Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Trip to Atlantis, Bahamas

The first time I was in Atlantis, 4 years ago, SUP was still very new in many places.  I was still getting into it and while I was there actually brought an inflatable with me.  It was very windy at the time and although I was stoked to paddle there, the windy choppy conditions and other offerings at the resort made the SUP experience less than memorable.

If you have never been to or heard of Atlantis, it is located on Paradise Island in the Bahamas.  It is a very nice vacation destination especially if you do not mind the crowded commercialized feel to it.  It offers amenities such as spa, massage, golf, water park rides, snorkel, beach, casino and an abundance of restaurants.  

Walking around Atlantis in 2009 was a blast!  There's a couple beautiful beaches and the area sports a pretty fun water park with a shark themed slide named the 'leap of faith' and a pretty relaxing and fun 'lazy river'.  I remember thinking how fun it would be if I was able to bring an SUP through the 'lazy river'.  I knew I would have to sneak it in and with all the low bridges and semi rough spots I would probably end up either in a Bahamian hospital or jail. 

There was one area at the time that was right in front the Casino, it was a man made lagoon with beaches on each side.  In this area, they were renting out Kayaks and those floaty tricycle things, I remember at the time that this would be a passable spot to safely allow standup.

I was fortunate enough to revisit Atlantis on a recent trip.  This time, with lesser expectations and previous knowledge, I decided to pack my golf clubs instead of my inflatable.  Because I had plans of SUPing immediately after I did pack my go to travel paddle, a three piece carbon fiber paddle.  One day while I was there I decided to try my luck in the Casino.  Five minutes and $200 dollars later I took a breather outside and to my amusement in the same lagoon I saw 4 years ago, there were people on SUPs. 

The next morning my fiancé and I woke up early, we headed over to the lagoon and rented a couple of boards.  The experience was fun but not nearly as enjoyable as an experience at Hanalei Bay, HI or even Point Lookout or Long Beach, NY.  But that wasn't an issue,  I paddled and observed as other visitors stood on SUPs for the first time and felt the stoke that I had been experiencing.  It gave me an added reassurance and excitement about introducing stand up paddle boarding to as many people as possible here in Long Island!   There is no question that SUP has arrived!



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