I love getting a feel for where I'm traveling, getting a little slice of what life is like there, and that's much easier to do if you're staying where the locals live. I remember one New Year's, and a bunch of guests from the hostel went across the street to my neighbours' place, where they were butchering a pig and doing a hog fry- authentic experiences is one of the great parts of staying in Sandy Bay. On cruise ship days, you won't even notice that they're here if you're in Sandy Bay.
If you're a diver (or would like to learn how), there are several dive shops in Sandy Bay, including a couple that offer special pricing for hostel guests. Octopus Dive School also has paddleboard and kayak rentals.
Like nature? The Carambola Botanical Gardens is just a few minute walk away.
If you'd like to swim with the dolphins, Anthony's Key Resort is also located in Sandy Bay, about a 5 min walk from the hostel.
Snorkeling? The Sandy Bay beach is a 3 min walk away, and there's exceptional snorkeling about a 200 meter swim from shore.
Cheap eats are another great thing about Sandy Bay. There are several local eateries that are very inexpensive. They don't look too elegant (more like someone's kitchen than a restaurant), but the food is good, the portions are big, and most of the options will cost you under $5. If you want a fancier place, there are a few of those too- Blue Bahia Beach Grill, Frangipani at Mayoka, and Tranquil Seas are all in Sandy Bay.
If you're interested in doing volunteer work, Sandy Bay is the perfect base, as there are several non-profits here.
Of course, my favourite part of Sandy Bay is the hostel. Always fun people around, plus there's the pool, patio, and lizard lounge. For a night out on the town, I'll head in to West End. For a beach day, I'll go over to West Bay. For groceries, I'll make my way to Coxen Hole. But for days of relaxing, diving, snorkeling, and enjoying the people and the culture of the island, Sandy Bay is where I'll stay :)