YOU CAN CHECK OUT ALL OF THE RESTAURANTS IN MORE DETAIL AT https://livingtheislandlife.com/dining/
The silence and serenity, the escape from reality, the sound of slight Atlantic surf and the turquoise blue waters are just an arm’s distance away from North Eleuthera, the location of Spanish Wells Bahamas.
The islands are an epitome of nature, with a delicate touch of human intelligence in structuring to make it look more beautiful. Although it is a special community of only a few thousand people, everything of need is easily available. Here, generosity is the way of life and people value humanity more than anything.
This place is hitting people’s radar constantly, and one major reason, after natural beauty, is the vast variety of food that is available in its top restaurants.
If you are a lover of seafood like me, then the restaurants below are your BEST OPTIONS to check when visiting Spanish Wells.
1- THE SHIPYARD RESTAURANT & BAR
This restaurant shares its name with its location. Found on the eastern most part of the island, the restaurant overlooks the area known to older locals as the ‘old shipyard’. Here you can find all types of food from traditional local dishes to American dishes. You can get seafood, Bahamian, vegetarian food, and vegan options. It also serves takeout, alcohol, full bar, television, and outdoor seating, along with special musical guests and bands during special holidays. The pricey menu will set you back more than any of the other restaurants but they offer a more upscale menu and atmosphere.
2- BUDDA’S SNACK SHACK
Situated on 12th street near the top hill, this restaurant is perfect for American, Bahamian, Caribbean and seafood. Like Shipyard, it also has a bar, a liquor store on site, and serves takeout. It has all outdoor seating, a television, and a guest parrot to keep your company while you eat. What makes this place unique is the fact that an old yellow American school bus which was converted into the kitchen, is located at the entrance. There is karaoke and a live band often into the wee hours of the next morning. Get your souvenirs before you leave. The staff are all local and friendly. Put in your order for conch salad early to make sure you indulge in this local delicacy. Stop by the on-site liquor store before you leave as well. Once you meet the owner, you will see why the place is called BUDDA’S – the husband of the married couple who own the place, once resembled a ‘buddha’ with the golden belly (but now more resembles Kenny Rogers). Nonetheless, you will always see the couple when you dine, as they interact with all customers daily. This is definitely one the favorite restaurants for the tourists.
Like its name, the restaurant is unique too. You will find it on Samuel Guy Street. The restaurant has been in operation for decades and was best known for breakfast and lunch. It use to serve Bahamian, seafood and soups. One of the oldest established restaurants, it started as a food and arcade hangout for young people several decades ago known then as the Generation Gap and was converted in to a down-home restaurant where once were able to enjoy the local hospitality. It’s name was shortened to The Gap. You were able to enjoy takeout, or dine-in. The rustic décor and furniture once took you back to the islands. However, it closed down at the end of 2022 and A & J liquor store has moved in the eastern part of the building. As of February 2023, the restaurant is still closed.
4- SANDBAR BAR & GRILL
Located on the Vivian Pinder Road, you have to cross the bridge in Spanish Wells over to Russell Island and travel about 5 minutes to get to this restaurant. One of the newest on the island, you will find this amazing restaurant. It is located on the water and has a pavilion as well as other tables nearby. It is known for its Caribbean, Bar, Seafood, Bahamian, American, Vegetarian Friendly, and Vegan Options. You can takeout, or enjoy the all-outdoor seating. There is a full bar and friendly staff. You can purchase souvenirs including tumblers and t-shirts. Make sure have the fish tacos or the creamy conch chowder. The menu is slightly more pricey than the others.
5- EAGLE’S LANDING
Next on the list is Eagle’s Landing, which is found on the main road near 18th street and right next to the grocery store named the Food Fair. You can have breakfast, dinner, and brunch here with your friends and family inside a newly renovated dining room. Next to the cashier is an ice cream station that many locals visit to buy. You can walk in but it is always recommended to make reservations since the locals always call ahead and book their special table. The food is a mix of American and Bahamian food. The menu is enormous and there is always a large variety of meats, side and rice dishes. This is the only restaurant on the island with a Drive-Thru window. However, the drive-thru only allows you to place your order. You have to come back later to pick it up.
6- ANCHOR SNACK BAR RESTAURANT
Located near 4th street right on the dock, this restaurant is one of the oldest on the island. The building faces the place where all freight boats come in and offload cargo. The menu once consisted of a mix of Bahamian and American cuisine decades ago, but transitioned to only serving breakfast/brunch and has closed down as of the end of 2022. This restaurant was once more affordable than the others. They user offer takeout as well as a very rustic dining experience with tables that were quite close together with plastic outdoor chairs and seashells everywhere. Reservations are suggested. Once offering American, Bahamian, Caribbean, Bar, Seafood, Pub and Vegetarian Friendly food, it became a coffee shop before it closed. The menu consisted of lattes like toasted marshmallow and english toffee as well as various flavors of french toast, grilled cheese, pancakes and waffles along with traditional grits and sausage.
7- WRECKERS RESTAURANT & BAR
Known for the best outdoor seating and alcohol, Wreckers restaurant and bar is located on south street in Spanish wells on the harbour where the more upscale personal boats dock. Here you can enjoy Mediterranean, Seafood, Greek, Bahamian, and Vegetarian-Friendly food. It has a variety of soft drinks, local cocktails, beer and international wines here along with Starbucks coffee (be prepared to wait for it to be made). There is a full bar on site as well. The wooden décor and all-outside dining allows you to feel like you are dining on the water. They tend to be short-staffed and there are long wait times to get your food. The cost here will be the most expensive of all, and while the food is good, there are other options with similar menus at better prices with friendlier staff.
8. BIKINI BOTTOM DELIGHTS
Formerly Salt and Peppa and Norma’s Takeaway and renamed Bikini Bottom Delights is located at Leo Pinder street across from snapper point dock of Spanish wells. This is a very small, local mom and pop establishment. You can eat outdoors on one of the 4 tables or stand to the window and order take-out. You can have breakfast, lunch, and dinner here, but they are inconsistent with when they are open. You would have to call ahead to see if they are open. However, a visit to this restaurant can make your trip memorable, as it is small, yet the food is amazing. As of September 2020, they officially closed to the public, reopened under the name THE PANTRY which offered lunch/dinner but this has also closed .
9. THE VAULT
The Snack Vault is the place to go when you want to get something on the run. Located on the main Leo Pinder Street and across from the public school on the island, this is a small take-away spot or it has some seating if you wish to dine under a tent on the main road. You can have lunch or dinner here. The menu consists of burgers, fries, sandwiches as well as chicken, fish and seafood dinners conch fritters and wraps. The food is very good and reasonably priced.
So next time you are in The Bahamas, either fly in to Nassau and take the Fast Ferry to Spanish Wells, or fly into North Eleuthera on one of the local charters and take a ferry over to Spanish Wells for some good food. You may need a few days to visit all of these restaurants to experience the food and friendliness that the islands have to offer.
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