Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Happiest Place On Earth, Part IV

Next stop: Castaway Cay!

Imagine you had Disney's deep pockets, two cruise ships, and a wild imagination. An island in the Bahamas comes up for sale. And hey, you have those Pirates of the Caribbean movies in production and you'll need a place to park that monster prop, The Flying Dutchman, afterward, unless you plan to tear it apart. What do you do? Hmmmmm...

How'd you like to wake up to that view on a Friday morning?!

Disney bought the former Gorda Cay in mid-90s, dredged enough sand to allow their cruise ships to dock, and has been maintaining the space for its cruise ship passengers ever since. After days racing around Mexico, Grand Cayman, and Key West, we were ready for serious lounging. We spent the morning doing exactly that--with plenty of sunscreen, of course--right here on the shore:

I read a big chunk of Elizabeth Boyle's latest Regency-era romance while sitting in one of the chairs. Bliss!

Disney rents snorkeling gear, floating tubes, and bicycles for anyone who's interested. We opted to rent bikes just before noon, and explored the abandoned runway before heading off down this gorgeous bike path. Hard to believe, but we had it all to ourselves:

Off to the left of the bike path is an unspoiled expanse of rocky beach and blue, blue water. I stopped to take this photo at a gap in the trees:

After lunch, we went fishing (Disney offers several excursions, and since I love to fish, I signed up for bottom fishing the minute it was available), then had a little more time on the beach before heading back to the ship. The end-of-day view is my current desktop wallpaper:

Next, in Part V: The Other Happiest Place On Earth

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