Cannon Cluster is the eleventh level of Donkey Kong Country Returns as well as the fourth level of the Beach (Donkey Kong Country Returns). The level takes place on the sandy beach. It features many ships that shoot Cannonballs at the Kongs (Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong) which land on the ground and explode, hurting them if they come in contact with one. In many areas of the level, the Kongs must dodge the cannonballs by simply running past them or taking shelter under large boards. Also, many wooden Crates appear around the level, some of which block the apes' path or contain collectibles. Common enemies in this level are Snaps and Pinchleys, even though some Jellybobs and Tiki Buzzes appear as well. In Time Attack mode, a time of 0:50:00 is needed to earn a gold medal, a time of 1:01:00 for a silver medal and a time of 1:23:00 for a bronze medal.
The level begins on a flat bridge that leads onto a beach area. When the apes heads over the beach, they are welcomed by a Snaps and a wooden pillar that can be pounded into the ground to make another wooden pillar appear nearby. There is another Snaps farther ahead, followed by some more after a pair of Crates. After the Kongs head down a small hill, they come across a flat area that is constantly being shot by cannonballs from the ships in the background. Before a raised area right after the area that the cannonballs hit the ground is a DK Barrel. If the apes climb up the ledge next to it, they enter an area with a few bridges that lead over ocean water. There are gaps in the bridges, and Jellybobs jump out of them. A larger gap is after the second Jellybob (which is in the second gap), which holds the letter K of the K-O-N-G Letters and a Tiki Buzz in it. A raised section of the bridge is above this gap holding the letter K with a Treasure Chest, some Bananas and a Banana Coin on it. After another gap in the bridge placed near a Pinchley is a long, flat area of the bridge that is placed slightly above the sand. Cannonballs are fired in this area, in which, the heroes must avoid. A gap with water below it is following this section with a Tiki Buzz in it. On the other side of the gap is a raised bridge that is on top of the sand from the beach. The primates can jump off of the end of this bridge to reach the beach area, where some Snaps and a Treasure Chest can be found. Farther ahead of them and also immediately before them are some wooden pillars that can be pounded into the ground to make another set of them appear nearby. One of these wooden pillars has a fan next to it that can be blown on to make a section of ground rise. After this fan is a small gap with a Jellybob in it. On the other side of the gap is a bridge that leads back onto land. The apes can find Crates here, followed by a raised area that is being shot by cannonballs. A wooden board is above a Treasure Chest here that they can take shelter under from the dangerous cannonballs; the letter O, however, is on top of the wooden board. If the primates proceed onto a large wooden object and climb across it before they are shot by too many cannonballs, they will reach the Tutorial Pig who marks the checkpoint on a straight, flat bridge. From the checkpoint, a gap located immediately after a Barrel can be found with a Jellybob in it. On the other side of the gap is a ship vessel part that floats on top of the water. Another floating ship part is after the gap placed nearby, which has a Jellybob in it, as usual. On this ship part, there is a Crate and above the gap right after it is the letter N. A Jellybob jumps out of it, like normal, under the letter. There is another floating ship part on the other side of this gap with three Bananas above it. The gap that is located after this ship part has another Jellybob in it, and leads to a small buoyant platform. The apes can reach an area of land near this floating platform, which has some Crates on it. After the Crates is a flat area that is shot by many cannonballs from the background. At the end of this area there is a wall that the primates must go under by pounding a few Crates apart to access an alcove below it. They can reach the letter G by jumping off of these Crates. When they get under the wall, they come up to a curvy area of land invaded by many Pinchleys. Farther ahead of the apes is an area that is constantly being shot by cannonballs. The Kongs must run or roll across this part of the level while trying to avoid the cannonballs to reach a raised piece of land that can aid them in reaching a large wooden ship part. Above an abyss next to the ship part is the level's Slot Machine Barrel. The level is complete when the Slot Machine Barrel is hit.
- K: The letter K is in a wide gap located in a bridge area in the beginning part of the level. A Tiki Buzz surrounds it and can be bounced on to reach the level without falling into the pit.
- O: In the area of land that the cannonballs shoot at just before the checkpoint, the letter O can be found on a wooden board.
- N: In the part of the level where there are ship parts floating above the water, the heroes should jump off a Crate to reach the letter N above a Jellybob.
- G: When the heroes reach the Crates right after the second-to-last area of the cannonballs, they should jump off going left to reach the letter G.
- At the beginning of the level, the apes can find a wooden pillar sticking out of the sand. They should pound it into the ground to make another wooden pillar appear nearby. If they pound this into the ground, the previous wooden platform pops back out of the ground with a Puzzle Piece on it.
- Just before the letter K is a platform surrounded by two Jellybobs. The heroes should blow on a strange plant to reveal the second Puzzle Piece.
- Shortly after the letter K is a wooden pillar sticking out of the sand. If the Kongs pound on it, another one appears behind them on a raised bridge area. If they stand on this wooden pillar they can find a Puzzle Piece in the air that they can reach with a jump from the platform.
- The Kongs should pound on the wooden pillar located after the wooden pillar previously found under the third Puzzle Piece to make another wooden pillar appear next to a fan. The Kongs should stand on the object and blow the fan to make a section of land rise from the ground. They can use the land to reach a Barrel Cannon that is able to shoot them into a Bonus Room. There they must move along two large moving platforms to collect forty-seven Bananas, two Banana Coins and an Extra Life Balloon. If everything is grabbed within thirty seconds, a Puzzle Piece appears.
- The Kongs should destroy the crates placed immediately before the letter O to reveal and obtain a Puzzle Piece.
- A Barrel is located after the checkpoint. If the apes pick up the Barrel and use it to break open the wall on the wooden structure behind them, they can enter the structure and collect the Puzzle Piece inside.
- In this area after the letter G is a Barrel that is placed near some Pinchleys. The Kongs should pick up and carry it past an area with cannonballs to find a wooden ship part right before the Slot Machine Barrel. Using the Barrel, the apes can smash open the wall on the wooden object to reveal a passage into a Bonus Room, where they must bounce on a moving trampoline to grab some flying Banana Coins and Bananas. If everything is collected within thirty seconds, a Puzzle Piece is revealed.