Family-Owned and Operated Lodge on the Northeast Coast of Andros
Established in 1960, this all-inclusive beach resort caters perfectly to couples and families seeking a reasonably priced vacation in the Bahamas. Small Hope Bay Lodge is a family owned and operated resort that offers numerous non-angling activities, including one of the top-rated snorkel and scuba programs in the Bahamas. The lodge is located on the northeast coast of Andros Island, which is a short boat ride to the Tongue of the Ocean, a 5,000-foot deep trench that is known for its diving and sport fishing opportunities. Being so close to the Tongue enables guests to explore the second largest reef system in the world, and the diverse fishing program allows anglers of all ages to fish the flats, reefs or blue water. The lodge overlooks a white sandy beach, with direct access to the ocean, a protected shallow bay, and an inland creek—all of which are ideal for fishing, kayaking, sailing, and snorkeling. This is indeed one of the finest values in the Bahamas for hardcore anglers, families, and couples.
The facility was hand-built in the early 1960s by the founder of Small Hope Bay Lodge, Dick Birch, who used native Andros pine and coral to construct each building. The accommodations have private bathrooms, plenty of storage, air conditioning ($15 per night), a porch facing the ocean and can be configured with one or two beds. The multi-room family suites are perfect for groups with young children or those seeking additional private space. The lodge’s grounds are shaded by mature palm trees which lead to the private beach, bonefish flats, main lodge and tiki bar. Although it is one of the oldest and longest-running lodges on Andros, everything is in good working order, and offers guests a feeling of “rustic elegance.” Small Hope Bay is currently remodeling the accommodations with new fixtures to achieve a brighter, more modern feel.
Food and Beverages
All meals are served in the main lodge, which consists of a dining room, a separate large sitting area and bar, and a library. Attached to the lodge are a play zone for kids, complete with a ping-pong table, games for all ages, musical instruments, and an indoor playhouse. The lodge offers complimentary child care through cocktail and dinner time as well!
In the mornings, a breakfast buffet consisting of coffee, juices, cereal, yogurt, pastries, and fresh fruit complements the American cooked-to-order menu. If you are not out on the water, daily lunch specials are served with a variety of snacks and fruit. Cocktails and appetizers are served either at the Tiki bar that overlooks the water or inside at the lodge bar. Dinners consist of freshly-caught local seafood including dolphin (Mahi-Mahi), wahoo, snapper, spiny lobster, conch, and hogfish. One of the highlighted meals is steak night, in which fresh beef is cooked over an open flame fueled by wood from Andros. Dinners are served with matching wines, and all meals are customized to your request for those with special dietary needs. As always, please be sure to fill out your Yellow Dog pre-trip questionnaire so that we may advise the destination of your special needs and requests.
Typical Length of Stay
Trips of any length are available, and the convenience of the Bahamas makes Small Hope Bay Lodge the perfect getaway for a week-long excursion or just a quick weekend escape.
Non-Angling Activities & Options
All the non-angling activities take place within minutes of the lodge or right there on the premises, which enables guests to relax and participate at their leisure. Swimming around the lodge is fun and safe, due to the reef break, clear water, and hard white sand bottom. The inclusive activities include sea kayaking, sailing, snorkeling off the beach, fishing the home flats, and beachcombing. Add-on activities include the PADI certified diving, snorkeling the reef via boat, Batik lessons, guided eco-tours, massages, as well as flats, bottom and reef fishing. The lodge has a full-time, eco-tour guide to lead groups on daily excursions. Nightly beach bonfires are a fun way to wind down the evening. Babysitters are available and free of charge during cocktail and dinner time.
Internet / Communications
The lodge does offer complimentary Wi-Fi for guests in the main lodge and tiki bar, except during cocktail and dinner time. Phone calls to the USA and Canada are also complimentary from the office phones. However, most U.S. cell phones will work throughout the Bahamas, depending on your service plan.
How To Get There
Most travel to Andros Island’s Andros Town/ Fresh Creek Airport (ASD) should route through Nassau International Airport (NAS) due to the frequent flights and reasonable costs offered there. Whether flying into San Andros (Western Air), Andros Town-Fresh Creek (LeAir), Mangrove Cay (Flamingo and LeAir) or Congo Town (Western Air), there are two flights daily into every small airport on Andros. The first flight is typically early in the morning (approximately 6:30 AM) and second is usually scheduled for later in the afternoon (approximately 3:30 PM). We always suggest adding a buffer of at least two hours between all arriving flights and departing connecting flights while in Nassau. Charter flights from Florida to Andros can also be arranged. Contact Yellow Dog for more information.
Arrival and Departure Details / Times
Once you arrive on Andros, any taxi at the airport will deliver you to the lodge. The cost is around USD 40.00 each way. On departure day, make sure to leave ample time for connecting flights on your return trip to account for time spent in customs and immigration (we recommend at least 1.5 hours). Small Hope Bay is a short 20-minute ride from the Andros Town Airport (ASD). Private air charters can be arranged by contacting Yellow Dog.
All U.S. citizens are required to have a valid passport that does not expire within six (6) months of trips dates. Please be sure that your passport has at least two blanks, unstamped pages remaining in the back, and that it is not torn, delaminated, or damaged in any way.
Yellow Dog works directly with and recommends Kanna Travel. They can assist with airline tickets, hotels, transfers and all travel logistics for every destination that we offer. Contact them at 855-739-3139 or [email protected] for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services, and trip insurance.
Andros is the largest island in the Bahamas and known as the “Bonefish Capital of the World,” but the northern section of the island differs from the central and southern regions of Andros. In the north section, there are dozens of inland creeks between the east and west coasts of the island, which feed massive interior flats systems. Fresh Creek would be considered Small Hope Bay’s home water and is only 15 minutes from the lodge by car. This large, east coast creek is fed by the Tongue of the Ocean and nearly reaches the west coast of Andros. Having a fishery migrate roughly 18 miles inland allows anglers to fish optimal tides throughout the day and always be able to find protection from the wind. Even though Fresh Creek is one of the more populated settlements on Andros, this fishery experiences minimal angling pressure. The bones in the area average between three and five pounds, but trophy fish can be targeted any time of year. This is an excellent fishery in which to focus on double-digit bonefish and particularly dynamic in that the guides can wade or boat fish during any tide. There are resident tarpon and permit around a few of the blue holes and creek entrances, but they are tough to target given the size of the area. Barracuda are plentiful and tons of fun for anglers of all ages.
Made up of small islands and flats that are protected by the reef, the Mastic Point/Standard Creek area is another coastal fishery in the area. Larger ocean bonefish inhabit this area because all of the flats are adjacent to deep ocean water. This is an excellent wade fishing area since the bottom is hard white sand.
Also, the famous Joulters Cays—a collection of small islands just north of Andros that is surrounded by endless white sand flats—are only 45-minutes away. The Joulters Cays are framed by the Tongue of the Ocean and Great Bahama Bank, making them one of the most highly populated areas for bonefish in the world. Tailing and schooling fish can be found in abundance and can get large. The northernmost cays and flats are well known for big ocean permit during settled weather. Barracuda and sharks are also plentiful in this region.
The Red Bays boat ramp, just 30 minutes away, allows easy access to the Andros’ famed West Side. This side of the island is renowned as one of the top “trophy bonefish” areas in the world, and it also offers opportunities for tarpon and an occasional permit from April through to October. The flats are a soft silty bottom, so all the fishing is done from the skiff.
Small Hope overlooks a shallow bay, which around low tide is a solid do-it-yourself (DIY) wade fishing option. Davis Creek, just short walk from the lodge, is inland and shallow mangrove lagoon that is also ideal for DIY fishing. This is an excellent area to hunt bonefish on either side of high tide. The DIY fishing around the lodge allows guests to fit in a little bonefishing on non-guided days, but it is also a fun spot for all ages to explore the water by sea kayak!
Boats and Equipment
Anglers targeting the flats fish from Dolphin, Action Craft and Maverick skiffs with 75 horsepower Yamaha engines. The reef and offshore fishing programs at Small Hope utilize a variety of V-Hull center console boats, which are rigged and outfitted with tackle. Small Hope can supply all fishing gear tackle for anglers who would rather not bring their own.
- $315 per person per night (double occupancy)
- $410 for a single room
- $125 for children between the ages of 2 and 12
- Kids under 2 are free
- $295 per person per night (double occupancy)
- $390 for a single room
- $125 for children between the ages of 2 and 12
- Kids under 2 are free
- Flats fishing is $550 for a full day and $385 for a half day for two anglers
- Reef fishing is $550 for a full day and $385 for a full day for the boat
- Blue Water fishing is $550 for a full day and $400 for a half day for the boat
- All meals and appetizers
- All beverages including the bar
- Sea kayaking
- Snorkeling from the lodge beach
- Fishing the home flats
- Baby sitters during cocktail and dinner
- Airport transfers on Andros
What’s Not Included:
- Airfare between home and Andros
- Gratuities for fishing guides and staff
- Snorkeling boat excursions
- Guided flats, reef, or offshore fishing
- Daily guided eco-tours
- Batik lessons
- Air conditioning in the rooms is $15 per night
- 12% VAT tax on package and purchased items
- Bahamas fishing license: $5 per day, $10 per week, $20 per month, and $50 for the year (Yellow Dog will ensure the lodge has your license until the on-line system is in place)