We’re not the only ones who love our beautiful blue waters and white sand beaches of The Bahamas; pirates loved them, too! In fact, during the Golden Age of Piracy (1690 to 1720), Nassau Paradise Island was one of the main attractions, and stops, for pirates. From Blackbeard to Calico Jack, and the notorious female pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read, we hosted the greatest concentration of pirates ever seen in the New World. (We were the original hotspot for pirates, treasure, and island fun!)
While our waters were too shallow for large man-of-war ships, they were deep enough for the fast, shallow draft vessels favored by pirates. As a result, Nassau Paradise Island became the base of operations for numerous pirates because they could plunder the many merchant ships that sailed just outside Nassau Harbour. Now that’s strategic pirate planning!
These days, there’s a different type of crowd who flocks to Nassau, but you can still come join in all the pirate fun and excitement—especially at the Pirates of Nassau Museum…
PIRATES OF NASSAU MUSEUM
Arrr, you ready to take the plunge? The year is 1716, and the Golden Age of Piracy is upon us. Enter into a pirate’s world, and be transported back to the life and times of the world’s most dangerous criminals at Nassau’s interactive pirate museum.
Begin your journey at The Quayside, a moonlit dock filled with sounds of water lapping against a dark wooden ship and mysterious pirates celebrating in a nearby tavern. Wander along the dock and keep a close eye out for hidden treasures or potential thieves looking to snag your loot. Arrr, welcome to the pirate life!
After your dockyard adventure, you’ll board the Revenge, a replica of Blackbeard’s Queen Anne pirate ship. Explore the lower levels of the ship, filled with swinging hammocks, stowed cannons, volatile gambling sessions, and even view an on-board surgery session with the ship’s carpenter. Oh my! Make sure to wear your eye patch, and pirate gear; you wouldn’t want the pirates to identify you and take you prisoner!
Once you’ve witnessed the pirate life below, you’ll emerge from the bottom to find yourself in the island of at one of Nassau’s beachside shantytowns, where you’ll come face-to-face with two notorious women pirates, Anne Bonny and Mary Read, disputing their share of treasure. And just when you think the coast is clear, you’ll find yourself on the deck of an embattled ship at high seas, surrounded by exploding cannons and the terrifying Captain Teach (aka Blackbeard) and his fearsome crew. Arrr, it’s a tough life as a pirate!
Amongst all of these exciting happenings, you’ll get the chance to learn about the Golden Age of Piracy, why it ended, and what happened to some of Nassau’s most infamous pirates. You’ll also see real cutlasses, flintlock pistols, and much more. Stop at the recently redesigned gift shop on your way out and pick up a keepsake—there are lots of exciting piratical souvenirs and treasures waiting for you at the Pirates of Nassau Museum!
Address: King and George St., Downtown Nassau, Bahamas
Hours of Operation: Monday to Saturday, 9:00am to 6:00pm, and Sunday 9:00am to 12:00pm
Cost: Adults $12 and Kids (4-17) $6
Did you know the skull and crossbones flag at the top of a pirate ship was called a Jolly Roger? Or that pirates didn’t really make people walk the plank? Here are 10 pirate facts and myths for you to learn about before you visit the Pirates of Nassau Museum—even pirates are fun in The Bahamas!