I’ve had a few people ask me when I was going to blog about this one…So finally here it is! 🙂
Have you heard about the swimming pigs in the Bahamas? I didn’t know they even existed until I stumbled across this short film on YouTube – When Pigs Swim by Charles Allan Smith, about a week later I saw the swimming pigs again on a TV show and that was when my mission to get to them began!
Now, how was I going to convince Sanjay that we needed to fly to the other side of the world to go to Exuma Island in the Bahamas, to see swimming pigs?! Here’s how I did it…
Feeding a rather large cutie a chicken sausage!
We’d previously talked about spending my birthday at Disney World in Florida (As I’m a bit of a Disney freak) so I started with that, we then talked about where else we could go that was close to Florida and that’s when our Southern States trip was born! I mentioned since we were close to the Bahamas it would be cool to see a few of the islands too…Score! We added a cruise to the trip, now I was getting somewhere! I casually dropped the Exuma Islands into the conversation… “What’s there?” Sanjay asked “The swimming pigs” I replied… That’s when he knew I had been working my way up to it all along, lucky for me he was on board with it!
Pig Beach is located in the Exuma Islands which are about a 40 minute plane ride away from the Bahamian capital Nassau. The beach is only accessible by boat, there are several tour companies which will take you out there and you can also charter private boats to get there. (We booked a tour company).
There are several theories as to how the pigs got to the beach –
- The pigs were survivors of a shipwreck and managed to swim to shore.
- They were dropped off on the beach by a group of sailors who planned to come back and cook them but they never returned.
- They were left there by Captain Cook and the pigs have lived on the beach ever since.
- The pigs were left on the beach as part of a business scheme to attract tourists.
Our tour guide told us this one… A local family initially had the pigs as pets at their home but couldn’t stand the noise or the smell that the pigs created so they relocated them to a nearby uninhabited area, which was just a short boat ride away. The family left the pigs to roam freely and would feed them regularly. This continued for many years until the pigs were spotted by tourists exploring the Exumas and then word spread, soon there were tourists flocking to see the wild swimming pigs!
I have no idea which of these stories is true (if any) but regardless this is definitely one strange tourist attraction that I’m so glad I got to experience!
The boat ride out to Pig Beach (which is actually a super small island) took about 30 minutes. (You should’ve seen my face as we approached the island, I was like a child giggling with delight, with the biggest smile on my face!). The pigs actually swam in a line up to our boat through the gorgeous clear Bahamian water to greet us! They knew we came bearing gifts of food so I suspect they were actually excited to see the food opposed to us tourists!
There were about 20 of us in our group and we all got off the boat and into the reasonably shallow water to feed and play with the piggies, while they’re friendly and will let you pat and take photos of them don’t get too close to their mouths as their teeth are sharp and could cause some damage, treat them with respect as you would any other animal. If you get lucky there’ll also be little piglets for you to play with.
This wee one liked following me around 😀
We were on the island for about 20 minutes, I think this was plenty of time but I would’ve loved to have gone in a smaller group as it was hard to get one on one time, every time I went to go and see a piggie someone would beat me to it!
That being said this was still one of the most incredible albeit quirky experiences of my life and I’d highly recommend it!
Happy Travels, Priti X