This past June, I had the amazing opportunity to travel to the largest Bahamian island, Andros Island, on a school trip. With a population of only about eight-thousand people, the beauty of nature really presented itself on this island and in the reefs, looking almost untouched by humans. I got to experience this natural wonder through a school trip and I am very glad I got to participate in this trip. The major objective of the trip was to see and be able to identify the various forms of wildlife: fish, creatures, and plants, around the island. This trip really opened my eyes seeing all the wildlife. It has made me realize why it is important to conserve all the wildlife.
Pine forests make up most of Andros Island’s landmass. Because of the forests there were many bugs. Any bug spray I used did not work. I used a bug spray that had a low concentration of deet and that was my problem. If going to the Bahamas try to find a spray that has a high concentration of deet; I would say about fifty or more. Being a near tropical region there was plenty of sun in the Bahamas. I used Banana Boat sunscreen with an SPF of fifty and I did not burn at all. I highly recommend at least a SPF of fifty to avoid a burn.
Not only did we learn about the island's wildlife but we also learned about the Bahamian culture. Living in a third world country, the Bahamian people are not as privileged as the people in the United States are. That was the biggest eye-opening experience I had throughout the trip. Seeing how they live made me feel a lot more appreciative of what I have. Due to the fact they do not have an advanced sewage system like the United States, they have created a few sayings for tourists when it comes to using the bathroom: "If it is brown flush it down" and "If it is yellow let it mellow." These people truly work hard for their money. On top of working hard, these people are probably the nicest anyone will ever meet. Even though we were tourists, the Bahamian people never treated us as such. They are the most welcoming people I have met so far in my life.
I got to experience one of the biggest celebration in Bahamian culture, Crab Fest. Coming form all over the Bahamian chain, Crab Fest is a weeklong celebration where the Bahamians come together and just have fun and celebrate. Crab Fest was an excellent place to try some of the amazing authentic Bahamian food. The best dish they had to offer was Conch Fritters, made by deep-frying the Queen Conch.
To finish three things i highly recommend doing while on Andros are:
1. Go snorkeling, you will not regret it.
2. If possible at all go to Crab Fest, it is a neat experience.
3. Try the local cuisine it may suprise you how good it is, even if you normally don't like seafood.
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