Cities and Communities
Cities and communities, specifically three districts and seven town areas, divide Grand Bahama Island. Each district is also run by a Chief Councilor, and each town area or township is run by a Chairperson. Additionally, Grand Bahama Island holds elections every five years. As of 1996, Grand Bahama has three districts:
- East Grand Bahama
- West Grand Bahama
- The City of Freeport
East Grand Bahama
East Grand Bahama is on the eastern part of the island of Grand Bahama. The local government seat for the district is in the settlement of High Rock, which is a fairly small town. It is about 40 miles east of the City of Freeport, and 20 miles from McLeans Town. Similarly, other settlements of East Grand Bahama include Rocky Creek, Pelican Point, Gambier Point and Sweeting Cay.
West Grand Bahama
West Grand Bahama encompasses the entire western portion of Grand Bahama Island, excluding the city of Freeport, which forms its own district. Additionally, communities within West Grand Bahama include the settlements of Mack Town, Hunters, Lewis Yard, Pinder’s Point, Eight Mile Rock, Hepburn Town, Bartlett Hill, Hanna Hill, Pine Dale, Martin Town, Russell Town, Jones Town, Sea Grape, Holmes Rock, Bootle Bay and the westernmost settlement of West End, which is the island capital.
The City of Freeport
Just over 50 years ago, the city of Freeport was just a track of land. Today, it is the commercial, industrial and tourist center of activity on Grand Bahama Island. As the second largest city in the Islands of The Bahamas, the city was built for people to come and enjoy a good time. Here you’ll find many tourist beaches and activities, and also the International Bazaar and Port Lucaya Marketplace.
Freeport/Lucaya is where the commercial ship harbor and the main airport are located. It is also a hub of tourist attraction.
West End is the current capital of Grand Bahama (contrary to popular belief that Freeport is the capital). It is located on the western tip of the island and is also the oldest town and westernmost settlement Grand Bahama. This picturesque fishing village is probably best known for its history as a liquor smuggling town during the prohibition era. Additionally, the legendary Jack Tar Village Resort is now the Old Bahama Bay Resort, the main tourist attraction in this settlement.
McLeans Town is the easternmost settlement and a 30-minute ferry ride from the northernmost settlement of the neighbor island of Abaco.