Pristine is the perfect word to describe Cat Island. From the weather to the water to the sand, every inch is breathtaking. Its untouched landscape is perfect for those looking to explore the island’s natural beauty, while its laid-back environment provides a unique destination to relax and unwind. Whether on rolling hills, endless nature trails or the eight-mile Pink Sand Beach, visitors can choose to do everything or absolutely nothing at all.
The two-lane Queen’s Highway runs the 48-mile length of the island from north to south, mostly along the western gorgeous sandy coastline, through quaint seaside settlements and past hundreds of abandoned stone cottages. This fishhook-shaped island is located near the Tropic of Cancer, between Eleuthera and Long Island and about 130 miles southeast of Nassau and Paradise Island.
Some are 200-year-old slave houses, crumbling testaments to cotton and sisal plantation days, while others were just too old to have modern utilities so were abandoned. Trees and vines twist through spaces that used to be windows and roofs and the deep-blue ocean can be seen through missing walls. In 1938 the island had 5,000 residents and today only about 1,500. Many of the inhabitants left the cottages long ago out of necessity, to find work in Nassau and Florida, but the houses remain because they still mark family land.
Largely undeveloped, Cat Island has the tallest hill in the Bahamas, a dizzying 206 feet high, with a historic tiny stone abbey on top, a lovely spot for reflection or a picnic. You’ll be purring on Cat Island’s exquisite pink-sand beaches and sparkling white-sand-ringed coves, as calm and clear as a spa pool.