Cable Beach - Close to downtown, soft fine sand with usual beach amenities. Quiet beach with clear water however there is currently some construction going on at Baha Mar that is a bit of a disruption and eyesore. The easiest way to get there and back is via Jitney Bus #10 or #10a for $1.25 per person and there are public beach accesses between the large hotels. There are no public restrooms available here exceptfor the hotel/resort restrooms and they are reserved for only hotel/resort guests. Goodman's Bay is also very close to Cable Beach and is a nice alternative.
Junkanoo Beach - It is also called the Western Esplanade or Lighthouse Beach. It is the closest to the cruise terminal and is a narrow strip of beach but it is very convenient with restrooms, changing facilities and a snack bar.
Cabbage Beach (Paradise Island) - Overall a beautiful public beach that stretches for over a mile and a half. The main ways to get to Cabbage Beach are to walk via the paradise Island Bridge, take a taxi or to take the water taxi/ferryboat from the port area. Good for activities, Good selection of water-sports rentals and selections of local eats. There are no public restrooms however there are several bars and restaurants that will allow you to use their facilities if you are a customer.
Goodman's Bay -- A public beach just east of Cable Beach (between the Port and Cable Beach). Goodman's Bay often host local fund-raising cookouts specializing in local food and play reggae and calypso music through the day. There are restrooms and a playground here as well.
Paradise Beach -- This beach is on Paradise Island and is one of the best in the entire area. White sand, palm trees and thatched huts which are perfect when you've had too much sun. Mainly for the guests of the Atlantis Resort, it lies at the island's far western tip. If you're not a guest, access is difficult. Day passes are available but hard to come by. If you want to come to Paradise Island for a day at the beach, it's better to go to Cabbage Beach.
Caves Beach- In Rock Point, another good option for peace and quiet but it is almost 7 miles from the downtown Nassau and port area. Quiet and not well known but there are no restrooms or changing facilities.
Love Beach - 12 miles west of downtown Nassau at Compass Point. Some #10 jitney buses go this far but it is difficult to access the beach due to no public access points. Access can be had for $5 at a place called Nirvana (purple house past the Compass Point hotel). Some unofficial public accesses are said to be available through vacant lots or along fences but the information is vague. Love Beach is known for great snorkeling because it is primarily a rocky and coral bottom which is not always the best for all beach goers. It also offers some quiet seclusion which may also be why the area has also been known for being clothing optional.