Disney’s private island Castaway Cay is a wonderful place to try snorkeling. It is the perfect opportunity to try this for yourself, even if you have never snorkeled before.
Let’s learn more about the Castaway Cay Snorkeling Lagoon.
Disney Castaway Cay Snorkeling Overview
One of the most popular activities on Castaway Cay is snorkeling. This is one that the whole family can enjoy together, even if you have no previous snorkeling experience.
The first time I ever snorkeled was on Castaway Cay. It is something that I had never dared try before, but of course, Disney makes everything so easy and safe for everyone. Once I had tried it here I was hooked.
There is a set area off of the Family Beach just before you get to Pelican Plunge which is the snorkeling lagoon. It is very clearly marked and there are lots of lifeguards around to keep everyone safe.
There are plenty of things to see. This is Disney so as you would expect, things are a little different.
As with all of the swimming areas on Castaway Cay, the snorkeling lagoon part is protected. There are huge nets around the edge of the perimeter so that large, and potentially scary fish don’t get in!
However, there are plenty of beautiful and interesting fish and sea life to observe. What makes Castaway Cay snorkeling unique is that Disney has put some surprises that you won’t usually find in the ocean. They have placed lots of sunken treasures for you to find!
One of the surprising things about the ocean in Castaway Cay is how much the depth of the water changes throughout the day. I am not particularly tall and I can stand up in most of the areas where you go out to swim. However, the tide shifts the sand a lot, very quickly. So just be aware that the depth can change a lot from morning to afternoon.
This video gives a good overview of what it is like to snorkel on Castaway Cay.
How Much is Snorkeling at Castaway Cay?
To actually snorkel at Castaway Cay is free, if you have your own equipment. Should you bring your own snorkeling gear to Castaway Cay? If you are going to use it more than once it will certainly pay for itself.
The only downside is that you will have to pack it in your luggage. That’s usually fine if you are driving to the port but you may want to think carefully about how much space it will take up if you are on a plane.
Also, in these new times of coronavirus I am sure there will be concerns about the cleanliness of renting shared equipment of any kind. Disney will no doubt do everything they can (as I am sure they always did) to disinfect the equipment between uses, but you may still want to bring your own.
If you don’t want bring your own equipment, most people use the rentals available.
- Snorkeling Equipment including mask and flippers are $34 for adults, $18 for children aged 5 to 9 for the whole day
- A Castaway Cay Double Dip 2-day rental is $45 for adults and $23 for children.
- Float Rentals are $13 for the whole day
- Bicycle Rentals are $13 per hour for all ages.
- Castaway Cay Getaway Package – includes snorkeling and floats for the whole day and 1-hour bike rental, $46 for adults, $26 per child
- There is a Castaway Cay Double Dip 2 day price of $60 for adults and $33 for children.
Everyone who wants to snorkel has to wear a life vest. These are provided free of charge. The lifeguards will very quickly see guests who are not wearing one and make sure that they do!
Castaway Cay Snorkeling Tips
Arrive early. If you are planning to snorkel on Castaway Cay it really is a good idea to make it the first thing that you do in the day.
Why does it make sense to do this first? What you will find is that most people take a while to settle in, so that they start snorkeling later in the morning and towards lunch time. This means one thing. More people in the water.
Now, you aren’t exactly going to bump into people as there is plenty of room out there in the water. However, what you will notice is that the water gets so much murkier as the day goes on. This is because the sand gets kicked up from the ocean floor and those crystal clear waters you saw early in the day are not quite so clear!
Most of the best things to see are further out. Be a bit adventurous and see what you can find. It can be quite a long swim out there so be careful to pace yourself and make sure that your children are able to keep up (or more likely the other way around)!
Make sure that you use Reef Friendly Sunscreen. You really will regret it if you don’t. I rarely ever get sunburn but I did once on Castaway Cay when we rented one of the boats. I realized when we were way out from the shore that I really should have put on more sunscreen before we headed out. I paid the price with a painful sunburn. Don’t let that be you.
Remember to keep properly hydrated. It can be very hot on Castaway Cay and you shouldn’t underestimate the fact that you are exercising when you are swimming so you will need to drink even more water.
Beware Jellyfish and Sea Lice
Most people never have a problem with jellyfish or sea lice at Castaway Cay. Fortunately I never have. However, I have certainly heard of some people who have.
It is wise to take precautions and most people seem to swear by Safe Sea Anti-jellyfish Sting Protective Lotion- SPF50+ . Always better to be safe than sorry as no one wants to deal with a painful encounter with jellyfish or sea lice.
Abaco Rigid Hull Snorkeling Adventure
If you want a more challenging Castaway Cay activity involving snorkeling this excursion could be for you.
This snorkeling excursion is for adults only. The age range specified is 18 to 70 and the cost is $89. Not sure what would happen if you are 71 and want to sign up!
Guests travel to a snorkel site on a Zodiac Rigid Hull Inflatable. The snorkel site is between 6 to 15 feet deep so you do have to be a confident swimmer.
You will also get a sample of Bahamian rum after the snorkeling is finished. For obvious reasons this is not given before you snorkel!
You will most likely see more fish than you will closer to the shore.
Have you enjoyed Castaway Cay snorkeling.
Alison Meacham is the founder of EverythingMouse Disney Blog. For over 15 years she has shared her love of Disney Parks, Disney Cruises and Universal Orlando. In over 30 years of Disney Travel she has spent countless months in Disney Parks and has sailed on over 45 cruises. A British native and now a United States resident she splits her time between California, Florida and the UK. And spends a serious amount of time sailing the seven seas. She helps over 200,000 people per month follow their Disney travel dreams.