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What to Do at CocoCay For Free and Cheap

Updated: 4 days ago

If you imagined your "Perfect Day at CocoCay" to be completely free, you're in luck - because it's totally possible! But, there's a few things like cocktails and hair braiding you may want to tack on just for the fun of it.

Here's a fun round up of what to do at CocoCay for free (and a few things worth opening your wallet for).

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a shallowed beach shaded by palm trees with beach chairs

Breakfast Onboard

Start the day with a long, big breakfast in the ship dining room. Enjoy, you have all morning.

Wading Without Committment

Not sure you want to do a full on beach day?

Scope out the shallow beach area to the left of the ship and enjoy some shallow wading before things get busier.

bridge overlooking beach with trees and rocks

Just bring a small bag with sunglasses, water and sunblock for the day. You don't really need anything else, because it's not a full-on beach day for you!

shallow beach with sand

Wander CocoCay's beach shops and kiosks

Although you likely won't be buying anything, it's fun to "window shop". Go ahead and splurge on a hat or sarong at one of the colorful beach shops. This is an easy way to kill 25 minutes before lunch.

Get your hair braided

When I was a little girl I remember getting my whole head braided on one of the islands. It cost my parents about $100 at the time, and I felt like Cleopatra. I remember being so proud of the braids and beads when I went back to school, but after a few weeks of wearing it, the braids of course had to come out.

When they did, my hair was coming out in clumps! As an uninformed kid, I associated hair loss with cancer, and spent a whole school day fretting that I must have gotten cancer! Thankfully, it was just the natural loss of hair and all was well (I didn't know about chemo!).

Anyway, get your hair braided - even if it's a few strands, it's fun! Chairs are set up all over the kiosk shops area.

What to do at CocoCay for Free? Eat at the massive lunch buffet!

Enjoy BBQ, ice cream and more! There's some nice shaded tables in the sand around the corner of the buffet pavilion, or take it back to your beach chair. It's an enjoyable area for a nice (free) meal while on shore.

woman takes a selfie in front of palm trees and a beach

Take a walk around the island to burn off that buffet lunch

I spent a good amount of time just walking around. Beware that based on time of day and time of year, this can be a hot and tiring endeavor. You'll need something better than flip flops to wear.

I 1000% recommend these sandals from Skechers - they are my go to sandal for hard walking days (I have easily walked 12,000 steps a day in these bad boys and they are so comfortable and stylish). I have them in two styles!

Also, bring a coverup to keep your shoulders from burning too.

lagoon with central fountain

Poke into the pool area and see if the swim-up bar looks inviting

On my walk I discovered tons of hidden alcoves with pools, secret beaches and more. Forget the map, just wander and see what comes up. If the pool bar looks inviting, stop in for a waste-deep sit down at the swim-up bar for a cold drink.

large pool with bar and palm trees

Take the free trolley around the island

There are stops around the island to grab the free trolley. Ride around for fun, or use it to get back to the ship.

Cool Off at a Splash Pad

Who says it's just for kids? You'll want to get wet at some point after your walk, trust me.

splash pad blue and colorful

Listen to some tunes from the rope swings at the central bar

My favorite part of the day. Swing and sip, groove to classic rock and country tunes, and enjoy the vibes of paradise. You'll find this bar to be central to the main attractions on the island, or wandering like I did. Near the splash pads!

outdoor bar with nautical decor

Enjoy some rum topped pina coladas

Get a rum floater and I promise your day will be great.

girl drinks a rum drink on a swing

Have a snooze in a hammock

Before retiring to the ship for a shower and evening entertainment onboard, consider finding a shaded hammock by the kiosk shops for a quick snooze.

view of two ships docked

You'll enjoy this port on most of the Bahamas bound Royal Caribbean cruises out of the Floridian ports. While you are there, you may want to also consider the ship tours, or getting on and off the ship throughout the day.

There is no obligation to get off the ship in CocoCay, but even if you are not a beach person, I found that it was an enjoyable day in a paradise setting, worthy of some relaxation and cocktails fitting of the vibes. Enjoy your Perfect Day in CocoCay!



Hi, I'm Maria!

Globetrotting since 1995, I'm not a digital nomad or a social influencer.

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