From the shores of Nassau Paradise Island to the sandbars of the Exumas, The Bahamas is booming. And as cruise passengers and air arrivals continue to flock to the country, The Bahamas just set an all-time record for visitors in a single year, officials told Caribbean Journal.

The country has welcomed 8 million visitors this year, including cruise passengers and stavover arrivals. That is the largest total in the country’s history, what The Bahamas is calling an “historic achievement in tourism.”

“The Bahamas has long been a sought-after destination, and reaching eight million visitors is a milestone that reflects the collective dedication of our tourism professionals nationwide,” said Bahamas Tourism Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Chester Cooper. “Our success lies not just in our islands’ allure but in the strategic endeavors we have embraced. As we celebrate this achievement, we are equally focused on shaping a future that ensures sustained year-over-year growth and enhances the visitor experience.”

Most importantly, the 8 million total means The Bahamas has surpassed its previous high of arrivals, set back in 2019, the year before the onset of the pandemic.

The news comes as The Bahamas continues to see rapid growth in airlift, both from major carriers like American Airlines and Delta, both of which have been significantly expanding their flights to the destination, and the country’s Bahamasair national flag carrier, among others.

The growth has been across the 700-island archipelago, focused on the country’s 16 “main” tourism destinations, from Nassau Paradise Island and Grand Bahama to the Abacos to the Exumas to smaller, up-and-coming hotspots like San Salvador.

“This historic milestone in visitor arrivals is a clear indicator of the unique charm and richness of our 16-island destination. Our unwavering dedication to offering diverse, authentic experiences underlines our strategy for Brand Bahamas,” said Latia Duncombe, director general of The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism. “We ensure every traveler’s journey is not just a visit, but an unforgettable, enriching experience that beckons a return to our beautiful shores.”

“Our partners have been instrumental in achieving this milestone. Their continued collaboration is key to our sustained success, and together, we will shape the future of Bahamian tourism and the Bahamian economy,” Duncombe said.