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Disney Cruise Line in a Jiffy: What is a Cabana?

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Disney Cruise Line offers cabanas as part of the amenities on their private islands: Castaway Cay and Lookout Cay. You’ll find them listed in the “Port Adventures” section of your booking experience.

The Disney island cabanas are private huts that are set away from the main beaches. There are some located in the family section and some in the Serenity Bay section that are available to only parties where every guest is 18+. There are about 25 cabanas on each island.

The cabanas include comfy lounge chairs, a small refrigerator stocked with water and soda, fresh fruit, packaged snacks, towels, and sunscreen. On Castaway Cay, cabana rentals come with sand toys, floats and tubes, snorkel equipment, and bike rentals. On Lookout Cay, cabanas come with sand toys and bike rentals. You also have access to a cabana host, who can bring you adult beverages (for a fee), and you’ll get a private golf cart or tram ride to your cabana.

If you sail with DCL a few times, you’ll hear a lot of ooohing and aaaahing about the wonders of the cabanas. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a few cabana experiences and can attest they are indeed a lovely. You’ll think, I too need a cabana.

Unfortunately, I’m here to provide two very large reality checks. First, the cabanas are expensive – like crazy expensive. For example, prices for six people in a family cabana on Lookout Cay start at $963 for the day, plus $56 for each additional guest (up to a total of 10 guests), plus you’ll need to tip your cabana host and any additional cast members who help you during the day. Second, even if you wanted to spend that much money, the odds of you being able to reserve a cabana are small. Concierge staterooms and Pearl Level Castaway Club members get first crack at reserving all activities, including cabanas. It’s been eons since I’ve seen availability even for Platinum level DCL cruisers.

The photos below are of Cabana 23 in the Serenity Bay (adults only) section of Castaway Cay. Other DCL cabanas are similarly appointed, though the family cabanas are larger, with more seating inside.

Cabanas are fantastic, but even if you want to pay the big bucks, you probably won’t have the opportunity to do so unless you’re sailing concierge or have already been on dozens of DCL voyages. However, the good new is, the Disney island beaches are lovely. There are ample lounge chairs and umbrellas. Bartenders walk the beach, offering to bring frosty drinks right to your chair. You can buy sunscreen and sand toys in the beach shops. And you snorkels, floats, and bikes are readily available to rent.

Note: Do not confuse the island cabanas with the pool-deck buffet on the Magic, Wonder, Dream, and Fantasy, named “Cabanas.” This dining location is included in the price of your cruise for all guests. No reservations are necessary.

Disney Cruise Line in a Jiffy is an offshoot of our “Disney in a Minute” posts. Both are bite-sized nuggets of information that can better help you understand a Disney term or planning topic, but here we’ll be focused on all thing Disney Cruise Line (DCL). Have a question about a DCL term that is unfamiliar to you? Suggest it here for an upcoming segment.

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Erin Foster

Erin Foster is an original member of the Walt Disney World Moms Panel (now PlanDisney), a regular contributor to TouringPlans.com, and co-author of The Unofficial Guide to Disney Cruise Line. She's been to WDW, DL, DL Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, Aulani, DVC Vero Beach, and DVC Hilton Head. She's a Platinum DCL cruiser and veteran of 10 Adventures by Disney trips. Erin lives near New York City, where she can often be found indulging in her other obsession - Broadway theater.

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