I went to Disney's private island, Castaway Cay, and now I understand why it's such a hugely popular destination

Heather ConcannonIt has gorgeous, clear waters.

Disney’s Castaway Cay is a private island located in the Bahamas exclusively for Disney Cruise Line guests on the Bahamian and Caribbean sailings.

The private island is a huge favourite amongst cruisers. It has even been called the top-rated cruise line private island destination in Cruise Critic’s annual Cruisers’ Choice awards.

The island is full of relaxing and beautiful beaches, and a variety of Disney-themed activities along the shore.

Here are 10 reasons Castaway Cay is worth visiting.


The views are stunning.

Heather ConcannonThe island’s palm trees are picture perfect.

Although Castaway Cay has plenty of man-made landmarks and public areas, the island’s lush wildlife, balmy tropical weather and swaying palm trees are picture-perfect.

Before you run off to the beach, take time to explore the island and enjoy the scenery. My personal favourite area is the walkway from the ship towards the family beach. There are beautiful views of the ocean, the cruise ship, and the picturesque palm trees.


Serenity Bay is the adults-only escape.

Heather ConcannonIt feels like a private oasis.

I’ve previously raved about the tropical adults-only escape, Serenity Bay. This exclusive area of the island is my personal favourite because it truly feels like a private oasis.

Pull up a chair, lounge in a hammock, frolic in the light waves or work on your tan along the quiet and peaceful shores. I promise you will not have a more serene experience and you will never want to leave.


Snorkelling Lagoon offers a once in a lifetime experience.

Heather ConcannonYou can see gorgeous reefs and sea life.

One of my favourite activities on Castaway Cay is their massive snorkelling lagoon off of the Castaway Family Beach. Inside the lagoon, you can explore the turquoise waters to find a plethora of exotic sea life, enchanting reefs, and even some sunken treasures.

This activity is perfect for all skill levels of swimmers. If you are more of a novice, you can enjoy the “discover trail” while more experienced swimmers can challenge themselves with the “explorer trail.” This experience does cost a small fee, but I think it’s worth it.

My cousin and I decided to tackle the “explorer trail” during our last adventure on Castaway Cay. We spent hours exploring and got to see plenty of sea creatures. We also enjoyed finding all the hidden Mickeys along the trail.


The Castaway Cay 5K is popular.

Heather ConcannonIt’s a great way to stay fit on vacation.

One of the most popular activities on the island is the RunDisney Castaway Cay 5k. You don’t have to be a runner to enjoy this 3.1-mile experience around the island. Both runners and walkers are welcome to participate and earn a very special medal.

I still have yet to participate in the race, but I have several friends who have and thoroughly enjoyed the race and have told me that spaces fill up quickly. That being said, I highly recommend signing up at Guest Services as soon as possible – it is completely free to register.


Castaway Cay is home to a whirlwind of recreational activities.

Heather ConcannoThere really is something for everyone.

Whether you want to rent a bicycle to venture around the island, fly high along the shores para-sailing, ride a thrilling banana boat around the island or even paddle-board to get a closer view of the ship, there is truly something for everyone.

Many of these activities are available to book in advance, so I highly recommend reserving your activities before embarking on the cruise.


The Castaway Cay Cabana Massage lets you enjoy a massage and the breeze.

Heather ConcannonThese cabanas fill up fast so make sure to book in advance.

You can treat yourself to an extra special massage in an open-air cabana. Nothing is more relaxing than enjoying your massage while taking in the soft breeze and beautiful views of Serenity Bay.

There are two different cabana spa experiences – one for just you and one for couples. Both are Swedish massages that allow you to de-stress, relax and get in touch with the natural beauty of the island.


The Castaway Cay Family Beach is filled with familiar faces.

Heather ConcannonIt’s one of the more crowded parts of the island.

Since this is a Disney island, there is a special beach dedicated to family fun where kids of all ages can enjoy some time soaking up the sun.

The Castaway Cay Family Beach has tons of activities to keep every member of your family entertained. Families can take advantage of the many recreational activities I mentioned earlier. They can also enjoy live music, and fun outdoor games. You might even spot some of your favourite Disney characters.

This beach is certainly the most crowded area of the island but it definitely has plenty of personality and whimsy which makes it worth stopping by.


Air Bar BBQ & Cookie’s BBQ has a variety of food options.

Heather ConcannonYou can order ice cream or even steak.

It wouldn’t be a perfect beach day without some tasty barbecue. There are two delicious outdoor venues for guests to enjoy – Air Bar BBQ & Cookie’s BBQ.

Cookie’s BBQ is next to the Castaway Cay Family Beach and has everything to make up the perfect barbecue including hot dogs, hamburgers, fresh fruit, and ice cream.

The Air Bar BBQ is located by Serenity Bay and is for adults only. Although this dining option features the traditional barbecue fare featured at Cookie’s BBQ, it also serves upscale menu items like steak and mahi-mahi.


The Castaway Air Bar has tasty beverages.

Heather ConcannonMany of the drinks are served in souvenir coconuts.

The Castaway Air Bar, located alongside Serenity Bay, can help you embrace the island life. The bar has a wide variety of signature cocktails, traditional favourites, and non-alcoholic smoothies.

Many of these beverages have the option to come in souvenir coconuts or Tiki mugs, which make the perfect memento of your time at Castaway Cay.


Olaf’s Summertime Freeze has refreshing drinks.

Heather ConcannonThey sell alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

If you are a fan of the famous Disney classic, “Frozen” then you need to make a stop at Olaf’s Summertime Freeze. This charming hideaway commemorates the beloved snowman, Olaf and his love for summer.

Olaf’s Summertime Freeze serves some refreshing and delicious non-alcoholic frozen beverages. These beverages can be purchased in souvenir mugs shaped like Olaf and Sven. They’re too adorable not to pass up. Speaking of adorable- don’t forget to snap a photo with the sandy statuette of Olaf.

The wintery wonderland is located near the Pelican Point tram stop, by the Castaway Cay Family Beach.

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