For many guests, Castaway Cay, 2018 Cruise Critic Destination Award-winner for Best Cruise Line Private Island, is the highlight of their Disney Cruise! A day spent on Disney’s private island in the Caribbean is as close to a your dream beach day as you can get. There is so much to do for every member of your family. Whether you’re cruising with your kids or you’re vacationing with your extended family, you’re sure to have fun with these 12 best Castaway Cay activities.
Here are just a few of the things to do on Castaway Cay…
1. Character Meet and Greets
Guests aren’t the only ones out to enjoy the beach. You’ll find many of your favorite Disney characters decked out in their beach attire for meet and greets (and often the lines to meet them are shorter here than they will be on the ship). Keep your eyes peeled, and your camera ready, because the characters can be found at the Post Office, Gazebo, gangway and elsewhere on Castaway Cay.! Other great photo opportunities include the Mount Rustmore character buoys (Mickey, Pluto, Donald and Goofy), a photo under the Castaway Cay sign, and of course a photo with that beautiful Disney ship in the background.
If you are looking for some adventure, there are many excursions available during your Castaway Cay day. Some of the options include parasailing, deep sea fishing, banana boat rides, aqua trikes, inner tube rentals, and even an opportunity to feed the stingrays. Check with the Port Adventures desk onboard for more information (or better yet, book in advance online). (Note that excursions are not included in your cruise fare).
Snorkelers of all skill levels will be enchanted by the undersea realm of marine life off Castaway Family Beach. Novices can follow the Discover Trail, while more experienced snorkelers may wish to tackle the Explorer Trail. Keep an eye out for the hidden Mickey! Two rental locations are available on the island to rent equipment for a nominal additional fee.
No beach day is complete without a delicious lunch, and of course, you’ll find one here on Castaway Cay. The Barbecue Buffet Lunch is served at 3 locations: Cookies BBQ (on the near side of the family beach), Cookies Too (on the far side of the family beach), and Serenity Bay BBQ (on the adult-only beach). The buffet ends at 2 PM, but boxed lunches will be available after 2:00. At each of these locations you will find grilled burgers and hot dogs, veggie burgers, fried chicken sandwiches, and pork ribs. Sides include corn on the cob, baked beans, coleslaw, and German potato salad — and there’s also a fruit bar, as well as soft serve ice cream cookies and banana bread for dessert. At each location on Castaway Cay, you’ll find a serve-yourself drink bar, with everything from soda and iced tea to coffee for the grown-ups and milk for the kids. In addition to the above at Serenity Bay you will also find steaks and a grilled fish or seafood options. There are multiple bars located throughout Castaway Cay. You can charge drink purchases to your shipboard account, so there is no need to carry cash. Be sure to check out the drink specials! One of the most popular options is the tropical rum punch called a “Konk Kooler.”
5. Go for a Bike Ride
Traverse tropical terrain and winding offshore paths at your own leisure, pedaling your way around the island for fun-filled exploration. Then, ride along the airstrip and turn off the road at one of 2 nature trails. Take a breather and park your bike. Then, climb the observation tower for a breathtaking view of the island. If you’d like to explore the island a bit, renting a bike is the perfect way to do so! They have bikes available in a variety of sizes and even have training wheels available for the littlest riders. (Note: bike rental does require a nominal additional fee)
6. Hide Out
Teens, age 14 to 17, have their own designated area at the Hide Out. They’ll find loungers and umbrellas here to hang out with friends and relax (perfect spot for that Snapchat photo to send to friends back home!).
7. Pelican Plunge
This water-play area and platform which celebrates the island’s native pelicans is a 2,400-square-foot floating platform complete with a 2 twisting water slides that carry you into the refreshing lagoon. Or, get soaked by the giant “bucket dump” that sprays hundreds of gallons of water on eagerly awaiting bathers beneath. Pelican Plunge is a floating platform which you’ll find in the ocean near the family beach. Your kids will love exploring this playscape! Be sure to go early because the lines do tend to get long!
8. Spring a Leak?
Kids can cool off at this 2,400-square-foot water play area and quench their thirst for adventure by exploring the “remnants” of a washed-away beach dwelling. The splashing fun begins as they enter the storm-ravaged structure and are greeted by dripping pipes, broken plumbing and hissing misters that have been exposed and twisted by the tropical tempest that “wiped out” the original structure?
9. Drop Your Kids Off at Scuttle’s Cove
The youngest cruisers, ages 3 to 12, will enjoy this kid’s club—a “hub” of youth activities supervised by Disney counselors from the ship. This sandy play spot features a whimsical water play area: a 1,200-square-foot soft wet deck area provides fresh-water fun with an array of pop jets, geysers and bubblers. With organized activities and Monstro’s Point—a giant whale-bone excavation site—kids will be delighted all day long. Then …
10. Serenity Bay
Mom and Dad can sneak away to Serenity Bay a secluded, adults only oasis for some time to relax. There, you can unwind in the heart of serenity The beach is nice and quiet, with calm, clear water and plenty of chairs, loungers and hammocks.. For the ultimate in relaxation, book a beach massage in one of the private cabanas! You’ll want to book well in advance as this option is quite popular.
11. Rent a Beach Cabana
For the ultimate in relaxation and privacy you can rent a beach cabana. All cabanas come with indoor and outdoor cushioned seating, a locker/safe to store valuables, a freshwater shower, hammock, a mini-fridge with unlimited soda and bottled water, fresh fruit and damp washcloths for cooling off, snacks (chips and granola bars), plush towels, sunscreen, and a call button for cabana service.. Also included are the use of snorkel equipment and sand toys, as well as free float, tube, and bike rentals.
12. Get Your Castaway Cay Souvenirs
Castaway Cay souvenirs are ONLY sold on Castaway Cay! You will NOT be able to purchase any Castaway Cay exclusive merchandise on the ship. You can find exclusive beachwear, hats, souvenirs and collectible pins with the Castaway Cay logo at two convenient locations, She Sells Sea Shells…and Everything Else and Buy the Seashore! And the Disney cruise staff will be happy to deliver your purchases to the ship. One of my favorite souvenirs is to send myself (or others) a postcard from the Castaway Cay Post Office and get the special Castaway Cay post mark on it! Bahamian stamps are required and can be purchased here or onboard. Bring cash as your “Key to the World” card will not work at the Post Office.
A message from Lorrie…
Ready to set sail on your next Disney Cruise? I’d love to help you get started planning! The perfect cruise vacation begins with scheduling your complimentary Dream Vacation Planning Session. To select a time that is convenient for you go to www.ScheduleYourDream.com . I’ll be happy to make some recommendations for you and to share with you how I can help make your Disney Cruise practically perfect in every way!
I am an Independent Travel Agent with Dream Departures Travel who works with busy parents to help create magical vacations and cherished memories to theme park, cruise, and island destinations in the US, Caribbean, and Mexico. I handle every last detail creating personalized plans that bring your family’s vacation dreams to life.