Visas: US citizens do not need a visa for stays of less than eight months, but must show proof of citizenship. Visas and passports are required of citizens of Canada and European countries. Air passengers must have a return or ongoing airline ticket. Public holidays: New Year’s Day; Good Friday; Easter Monday; Whit Monday; Labour Day (June); Independence Day (10 July); Emancipation Day (Aug); Discovery Day (Oct); Christmas; Boxing Day. Good buys: Stock up on duty-free items, arts and crafts, and fashion. Local dishes: Seafood (including conch, crab, grouper, lobster and shrimp) along with rice and grits (ground corn) are typical staples of the Bahamian diet. Good reading: For a general overview of Bahamas history, dip into The Story of The Bahamas, by Paul Albury, and A History of the Bahamas, Michael Craton’s political analysis. The Lucayans, by Sandra Riley, relates the sad tale of the extermination of the indigenous population by ruthless Spanish conquistadors, while Buccaneers of America, by John Esquemeling, offers a 17th-century eyewitness account of the sordid carryings-on of the infamous peg-leg and parrot set. The Bahamas Handbook is a comprehensive almanac for holiday-makers and business travellers alike. And Nassau’s Historic Buildings, by Seighbert Russell, provides a detailed review of the city’s architecture.