A Glimpse of Half Moon Cay’s History
Half Moon Cay Bahamas is privately owned by Holland America Line, a subsidiary company of Carnival Corporation & PLC. This beautiful island was formerly known as Little San Salvador Bahamas before it was purchased in 1996 for $6M by the cruise line company in order to create its own little paradise for their guests. Little San Salvador Bahamas was, at the time, uninhabited and had little to no infrastructure on it. The island’s name was changed to Half Moon Cay which was derived from the Holland America logo wherein the English explorer Henry Hudson’s flagship called the Half Moon is depicted. The name also represents the 2-mile long crescent-shaped white sand beach on the island. Most of the 2,400 acres on Half Moon Cay Bahamas remains unspoiled and is used as a nature preserve which includes a 700-acre lagoon, a wild bird preserve, and a wild life sanctuary. Only 45 acres of the land was developed by the company to cater to the needs and entertainment of tourists on their Bahamas cruise. For the past 4 years, Porthole Cruise Magazine has named this beautiful island as the “Best Private Island” in the Caribbean.
Featured Facilities on Half Moon Cay
Upon landing on the shore, guests are greeted at the Fort San Salvador Welcome Center. At this center, guests will be able to find an information booth, a Bahamian straw market, a post office, a first aid station, some gift shops, a bar, an ice cream shop, restrooms, and a sales pavillion for shore excursions.
There are 15 private cabanas located on the beach that guests can rent for the day. Each cabana has an air conditioner, a ceiling fan, a refrigerator stocked with fruit and drinks, a misting shower, and a table with chairs. Up to 4 guests can stay in the cabana. Food and drinks packages are available as well. There is also a bungalow called the Private Oasis that can be rented. In the bungalow, guests will find a hot tub that can accommodate up to 8 people, a large sun deck and a covered one, a dining area, a barbecue area, changing rooms, indoor and outdoor showers, a full wet bar, a refrigerator, a massage table, an iPod music system, and even a 100-foot walkway that has misting stations.
Other facilities on Half Moon Cay Bahamas include 3 water sport centers, the Half Moon Lagoon Aquapark, a non-denominational chapel, a massage cabana, more bars, the Tropics restaurant, and the Dining Pavilions. Traveling around the island is made easier by the presence of a tram that runs from the Welcome Center to the Tropics Restaurant which has 15 open-air dining shelters with buffet-style food service.
Adventures on Half Moon Cay Bahamas
The horse back riding excursion is one of the great adventures that you simply have to experience. On this adventure, you’ll get up close and personal with the island’s natural beauty with routes that are only accessible through horseback. You’ll cover both land and sea then finish off with a bareback swimming session in the bay.
The sting ray adventure program is another wonderful activity that guests can take part of while on the island. You get to see a lot of Half Moon Cay’s remarkable marine life and even get an opportunity to swim and snorkel with some stingrays.
The personal watercraft adventure will also allow you to see the island’s shoreline, explore the natural reefs, and learn more about Bahamas culture and history through an orientation on a sandy beach coupled with cool refreshments. You can also enjoy swimming underwater together with a school of fishes.
Fishing and snorkeling excursions can also be arranged. Water sports activities range from peaceful kayaking to exhilirating parasailing and windsurfing. You may also avail of the bicycle tour or take a hiking tour to view the rest of the island. Visiting the lagoons such as the Bone Fish Lagoon and the Ocean Fed Lagoon can be a treat as well. And for kids and the kid in you, an afternoon at the Water Park may be the best activity yet.
If you’re going on a Bahamas cruise, having Half Moon Cay Bahamas as one of your port of calls will definitely be the highlight of your entire adventure.