5 Best Liveaboards In Bahamas

Written and Reviewed By

Aquacat Liveaboard in the Bahamas floating on calm waters

Scuba diving the Bahamas via a liveaboard is an incredible opportunity.

Between the different routes, tour operators, and dive locations to choose from, picking the right Bahamas liveaboard for you can be a tough task.

Bahamas Liveaboard Routes

Before we jump into the different liveaboards to choose from, it’s first important to take note of the two main routes you’ll see liveaboards take in the Bahamas.

Based on my research speaking and interviewing liveaboard tour operators, the two main Bahamas liveaboard routes can be broken down into two main ones:

A. Port  – Grand Bahamas -> Bimini

B. Port – Nassau -> Exhumas

graphic of liveaboard routes around the Bahamas

An important factor in determining which liveaboard you should take is the route the cruise goes.

The first route, although less common, is route A, surrounding Grand Bahama, sometimes Bimini, and some reefs off toward Florida like Tiger Beach and Sugar Wreck.

The other more common route departs from Nassau and hits a combination of Nassau, Exumas, and Eleuthra. This route has a lot of popular dive sites like the Nassau Blue Hole, the Austin Smith Wreck, and more.

Best Bahamas Liveaboards

Great Budget Trip

Blackbeard's Cruises

4.5
$1050+
Check Prices on AllStarLiveaboards.com Read Our Review
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.

The AllStarLiveaboards Blackbeards duo of the Morning Star and Sea Explorer take the #1 spot on our list of Bahamas liveaboards list.

It’s incredible value at $175/n, and will take you to some of the best reefs the Bahamas has to offer including:

  • Reefs – Periwinkle, Amberjack, Jeep
  • Wrecks – Austin Smith with sharks and a resident Goliath grouper
  • Walls – Pillar, Whale Tail, Hole in the Wall
  • Drifts – Washing Machine
  • Blue Holes – Lost Blue Hole, Jakes, Lost
  • Nights – Hammerhead Gulch, Ray’s Reef

The liveaboard also includes a shark feed, where the crew places a bucket of chum above the entire group of divers as they look up towards a feeding frenzy. 

AllStarLiveaboards was kind enough to host us on Blackbeard’s liveaboard, so be sure to read our review.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/ Divers: 22 guests and up to 5 dive instructors/ divemasters
  • Number of Dives: Up to 19 dives per week
  • Number of cabins: 8 cabins
  • Trip Length: 3-7 nights
  • Wifi: No wifi available onboard
  • Nitrox: Nitrox is available for an additional fee
  • Drinks: Complimentary soft drinks, water, and beer are included. Other alcoholic beverages are available for purchase.
  • Port: Departures are from Nassau, Bahamas
  • Onshore Excursions: No onshore excursions are included, but the crew can help arrange activities like snorkeling or beach visits during the trip.
  • Route/Itinerary: The specific itinerary will depend on the trip you choose, but they generally visit the Exumas and Eleuthera regions of the Bahamas.
  • Camera Station: Yes
Best for Groups

Phoenix

4.0
From $227/d
Check Prices on Liveaboard.com
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Our second pick is the Phoenix Liveaboard. This beautifully designed catamaran caters for a maximum of 8 guests so it’s ideal for families, small groups or those who crave a more intimate and personal experience.

The 4 cosy cabins are optimized for maximum comfort. Each cabin features 1 double bed, air conditioning and private, freshwater bathroom. Plus there’s plenty of space to relax in the shaded outdoor lounge area or on the front sun deck.

Enjoy a variety of local and international dishes, always served with fresh salads and fruits, in the indoor or Al-fresco dining areas. The crew will also happily cook any fish you catch or help you prepare it yourself if you prefer.

What’s more, is that the highly experienced crew are available 24/7 delivering unbeatable customer service. The crew will always go above and beyond to make sure you have a truly unforgettable trip.

The Phoenix offers you the opportunity to design your own personalized itinerary with the option to make 4 dives per day. Choose from over 250 different dive sites around The Bahamas including the famous Exuma and Eleuthera reefs, only accessible via liveaboard.

You can also add a variety of activities including sailing, snorkeling, bird watching and, of course, island exploring.

If you’re looking for a highly personalized experience at an affordable price then look no further than the Phoenix Liveaboard.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/ Divers: 12
  • Number of Dives: up to 4 dives per day
  • Number of cabins: 6
  • Trip Length: 7 nights
  • Wifi: Available for an additional fee
  • Nitrox: Available for an additional fee
  • Drinks: Complimentary beer and wine
  • Port: Nassau, Bahamas
  • Onshore Excursions: Island visits and snorkeling
  • Route/Itinerary: Exuma Cays and Eleuthera Camera Station: Yes
 
Luxury Option

Aqua Cat

4.7
From $324/d
Check Price on AllStarLiveaboards Check Price on Liveaboard.com
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

The Aqua Cat is our top liveaboard in The Bahamas. This world-class 100foot (31-meter) catamaran boasts outstanding facilities, excellent customer service and delicious food.

The Aqua Cat can accommodate up to 30 guests across 11 spacious cabins. Each cabin features a private bathroom, individually controlled AC and oversized beds for added comfort. Fold-down bunks in 4 of the cabins provide additional options for families.

The large, air-conditioned saloon area features an impressive entertainment system including an area for video editing. For those who prefer lounging in the open air, the upper deck offers ample space for relaxing. Chill out in the shady hammocks or top up your tan on the sun deck.

Scuba divers can enjoy up to 26 dives per week across over 200 of The Bahamas’ most beautiful dive sites. The top-notch diving deck is well equipped with bathrooms, charging stations, camera storage, nitrox and more.

Aqua Cat’s onboard menu offers a wide variety of cuisine for everyone including vegetarians, vegans and those with dietary restrictions. There’s also an Al-fresco dining area equipped with a BBQ for the perfect end to a day of diving.

Plus, this catamaran liveaboard offers plenty of non-diving adventures including hiking, stand up paddleboarding, snorkelling, wildlife visits and more.

If comfort is a priority for you, then you simply can’t go wrong with the Aqua Cat liveaboard.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/Divers: 30 guests/ divers
  • Number of Dives: 26-27 dives per week
  • Number of cabins: 11 cabins
  • Trip Length: 7 nights
  • Wifi: available for an additional fee
  • Nitrox: available for an additional fee
  • Drinks: complimentary beer, wine, and rum punch with dinner
  • Port: Nassau
  • Onshore Excursions: shore excursions available upon request and at an additional fee
  • Route/Itinerary: Exumas, Eleuthera, and other Bahamian islands
  • Camera Station: available for photographers, with charging station and storage space.
Luxury Option

Bahamas Aggressor

4.4
From $281/d
Check Prices on Liveaboard.com
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

This spacious yacht provides absolutely everything you need for an incredible experience both above and below the water.

Catering to only 14 guests, each of the comfortable cabins is fitted with air conditioning, private hot-water bathrooms, individual entertainment systems and even a hairdryer. Communal areas include a roomy air-conditioned saloon and shaded outdoor lounge. Plus there’s a spacious sun deck equipped with jacuzzi, wet bar and grill.

Not only does the indoor lounge feature an impressive entertainment system but there’s also a dedicated area and software available for photo and video editing. Perfect for underwater photographers and videographers dying to review all te epic footage from each day.

The dedicated onboard chefs freshly prepare a delicious variety of American feasts, barbecues and local cuisine. If you have any dietary requirements rest assured you’ll be well taken care of on this liveaboard. Plus a variety of fresh fruit juices, soft drinks, tea, coffee and a selection of local beer and wine are all complimentary throughout the trip.

In between diving you can enjoy snorkelling, island excursions or simply relaxing onboard. And if you’ve still got energy left after your diving adventures, there’s a variety of nightly entertainment including diving and marine life presentations, movies, games and more.

An attentive and highly trained crew are always on hand to ensure your comfort and satisfaction, both onboard and underwater.

If you really want to make the most of your time in The Bahamas then The Bahamas Aggressor is the perfect liveaboard for you.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/ Divers: 18 guests, 6 crew members
  • Number of Dives: 4 – 5 dives per day, including night dives
  • Number of cabins: 9 cabins, including 7 deluxe staterooms and 2 master staterooms
  • Trip Length: 7 nights
  • Wifi: Available for an additional fee
  • Nitrox: Available for an additional fee
  • Drinks: Complimentary beer, wine, and soft drinks
  • Port: Departure from Nassau, Bahamas
  • Onshore Excursions: Not included in the trip package, but can be arranged upon request for an additional fee
  • Route/Itinerary: The Bahamas Aggressor follows various itineraries including the Exuma Cays and Tiger Beach, with dives at famous sites like the Washing Machine and the Blue Hole.
  • Camera Station: Available for photography enthusiasts, with charging stations and storage space for cameras.
Luxury Option

Cat Ppalu

4.8
From $255/d
Pros:
  • Delicious variety of food
  • Vegetarian options available
  • Fishing supported
  • Watersports included
Cons:
  • Wi-Fi not available
  • Nitrox not available
  • Limited communal space
Check Prices on AllStarLiveaboards Check Prices on Liveaboard.com
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Cat Ppalu is ideal for those looking to sail around the crystal clear waters of The Bahamas in laid back luxury. This super speedy catamaran will quickly whisk you away to the most secluded and peaceful spots in The Bahamas.

This outstanding liveaboard features 6 bright and comfortable cabins, 4 of which come with double beds, and two with twin beds. Each room has air-conditioning and a private bathroom with a freshwater shower. There’s a large dining area where guests can enjoy family-style meals featuring a variety of local and international dishes.

Cat Ppalu provides the ultimate diving and sailing adventure. Choose to maximise your bottom time with up to 19 dives per week. Or mix it up with an impressive array of watersports. Snorkelling, kayaking, fishing, windsurfing, stand up paddle boarding, bird watching and secluded beach trips are all available from this liveaboard.

If you want to get away from the crowds and soak up the beautiful Bahamian scenery then the Cat Ppalu is the liveaboard for you.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/ Divers: 12
  • Number of Dives: up to 5 dives per day
  • Number of cabins: 6
  • Trip Length: 7 or 10 nights
  • Wifi: Not available
  • Nitrox: Available
  • Drinks: Complimentary beer and wine with dinner
  • Port: Departure from and return to Sorong
  • Onshore Excursions: On Request
  • Route/ Itinerary: Raja Ampat and other areas in Indonesia
  • Camera Station: Yes, there is a camera station onboard.
Longest Trips

Bahamas Master

4.5
From $279/d
Pros:
  • Very comfortable & spacious
  • Seaviews in every cabin
  • Dedicated camera area
  • Great food
Cons:
  • Wi-Fi not available
  • Nitrox not included
  • Limited non-diving activities
Check Prices on Liveaboard.com
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

If you want to experience the best diving The Bahamas has to offer in the most comfortable way, then The Bahamas Master is the liveaboard for you.

The Bahamas Master can accommodate up to 16 guests across 8 beautifully designed and bright cabins. You can choose between 3 cabin types; a premium cabin on the forward upper deck, with a double bed and private en-suite bathroom, a classic cabin with en-suite or a standard cabin with a shared bathroom. All of the cabins boast panoramic ocean views, air conditioning, and hot freshwater showers.

On the main deck, you’ll find an air-conditioned indoor lounge with a designated camera area and entertainment system. Upstairs there’s a shaded outdoor bar and dining area. As well as a spacious sundeck for relaxing. All meals are served buffet style where you can choose between a variety of mouthwatering international and local dishes.

Scuba diving is a top priority on the Bahamas Master liveaboard. All itineraries focus purely on delivering the very best diving that The Bahamas has to offer. The Bahamas Master liveaboard is one of the few on the list that will take you to the dive sites around Freeport/Grand Bahama.

Combining world-class diving with unbeatable comfort and customer service, this is a fantastic liveaboard for serious scuba junkies.

Liveaboard Specs:

  • Max number of Guests/ Divers: 16 guests/ 2 dive guides
  • Number of Dives: Up to 4 dives per day
  • Number of cabins: 8 cabins Trip Length: 7 or 10 nights
  • Wifi: Available for an additional fee
  • Nitrox: Available for an additional fee
  • Drinks: Complimentary beer and wine
  • Port: Departure from Nassau
  • Onshore Excursions: Possible visits to the Andros Island and Exuma Cays Land and Sea Park
  • Route/ Itinerary: Itineraries cover the Exuma Cays, Eleuthera and Cat Island, depending on the length of the trip.
  • Camera Station: Dedicated camera station with charging points and storage area.

When To Go On A Dive Liveaboard In The Bahamas?

Dive liveaboards operate year-round in The Bahamas. There are some fluctuations in the weather but these tend to have a minimal effect on scuba diving.

Dry Season In The Bahamas (November To May)

Bahamas Boat Aerial shot

The dry season is often considered the best time for dive liveaboards in The Bahamas. The weather is dry, visibility is great and the risk of hurricanes is very low. This is the very best time to see sharks in The Bahamas as the water is a little cooler (minimum 25°C).

However, this is also peak season for tourism which means that prices tend to be higher and dive sites will be busier. It’s worth booking liveaboards far ahead to ensure availability and secure a good deal.

Wet Season In The Bahamas (June To October)

During the wet season, you can expect short spells of stormy weather. However, these are quickly followed by plenty of sunshine and have very little effect on the diving conditions.

Visibility is still spectacular even during the winter months and the water is warmer (29°C – 30°C). August tends to experience the most storms so is better avoided for a liveaboard trip.
As this is the low season you’ll find some amazing deals on liveaboard trips and dive sites will be far less crowded.

Frequently Asked Questions

The majority of liveaboard trips in The Bahamas are 7 days. These week-long trips focus mostly on the Exumas. But you can also find extended itineraries for up to 11 days which allow you to visit more remote regions including the Bimini islands.

It is also possible to charter a liveaboard to create a more personalised schedule to suit your desired timeframe.

Most of the dive sites around the Bahamas are suitable for beginners. There are plenty of beautiful reefs and spectacular shipwrecks in the shallows.

But if you want to explore the blue holes and deep walls that make The Bahamas one of the world’s top diving destinations then you will need at least an advanced certification. We also recommend diving with enriched air nitrox so you can really maximize your time underwater.

Some dive liveaboards do offer courses onboard, and the calm conditions in The Bahamas are ideal for learning.

On a dive liveaboard in the Bahamas, you’ll get to experience a wide variety of dive sites and some seriously impressive marine life encounters.

From vibrant coral gardens to alluring caves, historical shipwrecks to mysterious blue holes and plunging walls, there’s a ton of unique underwater adventures on a liveaboard in The Bahamas.

During your liveaboard diving trip, you will encounter many species of reef fish, turtles, eagle rays, seahorses, macro life and dolphins.

And let’s not forget about the numerous species of sharks you’ll spot on a liveaboard in The Bahamas. You’re almost guaranteed to spot Caribbean reef sharks, lemon sharks, bull sharks, tiger sharks and even the elusive hammerheads.

Most dive liveaboards spend a significant amount of time sailing around the beautiful Exuma Cays. This marine protected area consists of 365 picturesque islands and is widely known for its fantastic coral, an abundance of marine life, and a large shark population.

And with all of this possible to see in just 1 week! So it’s easy to understand why The Bahamas is one of the world’s best locations for a diving liveaboard!

The great thing about liveaboards in The Bahamas is that there is always a wide variety of non-diving activities available.

Almost every liveaboard offers snorkelling and island visits. Plus many liveaboards boast an impressive array of watersports including fishing, kayaking, stand up paddleboarding and more.

And if that’s not enough there is usually plenty of space to relax onboard or entertainment options such as movies, books, and games.

Most dive liveaboards in The Bahamas will depart from either Freeport on Grand Bahama or Nassau port on Nassau Island.

Both of the islands have international airports with direct flights from many destinations in the US and connecting flights from further afield.

The airports are only a 10-minute drive from the port. However, this transfer is not often included in liveaboard packages.

Liveaboards in The Bahamas are very laid back. So you really don’t need to bring much other than your swimwear and a few casual outfit options. Although you’ll mostly be barefoot, it’s also worth bringing some sturdy sandals or light sneakers for island excursions.

When it comes to dive gear, most liveaboards offer you the option to rent a full set of equipment. However, this can be quite expensive. And with limited options you might not find a comfortable fit.

If you dive often, it’s worth investing in your own scuba diving gear. The cost of renting numerous times can often exceed the cost of purchasing your own equipment.

And even if you aren’t ready to invest in a full set, we highly recommend bringing your own dive computer and mask. These essential items will make a big difference to your safety and comfort underwater.

Lastly, don’t forget to bring an underwater camera to capture all those once in a lifetime marine encounters!

Additional Information About Liveaboard Diving In The Bahamas

Aqua Cat Bahamas Liveaboard cruising by some islands

Here are a few extra things you might want to know when planning a dive liveaboard in The Bahamas:

  • The official language in the Bahamas is English. This makes conversations with locals very easy.
  • The currency is the Bahamian Dollar. However, the US dollar is also widely accepted.
  • As long as you have 6 months validity on your passport, an onward ticket and are staying for less than 30 days, you shouldn’t need a visa for the Bahamas. But it’s always best to check the latest entry requirements.
  • No vaccinations are currently required to enter The Bahamas.
  • You can view the current Bahamas COVID-19 Protocol here

Conclusion

The Bahamas archipelago is a paradise playground for scuba divers. And one that is most definitely best explored on a liveaboard.

We have no doubt that the beauty of scuba diving in The Bahamas will keep luring you back for more!

You’ve now got all the information you need to embark on your very own Bahamian liveaboard adventure. If you pick one of our top liveaboards in The Bahamas, you’re sure to have an unforgettable trip. 

But don’t forget that the Bahamas main port is only reachable by plan and boat.  So if  you want to make traveling as easy as possible. We would recommend reading our tips on flying with dive gear.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *