Royal Caribbean Cancels Shore Excursions Into January

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Royal Caribbean International has reached out to booked guests on upcoming sailings with the news that some shore excursions are now cancelled at least through mid-January.

This follows the recent accident on a Blue Lagoon excursion in Nassau, and those tours will remain cancelled for the time being while the investigation into the incident continues.

Blue Lagoon Shore Tours Remain Cancelled

On November 14, 2023, a Blue Lagoon tour boat sank and one Royal Caribbean cruise passenger died near the popular excursion island. This led to the temporary cancellation of all shore excursions to Blue Lagoon Island as the investigation in the cause of the accident and the response to the incident has been ongoing.

Royal Caribbean International has now notified guests booked on upcoming sailings that all Blue Lagoon tours continue to be cancelled at this time.

“We’re currently working with authorities to evaluate a boat incident that took place during a shore excursion in Nassau, Bahamas,” the email notification read. “In light of this incident, we have decided to cancel all Blue Lagoon tours through mid-January.”

Blue Lagoon is a popular spot for a variety of shore tours, including snorkeling, beach breaks, dolphin swims, sea lion and stingray encounters, shark encounters, and other excursions.

Cruise Passengers on Sinking Boat in Nassau, Bahamas
Cruise Passengers on Sinking Boat in Nassau, Bahamas

Guests who have already pre-paid for such tours through Royal Caribbean for the next month will have their excursions automatically cancelled and fully refunded back to the original form of payment. This may take 14 business days, though processing times vary for different banking institutions.

“We’re sorry for any inconvenience caused by this but we appreciate your understanding,” the notification concludes. “Please know your safety is our top priority.”

While the notification and the extension of tour cancellations is only for Royal Caribbean cruise guests, it is possible that other cruise lines may also continue to cancel these tour offerings for the time being. Nassau is one of the most popular cruise ports in the world – having already broken its all-time cruise passenger record just this month – and the safety of all visitors is very important.

Other Tour Options

While Blue Lagoon tours may not be available – unless guests choose to make private arrangements on their own to visit the destination – there are many other amazing tours to enjoy while visiting Nassau.

Top options include the Baha Bay Water Park, Atlantis Resort, shopping tours, historical sites, catamaran trips, swimming with the pigs, a local pirate museum, the iconic Straw Market, Ardastra Gardens and the dancing flamingos, and more. Different local options are also available for beach breaks, snorkeling, and water sports, even while Blue Lagoon remains unavailable.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship in Nassau, Bahamas
Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Docked in Nassau, Bahamas (Photo Credit: Wangkun Jia)

Guests can also enjoy the new cruise terminal facilities in Nassau, which just opened in May 2023. The revitalized area includes an open-air amphitheater for local concerts and events, Bahamian retailers, green space, and a Junkanoo museum to explore Bahamian culture.

When Will Blue Lagoon Tours Resume?

The cruise line has not clarified exactly when Blue Lagoon tours may resume, only that they are now cancelled through “mid-January.” It is possible the cancellations may be extended even longer depending on the results of the ongoing investigation.

Read Also: 39 Ideal Things to Do in Nassau, Bahamas

Royal Caribbean International – and all major cruise lines – work only with the most reputable tour operators, those who follow strict safety standards. Safety inspections and certifications may be necessary before the cruise line will permit Blue Lagoon tours to resume being offered through Royal Caribbean.

Guests sailing to Nassau in the next few weeks who are interested in Blue Lagoon shore tours will want to remain flexible with their excursion plans, and stay in close contact with their cruise line in case of continued cancellations.

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