The Eleuthera Directory

Map of North Eleuthera


Table of Contents


James Cistern -
Legend has it that the community of James Cistern was discovered by James, a ship captain whose ran aground on the jagged reef of the northern shores of James Cistern. It is said that he and his men found a hole from which he revived himself, therefore the community was named James Cistern. Even today, the drinking supply of James Cistern is supplied from this wonder of nature, called Ocean Hole.

The earliest recorded history of James Cistern, found in the archives of the Methodist Church, states that the community was established by freed slaves who migrated from the plantations of Exuma (the Rolle Estates) and Cat Island (the Johnsons' and Bethels' Estates). Today, these surnames are still prevalent in the community.

The community was officially named after Sir James Carmichael Smythe, who served as the Crown Colony's Royal Governor between 1829 and 1835. He was an abolitionist who was much concerned with the well-being of the freed slaves. He contributed one thousand pounds of his own money to establish schools for the freed black slaves in Nassau and the Family Islands. He is best known for shutting down the Parliament of the day because it would not pass legislation that would prohibit plantation owners from lashing or whipping their female slaves.

He commissioned the erection of the Columbus Statue that is located at Government House, and allowed salt-rakers from the Family Island to sell their salt to the markets in Nassau. This served the purpose of the inhabitants of James Cistern, because saltraking was a lucrative part of their income. Governor Smythe's contribution to the well-being of the Bahamian people was so widely established that today Carmichael Road, Carmichael School and James' Point were named in his honour.

The early inhabitants of James Cistern were hard-workers who made their living from fishing, sponging, salt-raking, farming and salvaging wrecked ships. They also made history when they leased their commonage land to the United States Government to establish the Naval Base and Missile Tracking System.

Briland Neighbors:

North Eleuthera's Townships

For more information, see

Eleuthera is a beautiful, one hundred and ten mile long island with rolling hills and magnificent beaches. Dotted with an array of quaint settlements, this island's economic base varies, as do the townships themselves.

Spanish Wells centers around the fishing industry for which it is famous. Named for the deep fresh water wells found here by its first settlers, this small, picturesque island is strewn with beautifully painted 18th century houses and immaculate flower gardens.

The Current, The Bluff & the Bogues in the north are farming and fishing townships. The rich soil and abundance of water yield a variety of citrus and other produce.

Gregory Town, the pineapple princess of The Bahamas, is nestled on a hillside. This township is home of the popular, annual Pineapple Festival. Visitors are also attracted to this settlement, due in part, to it proximity to the world famous Surfer's Beach. Hatchet Bay is nestled away from the main highway, with a tranquil harbour and marina where yachtsmen have anchored for many years to experience the quiet serenity of this sheltered inlet.

James Cistern sits on a hillside, along the water's edge, just about a mile south of the Cliffs.

Governor's Harbour - a quaint, colonial style settlement is home of the first visitors to Eleuthera (the Eleutheran Adventurers) and today it houses the offices of the Local Government and Island Administrator. It is also the home of the one hundred year old, newly restored, Haynes Library. Picturesque Cupid's Cay adjoins Governor's Harbour.

Tarpum Bay - a charming artists' colony lost in time.  See George Major's for daily news of the village.

Eleuthera & Briland Travel Guide

Eleuthera, Spanish Wells and Harbour Island are three specific and unique destinations, all rolled into one:

You'll see the dramatic Glass Window Bridge as it balances the calm Caribbean Sea on one side, and the hearty Atlantic Ocean on the other with a single-car wingspan; feast on tasty pineapples and tan on pink sand beaches; scuba dive the world-famous Current Cut drift dive at more than 7 knots per hour.  

You can also visit Preacher's Cave that was once used for shelter by the earliest European settlers of The Bahamas; ride horseback down a deserted beach; explore the dramatic Hatchet Bay network of underground caves as used by the original Arawak Indians; marvel at the sunset overlooking Hatchet Bay and Alice Town; watch descendants of the 16th century Eleutheran Adventurers feed the fish at the Rock Sound Ocean Hole, or climb the cliffs in the north for a dramatic view of both the Caribbean and Atlantic oceans.

Hotel Directory
Briland & North Eleuthera
Coral Sands Hotel
800 468 2799 / 242 333 2320
Fax - 242 333 2368
Dunmore Beach Club
800 688 4752 / 242 333 2200
Fax - 242 333 2429
Ocean View Club
242 333 2276
Pink Sands Hotel
800 688 7678 / 242 333 2030
Fax - 242 233 2060
Romora Bay Club
800 327 8286 / 242 333 2325
Fax - 242 333 2500
Runaway Hill Club
800 728 9803 / 242 333 2150
Fax - 242 333 2420
The Landing
800 688 4752 / 242 333 2707
Fax - 242 333 2650
Tingum Village Hotel
242 333 2161
Valentine's Resort & Marina
242 333 2142
Fax - 242 333 2135
Hatchet Bay
Rainbow Inn
800 688 0047 / 242 335 0294
Fax - 242 335 0294
Spanish Wells
Spanish Wells Yacht Haven
242 333 4255
Fax - 242 333 4649
St. George's Hotel
242 333 4075