Half Moon Cay is Holland America Line’s private island in the Bahamas. It’s a quiet paradise port stop to relax and unwind. RomanticSouth.com visited this serene and powdery sand beach to see just what the fuss was all about. It’s a fantastic port stop for couples, families, groups of friends, and even the solo cruiser.
Here’s what we discovered on our visit:
The natural beauty of this private island in the Bahamas has been preserved through responsible environmental practices. There are a limited number of visitors allowed on the island at one time. The island is inhabited by only 45 people, who work on, and maintain the island. This is a crescent shaped coral island also known as Little San Salvador Island, one of 700 islands that make up the archipelago of the Bahamas.
This island is accessed from the cruise ship via tender, since it does not have deep water docking.
Half Moon Cay offers something for everyone. The younger cruisers can check out Club HAL’s outdoor play area, conveniently located near community restrooms. There is also a chapel on the island, for those wishing to exchange vows in a remote and private setting.
In addition to the various watersports options, such as paddle boards and water bikes, there is horseback riding (by land and sea), the Aqua Trax Adventure or a shuttle tour around the island, snorkeling, and swimming with the Stingrays.
One of the special activities beachside is morning yoga, through a partnership with O Magazine.
Eat and Drink
Lunch is provided for cruisers at the Dining Pavilion, but get there early, as the food gets put away at 1:00pm. For an additional charge, The Lobster Shack offers Caribbean Lobster dinners and Lobster Rolls. This is another option to get in line for early, as the Lobster dinners run out. Keep in mind, due to environmental reasons, supplies are brought onto the island for cruise passengers and are limited.
Our favorite spot for a drink was the Captain Morgan on the Rocks Bar. It’s built in the shape of a pirate ship and is a fun, tree house style abode for adults.
Down the walkway is another place for a cool drink, the I Wish I Could Stay Here Forever Bar.
Cabanas and Beach Villas
For small groups, or a couple wishing the ultimate privacy, this port stop can be spent in your own private cabana, or if feeling more adventurous, a private beach villa. We enjoyed the use of a Beach Villa, thanks to HAL.
These two story beach villas can accommodate 8-16 people and some include a 5 person hot tub, refrigerator, small kitchen, air conditioning, and a private bathroom.
My favorite moments at Half Moon Cay were walking along the shoreline of crystal blue water with my feet in the powdery soft sand. I passed a few couples here and there along my walk, as they took time for themselves to relax and renew their spirits.
It was a beautiful day at Half Moon Cay, and my soul wasn’t quite ready to depart this quiet and peaceful port stop. However, Holland America Line’s Nieuw Amsterdam was waiting in the distance, with many other opportunities for relaxation and pampering.
Special thanks to Holland America Line for hosting this experience. For more information to book your own cruise vacation, visit HollandAmerica.com.