Harvest Caye offers huge beach, villas, cabanas, nature, aerial adventures

Harvest Caye - the only Belize destination with a cruise ship dock Harvest Caye - the only Belize destination with a cruise ship dock

A seven-acre beach, 15,000-square-foot pool, multiple dining options and easy access to the mainland for adventure tours highlight Harvest Caye, Norwegian Cruise Line's new destination in southern Belize. Aerial adventures and nature tours will be offered, too.

As the sole port in Belize with a cruise ship pier, Harvest Caye will offer a very different experience from Belize City to the north, where passengers have to tender ashore.

'There is so much to do on the island, from the spectacular seven-acre beach and watersports to interactive wildlife programs. Beyond Harvest Caye, we will strongly encourage our guests to explore Belize through the spectacular eco-adventure and cultural tours this incredible destination has to offer,' said Andy Stuart, Norwegian president and chief operating officer.

At a large marina, passengers can depart for a wide variety of excursions, including Mayan ruins, river rafting and nature tours.

Harvest Caye’s white-sand beach will be the heart of the destination, with 11 luxurious beach villas available to rent. They accommodate up to 10 people and have air conditioning, lounge and dining areas, a restroom, indoor and outdoor showers, hammocks, and exclusive dining and beverage options with dedicated concierge service.

The island's sprawling pool, lushly landscaped, features a swim-up bar with stools and lounge tables in the water, surrounded by elegant lounge chairs and umbrellas. A footbridge spans the center of the pool, with a waterfall feature below. Fifteen canopy pool cabanas are available to rent.

Harvest Caye's 130-foot-tall Flighthouse is the center for aerial activities including zip lining, suspension bridges, free fall jumps, a tandem 'superman'-style zip line and stunning views of the mainland. The zip line stretches more than 3,000 feet, with stops at three platforms. The Flighthouse will include a ropes course on a platform in the saltwater lagoon. For a lower adrenaline adventure, passengers can kayak, paddle board and canoe in a shallow lagoon area.

The five dining and bar outlets include a two-story indoor/outdoor Landshark Bar & Grill, expanding Norwegian’s partnership with Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville. There will be an upper deck and a swim-up pool bar. Authentic Belizean food will available in casual street-style dining in the shopping village. Further dining options are the Laughing Bird Bar & Grill serving the beach, the Manatee Marina Bar & Grill in the marina, the Horse-Eye Jack Bar & Grill servicing the cabanas, and food and drink delivery throughout the pool area.

Popular name-brand retailers and items from Belizean craftsmen will be available in Harvest Caye's shopping village.

Passengers can learn about the native flora and fauna on manatee observation tours at the lagoon, visit a butterfly garden and see scarlet macaws and toucans in the island's aviary, which will house a breed and release program for scarlet macaws in an effort to increase the population of these native birds. An educational center will house indigenous reptiles such as boa constrictors.

Harvest Caye’s conservation and education programs were developed by award-winning author and wildlife expert Tony Garel, the destination’s chief naturalist. He will lead many of the island’s educational tours and be available to chat wildlife in Belize.

To help further the island’s conservation efforts, more than 10,000 new mangroves have been planted throughout the island to increase the natural estuary system that serves as a habitat for birds, fish and other marine species.

Harvest Caye will be available to passengers on Norwegian's western Caribbean itineraries starting in November. Select sailings of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings' sister brands, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises, will also call.

Posted 18 March 2016

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Anne Kalosh

Editor, Seatrade Cruise News & Senior Associate Editor Seatrade Cruise Review