CocoCay (Little Stirrup Cay)
Located in the Caribbean Sea, CocoCay is the most north western island in the Bahamas’ Berry Islands. Formerly known as Little Stirrup Cay, cruise company Royal Caribbean Cruises renamed this piece of paradise CocoCay after becoming its private owner. It is also now an exclusive destination for their guests.
This incredibly flat and narrow island is less than 1 kilometre long, from east to west. Soft angelic-white sand and crystal clear blue waters surround the island, with most of the activities centralised on the eastern side.
Guests can disembark from their cruise ship and wander through the Straw Market to pick up a souvenir, have their hair braided and enjoy the complimentary BBQ lunch at Blackbeard’s Grille before sipping on a Coco Loco cocktail on the beach. Vacationers can also hire a floating beach mat and drift lazily across the shallows, or head up to Lookout Point to enjoy island views at sunset.
Those looking for a bit more action and adventures can choose from a range of water activities like sea kayaking, snorkelling, scuba diving, parasailing and jet boating. There is also a giant Aqua Park, which is perfect for kids and adults alike.
Cruise ships anchor off CocoCay and a double decker tender boat brings you from the ship to the shore in less than 10 minutes. The tender landing for these boats is located at the north eastern inlet of CocoCay.
All of the facilities you will need are within walking distance from where Royal Caribbean Cruises’ ships dock.
Facilities nearby include:
Souvenir shops (Straw Market)
Water sport rentals.
How to Get Around
Everything on CocoCay is easily accessible on foot. It takes no more than a couple of minutes to get from one facility or attraction to the next. Walking from one end of the island to the other takes about 15-20 minutes, although most of the activities and attractions are based on the eastern side.
Travel times from the port:
It is a 2 minute journey to Coconut Willie’s Beach
It is a 3 minute journey to Water Sports Beach
It is a 4 minute journey to Snorkel Beach
It is an 8 minute journey to the start of the Nature Trail Walk
Currency – CocoCay accepts ship credit as well as the U.S. dollar. U.S Coins appear in 1 cent, 5 cents, 10 cents (dime), 25 cents (quarter), 50 cents (half dollar) and $1. Banknotes are available in $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100.
Time Zone – To take advantage of the summer sun between March and November, Princess Cays operates on Daylight Savings Time (DST), which is 4 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). During the winter from December through to February, the time switches back to Eastern Standard Time, which is 5 hours behind UTC.
Weather – CocoCay enjoys a balmy tropical climate with temperatures in the high twenties all year round. November through to April sees drier skies, while May to October experiences higher rainfall, with the most rainy days occurring between June and August.
Nature Trail – A slow walk along the island’s Nature Trail takes about 75 minutes and introduces you to both the island’s wildlife and history. A guide will also accompany you, sharing exciting stories of the island’s pirate history, pointing out the medicinal qualities of the island’s flowers and plants, and helping you to spot sea creatures as well as iguanas, pelicans and other birdlife. Before finishing up on one of CocoCay’s quiet, secluded beaches, the tour will take you to some fascinating historical ruins.
Barefoot Beach – If a couple of ships have anchored at CocoCay and you’re looking to escape the crowds, a 5-minute walk from the docking area will bring you to Barefoot Beach – a secluded beach along the south coast of the island. The sand on this beach is actually the softest sand found on this island paradise.
Aqua Park, Caylana’s Castle Cove – This aquatic playground covers 20,000 square feet of water off the eastern shore, providing kids with boundless entertainment. Adults can also test the limits of their fitness and skill levels on a series of floating challenges, from rock-climbing walls to water trampolines and 14-foot floating castles. In addition to Castle Cove is the giant waterslide where you can race down 175 feet on one of the largest inflatable slides in the world. Tickets to the Aqua Park are by the hour, allowing you plenty of time to explore the other attractions of CocoCay.