We loved spending time at the Port Lucaya Marketplace. We took advantage of almost everything it has to offer: shops, restaurants, bars, excursions and the straw market. My sister and I had a blast at the straw market. Yes, the vendors try to get you to buy their stuff, and yes, some of it is overpriced, but we never found them to be rude or aggressive. Most of the vendors are actually very friendly and willing to barter. It pays to be pleasant and not walk in with an attitude.
The arts and crafts section of the straw market had some wonderful and unique items. You must visit Shelly's shop if you are looking for beautiful handmade dolls. Of course, that is assuming that she has had time to make more dolls since my sister practically bought out her entire shop! We bought some very cool adjustable magnetic bracelets/necklaces that we gave as gifts when we got home. Everyone loved them. The first time we were there we bought them for $10 each; by the end of our trip we figured out that some vendors will sell them for 3 for $15. That is all part of the fun, and even at $10 we thought they were a good deal.
In the middle of the Marketplace there is a stage and outdoor seating area called Count Basie Square. It seemed kind of dead during the week, but on Friday and Saturday nights it came alive. It was so much fun to listen to the music and people watch. The bars are full of people, yet it is also very family friendly. We never once felt unsafe or uncomfortable.
The Marketplace has a couple of convenience stores and also a couple of liquor stores. It was nice to be able to buy a few things that we could bring back and keep in our hotel room. The prices seemed reasonable enough, all things considered. And finally, a must stop is the little fruit stand in the middle of the Marketplace. They have the best pina coladas, and you can order them with or without rum.
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