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vacationbound 11-17-2007 06:51 PM

I was wondering what you guys thought about Half Moon Cay? What is there to do? We are thinking about going on the 5 day Caribbean to Half Moon Cay, Nassau, and Grand Turk in August on the Imagination. I can't wait to see how the Imagination looks!!! Thanks for your help and if you have any ideas about Grand Turk and Nassau that would be appreciated too.

Hooked-on-HAL 11-21-2007 04:02 AM

Hi Vacationbound.
I love HMC. For me it is a port for complete relaxation. Very quiet, still tourquoise water, and white sand. Get off the ship early as it gets quiet hot and there is not much shade available (where are the maple trees??). There are excursions available. I hear the off the boat snorkeling is quite good. I am doing that on my upcoming cruise.
There is also a wonderful bar with live music and a small craft market.

SanDee 11-21-2007 07:45 AM

I had this same itinerary last Nov on the Elation. If you like beach breaks you will love Half Moon Cay. There are chairs all over but if you want a clam shell you have to reserve them ahead of time. I did not know about this. I heard they are $15.00 but not sure. You will only use your sign and sail on this island. There will be a free BBQ provided and servers will come around selling drinks. There are little shops but only one was open when we were there. This is such a beautiful little island. The water is breathtaking. I felt like I was in paradise. We did not take any excurisons. My son and his girlfriend brought their fishing poles and found a great little spot to fish.

Frase 11-25-2007 10:34 PM
Half Moon Cay was a very beautiful island. It is a private island owned by Carnival and HAL for use by there cruiseship passengers(guests). There are a few Shore Excursions to do; I saw parasailing, snorkeling, I also heard there was a nature trail walk, stringray encounter, horseback riding and a few others.

I didn't choose any shore excursion. Instead, like many others, I just had a relaxing day at the beach, as you see in the photos. The cruise ship will anchor closely off-shore and a tender boat will take you ashore. There are a few gift shops,a replica caribbean stlye church, a large buffet, and pinic pavilions on the island. I had a great time on Half Moon Cay.

By the way, they pronounce the word "Cay" like "Key". So I wonder why don't just spell it "Half Moon Key"?

Frase 11-25-2007 11:11 PM

As for Grand Turk and Nassau:

Perhaps the best thing to do there is to go to the Atlantis Casino and Resort. You will see it across the chanel from Prince George's Wharf (the cruise ship dock). They have an enormous walk through marine aquarium which has to be seen to beleived.
Grand Turk:
Allot like Half Moon Cay. Except it has a dock, so you can walk straight-off the ship. There are a few more gift shops than H.M.C. and there are duty free stores as well. There are even fewer things to do on Grand Turk, rather than relaxing at the beach. There is a Jimmy Buffet's Margaritaville in the middle of the shopping area. They have a nice complementary swimming pool at Margaritaville, along with the bar and restaurant. The island, IMHO, is not as beautiful as H.M.C., but it is close enough.

vacationbound 11-26-2007 05:01 PM

Awesome pictures and info Frase. Thanks a lot. I had no idea that "Cay" was pronounced "Key". That is interesting. Now I know how to pronounce it correctly.

Scott Taylor 12-21-2007 12:57 PM

Believe it or not, Half Moon Cay is our absolute favorite port out of any Caribbean Cruise Ports, and it's the best Cruise Ship private island by far! It's paradise. I would, as a previous poster suggested, get off the ship as early as possible and find a hammock. if the hammocks are taken closer in, keep walking further down the beach until you find one. We rented a clamshell for the day, very reasonable, but didn't barely use it because there were a few hammocks behind us. It was heaven on earth just lying in that hammock swinging in the breeze looking out over the cresent shaped white sand beach with clearest Aquamarine water. You'll be so sad when it's time to go back to the ship. By far this is the best private island stop of all the cruise ship's, even Disney, we've seen em all.

For Nassau I'd do the Blue Lagoon excursion, takes you to a beautiful beach on an island. Atlantis tour is great but lots of walking. You can do the dolphin encounter but that's optional. Whatever you do stay away from the city, it's a dump!.

Never been to Turks and Caicos. Write us back after the cruise and share your experiences.

catiemor 12-21-2007 05:35 PM

Wondering when Carnival cruises started going to Half Moon Cay as well as HAL. I have been on four HAL cruises and never once have I seen a Carnival cruise there. For three of my cruises there was only 1 HAL ship and one other time there were 2 HAL ships. It was not crowded with 2 anchored.

It is the best part of the cruises and I always try to pick a cruise that stops there preferably the last day of the cruise - a nice finishing touch.

Catie M.

SanDee 12-22-2007 02:35 PM


When we were at HMC there were no other ships. I assumed that only one ship a day in anchored there. It was crowded enough without more than one ship. Maybe that is why you have never seen a Carnival ship there.

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