Government House has been the ... More home of the Bahamian Governor-General since 1801. The British influence in the islands is demonstrated by Government House’s Changing of the Guard ceremony which takes place every other Saturday, and by the Tea Party held on the last Friday of the month by the Governor-General’s wife. The pink buildings of Parliament Square were built in 1815, and include the Houses of Assembly, the Supreme Court, and the old Colonial Secretary’s Office. When Parliament is not in session, visitors can enjoy tours through these buildings.
For anyone interested in the less savoury aspects of Bahamian history, a visit to the Pirates of Nassau is a must. This attraction brings the history of the pirates to life in an interactive, fun and historically accurate way, and even includes a pirate-themed pub. Festival Place at Prince George Wharf is modelled on the architecture of a small Bahamian village, and includes a Welcome Centre where 45 artisans sell traditional Bahamian arts and crafts, and a tourist information centre with information on activities, sights, and tours through Nassau and the Bahamas.
Nassau, the capital, lies on the shore of a protected harbour on New Providence Island. Its population of 180,000 makes this the largest city in the archipelago, and in fact roughly two-thirds of the country’s population live on this island. The city was founded by the ... More British in the mid 1600s as Charlestown, but was renamed in 1695 in honour of William III of Orange-Nassau, successor to the English throne. It became a popular haven for pirates during the 18th century, including the famous and fearsome Blackbeard. Later in the same century, the Spanish attempted to invade Nassau, and in 1776, American revolutionaries briefly gained control of the city. Tourism took off in the 1960s when Cuba was closed to American tourists, and the government dredged Nassau’s harbour to accommodate up to six cruise ships at a time, as well as building hotels and resorts.
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