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Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve (Photo: Conrad Schutt)
Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve (Photo: Conrad Schutt)

Brittany Chrusciel
Cruise Critic Editor

Port of Ocean Cay Marine Reserve

MSC Cruises' Ocean Cay Marine Reserve, opening November 2019, is part of the Bimini chain of islands in the western Bahamas, 20 miles south of Bimini and just 65 miles east of Miami. The former sand-mining site is home to eight beaches and a coral reef, across the 64 square miles of marine reserve. The island's Bahamian-style village offers a wide range of places to shop, eat, drink and relax, claiming authentic Bahamian cuisine, cocktails and a straw market.

Ships dock directly at a pier, with an easy walk onto the island. MSC Cruises is the only line to call at Ocean Cay and will offer late nights in the port, with special evening activities, due to its close proximity to Miami.

Shore Excursions

About Ocean Cay Marine Reserve


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Good to Know

The use of reef-safe sunscreen (as well as bug repellent) is encouraged and available for purchase on the island.

Bring cash (U.S. dollars) for the local straw market.

Getting Around

Transportation

There will be continuous tram service running from the ship to various points on Ocean Cay throughout the day/evening. Signage will also be posted throughout as the island is easily walkable.

Accessibility

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

Food and Drink

Ocean Cay Marine Reserve has one buffet, an ice cream and coffee shop, and food trucks galore. A second buffet restaurant is slated for spring 2020.

The island has vegetarian and vegan dishes and will also offer veggie burgers, salads and gluten-free breads (available upon request). The island will not be able to accommodate specific allergies, so it's recommended for those with food sensitivities to eat onboard the ship where crew will be able to accommodate special requests. Kosher food will not be available on the island as well.

The ship's dining room and buffet will also remain open during select times, so passengers can come and go as they please, if they wish to eat onboard the ship.

Free

Seakers Food Court: Authentic Bahamian flavors and American classics will be available at this complimentary buffet restaurant. A second buffet will open spring 2020.

Food Trucks: Don't feel like going to the buffet? Find one of nine complimentary food trucks located throughout the island.

Fee

The Smiling Fish and Coffee Bar: For dessert, head to The Smiling Fish, located in the marina, for a variety of soft serve ice cream (including Bahamian flavors) with your choice of fresh fruit and favorite toppings. There is also a coffee bar that offers freshly brewed whole bean coffee, espresso and iced drinks.

Bars

There are three MSC beverage packages for purchase that extend to Ocean Cay. Easy, Premium and Premium Plus drink packages can be used on the island.

Springer's Bar: Established by a local Bahamian family and located in the marina, this authentic Bahamian bar offers cocktails and drinks in a friendly atmosphere.

Lighthouse Bar: Towering into the sky at the edge of the island, the Ocean Cay lighthouse is a striking landmark. Enjoy drinks and food at the Hemingway-style bar downstairs with live music, DJs and an evening lights show.

Tiki Bars: Grab a drink at one of the island's tiki bars located right by each of the food trucks. There are eight tiki bars spread across the island with a wide choice of beverage options, each claiming its own unique look and feel.

Shopping

Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve Logo Shop: Souvenir and gift shop with a focus on Ocean Cay. Your MSC Cruise Card will be the only form of payment accepted in the souvenir and gift shop.

The Bahamian Shop & Artisan Market: Shop for authentic Bahamian products at the straw market. Unlike other venues on the island, the Bahamian artisan market does not accept a cruise card as a form of payment, so cash (U.S. dollars) is required.

MSC Logo Shop: The place to browse a selection of MSC-branded products to take home memories of your cruise. Cruise Card accepted.