Harbour Island Bahamas

Harbour Island Charms

by Valerie Connors - The Travel Channel

Harbour Island's quiet charms seem countless, but none offer greater allure than the tiny island's wondrous stretch of pink sand beach. These soft, coral sands bask under the warm Caribbean sun, and prove irresistible to locals and visitors alike. Harbour Island's beachgoers are treated daily to postcard-perfect scenes as the beach's palm trees sway in the gentle island breeze and the turquoise sea laps at the pale, pink sand shore.

Only 3 miles long and half a mile wide, Harbour Island - known as "Briland" to locals - sits just a mile off the better-known island of Eleuthera. Harbour Island's hub, Dunmore Town, gained fame as the original capital of the Bahamas, and the island still retains a Georgian architecture, marked by pastel-colored buildings, white picket fences and bougainvillea-draped door frames.

The island's infectious laid-back atmosphere provides a quiet retreat from the hectic rituals of daily life. With only small handfuls of tourists visiting at any given time and less than 2,000 locals, Harbour Island is the perfect respite for families and folks hoping to relax by the beach, stroll quaint streets, pop into tiny shops or sip casual sunset cocktails.

Harbour Island activities are as laid-back as the island atmosphere: unwinding on the pink sand beach, diving, snorkeling, bone fishing, bike and boat rentals, strolls through town and a relaxed nightlife mark island attractions. The island is small, and easy to explore; possibly the most fun way to see the island is via golf cart, which you can rent from many shops. The day's main event revolves around the sunset. Locals and tourists gather by Government Dock with a cocktail to watch the spectacular evening sky.