Not too many things of interest stand out from the road side when you drive through Rainbow Bay, Eleuthera, Bahamas. There is a Bahamas Heritage Site on the Eastern coast, but you would never guess how incredible the site is judging by the inconspicuous heritage sign that is worn down at the roadside.
Do not be deceived, this heritage site is a remarkable place. If you are driving north and you pass the Rainbow Bay Inn, which you are sure to notice, you have missed your mark. Turn around and look carefully for the round, blue heritage sign indicating the turn off for Rainbow Cliffs.
Rainbow Cliffs is one of Eleuthera’s geological wonders. The cliffs tower at least 30 to 40 feet above the water. The limestone walls have been cut by the sea, creating a network of trenches, caves and coves, all around. The limestone exposes stratas of black and red stone, as well as embedded pockets of sand.
Closer to sea level, nestled into the rock was a shallow tidal pool, a private bath from someone’s fantasy spa. It was a relatively cold time of year for me, but the pool was too inviting not to be bathed in its cool waters.
When I arrived at the cliffs the tidal pool was not in sight. The only thing visible at first was the broadside of a massive limestone hill; it sloped at such a gradient that the coastline was not visible. At the peak was a ridge stretching in view from the north to the south. The limestone was carved with an interesting formation: parallel wave-like tracks that snaked across the hill.
The rock formations stimulated some interest, but my instinct told me there was more to see. I headed for the top of the ridge and what lay beyond was a view of the rocky coastline with towering cliffs above. The site was definitely something to behold, but still something called me to push further. There was a secondary ridge that obstructed the complete view of the cove below.
Several large boulders provided foot holds from me to climb down to the lower level. From beyond the ledge, I peered down into a sizable cove and the enchanting tidal pool stared back at me. I was so invigorated I had to find a way down the cliff; a task that required strength, agility and no fear. There were no boulders this time to provide a stairway down. The vertical walls had to be scaled somehow.
The challenge was well worth the reward.
Rainbow Cliffs is one of a few sites in Eleuthera for adrenaline junkies looking to go cliff jumping. Next time I am Eleuthera, you will find me doing this!