Why are there swimming pigs in the Exumas, Bahamas???

Filed in The Great Exumas, Travel by on January 13, 2014 10 Comments
swimming pigs, exumas, bahamas

Swim, pigs, swim!

These swimming pigs are causing a sensation, and it is easy to see why!  PIGS are not supposed to be swimming in the ocean…are they?  Have YOU ever seen such a thing?  Or heard about it?  A couple of months ago I saw a video on youtube with the swimming pigs of the Exumas, and I was so amazed (and laughing so hard) I decided I had to come and see this for myself!  It must have been meant, because a few weeks later I had the opportunity to come to the Exumas (outer islands of the Bahamas).  I checked to see where these swimming pigs were, and when I found out they were in the Exumas, I booked a ticket!

swimming pigs, exumas, bahamas


On arrival, I asked how I could get to the pigs.  It turns out there are unbelievable animal encounters here in the Exumas!  I booked with Exuma Water Sports, not just to see the pigs, but to see huge Iguanas (and feed them!), swim with nurse sharks, and snorkel Thunderball Grotto (where 007 movies Thunderball and Never say Never were filmed).  There are over 300 cays (pronounced keys), small islands, throughout the Exumas.  The only way to really check it out is to do it by boat.  In comes Exuma Water Sports, owned by Ray and Phillipa Lightbourn. The Lightbourn family has been in the Bahamas since 1735, and it doesn’t appear that they plan to go anywhere!  Be glad, because their tours are top notch.  I went the first day for a full day tour on board the 007 by myself as my cousin, who planned to go with me, was ill. What an incredible day!  Great people, it was lovely to chat with Ray and his son, Justin, and the highlights were so incredible I don’t want to rush them all into one blog.  SO.  Pigs first! I already published a photo blog of the bigger piggies here, so please check them out. These are the pictures of the second day, when we did the half day tour!swimming pigs, exumas, bahamas

As I understand it, one of the cays had a pig farm on it, and the pig farmer was not only tired of farming, but tired of complaints about the odor of his pig farm.  I cannot remember if he just turned them loose, or if he relocated them (I think the latter because they seem to have their own island), but when boats would stop to look at them, they began to swim out to the boats for food!  And so, the swimming pigs of Exuma were born.

swimming pigs, exumas, bahamas

Kathy and I with friends!

swimming pigs, exumas, bahamas


Exuma Water Sports sees those pigs on their full day tour, but they are too far for half day tours.  So what did they do?  They brought their own pigs to a small cay and taught them to swim and come for food!  They are now a year and a half old, and cute as they can be.  I was lucky enough to see both sets of piggies, I loved the full tour so much, I took my cousin back for the half day tour!

I am rather accident prone, and Exuma Water Sports helped me stay on my feet instead of tripping around the boat, they figured out the first day that falling on flat surfaces seems to be quite natural for me…though I did fall off the boat ladder once, too.  Just call me Grace.

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Swimming pigs need to be on your bucket list, folks!  Want to see them in action?  Check them out on YouTube!

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About the Author ()

I am an avid scuba diver, underwater photographer, amateur historian; interested in all people and cultures. For me, the unexpected is usually the norm! My motto? I am an Empty Nester who likes to Renew, Revamp, and Reinvent Life! Contact me at travelswithtam@gmail.com

Comments (10)

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  1. That is … hilarious! I mean, seriously. I would LOVE to see swimming pigs. Who even knew? Not me!

  2. Unbelievable! How freakin’ freaky… and cool!!! I’ve seen photos pass by in my FB stream of such, but thought it was baloney. Now I believe it. Crazy!
    Lisa at Grandma’s Briefs recently posted…That time my grandsons became piratesMy Profile

  3. Helene Cohen Bludman says:

    Love the swimming pigs! That is an experience I would love to have.

  4. Mary says:

    I want to go swimming with the pigs!
    Mary recently posted…Getting Ready For SpringMy Profile

  5. Okay, that is awesome! I never heard of swimming pigs but now I definitely want to go swim with them!

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