Hello From The Cayman Islands
I’ve been fortunate to have been in the Cayman Islands 6x now and love going back every single time. A work-hard, live-hard culture, life here feels like the best of North America, sprinkled with British charm and the fun, light-heartedness of island life.
Did you know: The Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach is noted as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with turquoise water lapping at the pure white sands. It’s an iconic five mile stretch of dazzling white sand that runs from Georgetown (the main hub of the island and where cruise ships tender their passengers each day). It is lined with hotels and some of the sun loungers are free to use (Hemingways and Tiki Beach), while at others you need to be a paying guest (such as at the Kimpton).
Nature lover? -If you're a nature lover, you should definitely add the Mastic Trail to your list of Cayman Island must-dos. The trail is a 200-year-old gravelly path that winds through a native mangrove swamp and a 2 million-year-old woodland area, surrounded by some of the island's most colorful and rare plant life. The trail is preserved as a flat, beginners hike by the Cayman Islands National Trust. Recent travelers found the hike challenging but worth the trek, especially with a guide. Plan for at least 2-3 hours to enjoy the trail.
Stingray City- One of the most popular destinations within the Cayman Islands. While some consider it a tourist trap, it’s definitely worth a visit. The shallow sandbar allows you to interact and feed the stingray that live in the waters. You can explore Stingray city on a private catamaran, a scuba trip or even a glass bottom boat.
Scuba Diving-With clear visibility, warm sea temperatures, a selection of deep and shallow dives and great wall diving, it makes sense to spend as much time as possible exploring the Cayman’s colorful coral reefs. Dive into the waters of Little Cayman to explore the buzzing aquatic life of Bloody Bay Marine Park.Explore the caves carved into Cayman Brac’s limestone bluffs.
Currency: The Cayman Islands Dollar (CI$) and US dollars are widely accepted. ATMs are common on Grand Cayman, however there is only one ATM each on Cayman Brac and Little Cayman.
Tipping: Tipping is expected and don’t be surprised if the waiter/less has already added 15-18% onto your bill. Make sure you check that lest you add it on again!
Best Time To Visit: The peak season falls between mid-December and mid-April. The shoulder season from late November to mid-December and late April to early May enjoys good weather and is less crowded. Rainfall is highest from mid-May through to October, with frequent afternoon showers that clear as quickly as they arrive.
Food Recommendations: Seafood, seafood, and oh seafood. It’s not surprising that seafood is a staple here, including turtle and conch. Try everything from the tuna to the ceviche to wahoo. If you love fish tacos, some of my favorite fish tacos on the planet are located at the Sunshine Grill. Located on property at Sunshine Suites Resort and across the street from the Hilton along 7 Mile Beach, the food is delightful. Be prepared to wait if you come during the busy lunch hour though. There are 11 tables inside, and only four out with a pool to jump into if you get hot. You’ll walk away stuffed and with a little mini ice cream cone as your dessert.
Nightlife: While you won't find the locals hanging out in the bars or pubs in Grand Cayman, you’ll find karaoke bars, pubs that host quiz nights and cigar bars with a DJ and a dance floors in Georgetown. The Royal Palms and The Attic are two popular night clubs to hit up while you are there. If you want to go where the locals go you either need to ask around or just look for a place that doesn't look too built up. The drinks will be cheaper and you will get to hang out with the locals.
Attire: Truly, flip flops are what you’ll live in here. Casual dress is acceptable just about any place you go. Sarongs and simple sundresses are what everyone is wearing around resort pools, in beachside bars and it’s pretty much all you’ll be able to buy in the shops too.
Converters not needed: The majority of hotels have US plug ins, so leave your converters at home.
Health Tip: If you are a lover of yoga, you CANNOT leave the island without a taking a yoga class on the beach. Many classes are located on the island within Camana Bay. Truly one of the most peaceful and breathtaking yoga on the beaches I have done: cool-breezes and sun included!
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