In an archipelago of over 700 islands and cays, the Bahamas' largest landmass often gets overlooked by travelers, its sugar-white beaches mostly ignored by cruise ships and high-rise hotel developers. Known to locals as ''The Big Yard," Andros Island is the wild Bahamian backcountry—a place edged by gorgeous beaches, blanketed by mangroves and thick primal forest, and intersected by a string of mysterious blue holes that have captivated National Geographic explorers like Sylvia Earle.
On the island’s southern shores, known as South Andros, Tiamo found an unspoiled spot that offers a gateway to extraordinary coral reefs, a place where ecosystems are rich and healthy and wildlife thrives. The thatched-roof villas, tucked on a sandy stretch of shoreline only accessible from the sea, offer an off-the-beaten-track Caribbean experience. And while you don't have to go beyond Tiamo's beaches to experience the uniqueness of this Bahamian hideaway, what lies beyond—both inland and off the coast—is truly remarkable.
Originally opened in 2001, Tiamo Resort was designed to blend into the area’s natural surroundings. The developers took great care to keep the environment intact, electing to use creative, site-sensitive building techniques. The construction process avoided the use of big machines or a man-made marina, and instead involved clearing vegetation by machete and shipping supplies in on small boats. These initial development phases, though more physically demanding and time-intensive, left a minimal impact on the island’s lush coastal landscapes and had the added benefit of keeping a local work crew busy.
As the environmental, community, and economic benefits of these initial pursuits became evident, Tiamo was inspired to implement other sustainability initiatives—from a solar power system that generates the majority of the resort’s energy needs to reducing plastic waste. Tiamo also continues to embrace its local roots: as the majority of the staff hails from nearby communities, guests have the opportunity to explore the island with those who know it best—the people who have grown up here.
Guests who reserve their stay at Tiamo through National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World will have the exclusive opportunity to venture through Andros Island’s pristine forests with an expert naturalist to learn about bush medicine—traditional remedies concocted by locals from the surrounding flora. Your destination is one of the island’s brilliant inland blue holes. Peer into the waters of this underground cave entrance, and then hop in for a swim.
From its beginnings, Tiamo Resort set out to embrace an ethos of environmentally friendly practices and conservation. The resort’s buildings rest lightly on the land, resulting in minimal disturbance to the natural landscape. Footpaths provide access to the resort’s various facilities, allowing native vegetation to flourish, and solar power provides the majority of the resort’s power. Guest activities focus on exploring the marine wilderness that surrounds Tiamo, from the hundreds of tiny islets and mangrove forests that dot the west coast of South Andros to the world’s third largest coral reef nearby.
The lodge is the largest employer on South Andros, and the vast majority of staff comes from the local area. The resort contributes to scholarship funds for local students; provides no-interest loans to encourage community business development; and works closely with locally owned tour guides and outfitters, who provide authentic experiences to lodge guests.
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