Cruise Ship Private Destinations: Best Ports offers for Exclusive Experiences

Cruise Ship Private Destinations: Private cruise ship locations are now among the world’s most well-liked ports. Furthermore, why not? Since the cruise lines often design and oversee them, they can create experiences that are tailored to the needs of individual guests.

These locations provide a lot to adore, including white sand beaches, glistening sea, restaurants, and adventures that are available right at the port. However, we’re willing to wager that there are some facts about these ports you should know before you ever visit.

Thus, we’re revealing some insider knowledge on how to maximize your day as well as a few secrets we bet you were unaware of.

Cruise Ship Private Destinations like CocoCay, home of Royal Caribbean, see millions of visitors annually, putting them among the world’s most popular ports.

World’s Most Popular Ports

Let’s start with a statistic about which you probably know nothing. Private islands owned by cruise lines are sometimes the busiest ports of call worldwide. Major departure ports like Miami, Port Canaveral, and Port Everglades rank highly on the list of the busiest cruise ports, handling about 4 million passengers annually.

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Cozumel and Nassau are the busiest ports of call, each welcoming over 3.5 million cruise passengers annually. Most people who have been to the ports aren’t shocked. Some days, there may be as many as six ships in port.

However, CocoCay, a private island that is the best example of one that Royal Caribbean has made a stop on almost all of its cruises in the area, is also highly recommended. The cruise line stated on a recent earnings call that it anticipates 3 million visitors in 2024.

Put differently, these places are more than just pleasant stops. They have a significant role in itineraries.

Farther Is Better for Finding a Spot on the Beach

10 best cruise ship ports, cruise ports, 10 best ports, 10 best places to visit from cruise
(Credit: Globe Guide)

Do you want to locate a private area on the island? The best course of action is to start walking if you’re the kind of person who, after being on a cruise ship, craves some more space.

The beaches appear to be the busiest closest to the ship, much like a parking lot is busiest near the main door. However, a short stroll will find you distant from as many people. That walk can be quite a distance on some of the bigger islands, such as MSC’s Ocean Cay, but some shuttles will transport you there. However, the crowds will get smaller the further you travel.

That is not to indicate that you will be alone. However, this is the method to lounge without having someone physically next to you.

Drink Packages and WiFi

(Credit: VinePair)

The enormous MSC Ocean Cay offers free wi-fi and drink packages that are valid both on land and on board during your visit.
While this isn’t always the case, in general, drinking packages and wi-fi can be purchased for a significant discount at Cruise Ship Private Destination. These packages are purchased for the duration of the cruise, although they are typically only usable while on board.

Therefore, the drink package, for example, is worthless until you board the ship again if you happen to be in a typical port of call one day.

Generally speaking, this isn’t the case for Cruise Ship Private Destinations. Consider these as extras on board the ship. Usually, but not always, you can use your drink package to its fullest extent in the port, just as you would on board the cruise. for you to order at the bar without having to spend more. Wi-fi works similarly in this regard, enabling you to maintain communication while at the beach.

Food Is Included

You may be curious about the meals if you haven’t been to one of these locations before. The benefit is that meals are typically provided at the locations. To reduce the distance you always have to walk for a snack, there is typically a sizable buffet area for patrons to eat from, as well as a few additional locations scattered around. Though there are a handful, for-charge restaurants are thankfully somewhat uncommon in exclusive locations.

You can, of course, always return to the ship to dine. You have additional alternatives for dining because eateries are open even while the ship is in port.

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Options for Getting About the Island

Willemstad, Curacao
(Credit: Curacao)

Do you simply don’t want to walk in the Caribbean’s heat and humidity, or do you have mobility issues? You’re protected.

There are transportation services that travel in circles to take people from one location to another at the majority of these locations. You just need to wait at the stop and climb on when they arrive to ride for free.

They might not be the shortest route because walking is typically quicker than waiting for a vehicle, but there are still other options if walking is not your preference.

Use a Map in Advance

A private island or location may offer a wealth of sights and activities. There are amenities galore at a location like Royal Caribbean’s CocoCay, including a waterpark, restaurants, a beach club, a pool, and numerous beaches. It can be a little daunting and you might not know where to go if you’re not prepared.

It’s much, much easier to navigate around and know where things are before you start wandering, just like if you were heading to a theme park. Maps of islands are provided, usually at the entrance or perhaps even on the ship before disembarking. They can be found online as well.

Spending a few minutes looking at the map and determining how things relate to one another is a smart idea. In this manner, you avoid being lost or aimless.

People Thin Out in the Afternoon

People private destination pool
(Credit: Carnival cruise)

What is the connection between the ship’s pool deck and the exclusive destination? They appear to adhere to comparable crowd patterns. When you arrive early in the morning, hardly anyone is present. However, as the day wears on, the crowds get larger and larger, appearing to peak at lunchtime or possibly a little later. Depending on how many and what size ships are in the dock, certain islands may feel extremely crowded during this period.

But as the day drags on, it seems like a lot of people decide to head back to the ship and call it a day, even though there’s still plenty of daylight and sunshine left.

We advise going there earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon when the crowds can drastically thin out if there is a particular location or activity you would like to do on the island.

Creating “Two Days” Out of One Day in Port

Continuing with the early morning or late afternoon theme, splitting a day into two could be the greatest advice for seeing a secluded location.

Typically, your cruise will arrive early in the morning and begin disembarking guests at approximately 8 a.m. The last time to board is usually around 5 p.m., however some lines—like MSC—allow passengers to stay longer or even overnight.

It makes sense to divide the day into two. Arrive early (it doesn’t have to be precisely 8 a.m.) and spend the morning and part of the lunch on land. Then return to the ship for a snooze after lunch, when things are at their busiest. Take a short break from the sun, nap if you’d like, and generally relax.

After a few hours, you can return and enjoy the island once more, feeling refreshed and with plenty of sun remaining. If not, spending the entire day in the sun can be taxing.

Don’t Spend Money too much

You can spend a lot of money on cruise Ship Private Destinations, no doubt about it. There are lots of options, including shore excursions, cabanas, and waterparks. However, if you can, try to utilize today as a “free” day.

Private islands or destinations are the easiest places to spend a cheap day when it comes to ports of call. Depending on the location, cuisine, a pool, and beaches are all included.

If you want to do anything, you usually have to spend money on the other ports. The majority of ports require you to pay for taxi cost just to get about, and many of the beaches aren’t quite as lovely or tranquil as those provided by the cruise line.

Because you may still have a great time on the cruise line islands without breaking the bank, save your money for these days and use it for excursions in other ports of call.

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Certain Areas of the Island You Won’t See

Papeete, Tahiti
(Credit: Accor)

There are crew members who live on the island behind the scenes at many sites. These locations, building zones, and other port-related infrastructure are unlikely to be visible.
Even though it can seem like you have the whole cruise ship to yourself, there are some places you will never visit. It works the same manner at a cruise ship Private Destinations.

These regions are occasionally seen from the ship. Alternatively, the back-of-house areas can be enormous, yet they are easily seen on Google Maps. This is the location of the staff quarters, maintenance facilities, and other hidden gems that keep the destination in top condition. If you find yourself on an island, you will also discover that there are significant underdeveloped areas that you are unable to visit.

Therefore, if you’re thinking that there are uninhabited beach locations that you can visit, Yes, it is not going to occur.

Utilize the Ship to Your Advantage

One piece of advice about going to private destinations that you won’t typically hear? Make use of the ship.

Because these ports were created specifically for cruise guests, they are incredibly well-liked. The ship thus empties out during the day. This is a terrific opportunity if there is something you’ve wanted to accomplish onboard but haven’t had the chance to do so yet.

For example, there should be shorter lineups for activities onboard and greater availability in the spa and specialized restaurants; nevertheless, you should confirm that they are open before making any plans around them.

This doesn’t indicate that you skip out on exploring the destination; instead, schedule some free time for yourself on the ship either before or after you get at the port.

Cruise Lines’ Adoration of Private Destinations

It’s not your imagination if you’ve noticed that many cruises appear to visit the cruise line’s secret destinations. For a variety of reasons, cruise lines adore highlighting these locations.

Control comes first. Voyage lines adore being able to have total control over the experience and customize it to the preferences of the passengers, making for a more pleasurable voyage.

Second, these locations may provide a wide range of frills and facilities since they have a captive audience. And now you’re spending that morning with the cruise line rather than in a separate port of stop. For example, some of Royal Caribbean’s cabanas cost as much as $4,000, the waterpark admission can cost as much as $160, and the island’s exclusive beach club can cost as much as $300.

Lastly, you’ll see that a large number of the locations are in the Bahamas and are only 60–100 miles from Miami.

This isn’t just a random spot. It’s tactical. Because of its proximity, the ship uses less fuel and emits less emissions. Cruise to a neighboring area and save millions of dollars in gasoline expenditures and carbon emissions over a year, much as taking a road trip to a destination a few hours away instead of across the country saves gas.

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