CoCo Cay Island (officially Little Stirrup Cay ) is one of Bahamas' Berry Islands, an archipelago of small isles and cays. It is located approx 55 mi (90 km) north of Nassau The island is privately leased and used exclusively by Royal Caribbean for cruise ship tourism purposes. CocoCay is adjacent to the NCL Norwegian Cruise Line's private island Great Stirrup Cay. The nearest large island is Great Harbour Cay.
CocoCay is one of Royal Caribbean's "Perfect Day Island Collection" - privately developed land destinations in the regions of Caribbean, Asia and Australia (Lelepa Vanuatu). RCCL's "Island Collection" project's total budget is USD 200 million. The first ship scheduled to visit the new "Perfect Day CocoCay" was Navigator of the Seas - during the 3-day Bahamas cruise (May 3-6, 2019) from Miami to CocoCay (May 4) and Nassau (May 5).
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd (RCCL), which owns the brands Azamara, Celebrity, and Royal Caribbean International, assumed the lease of the isle upon Admiral Cruises' acquisition and renamed it Coco Cay. RCCL is one of the first companies to lease islands for exclusive use.
CocoCay has width ~1 mi (1,5 km / east to west). Most of the tourist activities are in its eastern part, where are also the beaches. They front a coral reef basin. On the island's northern side there is a covered pier where the ship's tender boats dock to embark/disembark passengers.
CocoCay Island refurbishments 2015-2019
CocoCay was refurbished and expanded in the years 2015, 2016, 2017-2018, and in 2018-2019. With each project completed, to the island were added new venues, amenities and services, and many of the existing ones were redesigned, expanded and upgraded.
In mid-March 2018 was announced the private island renovation project ("Perfect Day at CocoCay") which was completed in phases (starting September 2018). The official opening was on May 4, 2019 (most new attractions) and full completion in December 2019 (when South Beach and Coco Beach Club were inaugurated).
For season 2020, RCI estimated that the island will be visited by 2+ million cruise tourists. RCI also considers the option for 3-ship calls per day, thus increasing the island's max daily passenger capacity from 6,000 to 10,000 and even 12,000 (with bigger liners).
In 2015, to CocoCay's amenities were added:
- The old cabanas ("cabanettes", accommodating 2 guests) were renamed to "Beach Loungers". Cabana rental costs USD 59 (for 2 guests) and include 2 bottles of water (in a cooler), towels, 2 beach mats (floating) and a fruit plate. Alternatively, beach mats cost USD 18 PP. UPDATE: Since September 2016, RCI lowered the beach lounger rental to USD 45 and "regrettably" removed all amenities previously included in the deal.
- Previously, Royal Caribbean passengers were provided with a pulled by a tractor shuttle transportation as an alternative to long-distance walks. In 2015 were added new trams, which are quieter and taller, and the ride is smoother.
- Previously, the tram's path was south of the nature trail (passing by the barracks and ending east of the cabanas. The 2015-added new tram route is shorter, running north of the nature trail and also ending east of the cabanas.
- A new freshwater shower was added to the Barefoot Beach area (north of Beach Lounger Bar).
Note: For cabana rental prices see at port's "tours, shore excursion" section (at page bottom).
As a cabana alternative, on the South Beach (fka Barefoot Beach) are offered the new Beach Loungers - shaded (clamshell) loungers called "cabanette". Upon arrival, you go to the open-air bar area, meet your attendant and get towels.
- Loungers are available on a first-come-first-served basis.
- Coco Loco (souvenir cups) are available at the beach bar.
- The new Floating Bar is located just a quick walk away from the lounger area.
- Beach Loungers can be pre-cruise booked (reserved) via the RCI's "Cruise Planner". Note: You only need to book the lounger under one person.
Among CocoCay's newly added amenities is the new swim-up bar located near Barefoot Beach (aka South Beach). The new bar is adults-only and was inaugurated in July 2016. It is freely floating in the ocean, meaning to get a drink the island's visitors have to swim to it. The bar's rules forbid diving, flips, stunts, horseplay, trucks, pushing, also diving or swimming under the bar. Other new (2016) additions are new cabanas and a new island dock.
Next is the floorplan of the 2019-added floating / overwater cabanas at Coco Beach Club (capacity 450 tourists). Each cabana is fitted with wet bar, freshwater shower, lockable storage, overwater hammock, USB charging power outlet, ice-cold cooler, beach towels, waterslide, cabana concierge (dedicated food and drinks service).
Coco Beach Club has a total of 20 floating plus 10 land cabanas, each with max occupancy 8 tourists. The premium resort complex also offers as facilities and amenities a clubhouse, an infinity swimming pool, daybeds, beverage service, The Grille (complimentary restaurant).
A total of 35 beach bungalows (max capacity 6 guests each) are located in the island's South Beach ("members-only") area. The rental costs USD 225 per day. Each bungalow rental deal includes beach mats (floating), beach towels and water. Transportation to and from the area is via private shuttles. To the amenities of CocoCay's South Beach area were added new restrooms (located nearby, at ~5-min walking distance) and a total of 650 sunloungers.
Since 2016, CocoCay offers full-day beach bed rentals. Rental costs USD 150 capacity up to 6 guests each) and is inclusive of 2 floating beach mats, beach towels and a cooler (with 4 bottles of water). Beach beds are positioned among the South Beach's palm trees and have adjustable curtain walls. Transportation to and from the area is via private Cocolimo shuttle.
Refurbishments and island expansion 2017-2018
In early-March 2017, Royal Caribbean announced a planned investment in Coco Cay. The expansion project included building of a dedicated cruise ship docking pier, adding new facilities, amenities and duty-free shopping options.
The new pier is covered and able to handle RCI's largest (Oasis-class) ships. Construction works will be done in several phases, with scheduled completion in 2019. The project will not affect the RCI's scheduled cruises to CocoCay. According to RCI, CocoCay's pier was completed in June 2018.
Royal Caribbean also signed a 5-year agreement with The Bahamas government aimed to increase the cruise company's employment of Bahamian citizens. The company will also invest in a hospitality training program. The company will create a curriculum to prepare thousands of Bahamian students for maritime careers on RCCL ships. Classes will be lead by certified instructors providing theoretical and practical information and training to help students develop hospitality skills. Besides classroom teaching, students will also receive training from the company's onboard staff.
On April 26, 2017, Royal Caribbean held an official groundbreaking ceremony while Enchantment of the Seas was docked here on a 4-day Bahamas cruise roundtrip from Miami to Nassau, (April 25), Coco Cay and Key West Florida (April 27).
Among the island's newly added amenities are a basketball court, bocce ball court (for up to 4 players), bowling court, volleyball nets, large-size pool table.
Island expansion 2018-2019
Thrill Waterpark attraction was constructed with 2 water towers (Daredevil's Tower, Family Tower) and a total of 13 slides. Daredevil's Tower complex consists of North America's tallest waterslide "Daredevil's Peak" (height 135 ft / 41 m), Dueling Demons (2 drop slides), Manta Racers (2 high-speed slides), Screeching Serpent (fully vertical slide), Green Mamba (coiling slide), Tidal Wave (boomerang-style slide in the Family Tower area), as well as Caribbean's largest wave pool (Adventure Pool) with obstacle course (lily pads), rock-climbing wall and rope swing (in the swimming pool). Family Tower complex consists of all 6 waterslides, including 1 tubed (The Twister, capacity 2 persons sharing 1 raft), 1 zero-gravity (The Slingshot, capacity 4 persons) and 1 racing (Splash Speedway, with 4 lanes). NOTE: For waterslides height and weight restrictions see at port's "tours, shore excursion" section (page bottom).
Caribbean's biggest freshwater swimming pool "Oasis Lagoon" (sized 3080 m2 / 33170 ft2) has a swim-up bar with in-water stools, benches and water loungers. Caribbean's only Zip-line with water landing has length 1600 ft (488 m) and crisscrosses the island at heights up to 50 ft (15 m). The Bahamas' highest vantage point (an attraction named "Up, Up and Away") is a helium balloon flying up to 450 ft (137 m) above ground.
CocoCay has 3 new beaches:
- Chill Island Beach is accessed via a green pathway and has private cabanas and daybeds. This is CoCo Cay's most quiet area. Nearby is the Artisan Market (cash-only straw market) where local vendors sell handmade goods.
- South Beach is specifically designed for beachside activities - volleyball, basketball, soccer, paddleboards, glass-bottom seakayaks, zorbs / inflatable bumper bubble balls. At South Beach are offered bungalows, daybeds, teepees (cone-shaped tents).
- Coco Beach Club is a VIP (but not suite passenger-exclusive) beach with overwater cabanas providing premium island vacation experiences. Coco Beach cabana rentals are inclusive of 1 hammock (overwater), 1 waterslide, dedicated service (by an attendant). The complex also includes a freshwater infinity pool, full bar, an exclusive restaurant (serving Mediterranean cuisine specialties).
Other newly added island attractions and amenities include:
- Shipwreck Galleon ("Captain Jack's Galleon" kids park) has 30 water cannons. The Sprayaway Geyser sprays water up to 82 ft (25 m) in the air. Both are part of Splashaway Bay aquapark. This is the enlarged version of the Royal Caribbean ships upgraded onboard aqua parks for kids, fitted with fountains, splash pools, sprinklers, geysers, cannons, whirlpools, slides, 2 drench buckets.CaptainJack's Galleon"
- Captain Jack's is a new bar and dining venue - designed as a rowboat, with waterfront views, serving beverages and fast-food items (including chicken wings and steak fries).
- The complimentary Skipper's Grill restaurant serves lunch fast-food, including sandwiches, burgers, tacos, salads.
- The complimentary beachside restaurant Chill Grill is CocoCay's largest. Also new is the food bar Snack Shack.
- Newly added amenities include wave runner and boat tours, snorkeling, private cabanas and daybeds for rental, several beach bars with upgraded menus.
- At all swimming pools are allowed toddlers in swim diapers.
In May 2018, RCI announced plans to build permanent accommodations on CocoCay allowing Suite passengers to stay on the island overnight (or longer). The concept includes premium cabanas serving passengers on any of the RCI ships calling at CocoCay.
NOTE: For CocoCay prices see at port's "tours, shore excursion" section (page bottom).
In October 2019, RCI partnered with Funky Buddha Brewery (Oakland Park FL) for an exclusive beer label available only on CocoCay's Funky Buddha taproom. Royal Caribbean's private beer label "Chilla Thrilla" was trademarked on July 8, 2019. The craft beer (5% ABV) is a tropical ale (with mango and guava) packaged in 12-oz cans and is offered in different labels themed after CocoCay's areas.
Island expansion 2021-2022 (Hideaway Beach /adults-only)
In September 2021 was announced the "Hideaway Beach" (CocoCay's western end).
Details on the new experience will be revealed in the coming months.
The adults-only area will be opened in 2022-Q4.
Rental prices on cabanas (Chill Island, Thrill Waterpark, Oasis Lagoon) range between USD 300-1000. Coco Beach Club cabanas cost USD 1050 while Floating Cabanas there cost USD 2500. These prices are per day and per cabana (not per person) and inclusive of 8 water bottles (additional bottles cost extra).
As max capacity, cabanas at CocoCay accommodate 6-8 people, which allows sharing (and splitting the cost) with other cruisers (or another family).
Chill Island cabanas
Chill Island cabanas are on Chill Island's northern side, near the tours office. Each cabana accommodates max 8 people and offers as price-inclusive amenities and services dedicated Cabana Concierge, towels (8), food (Chill Grill), chaise lounge chairs (2), L-shaped sectional sofa, cocktail table, power outlets, USB port, storage locker, drinks cooler (stocked with 8 water bottles/free). Upon request are provided (complimentary) portable Bluetooth speaker, floating mats, snorkeling gear.
Thrill Waterpark cabanas
Thrill Waterpark cabanas are located near Thrill Waterpark (playground complex) and positioned near Daredevil's Peak, Family Tower and the Wave Pool. Before booking the cabanas (at least 24 hours prior ship arrival at CocoCay), guests must specify which of these 3 locations they prefer.
Thrill Waterpark cabanas accommodate max 6 people and as complimentary amenities/service offer L-shaped sofa, 2 sun loungers, towels (6), Thrill Waterpark entrance (6-person complimentary full-day pass, all waterslides and activities), drinks cooler (stocked with 8 water bottles/free), storage locker, power outlets, USB port.
Oasis Lagoon cabanas
Oasis Lagoon cabanas are located by the Adventure Pool (freshwater, with a swim-up bar), accommodate max 8 people and offer as complimentary amenities/service L-shaped sofa, cocktail table, chaise lounge chairs (2), towels (8), dedicated Cabana Concierge, storage locker, power outlets, USB port, drinks cooler (stocked with 8 water bottles/free), portable Bluetooth speaker (on request).
Coco Beach Club cabanas
Coco Beach Club cabanas accommodate max 8 people and rental prices are inclusive of Coco Beach Club full-day pass (8-person), dining table, lounge chairs (4), L-shaped sofa, drinks cooler (unlimited bottled water), ceiling fan, storage locker, dedicated Cabana Concierge, towels (8), room service (menu orders from Coco Beach Club restaurant).
Floating cabanas at Coco Beach Club accommodate max 8 people and feature overwater hammock (1), small waterslide (running into the sea), L-shaped sofa, minibar, dining table, lounge chairs (4), towels (8), power outlets, USB ports, storage locker, drinks cooler (unlimited bottled water), dedicated Cabana Concierge.
CocoCay tips and tricks
- Bring from the ship your SeaPass card, cash (for the artisan market and tipping the cabana attendants), sunscreen, beach towels, closed-toe shoes (for the Zipline).
- RCI's beverage packages (all) and Voom (Internet packages) work at CocoCay.
- The best times to short Thrill Waterpark's water slide lines are before 11 AM and after 3 PM.
- The Snack Shack bar's printed menu doesn't include the Chicken Parmigiana sandwich but you still can order one.
- Two water splash (outdoor playgrounds for kids) are for free - Splashaway Bay and Captain Jill's Galleon.
- To save money, pre-purchase online (via Cruise Planner) or on the ship your Thrill Waterpark admission tickets.
- Your RCI cruise fares are inclusive of the following CocoCay facilities/activities: Splashaway Bay, Captain Jill's Galleon, Snack Shack, Chill Grill, Skipper's Grill, beach chairs-beach wheelchairs-umbrellas-towels-showers (at Oasis Lagoon, Chill Island, South Beach), Sports Courts, Tram service (around the island), Fitness Classes, self-serve soft ice cream machines (Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches), lifejackets (swim vests).
- Lockers (at Thrill Waterpark, Chill Island, the Ziplines, and near the Helium Balloon) are free (first-come-first-serve basis).
- Chill Island is the quietest spot on CocoCay.
- South Beach's swim-up bar is a must.
- Take breakfast on the ship before disembarking the ship - only Coco Beach Club offers a breakfast alternative in the early morning (coffee and pastries).
- Booking a cabana at Thrill Waterpark is recommended for families.
- There is a snorkeling area at CocoCay for enjoying marine life (fish, stingrays, sea turtles) and a submerged plane wreck.
- Best-selling RCI shore excursions here are the Helium Balloon Ride, the Zip-Lines (3x around the island), as well as jet skiing, scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking.
- CocoCay is wheelchair-accessible, excepting only Oasis Lagoon's pool, and Thrill Waterpark's and Zipline's towers.
- Captain Jack's bar features rope swings (seats) and live music performances.
- Drones are prohibited to be used both on the ship and on the island.
CocoCay has ~6000 sun loungers, ~1200 umbrellas, 13 waterslides (at Thrill Waterpark).
Coco Cay cruise terminal
Before 2018, Royal Caribbean ships to CocoCay Island were moored (anchored) and their passengers were offloaded (tendered ashore) via the ship's tender boats. The tendering ride was about 15 min. The liner's tenders docked at a dedicated pier to embark / disembark passengers.
Cruise ship disembarkation on the island is in the morning, at around 10:30 am. After the tendering, passengers go to the Shore Excursions desk. At building's back stops a tram going to the Beach Lounger area. The route is also a long walk on the beach, so walking to the loungers/beach area is a great option to see the island's vast majority along your way.
Since June 2018, cruise liners dock directly at the new pier, where are able to berth even the world's largest Oasis-class boats.
Coco Cay tours, shore excursions, hotels
City Tours and Shore Excursions
CocoCay offers the following complimentary amenities and facilities:
- dining venues (Skipper's Grill, Chill Grill, three Snack Shack bars), self-serve ice cream machines
- Oasis Lagoon (swimming pool)
- beach chairs, towels, freshwater showers, changing rooms, restrooms, sports courts, island tram service, selected fitness classes
- Beach umbrellas and lockers are available for a nominal rental fee.
- Bars and self-service beer stations are a la carte priced.
- Captain Jack's dining menu is a la carte priced.
- At surcharge are cabanas, daybeds, watersports equipment (diving, snorkeling, seakayaks, boats, etc).
- CocoCay serves VOOM Internet and Wi-Fi packages and all RCI drink packages available for shipboard purchasing. Note: souvenir cups and beverages in coconuts/pineapples are not package-inclusive. WiFi coverage is island-wide.
- CocoCay doesn't offer dedicated daycare services. However, Royal Caribbean's kids program "Adventure Ocean" is complimentary and provides dedicated staff for supervised activities on the island.
- Gluten-free and vegetarian food is available at all dining venues.
- There are designated smoking-allowed areas.
- Charging stations are complimentary and available in all cabanas plus some public venues.
- Most trash is recycled on the island, the rest is sent to the cruise ship.
There are no age restrictions on CocoCay, but some waterslides and activities (including helium balloon and zip-line) have height and weight restrictions.
- Daredevil Peak waterslide (length 135 ft / 41 m) - 48 inches (122 cm) - 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Dueling Demons waterslides (length 75 ft / 23 m) - 48 inches / 300 lbs
- Slingshot and Twister waterslides (length 60 ft / 18 m) - 48 inches / 300 lbs
- Screeching Serpent and Green Mamba waterslides (length 50 ft / 15 m) - 48 inches / 300 lbs
- Splash Speedway waterslides (length 40 ft / 12 m) - 42 inches (107 cm) - 300 lbs
- Manta Raycers waterslides (length 25 ft / 8 m) - 40 inches (102 cm) - 300 lbs
- Splashaway Bay waterslides - 42 inches / 200 lbs (91 kg)
- slide rafts max weight - 550 lbs (250 kg)
- Adventure Pool and Wave Pool - under 48 inches (122 cm) must be with swim vests
- Zip Line weights - min 50 lbs (23 kg) / max 300 lbs (136 kg)
- Note: best/minimal-wait times for the waterslides are before 11am and after 3pm.
Cabana rentals are available at all beaches, plus Thrill Waterpark and Oasis Lagoon (swimming pool). Overwater cabanas (max capacity 8 persons) are available at Coco Beach Club. Cabana rentals are inclusive of attendant service, hammock, minibar, personal waterslide (going into the sea). Thrill Waterpark cabanas (max 6 persons) are inclusive of entry fees, all waterslides and activities. Coco Beach cabanas are for max 8 persons. Cabana rental prices are as follows:
- Chill Island, South Beach and Oasis Lagoon (pool) cabanas are for 8 persons and cost $299-569.
- The 6-person Thrill Waterpark cabanas cost $499-869 and are inclusive of park fees.
- The 8-person Coco Beach Club cabanas cost $949-1549 and are inclusive of club fees.
- The 8-person Coco Beach Club overwater cabanas cost $999-1599 and are inclusive of club fees.
- Since March 2020, cabana rentals at Chill Island, Oasis Lagoon and South Beach include the option of adding 2 more guests (beyond the cabana's max capacity) for USD 50 pp.
Next are listed Royal Caribbean CocoCay shore excursions with prices.
|Excursion Name / Booking Code||Duration||Price per Adult (USD)||Price per Child (USD)|
|Aqua Park - Caylana's Castle Cove (ZC08)||1 h||22||22|
|Aqua Park / Water Slide Combo (ZCC5)||1 h||37||37|
|Beach Bungalows (ZCV3)||full day||279||279|
|Beach Lounger for Two (ZCU5)||full day||45||45|
|Certified Scuba Dive With Equipment (ZC04)||1 h 30 min||68||68|
|Certified Scuba Dive Without Equipment (ZC05)||1 h 30 min||57||57|
|CocoCay All Day Snorkeling at your Leisure (ZC06)||full day||39||29|
|CocoCay Nature Walk (ZCC7)||1 h 15 min||30||23|
|CocoCay Wave Jet Tour - Driver (ZC02)||1 h 15 min||109||109|
|CocoCay Wave Jet Tour - Passenger (ZC11)||1 h 15 min||33||33|
|Floating Beach Mat (ZC01)||full day||18||18|
|Full-Day Beach Bed Rental (ZCV5)||full day||157||157|
|Kayak Adventure (ZC07)||1 h 30 min||43||43|
|Kayak Adventure and Snorkel Combo (ZCD7)||1 h 30 min||72||57|
|Ocean View Deluxe Cabana (ZCh5)||full day||309||309|
|Parasail Adventure Tour (QCC1)||1 h||104||104|
|Reef Snorkeling and Sandbar Getaway (QCD5)||2 h 30 min||57||47|
|Right Choice Glass Bottom Boat Tour (QCC3)||1 h 30 min||42||33|
|Stingray City Bahamas (QCC8)||1 h 30 min||67||49|
|Teen Adventure Pack (ZCC8)||3 h||54||54|
|Water Slide - All Day Access (ZC10)||full day||26||26|
Coco Beach Club costs $54-99 (ages 13+), $24-64 (ages 4-12) and is complimentary for toddlers (ages 3-).
"Up Up and Away" (helium balloon) costs $39-99 (ages 13+), $24-64 (ages 4-12) and is complimentary for toddlers (ages 3-).
Zip-Line costs $79-139 pp. Thrill Waterpark costs $44-99 (full day pass), $39-74 (half day pass) and is complimentary for toddlers (ages 3-). You can save money by purchasing Thrill Waterpark tickets via CruisePlanner (before the voyage). Thrill Waterpark's age restriction is 14-years-old, meaning all children under 14 must be accompanied by a cruise passenger of 14+ years of age to enter the facility.
"Thrill Waterpark" plus "Zip Line" packages cost $99-179 (full day pass) and $89-149 (half day pass).
Port Coco Cay cruise ship schedule shows timetable calendars of all arrival and departure dates by month. The port's schedule lists all ships (in links) with cruises going to or leaving from Coco Cay, Bahamas, Royal Caribbean. To see the full itineraries (ports of call dates and arrival / departure times) and their lowest rates – just follow the corresponding ship-link.
|1 January, 2022|
|Independence Of The Seas||07:00||17:00|
|1 January, 2022|
|Harmony Of The Seas||09:00||17:00|
|2 January, 2022|
|Freedom Of The Seas||07:00||17:00|
|4 January, 2022|
|Enchantment Of The Seas||07:00||17:00|
|7 January, 2022|
|Symphony Of The Seas||10:00||17:00|
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