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Atlantis Paradise Island, in the Bahamas, has long been prominent on my family vacation bucket list. So, when I went on the Disney Dream last month to celebrate my 40th birthday, I knew that our Nassau excursion had to involve Atlantis Bahamas. There are lots of things to do with kids in Atlantis, and it can be overwhelming. So, if you are traveling to Atlantis with kids – either on an excursion or for a vacation, it’s important to do your research first.
A Day in Atlantis, Paradise Island, The Bahamas
Note: Years after posting this, I was invited on a press trip to Nassau/Paradise Island for a complimentary press trip, and we stayed at Atlantis. Well before that press trip, we paid full price for this day trip and the cruise. All opinions are my own.
Our cruise offered several excursion options to Atlantis. Since we traveled in January, when the weather in the Bahamas can be cooler, we chose to do only the day at the beach and Discover Atlantis excursion (which came with an included lunch). We didn’t want to spend the money on a more expensive excursion with the potential of cooler or bad weather.
On the Disney Cruise Line, those going on excursions are given an on-ship location to meet up. We went into the theater, and then were led out of the ship for our excursion.
After leaving the ship, we were guided to Atlantis reps that provided us with wristbands and lunch vouchers. It was a bit hectic coming through the line – there were a lot of people going to various excursions. If you’ve been on a cruise ship before, you know that this can be pretty standard for excursions. Once we received everything we needed, we were directed to a few buses to take us to Atlantis.
Paradise Island is just a short drive away from the Bahamas cruise , and our driver talked a bit about the landmarks and shops as he drove us. Once we arrived at Atlantis, another guide met us to bring us down to the beach.
At this point, I wish we had a bit more freedom – the resort had lots of fun things to see but we just walked right past them with no option to stop and look around. Once we walked about ten minutes or so, we were able to pick up complimentary towels and were directed to the beach.
The section of beach we were on was somewhat small, but had lots of beach chairs as well as a lifeguard. As I suspected, the water temperature was quite cold, and my kids weren’t excited about going in. After a short while, they tired of the beach and we headed out for lunch. Our lunch vouchers included several different quick service locations, and after doing a bit of research we ended up finding a great option that had something each of us could enjoy (I desperately wanted some conch fritters – a staple in the Caribbean).
After eating, we headed to the Dig – a large open-air aquarium that represents what the ruins of Atlantis would actually look like.
My kids loved the Dig, and my husband and I agreed that it was really a unique spot. It is something you can wander through at your own pace, and didn’t take too long to explore. If you book a day excursion to Atlantis, I’d definitely recommend stopping by the Dig to walk through.
After exploring the Dig, my kids were really eager to return to the Disney Dream, so we did a bit of shopping in the lobby of one of the hotel towers and then headed back on the bus. In retrospect, I would have booked the package that includes the Aquaventure water park.
The beach explorer excursion didn’t include any of the pools, and once we got there, that’s what my kids wanted to do. If traveling a different time of year, when the weather is warmer, the dolphin explorer option would be a great idea too.
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To learn more about Atlantis Paradise Island, visit their website.