Cruise Line Info

Half Moon Cay Cruise Port is a private island located in the Bahamas that is owned by Holland America Line, a subsidiary of Carnival Corporation. It is a popular stop for cruise ships, with many visitors enjoying the beautiful white sandy beach and the diverse range of activities available. The island is also known for its crystal clear water and its abundance of marine life, making it a great destination for snorkeling and other water activities.

Half Moon Cay Cruise Port Cover Image

When you arrive at Half Moon Cay, you’ll be greeted by the stunning natural beauty of the island, with its pristine beaches and crystal clear waters. There are plenty of activities to keep you busy, including horseback riding, kayaking, and paddle boarding.

You can also take a guided tour of the island and learn about its history and culture, or simply relax on the beach and soak up the sun.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a must-visit destination for anyone on a Caribbean cruise. With its beautiful beaches, crystal clear water, and diverse range of activities, it’s the perfect place to unwind and enjoy the natural beauty of the Bahamas.

Overview of Half Moon Cay Cruise Port

As a privately owned island by Carnival Corporation, Half Moon Cay is a popular port of call for many Caribbean cruises. Located in the Bahamas, it offers a picturesque and idyllic setting for passengers to enjoy a day of relaxation and fun in the sun.

The island’s main attraction is its stunning white sandy beach, which is lapped by calm cerulean blue waters. The beach is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and taking part in a range of water-based activities, such as snorkeling, kayaking, and paddleboarding.

Aside from the beach, Half Moon Cay offers a range of other activities for visitors to enjoy. These include horseback riding, hiking, and exploring the island’s nature trails. There is also a range of shops and restaurants on the island, offering a variety of local cuisine and souvenirs for visitors to take home.

Half Moon Cay is also committed to preserving its natural habitat and protecting the environment. The island has implemented a range of sustainability initiatives, such as recycling programs and conservation efforts, to ensure that it remains a pristine and beautiful destination for years to come.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the beauty and tranquility of the Caribbean. With its stunning beach, range of activities, and commitment to sustainability, it is sure to provide a memorable and enjoyable experience for all who visit.

Half Moon Cay Cruise Port Half Moon Cay Beach

Location and Geography

Half Moon Cay is a privately owned island in the Bahamas, located approximately 10 miles southeast of Nassau. The island is situated halfway between the Bahamian islands of Cat and Eleuthera. The island is also known as Little San Salvador Island and is part of the Holland America Line (HAL) assets, which is a subsidiary company and brand of Carnival Corporation.

The island is crescent-shaped and stretches for four kilometers. The beach is lined with white sand and surrounded by calm cerulean blue waters. Only part of the island is developed, and the rest is preserved to protect migratory bird species. The island covers an area of 2,400 acres or 9.7 square kilometers.

The island’s climate is tropical, with temperatures ranging from 75°F to 85°F throughout the year. The island’s vegetation is mainly made up of coconut palms, sea grape trees, and other tropical plants. The island’s interior is hilly, with the highest point being 100 feet above sea level.

The island is accessible only by sea, and cruise ships dock at the island’s pier. From there, visitors can take a tender boat to the island’s shore. The island offers various activities for visitors, including swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, horseback riding, and more.

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Climate and Weather

Half Moon Cay is located in the Bahamas, which means it has a tropical climate with warm temperatures year-round. The climate is primarily influenced by the surrounding water temperature, which is typically in the mid to high 80s Fahrenheit (29-32 Celsius) during the summer months and in the mid to high 70s Fahrenheit (24-26 Celsius) during the winter months.

The island experiences a rainy season from May to October, with the most precipitation occurring in September and October. However, even during the rainy season, the showers are typically brief and intermittent, and the sun quickly returns. The dry season runs from November to April, with January being the driest month.

If you’re planning a trip to Half Moon Cay, it’s important to pack accordingly. Be sure to bring lightweight, breathable clothing, as well as plenty of sunscreen and a hat to protect yourself from the strong Caribbean sun. It’s also a good idea to bring a rain jacket or umbrella in case of a passing shower.

Overall, Half Moon Cay’s warm and sunny climate makes it an ideal destination for a tropical getaway. Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach, go snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters, or explore the island’s natural beauty, you’re sure to enjoy your time in this idyllic paradise.

Transportation and Accessibility

Half Moon Cay is a privately owned island in the Bahamas and is only accessible by sea. Most visitors arrive at the island via a tender from their cruise ship, which takes about 10-15 minutes. The tender landing is located near the Fort San Salvador Welcome Center, which is the hub of activity on the island.

For guests with mobility limitations, a hydraulic lift transfer is available for transportation from the airport to the cruise port in North America. If you need general information about accessibility, you can contact the cruise line in advance.

A barrier-free pathway connects the Half Moon Cay Tender Landing, Fort San Salvador Welcome Center, Straw Market, Food & Beverage Venues, and restrooms for the convenience of guests with disabilities. Complimentary beach wheelchairs are available ashore at the tender landing. Cabana #1 is designated as the accessible cabana, but there are stairs down to the sand, so it may not be suitable for everyone.

If you’re looking to explore the island, there are several transportation options available. You can rent a bike or take a guided horseback ride to see the island’s natural beauty. Golf carts are also available for rent, but they must be reserved in advance. Additionally, there is a tram that runs throughout the island, making stops at various points of interest.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a beautiful and accessible island that offers a variety of transportation options for all visitors to enjoy.

horseback riding on beach

Attractions and Activities

Half Moon Cay offers a wide range of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, there’s something for everyone on this beautiful island.

Water Sports

One of the most popular activities on Half Moon Cay is water sports. The crystal-clear waters surrounding the island are perfect for snorkeling, diving, and swimming. You can also go kayaking, paddleboarding, or take a banana boat ride. If you’re feeling more adventurous, you can try parasailing or jet skiing.

Nature Trails

For those who enjoy nature, Half Moon Cay has several nature trails to explore. The island is home to a variety of wildlife, including iguanas, flamingos, and sea turtles. You can take a guided tour or explore on your own. The trails are easy to follow and offer stunning views of the island’s natural beauty.

Shopping and Dining

If you’re looking for some retail therapy or delicious food, Half Moon Cay has plenty of options. The island has a marketplace where you can find souvenirs, clothing, and other items. There are also several restaurants and bars where you can grab a bite to eat or a refreshing drink. The food is delicious and the atmosphere is relaxed and casual.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a fantastic destination for anyone looking to enjoy the sun, sand, and sea. With so many attractions and activities to choose from, you’re sure to have a memorable vacation.

Safety and Regulations

When visiting Half Moon Cay, it is important to be aware of the safety regulations in place to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all visitors. Here are some key safety and regulatory points to keep in mind:

  • COVID-19 Regulations: Due to the ongoing pandemic, visitors to Half Moon Cay must adhere to local COVID-19 regulations and guidelines. This may include providing proof of vaccination or a negative PCR test within a certain timeframe before arrival. It is important to check with your cruiseline or travel agent for the most up-to-date information on these regulations.
  • Water Safety: While the water at Half Moon Cay is generally calm and safe for swimming, visitors should always exercise caution when in or near the water. Be aware of any warning signs or flags indicating unsafe conditions, and follow the instructions of lifeguards and other safety personnel.
  • Wildlife Safety: Half Moon Cay is home to a variety of wildlife, including birds and marine life. Visitors should respect the natural environment and avoid disturbing or feeding any animals they encounter.
  • Beach Safety: The beach at Half Moon Cay is a popular spot for sunbathing and relaxing, but visitors should take precautions to avoid sunburn and heat exhaustion. Be sure to wear sunscreen, stay hydrated, and seek shade during the hottest parts of the day.

By following these safety and regulatory guidelines, you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable visit to Half Moon Cay.

Half Moon Cay Cruise Port use sunscreen while on the beach

Cruise Lines That Visit Half Moon Cay Cruise Port

If you’re looking for a tropical paradise on your next cruise, you should consider Half Moon Cay. This private island is a popular port of call for several cruise lines. Here are some of the most popular cruise lines that visit Half Moon Cay:

Holland America Line

Holland America Line is the primary owner of Half Moon Cay. They operate several Caribbean and Panama Canal itineraries that include a stop at the island. Holland America Line has invested heavily in the island, building a pier, a welcome center, and several beachfront amenities.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line also visits Half Moon Cay on some of their Caribbean itineraries. They have been visiting the island for over 20 years and have won several awards for their private island experience. Carnival’s guests can enjoy a variety of activities on the island, including horseback riding, snorkeling, and water sports.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line used to own Half Moon Cay before selling it to Holland America Line. However, they still visit the island on some of their Caribbean itineraries. Norwegian’s guests can enjoy the island’s pristine beaches, turquoise waters, and a variety of water sports.

Other Cruise Lines

Other cruise lines that occasionally visit Half Moon Cay include Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, and Royal Caribbean International. However, these visits are less frequent compared to the above-mentioned cruise lines.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a popular destination for many cruise lines. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day on the beach or an adventure-filled excursion, Half Moon Cay has something for everyone.

BBQ lunch

Tips for Visiting Half Moon Cay Cruise Port

If you’re planning to visit Half Moon Cay on your next cruise, here are some tips to help you make the most of your time on the island:

  • Pack wisely: Make sure to bring sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and a towel. Also, consider bringing water shoes if you plan to do any water activities, as the ocean floor can be rocky in some areas.
  • Get there early: Half Moon Cay is a popular destination, so it’s best to get there early to beat the crowds. Most ships arrive around 8:30 am, so plan to be on the first tender to the island.
  • Take advantage of the free food: As Half Moon Cay is owned by the cruise line, the food on the island is included in your cruise fare. Take advantage of the free BBQ lunch and enjoy the local cuisine.
  • Try horseback riding: Even if you’ve never ridden a horse before, consider trying the horseback riding excursion. It’s a great way to see the island and experience something new.
  • Bring cash: While most things on the island are included in your cruise fare, some activities and amenities, such as the spa and alcoholic drinks, require additional payment. Bring some cash with you just in case.
  • Respect the environment: Half Moon Cay is a beautiful and pristine island, so make sure to respect the environment and dispose of your trash properly. Also, avoid touching or disturbing any wildlife you may encounter.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to make the most of your time on Half Moon Cay and have a memorable experience on your cruise.

Final Thoughts on Half Moon Cay Cruise Port

Half Moon Cay is a beautiful and exclusive port of call owned by Carnival Corporation in the Bahamas. With its pristine white sandy beaches and crystal clear blue waters, it is a must-visit destination for any cruise enthusiast.

During your visit to Half Moon Cay, you can enjoy a variety of activities such as horseback riding, snorkeling, kayaking, and much more. The island also offers an array of dining options, including a BBQ lunch buffet, which is included in your cruise fare.

One thing to note is that Half Moon Cay is a private island, and the only way to visit is by taking a Carnival cruise. Therefore, it is important to plan your trip accordingly and book your excursions in advance to avoid any disappointment.

Overall, Half Moon Cay is a fantastic addition to any Caribbean cruise itinerary. With its picturesque scenery and endless activities, it is a perfect destination for both families and couples. So, pack your bags and get ready to experience the beauty of Half Moon Cay on your next Carnival cruise.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Half Moon Cay Cruise Port

What are some fun excursions to do on a Half Moon Cay cruise?

There are plenty of fun excursions to do on a Half Moon Cay cruise. You can go horseback riding on the beach, take a kayak tour, or rent a private cabana for the day. Snorkeling, paddleboarding, and jet skiing are also popular activities.

Is snorkeling available at Half Moon Cay?

Yes, snorkeling is available at Half Moon Cay. You can rent snorkeling equipment and explore the coral reefs and underwater wildlife.

What is the distance between Nassau and Half Moon Cay?

Half Moon Cay is located about 100 miles southeast of Nassau.

Do cruise ships dock or tender at Half Moon Cay?

Cruise ships tender at Half Moon Cay. You will be transported to the island via small boats called tenders.

Is food included on Half Moon Cay?

Yes, food is included on Half Moon Cay. There are several food options available, including a beachside BBQ and a full-service bar.

What is there to do at the Half Moon Cay port?

At the Half Moon Cay port, you can enjoy the beautiful beach, go swimming, or participate in various water activities. There is also a nature trail, a bird sanctuary, and a children’s playground.

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