Hello, Mouskefriends! With the brief glimpses of warmer temperatures here and there in
Chicagoland, I’m thinking of sunshine and a beach. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy some time in the sun than on everyone’s favorite port of call, Disney’s Castaway Cay.
Castaway Cay is Disney’s private island in the Bahamas and an exclusive port of call for Disney Cruise Line. You can make your way to Castaway Cay on any Bahamian sailing and many Caribbean itineraries, while aboard the Disney Fantasy and Disney Wish originating in Port Canaveral, and on the Disney Dream originating in Miami.
Did you know that you can even book Port Adventures (Disney’s coined term for excursions) on Castaway Cay? Like any other cruise port, you can plan several excursions here from fishing to glass bottom boat tours to parasailing, but we recommend just enjoying the island and its wonderful features.
It doesn’t get any more convenient than Castaway Cay, as the ship is able to dock right at the island and a quick tram ride or scenic walk leads you directly to paradise.
Arrival on Castaway Cay
When the ship arrives at Castaway Cay and you’ve been cleared to enter the island, everything you need will be there ready for you. You’ll be provided with towels to take with you, so no need to pack beach towels from home. You’ll also be given the opportunity to purchase a Disney Cruise Line soft-sided cooler with 6 bottles of water, or you can take your own refillable water bottle to stay hydrated in the sun.
At this point, you’ll either board the tram to the beaches, or take the sidewalks along the
gorgeous coastline. There are several photo spots available to give you that perfect backdrop for your family photos, and you can find characters such as Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Captain Jack Sparrow and more ready to pose with you at the character greeting locations while on your walk to the island fun!
Shopping on Castaway Cay
Shops with names such as ‘She Sells Seashells…and Everything Else’ and ‘Buy the Seashore’ are there to greet you and provide an opportunity to pick up any last-minute beach toys or sunscreen that you forgot, and offer exclusive Castaway Cay merchandise like shirts, mugs, water bottles, and Christmas ornaments.
You can also find merchandise from makers and artisans who are local to the Bahamas for a souvenir that you won’t find anywhere else.
Castaway Family Beach is the ultimate destination for families with children. A swimming lagoon with a climbing tower, Pelican Plunge water slide and play area, Spring-A-Leak splash pad, and the snorkeling lagoon provide so much fun that it’s difficult to fit it all into one day. Plenty of lounge chairs wait for you, with the thoughtful set up of 2 lounge chairs, 2 low-sitting chairs and an umbrella for families. In this area, you’ll also find the ‘In Da Shade Game Pavilion’ where you can take a break from the sun to play table tennis, foosball, basketball, and more. Tube rentals for floating in the lagoon and snorkeling gear can be rented ahead of time when booking your other Port Adventures for your sailing.
Serenity Bay is Castaway Cay’s adults-only beach for that tranquil beach time. To get to Serenity Bay, simply hop on the tram and get off at the second stop. For the ultimate serene experience, schedule a massage while you enjoy the sounds of the ocean.
Kids Clubs & Teen Areas
Scuttle’s Cove is for the little ones, ages 3-12, with a splash pad, games, and activities, and lots of play time with their friends while the grown-ups can have some time to unwind.
Teen Hideout is an area where teens 14-17 can lounge on the beach and participate in
organized games. But, what if you have a 13 year-old? Teen Hideout specifies that while teens ages 14-17 are invited to this enclave, you will find that 12- and 13-year-olds will have their time there, too. There are several opportunities for that age group to “Invade the Teen Hideout” that you’ll find in the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app. This is their chance to take over the club.
Castaway Cay 5K & Bike Paths
If you’re feeling active, you can take part in the Castaway Cay 5k, by either running or walking the marked path along the air strip and toward the observation tower and back. There are signs along the route showing you which way to go. When you are done, you can stop by the bike rental booth to request a medal. Bike rentals are also available, and you can bike these same paths and experience the island sights with the wind in your hair.
Dining on Castaway Cay
Cookies BBQ and Cookies Too BBQ are the buffet dining areas where you can grab lunch at your leisure at no additional cost. Typically, the menu consists of burgers, hot dogs, grilled chicken, and sides. You’ll also find that the soft-serve ice cream machine is always readily available when you want a treat. There are four bars onsite, plus servers who walk around taking drink orders. Beverages on Castaway Cay are an additional purchase. For the young and the young at heart, Olaf’s Summertime Freeze offers specialty frozen drinks in souvenir cups.
As if Castaway Cay wasn’t enough, Disney Cruise Line is developing a new private island on the southern tip of the Bahamian island of Eleuthera as a second exclusive port of call. The island has stunning pink sand beaches and Disney is thoughtfully developing the island in an effort to honor Bahamian culture and the beauty that already exists on Eleuthera.
Now that you’ve had a glimpse of Castaway Cay, are you ready to experience it for yourself? Contact me today to start planning your Disney Cruise Line vacation!
Katie is a runDisney marathoner and travel agent with Kingdom and Cruise Travel. Whether you are planning to runDisney or planning a magical vacation, she'd love to help you maximize your time and budget. Click here to send me an email.