The candy sprinkles on the tropical delight are made up of crashed and abandoned planes from the island’s drug trafficking past.
Andros sits in the Bahamian island chain like a giant among dwarves. Although the majority of land is marshy and uninhabited, it is by far the largest of all the Bahamian islands. Andros is as much water as it is land, but the land stretches over 150 miles in length and 50 miles in width. Like a separated jigsaw puzzle, the ocean has sliced through the landmass forming three major islands and hundreds of smaller ones. The three major cuts, called bights, make travel between its major islands only possible by boat or plane. Although secluded, Andros is happy with this arrangement, having forgone the more modern approach of bridging together any piece of land that is within sight of civilization.
Cruise ships or large resorts are not part of the Andros experience. Instead, the occasional tourist must put up with miles of deserted beaches, some of the best fishing and diving in the Bahamas, and a peacefulness that is often hard to find on some of the other more touristed Bahamian islands.
Another Andros diversion is its blue holes. From the sky, they look like giant black cherries scattered on the ice cream sundae. But on the ground they are actually water filled holes in the island, some of which may eventually lead to the ocean. Although not unique to Andros, its numerous blue holes have been explored by several famous divers, including Jacques Cousteau.
The other interesting geologic feature is off the east coast of the island. Ready to lap up the melting sundae, the Tongue of the Ocean is a 6000-foot drop-off literally shaped like a tongue. Bordered by the third largest reef in the world on the east, and world-class bonefish flats on two other sides, the deep water provides an ideal location for deep-sea fishing.
Exploring Andros is in deed an adventure. With the majority of its land uninhabited, Andros is the perfect location for secluded camping trips in which another human being may not be seen for days.
There have been rumors of development plans in the past. There was even talk that a U.S. business group was going to put 100 golf courses on Andros turning it in to a miniature Florida. However, as time goes by, plans fall through and Andros remains a sleeping giant.
Travel to Andros is possible either by small private charter planes leaving from West Palm Beach and Ft. Lauderdale or from Bahamas Air flights leaving from West Palm Beach or Nassau. Flights arrive on Andros at either the San Andros or the Andros Town airport. The San Andros airport is located in North Andros near the settlement of Nichol’s Town. The Andros Town airport is located near the other main settlement, known as Fresh Creek.
Andros Island, Bahamas