Ships can dock directly at Ocean Cay, thanks to a dedicated pier constructed. Picture: Conrad Schutt.
Ships can dock directly at Ocean Cay, thanks to a dedicated pier constructed. Picture: Conrad Schutt.

LOOK: Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve to feature in new National Geographic series

By Travel Reporter Time of article published Jul 3, 2020

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Restored island Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve will feature in a new National Geographic channel series called Building Paradise Island

MSC Cruises revealed that the three-part documentary series follows the transformation of a sand excavation site in The Bahamas to the stunning private island destination and marine reserve. 

When MSC Cruises officially “broke ground” on Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve in 2017, it was labelled as the region’s most ambitious engineering projects ever with the vision to create a unique island destination where MSC Cruises guests could connect with the natural surroundings and learn about the importance of preserving the oceans and coral reefs.

Camera crew followed every step of the restoration through to first guests. Picture: AP Images.

The new series was filmed over three years as a camera crew followed every step of this major construction project, including the reshaping of the island and installation of revetments, facility and infrastructure construction, the installation of a pier for the ships to dock directly at the island and the planting of more than 75 000 trees and shrubs. 

The series concludes with the race against the clock to welcome the first guests in December 2019.  

MSC Cruises said in a statement: "Since opening in December 2019, MSC Cruises guests have been able to experience the flourishing marine reserve and its 64 square miles of protected waters, with endless sweeping vistas of turquoise blue and two miles of white sandy beachfront while immersing themselves in the warmth, fun and hospitality inspired by the Bahamian spirit."

Ocean Cay was one of the region’s most ambitious engineering projects. Picture: National Geographic.


The flourishing marine reserve has 64 square miles of protected waters. Picture: J Nussbaum.

Ocean Cay is home the Great Lagoon Beach, located in an inlet at the centre of the island. Great Lagoon Beach is known as the largest single beach offers a haven with shallow crystal-clear water perfect for swimming and water sports.

Other attractions include the lighthouse, a striking 30-metre tall landmark that is home to a Hemingway-style bar and a terrace where guests can take in the incredible sea view and enjoy a few sundowners. 

  • Tune in to watch the new series on Channel 181 on DSTV from July 3, at 7.10pm CAT. Episode two and three continue at 00:15 CAT on July 4 and 7pm CAT on July 8. 

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