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  • 04
  • Sep
  • 2014

5 places to see in Great Stirrup Cay when on a Norwegian Caribbean cruise

Great Stirrup Cay is a small, privately owned island in the Berry Island chain in the Bahamas. Owned by Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), it’s an exciting stop on any NCL Bahamas cruise. The island is considered one of the best stops in the Berry Islands, and a must see destination on any Caribbean cruise.

When on Great Stirrup Cay there are a wide variety of activities and things to see across the island. Of course, the island is small, so there will be plenty of time to take in most of the sites it has to offer. Particularly exciting for those interested in snorkeling or waterfront activities because the northern part of the island is scattered with beaches and diving areas. At we put our heads together to come up with the best places to visit on this fascinating island.

Happy Traveler Comment
Just wanted to follow up and say what a pleasure it was to work with you [Darlene] and Cesar and I am thankful for the patient and prompt responses to several questions I had leading up to the trip. And the trip was awesome! I would also recommend Holland America. We did a cruisetour. The land tour schedule was intense at times, but worth it. I feel like we saw three weeks' worth in one week. And there were never any lines and very little waiting with Holland America having made all arrangements ahead of time. I can't imagine a better trip! Thank you! — Brigette and Bruce W.

Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines

Here are our top five picks:

The beach – Of course, no Caribbean island is complete without plenty of beach area. The beaches at Great Stirrup Cay are particularly beautiful and offer plenty of sun, swimming and snorkeling for all visitors. There are multiple beach areas, some more secluded than the rest, for visitors to relax on or investigate the local waters on a dive. There are also hammocks for visitors to relax in, as well as a wide variety of hosted activities from volleyball to a scavenger hunt.


Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines

Water slide – The large Hippo slide is another ideal attraction for adults and children alike, with plenty of excitement to offer right off of the beachfront. Many visitors spend their entire time on the island at the water slide and beaches enjoying the sun and water to full extent.

Exploration – Plenty of opportunities exist to explore this uninhabited Caribbean island. Take an ecoboat tour, kayak or waverunner to cruise around the waters and get a sense of how isolated the island is, or take a walk around Grand Stirrup Cay to enjoy the vegetation, ocean breezes and sun on foot. Guests can also take a parasail adventure for an aerial view.


Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines

Snorkeling Excursions – A booked tour of the waters with specially-trained stingrays is another amazing opportunity at Grand Stirrup Cay. Guests can snorkel with these aquatic creatures, feed them and even hold them. Located inside Bertram’s Cove, the Stingray Encounter also includes use of a mask, snorkel and snorkel vest so that guests can peer below the surface to examine the rays up close. In addition to the Stingray Excursion, the island offers a snorkeling tour of a shipwreck, “The Fancy.” The tour takes guests on an interactive treasure hunt for the lost ship and its cargo.


Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines

The lighthouse – Perhaps the most impressive structure on Grand Stirrup Cay is the lighthouse. Though the tower itself is close to the public, visitors can see the site and enjoy walking around the historic landmark, leftover from the 1800s, when the lighthouse was built. The light is still in operation, powered by solar panels and set to a timer to flash every 20 seconds.

Get an up close and personal look at Grand Stirrup Cay cruise by watching this short video clip: [youtube][/youtube]

If you’re ready to head off on an exciting cruise vacation, now is the time to start planning. At, we’d love to help you design an itinerary for your trip of a lifetime. We also provide tips for the best places to visit.

Not interested in cruising through the Caribbean? No problem! Ask us about our European river cruises and Alaskan cruise tours. Call us today at 1-888-804-CRUISE (2784), visit our website,, or email us at

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