Most historians agree that Long Island was the third island Columbus sailed to during his first voyage of discovery. The Tropic of Cancer runs through this long, thin sliver of land, located 242km (150 miles) southeast of Nassau. It stretches north to south for some 97km (60 miles) and is 2.5km (1 1/2 miles) wide on average, and only 5km (3 miles) wide at its broadest point. Long Island is characterized by high cliffs in the north, wide and shallow sand beaches, historic plantation ruins, native caves, and Spanish churches. The famed diving sites are offshore, including a blue hole of stunning magnitude that locals claim is bottomless.

Long Island's best beaches include Deal's Beach, Cape Santa Maria Beach, Salt Pond Beach, Turtle Cove Beach, and the South End beaches, the latter offering kilometers of waterfront scenery with powdery white or pink sands. Only recently has the island emerged as a minor tourist destination.