I love beaches and I love the Caribbean, so Castaway Cay (Disney Cruise Line’s private island in the Bahamas), is one of my favorite places to visit. The island is always a special stop on the Disney Cruise Line’s Caribbean and Bahamian itineraries.
Castaway Cay is a gorgeous place, and while you are there, you’ll definitely want to maximize your experience. There’s so much to do on Castaway Cay, but for a special treat, considering spending the day in one of the Castaway Cay Cabanas.
During a girls’ trip on the Disney Cruise Line, we rented a cabana for the day on Castaway Cay. It’s such a fun treat. You definitely don’t NEED to rent a cabana to have fun, but if you have the opportunity and budget, it’s worth doing at least once. I’ve been to Castaway Cay eleven times now, and my experience in a cabana was definitely my best visit of all of them.
Disclosure: While I’ve been on one media cruise and two cruises as part of Social Media Moms, this particular cruise was at my own cost. All opinions are my own.
All About the Castaway Cay Cabanas
What are Castaway Cay Cabanas?
Cabanas are an optional add-on that cost an additional fee and need to be reserved in advance. There aren’t many of them on the island, which makes them hard to come by. Chairs and umbrellas are completely free to use at Castaway Cay, so these cabanas are really a luxury and not a necessity (although they definitely are great to have!).
Types of Castaway Cay Cabanas
There are two different sections of cabanas on Castaway Cay, with three different price ranges. The cabana that we had for our beach day was one of the cabanas on the family beach. These cabanas include six guests but you can add up to 10 additional guests for an additional fee per person. This would be so fun for two families to share.
There’s also a larger cabana available on the family beach. That cabana includes ten guests but up to 16 can be accommodated for an additional fee. That one would be great for a multiple families or a multi-generational family trip.
If there are just adults in your group, you may consider one of the Serenity Bay cabanas (on the adult-only private beach). The price for this includes four guests and up to ten can be accommodated at the additional fee. Keep in mind that you can’t have kids at these cabanas or on Serenity Bay, so only reserve one of these if you are traveling with adults.
I don’t generally list prices here because they are subject to change. However, you should know that these cabanas are pretty expensive, and adding guests over the included number will run at least $50 per person. So, you’ll want to make sure that you will absolutely get value from the cabana if you choose to get one.
Castaway Cay cabana rentals are for the whole day – they aren’t available hourly or for a half day. So, you’ll want to make sure that you are going to use it for at least most of the day to get the full value.
What’s Included in a Castaway Cay Cabanas
So, I’ve told you that they are expensive and difficult to reserve, so why exactly do you want to get a cabana? They really do add a special element to your day at Castaway Cay, and are luxurious and fun. You’ll also get some special inclusions that will enhance your vacation.
Not only will you get the cabana, with chairs, tables, and lots of shade, there are other things included with a cabana:
• Snorkels (not included in Serenity Bay cabanas)
• Bike rentals so you can ride around the island
• Sodas, bottled water snacks, chips
• A Cabana host to help restock the refreshments if you need more
• Sunscreen (usually at this point in our trip we are starting to run out of sunscreen, so it’s nice to have some included)
• Sand toys
• A hammock right outside the cabana
• Food is already included with your day on Castaway Cay. You can eat at Cookies BBQ, Cookie’s Too, and Serenity Bay BBQ.
As someone who loves the beach but needs to avoid the sun, I appreciate having the extra shade that a cabana affords us. It’s definitely a nice luxury and great for an extra splurge on your cruise.
How to Book a Castaway Cay Cabana
Now that you’ve decided that you want to rent a cabana, how do you rent one? This is the most difficult part!
Cabanas open up for reservations during your cruise excursion booking window. These windows are based upon your Castaway Club level. Your cruise must be paid off for you to be able to book a cabana as well as other cruise excursions.
• Platinum Castaway Club members can reserve 120 days prior to sailing
• Gold Castaway Club members can reserve 105 days prior to sailing
• Silver Castaway Club members can reserve 90 days prior to sailing
Because there aren’t many of them, cabanas can book up early. When we were gold Castaway Club members, I never had the opportunity to rent one when my booking window opened. They just weren’t available.
Unfortunately, in my experience, they are typically all booked up by platinum and concierge guests, who have the opportunity to book earlier. However, it’s always worth checking to see if any cancellations have happened.
Are the Castaway Cay Cabanas Worth it? Should You Rent a Castaway Cay Cabana?
Spending the day in a cabana on Castaway Cay is definitely a special treat and splurge. It’s not cheap, and they can be difficult to reserve. So, you should definitely weigh your options before deciding whether to rent one.
Think about your situation, and how you plan to spend your day at Castaway Cay. If you already plan on renting bikes, floats, and snorkel equipment, then a Cabana may be worth it. These items are available a la carte without a cabana rental, but you do have to pay for them.
Also, you’ll want to make sure that you plan to spend most of the day at Castaway Cay. You really want to take advantage of everything that a cabana offers. If you are planning to spend some of the day on the ship, it may not be worthwhile.
While a Castaway Cay Cabana is a fun luxury, it isn’t essential. If you can’t get one, know that you’ll still have plenty of fun at Castaway Cay, and can still find lots of shade under the complimentary umbrellas.