San Salvador is home to many monuments, ruins and shipwrecks that directly reflect its rich history, including five memorials that commemorate Christopher Columbus’ arrival in 1492. One of them, an underwater monument, is said to mark the spot where the Pinta dropped anchor. In addition to its profound past, the island showcases miles of secluded beaches, crystal-clear seas and sparkling inland lakes. Visitors looking to embark on an adventure full of history and culture will find that San Salvador Island is the perfect place to begin their journey. It’s no wonder that Columbus dubbed it “The New World.”
Originally called Guanahani by the Lucayan Indians, the island was renamed San Salvador by Christopher Columbus, which means Holy Saviour. It’s actually the exposed peak of a submerged mountain that rises 15,000 feet from the ocean’s floor. It has one of the most unique-looking landscapes in The Bahamas. The land is full of undulating hills, beautiful beaches, numerous salt water lakes, and amazing reefs that surround the greater part of the island. Plus, there are a few substantial plantation ruins that are important reminders of the island’s Loyalist past — Watling’s Castle at Sandy Point and Fortune Hill Plantation at Fortune Hill. Just over 1,000 people call San Salvador home. They’re descendants of slaves brought to the island by British Loyalists. Today, these San Salvadorans provide visitors with tourism activities such as fishing, diving, sailing and guided tours.