What is Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve?

Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve is MSC Cruises’ private island and is part of the Bimini chain of islands in the western Bahamas, 20 miles (32 km) south of Bimini and just 104.5 km (65 miles) east of Miami.

When did Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve open?

Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve welcomed its first guests on December 5, 2019.

Where does the ship dock? How can I reach the island?

Ships dock directly alongside the pier, so you can walk straight off the ship and onto the island. The island offers walking paths to every destination and easy-to-follow signs, as well as golf cart transportation for those who prefer not to walk.

Is there an information center?

Yes, all essential information is provided at the Welcome Centre, where our staff will be happy to provide you with all the details you need and will be at your disposal to book any excursions or activities. You will also find a map of the island at the Welcome Centre.

Is this island big? Will I have to walk long distances to visit places?

The island spans 95 acres in size with just over 1 mile of pristine beachfront. The most distant place on the island is only a 20-minute walk away, and easy-to-follow signs will guide you to wherever you wish to go. For added convenience and comfort, golf carts follow a regular route around the island.  

Are drones allowed on the island?

Drones are permitted on Ocean Cay but only with relevant Bahamian Civil Aviation Authority certificates and permission from MSC Ocean Cay management following all guidelines.

Will my Cruise Card work on the island

Yes, you can pay for all things on the island with your Cruise Card. 

 If I want to reach my cabin, can I come back to the ship at any time?

 Yes, you are free to come and go from the ship throughout the day and your ship cabin is always accessible. It is important that your cruise card is in your possession at all times so that you are able to enter and exit the ship.

Are towels available at Ocean Cay, or do guests need to bring them off the ship?  

Guests are to take towels off the ship or receive them at the entrance to the island. All towels must be returned to entrance of island. 

What time do the beaches, bars and restaurants close at Ocean Cay?

The beaches are slowly closed in the late afternoon, furthest away first and lastly the Lighthouse beach closest to the ship. All beaches are closed before sundown which varies depending upon the season.


What are the beaches on Ocean Cay?

There are seven beaches on Ocean Cay, and they are:

Bimini Beach - Located furthest from the port, this may be your opportunity for seclusion and relaxation with endless ocean views.

North Beach - Situated perfectly in the lagoon, just across the way from South Beach, this beach offers shallow water, multiple water activities and is the largest beach on the island.

South Beach - Neighbor to North Beach, this beach offers open space for swimming, water activities and more.

Ocean House Beach - Exclusive only for MSC Yacht Club guests, this beach offers an upscale experience with complimentary private amenities including a restaurant and bar, butler service and more. Beachfront or Ocean View cabanas are available to rent.

Lighthouse Bay Beach - Home to the 100 ft. tall lighthouse, this beach offers lively entertainment day and night and is the closest beach to the ship. Here you can enjoy cozy seating areas with bean bag chairs and fire pits.

Sunset Beach - Extending over a half mile long, this is the longest stretch of beach on the island. This beach is fantastic for swimming, and in the evenings, enjoy a romantic picnic with a stunning sunset.

Paradise Sands Beach - Next to The Spa at Ocean Cay, this quiet stretch of sand is dedicated to zen lovers, offering peace, tranquility, and easy access to a massage on the beach.

Are lounge chairs, umbrellas, cabanas and beach towels available on the island? 

The beaches feature sunbeds free of charge, while umbrellas and cabanas are available to rent for an additional fee. Lighthouse Beach has a limited number of free umbrellas, beach chairs and bean bags. Umbrellas are handed out at the umbrella stations next to the beaches. In addition, restrooms can be found on every beach. They are clearly indicated on the island map and on the signs around the island. 

Can I rent water-sport equipment?  

Yes, Ocean Cay offers facilities for many water-based activities. Rentals and Snorkel gear for the whole family, as well as family and individual kayaks, single and electric paddleboards, windsurfers, sailing catamarans and many other rental equipment are available to reserve pre-cruise, onboard the ship or on the island at our Shore Excursion tower and beach rental stations. These are located directly across from the Welcome Centre upon arrival to the island and on South and North lagoon beaches.

Is there an adults-only beach?

On Ocean Cay, beaches are open to guests of all ages, however the Crew beach is only available for our teams. 


Will food be available on the island?

Yes, the island has a complimentary Seakers buffet food court, five food trucks (four complimentary and one with food items available for purchase) as well as an ice cream parlor.  

  • Seakers Food Court: A traditional barbecue buffet, serving Caribbean and American classics from burgers to salads and an array of kid-friendly and grab-and-go choices. 

  • Beach Shack Food Trucks: Conveniently located throughout the island, here you’ll find hamburgers and hotdogs with the lagoon South Beach food truck specializing in upscale lobster rolls and crab ceviche salads amongst other choices available for purchase. 
In addition, the buffet on the ship will be open at select times, should you prefer to eat on board.

Where can I get beverages and ice cream on the island?

Complimentary water will be available at all bars and buffets, as well as water fountains near all restrooms on the island. Below is a list of the bars and restaurants that offer beverages and cocktails: 

  • Spread across the island, we have ten bars at your hand for our thirsty guests. Two of our signature beach bars include:
    - Springer’s Marina Bar: An authentic Bahamian bar with a laid-back atmosphere.
    - Lighthouse Bar: This Hemingway-style cocktail bar offers an ample selection of rums, spirits and delicious cocktails, all served with incredible views of pristine water and white sand beaches. 

  • The Smiling Fish: Located in the Ocean Village, this venue offers many kinds of ice cream, from classics to more innovative flavors with a Bahamian twist. In addition, the bar offers freshly brewed whole bean and ground coffee, espresso and cappuccino for an energetic start to the day on Ocean Cay or a quick boost throughout the day.

Will restaurants and bars be open on the ship while the ship is at Ocean Cay? 

The ship's buffet will be open at select times, with most specialty restaurants closed during the day*. Some bars will also remain open onboard.


*Hours may vary based on the ship. 

 Does the onboard Beverage Package include drinks on Ocean Cay?

Guests who purchase the Easy, Easy Plus & Premium beverage package may use their package on Ocean Cay.


Please note: Select alcoholic beverages will be available for the Premium packages.


MSC Yacht Club guests have complimentary beverages included with their experience and these are served at the dedicated MSC Yacht Club area and beach, as well as the Ocean House Bar & Restaurant.


Will the island accommodate dietary needs?

Yes, vegetarian and vegan dishes are available on the island. The island will also offer veggie burgers, salads and gluten-free bread (gluten-free bread only available upon request). Unfortunately, the island will not be able to accommodate specific allergies, therefore we recommend eating onboard the ship, where our staff will be able to accommodate your every need. Kosher food will not be available on the island.

Can I use my Diamond Card Voyagers Club amenities on the island, such as the complimentary specialty dining?

The complimentary specialty dining for Diamond Card Voyagers Club members is not transferable to the island and can only be used on the ship.  


What family-friendly activities are available on Ocean Cay?

Ocean Cay is a family-friendly island. You can enjoy dedicated entertainment for families and kids on the beaches as per each ship’s entertainment schedules.

 Will there be a Kids Club on the island? Do you offer babysitting?

There is not a dedicated Kids Club on Ocean Cay, however there will be plenty of scheduled kids' activities throughout the day and evening on the South lagoon and Lighthouse beaches. Babysitting is not offered on the island.

What entertainment is available on the island? 

 From water sports, and dedicated entertainment activities such as bocca ball, beach volleyball and dance lessons, to live music, you can enjoy a variety of activities on Ocean Cay. The Lighthouse LED show is available twice each night (times may vary). At any time, you can choose to go back to the ship, where the shops, casino and spa will remain open.

Is shopping available on the island?

Yes, indulge in authentic Bahamian artwork and items, MSC logo apparel and more. Shops available on Ocean Cay include: 

  • My Ocean Bahamian artwork. 

  • Ocean Cay Trading Post & Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve Logo Shop: Share a piece of paradise with your friends and family. A wide selection of Ocean Cay souvenirs and gifts for both adults and children, ranging from T-shirts, caps, beach items, towels and accessories will be available for purchase. You will also find beach essentials like reef-safe sunscreen lotions and lip balms that are biodegradable and eco-friendly for the coral reef. Your cruise card will be accepted here. 

Will the island offer special activities for MSC Voyagers Club members? 

Parties and events for our Voyagers Club members will be held on board, before and after the ship visits Ocean Cay. We want our guests to enjoy the island at their own leisure, therefore there will be no additional activities on the island for our club members.


 Is Wi-Fi available on the island? 

 Ocean Cay is equipped with Wi-Fi. You can buy Internet packages on MSC Cruises' website pre-cruise and on board the ship.

How can I book excursions? 

Excursions can be booked in any of the following ways: 

  • Prior to the cruise via the MSC website 

  • On board the ship, either at the Excursions’ Desk or via the MSC for Me app (where available) 

  • At the Welcome Centre or Excursion pavilion located at the Ocean Village welcome area directly as you enter Ocean Cay  

Should I wait to book an excursion once I’m onboard or on the island?

We highly recommend you book your excursion in advance. This guarantees you will be able to participate in the excursion, as well as saving you up to 20%. Prices shown online are already discounted. 

Click here to see a list of available excursions.


Which ships visit Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve?

All ships sailing a Bahamas or Caribbean itinerary will visit Ocean Cay. Detailed ship and itinerary information are available here.

Is the ship accessible at any time while docked at the island?

Yes, you can return to the ship any time. Restaurants, entertainment, and activities will all be available onboard while the ship is docked at the island. NOTE: Always have your cruise card accessible and ready to enter and exit the ship.

What ships stay overnight in Ocean Cay?

MSC Seashore, MSC Seaside, MSC Divina and MSC Magnifica will overnight on Ocean Cay on selected sailings, and all other ships have itineraries with late night departures between 9pm and 12 midnight.


Will there be a spa on the island?

Yes, you will have the chance to relax, rejuvenate, and feel alive! The Spa at Ocean Cay will offer a variety of services: Smooth Breeze Massage (30 min), Breeze Boost massage (50 min) and Deep Blue Massage (50 min). Your massage will take place in a massage treatment hut on the beach, looking out on to Paradise beach and the tranquil Bahamian waters. 

Can I get a massage on the beach? 

Absolutely, that is the only way to get a massage on a remote, private island! There will be eight massage cabanas on the island. These cabanas will be available for guests to enjoy one of our fine massages with breathtaking views of the beach and sea.

What products are used in the spa?

Only eco-friendly products will be used, and guests will be able to purchase these products once on the island and onboard.

If I book the Aurea Experience, can I get the massage on the island?

The Spa at Ocean Cay is separate from MSC Aurea Spa, therefore, your Spa treatment included in the Aurea Experience is not transferable to the island and can only be used onboard. 

Will fitness activities be available on the island?

Yes. The activities available are Sunrise Yoga on the Beach (50 min) and Sunset Silent Yoga on the Beach (50 min). Availability and schedule to be confirmed onboard.


Is there a medical facility on the island?

Yes, there are two medical centers with an Ocean Cay island doctor and nurse support from the ship. Additional medical facilities are available on board.

Is there security on the island?

The safety of our guests and crew members is our top priority, and we have designated security officers throughout the island.

What does MSC Cruises do with the trash on the island?

MSC Cruises is dedicated to protecting the environment. The waste on the island (plastics, metals, glass, vegetation, and wet waste) is sorted, compacted, and recycled via sending back on the ships to the US or dedicated barges to Nassau, Bahamas – all handled in environmentally friendly way.

We are also continuously working to improve our systems on the island to stay eco-friendly. 

Will Ocean Cay be accessible for guests with special needs? 

Yes, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve is completely ADA compliant. Beach wheelchairs will be available on the island and waiting for guests at the pier upon disembarkation (upon request).

Service animals must be approved by MSC and accompanied by a permit from the Bahamian Department of Agriculture. 

Can children access the island without parents?

Parents and/or legal guardians must accompany minors when leaving the ship, and MSC recommends that parents/guardians always stay with and accompany their children while on the island and enjoy the beaches and facilities. 


Can I get married on the island?

Yes! The island features a Wedding Pavilion that can be hired onboard for private symbolic wedding ceremonies and/or vow renewals. 

Can I rent Ocean Cay for private use? 

No, it is not possible to rent any area of the Island at present.