The city of Nassau is on New Providence island. It is the capital of the Bahamas and the commercial centre of the Commonwealth. The naming of the town was in honour of William III of England, Prince of Orange-Nassau. Therefore, the name is forever linked with both the United Kingdom and Germany.
Weather and Climate
The island of New Providence benefits from low latitude and low elevation. Hence, Nassau has a tropical savannah climate. Additionally, the warm Gulf Stream Drift gives the area perfectly warm and winterless, year-round weather.
Nassau’s modern growth began in the late 18th-century, with the influx of thousands of American Loyalists to the Bahamas.
Subsequently, after the American War of Independence, the Loyalists migrated to the region. They brought their slaves with them as workers.
At the time, most of New Providence was bush and had not been cultivated. Therefore, the influence of the new settlers created a new wealthy society. They established several profitable plantations such as Clifton and Tusculum.
The British abolished the slave trade in 1807. Thousands of Africans were liberated from slave ships by the Royal Navy. They resettled on New Providence and other islands in the region.
Additionally, some slaves freed from American slavers were allowed to settle on the island as free men. Most of the Africans lived in the suburbs of Grants Town and Bain Town, south of the city of Nassau. The Europeans who settled in Nassau lived on the island’s northern coastal ridges at this time.
The islands used to be authentic pirate country. The town of Nassau was a pirate stronghold and almost a no-go area for wealthy merchants, for fear of robbery.
As the population grew, the populated areas expanded. Today, the city of Nassau dominates the entire island of New Providence. People often think that the island is actually called Nassau.
Opposite Nassau is a small satellite islet named Paradise Island. Two bridges attach it to the central city. No one lived on Paradise Island until the 1980s.
Now, a world-famous marine life resort named “Atlantis” is on Paradise. The singer, Michael Jackson, bought the entire top floor of the Atlantis Hotel when it first opened.
Atlantis is like Disneyland with fish!
Also on Paradise Island is a yoga ashram and a picturesque honeymoon style resort called “The One and Only”.
Lynden Pindling International Airport is the main airport for the Bahamas, just 16 kilometres west of the city. There are daily services to major cities in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Additional and frequent flights connect with the other parts of the Caribbean.
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