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Half Moon Cay with Two Ships

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Never been to HMC and was really looking forward to it.  Just realized there will be another ship there the same day.  Will it be a mad house?  I've rented a clamshell.  Are they all in one place or dispersed throughout.  Any and all advice appreciated.  Thanks

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I do not expect it to be a madhouse.  I was there a couple of years ago with pretty much 2 of HAL's biggest ships, the Koningsdam and Nieuw Amsterdam and thought it was fine.  The lunch will be served by the 2 crews working together and I thought it a very good day.

 

I was told at the time that the larger ship will use the land based island tenders and the smaller one will use the ship's tenders and I think there were separate tendering lines for each ship.

 

I did not pay any attention to the clamshells so I can't answer that.

 

Roy

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The clam shells will be spread down the beach.

 

We have been there with 2 large ships.  The lines were long for lunch.  It was very crowded at the bars.

 

Now if we are there with 2 ships, we stay on our ship -- nice and quiet.

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We are due to HMC in April and both Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam are scheduled to be there!   I wonder how long tendering will take and what rule will be used for the Island tenders?

It will be a stay on board day for sure!

Edited by VMax1700

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30 minutes ago, go noles said:

Never been to HMC and was really looking forward to it.  Just realized there will be another ship there the same day.  Will it be a mad house?  I've rented a clamshell.  Are they all in one place or dispersed throughout.  Any and all advice appreciated.  Thanks

The clam shells are along the length of the beach back from the water in a line.  As you get off the tender you will go through an arched opening - on the left you will see an area where they are arranging the tours.  People there will direct you to an attendant that will setup your clam shell.  We have been there many times with 2 ships.  It can be a little crowded but not bad.  We have been in January and February and the water temp is on the cool side for me.  The clam shells are the dark blue structures in the photos

 

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Edited by iflyrc5

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Been there with two ships and you will only need to walk a  bit more down the beach to get to some pretty glorious quiet and privacy. Most congregate near the dining and activity areas closer to the tender dock.

 

Biggest problem were the lines getting back on the ship - just make sure you are in the right line for the right ship, because some of the lines stretch out a bit pas the signs indicating which ship you will be returning too. Not a big deal, just about the only impact we noticed when there are two ships in port. Yes, there were more people but we like to get away down beach anyway even if there is only one ship..

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Two dam ships simultaneously means more people on the island, but not a mad house. The island can manage it while one of the two ships usually departs some time before the other one. Make sure you get in the correct boarding line! :classic_wink: 

 

Roy is correct, as always, in that the larger ship will get the island tenders (Anne Bonny, Henry Hudson, and Stingray, while the smaller of the tow ships will be using her own tenders to shuttle pax ashore. Enjoy HMC, it's a slice of paradise!

 

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How do you find out if another ship will be there when your ship is there?  We are there on the Oosterdam on 12/301/18.

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2 minutes ago, RayRose51 said:

How do you find out if another ship will be there when your ship is there?  We are there on the Oosterdam on 12/301/18.

 

Oosterdam will be the only ship at HMC on 30 Dec

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30 minutes ago, RayRose51 said:

How do you find out if another ship will be there when your ship is there?  We are there on the Oosterdam on 12/301/18.

 

Probably the best source is http://www.cruisetimetables.com.  Click the tab for Ports of Call, then HMC under Bahamas.

 

Roy

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1 hour ago, VMax1700 said:

We are due to HMC in April and both Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam are scheduled to be there!   I wonder how long tendering will take and what rule will be used for the Island tenders?

It will be a stay on board day for sure!

 

I would never stay on board just because 2 ships are scheduled at HMC the same day.  Why give up a day at probably the most beautiful private beach in the Caribbean just because there are a few more people there?  

 

As previously stated:  just make sure you get on the correct line for the tender back to your ship.  We usually wait until the next-to or last tender.  The lines are not that long then.  

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I do not like crowds.

 

And since I had to start to use a Rollator in 2012, that makes it even harder to get around even with the paths.

 

On the ship -- no lines for lunch.  No crowds at the bar.

 

 

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38 minutes ago, baggal said:

would never stay on board just because 2 ships are scheduled at HMC the same day.  Why give up a day at probably the most beautiful private beach in the Caribbean just because there are a few more people there?  

 

Well said, baggal, ... although those who do just make it that much nicer for everyone else.

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Half Moon Cay has a lot more capacity than you'd expect. If you are on the first ship in, you will get your pick of facilities. If you are on the second ship, just head down to the pirate ship /Captain Morgan bar. Things thin out there. 

 

There are clamshells all down the beach. Just find an attendant and he or she will hook you up.

 

Tip: There is a paved path just a little bit inland from the beach. It's much easier to traverse than walking on the sand if you have difficulty with uneven surfaces. 

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We stopped renting clamshells some time ago, choosing instead to walk further down the beach and find loungers in the natural shade of the trees. One ship or two, the vast majority of passengers tend to crowd into the first few hundred meters or the beach, leaving lots of space further along.

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6 minutes ago, Fouremco said:

We stopped renting clamshells some time ago, choosing instead to walk further down the beach and find loungers in the natural shade of the trees. One ship or two, the vast majority of passengers tend to crowd into the first few hundred meters or the beach, leaving lots of space further along.

 

I think you're absolutely correct. 

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Go Noles, my wife and I were there late Feb. 2018.   We were on the first of 2 ships to arrive so later in the day it did get busy.  We were on the first tender and nearly the first ones on the deserted beach.  I believe it was maybe 9am when we arrived ( could have been a bit  earlier or later).  

 

If you haven't been there before, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.  We really loved the soft sand the aqua blue water.  We stayed for perhaps 4 hours and left as the beach got more crowded.  We skipped the buffet luncheon at HMC and returned to a nearly deserted ship and had a super lunch in the Lido.  There are you-tube videos showing the luncheons at HMC and they may be helpful on your decision of staying or returning to the ship.

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17 hours ago, baggal said:

 

I would never stay on board just because 2 ships are scheduled at HMC the same day.  Why give up a day at probably the most beautiful private beach in the Caribbean just because there are a few more people there?  

 

As previously stated:  just make sure you get on the correct line for the tender back to your ship.  We usually wait until the next-to or last tender.  The lines are not that long then.  

 

One ship or two ships will have nothing to do with the decision to stay on board.  After visiting HMC twice we have stayed onboard for all following visits.  It is lovely, but it is still beach and sand and water and a poor lunch and drinks that have to be paid for.  Onboard is a very pleasant day, specially if it is the last day of a cruise and repacking can commence!

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21 hours ago, go noles said:

Never been to HMC and was really looking forward to it.

Definitely go to see it at least once. We like to get one of the earliest tenders possible, spend 2 or 3 hours, and go back to the ship for a late lunch just as the incoming crowds are starting to get heavy.  We've been there 6 or 7 times (a couple of times with 2 ships) and it never gets old for us.

Edited by catl331

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We were there less than a month ago, and there were two ships.  Our 4th visit there, but first with two ships.  There was no problem getting a lounger.  The beach is very long and wide, so just keep walking past the crowd if you want.  I have always rented the clam shell, but didn't this time.  While it's nice to have some shade, we find they get very hot as they are closed on 3 sides.   The buffet lunch is quite good, but we did head back to the ship this time without going for lunch.  I'm assuming with 2 ships it will be long lines and there really aren't that many tables to sit at.  

 

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8 hours ago, VMax1700 said:

 

One ship or two ships will have nothing to do with the decision to stay on board.  After visiting HMC twice we have stayed onboard for all following visits.  It is lovely, but it is still beach and sand and water and a poor lunch and drinks that have to be paid for.  Onboard is a very pleasant day, specially if it is the last day of a cruise and repacking can commence!

 

Different strokes for different folks. I for one, wouldn't give up a beautiful beach day - especially on the last cruise day - knowing that by the afternoon of the next day I'll be back in the snowy, cold Northeast.  

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We found the water deliciously warm in November - did not want to get out- water not as warm later in the season. So if you are there in November/December, do not miss going to the beach and into the water too. 

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