Most sailings going to the Caribbean on a Disney Cruise Line vacation will stop at Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay. We love the beauty and tranquility of this island, and there is plenty to do! Whether you want to take an excursion while visiting Castaway Cay, or just relax, it’s a favorite stop for many guests on Disney Cruise Line. And if you’re looking for something free to do while there, the Castaway Cay 5k is something fun for the whole family!
Castaway Cay 5k
The Castaway Cay 5K used to be an organized 5K run through Castaway Cay. Before the pandemic, it was set up like a regular race. The race itself was free, but it still required a few things. Guests would have to sign up prior and be ready to disembark the ship at 8am. Since Disney Cruise Line began operating again after the shutdown from covid, things have changed. The Castaway Cay 5K is one of those things. Now, anyone can do the Castaway Cay 5K at any time while they are docked at Castaway Cay.
It is self-paced, so you can walk it or run it. We saw lots of families completing this activity together. And some people were even completing the 5k in their swimsuits and flip flops so you can also do that as well. Although if you choose that route, make sure you bring a good sunscreen! Many of the areas are not shaded and the sun can get quite hot unless you are choosing to complete this super early. And just a reminder, a 5k is 3.1 miles. So just be sure to wear shoes that you can stand to be in for that long.
Our 4-night cruise on the Disney Wish had been extended to a 6-night cruise due to Hurricane Ian and we had been at sea for several days, so by the time we reached the island we were ready to spend some time walking in the sunshine! And it was the perfect way to work up an appetite before lunch at Cookies Too before the sun got too hot.
Where does the Castaway Cay 5k go?
The Castaway Cay 5k takes you through paved paths around the island! If you’ve ever rented bicycles at Castaway Cay, they basically use the same paths. There are signs all over directing you to the route as well as water stations for your convenience. You’ll find lots of hidden treasures throughout the paths, and the route also leads you past the adult only beach, Serenity Bay.
There are areas of shade and areas of harsh sun, so plan accordingly. There are also little benches along the pathway, so if you feel like you need to take breaks, you can do this too!
How to sign up for the Castaway Cay 5k
You don’t need to sign up for the Castaway Cay 5k! You just start it on your own and finish it on your own.
How long does it take to complete the Castaway Cay 5k?
That’s really up to you! A 5k is 3.1 miles, so it really depends on your pace. If you’re running it, it’s easy to complete it in 30 minutes or less. If you’re walking it, you can expect anywhere from a little less than an hour to a little more than an hour. And if you’re planning to make this a family event and include little ones, I would recommend allowing yourself closer to an hour and a half. You can even push your kiddos in a stroller for this 5k so feel free to do that as well! There is no time limit, except
What is the prize for completing the Castaway Cay 5k?
Castaway Cay 5k participants will receive a medal for their efforts. This is a super fun little souvenir and even better, it’s free! A lot of people like to wear their medals around the island after completing the 5k to show off their accomplishments. Or you can always just put it in your bag to bring back home with you later. We love runDisney medals, so we were excited to be able to add this one to our collections!
How to get your medal for the Castaway Cay 5k?
After you’ve completed your 5k, just head to the bicycle rental booth. Let them know you’ve finished the 5k and they will give you your medal. No need to show proof or anything as this is done on the honor system. But we had fun seeing how we did with our pace!
Best time of day to Castaway Cay 5k
It can get very hot at Castaway Cay! The best time of day to complete this course will depend on the time of year you are visiting. But generally, before the sun reaches its peak will be the most comfortable. During cooler months, like January and February, you may be able to do this any time. But most of the time, the ship departs Castaway Cay by 5, so you’ll probably want to plan this earlier in the day. We finished our course around 11:30am, and it was starting to get quite hot at that point. So just try to plan ahead!
The Castaway Cay 5k is a fun, free, self-paced activity that anyone can participate in while on Disney’s private island. If you have the time, want to get some extra steps in, or even just want to take a nice stroll to appreciate the beauty of Castaway Cay, this is a great way to spend a little time here!
Melanie Renee is a photographer, writer, designer and mom. Visiting Disney destinations since 2010, she is also an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner. When she's not creating her next coffee recipe, or designing apparel at Polka Dot Pixie Shop, she's seeking beautiful sunsets and planning her next trip .