Whether you are visiting for a day or longer, you’ll find a wide range of activities and tours to make your trip as leisurely or active as you want. From swimming with the stingrays to discovering Cayman’s flora and fauna along the Mastic Trail, there’s something to suit all.
One-day port of call
Swim with the rays
Indulge your sense of adventure and take a trip to see the stingrays. No vacation would be complete without a visit to Cayman’s most popular water-based tourist attraction. A number of tour operators run an assortment of daily trips to theSandbar, where the friendly fish will swim up and greet you in return for a tasty treat, and the nearby shallow dive site of Stingray City where the fish also congregate.
These graceful, bottom-dwelling sea creatures love to be hand-fed, often brushing their velvety underbellies against visitors as they search for a snack. Just a short trip by boat, there are various snorkel and dive packages to choose from, which can be booked through the island’s numerous tour operators.
Many excursions include an opportunity to snorkel amongst coral reefs and view an amazing array of colorful tropical fish and sea life. The stingrays began gathering in the North Sound area of the island decades ago when fishermen used to clean fish on the shallow sandbar, discarding the unwanted bits into the water.
The rays soon began to associate the fishing boats with a free lunch, becoming increasingly tame and sociable. Today, a trip to the Sandbar or Stingray City is a one-of-a-kind adventure not to be missed.
Spend a day on Seven Mile Beach.
A Caribbean holiday wouldn’t be complete without sun, sea and sand.
Hugging Cayman’s western shore is Seven Mile Beach. Crystal clear blue waters lap against the powdery-white sand that stretches from Cayman’s capital, George Town, all the way along to West Bay.
The beach is actually just over five miles long and a wide range of tour operators offer just about every water sport you can imagine, from Jet Skiing to parasailing. You will also find a host of small coral reefs dotted just off shore to explore. Alternatively, enjoy a leisurely picnic under the shade of a palm tree or at one of the many beach cabanas.
Relax and unwind with a spa treatment.
What could be more relaxing than a massage for two? Cayman has some fabulous spas offering a wide range of deluxe treatments to help you relax, unwind and forget the stresses of day-to-day life.
Step back in time with a visit to Pedro St. James.
This beautiful old building recalls the islands’ tumultuous past, with commanding views of the coastline. Take a stroll through the imposing edifice featuring period furniture to authentic artifacts and experience what life in Cayman was like many years ago.
Built in 1780, the historic site is the oldest stone structure in the Cayman Islands and was built by mariner, plantation owner and early settler, William Eden. Over the years, the property has served as an inn, a family home, bar and restaurant.
In the 1990s, the Cayman Islands government purchased Pedro St. James and painstakingly restored it to its 18th century glory. The restoration of the house was based on archive and architectural research and every detail reflects authentic building techniques, colors and furnishings. As well as the house, gardens and beautiful courtyard, there is a multimedia theater that showcases a 3D presentation about the property and 200 years of Caymanian history.
Visit Cayman Turtle Farm
Experience the diversity of Cayman’s local flora and fauna up close at the Turtle Farm. This 23-acre site is a hit for fun-loving families and doubles up as a marine conservation and research facility too. A highlight of the park is seeing the green sea turtles swimming in the breeding pond. Capable of growing up to 600lbs, these behemoths are a wonder to behold.
At the touch tanks pick up a juvenile turtle for a great photo opportunity. Small enough to hold comfortably, these young turtles are deceptively strong. Green sea turtles were once plentiful in Cayman but were almost wiped out due to over-fishing. Thanks to the facility’s release program, sea turtles are once again increasing in numbers in Cayman’s waters and are often spotted by divers and snorkelers.
Once you have taken in the turtles, relax at Breakers Lagoon, one of the biggest swimming pools in Cayman, where two beautiful waterfalls cascade over mossy rocks.
For a break from all things aquatic, head to the aviary where you can spot birds native to Cayman. Alternatively, step back in time and admire the island charm of yesteryear along a replica Caymanian street.
Spend a day on Seven Mile Beach.
Cayman’s most famous beach isn’t just for couples - it’s great for all the family. The shallow water makes it ideal for little ones to paddle and swim, while the sand is good for making sandcastles.
Swim with the rays
If you have several days on-island, take an early morning trip to the Sandbar to see Cayman’s famed fish, as this way you’ll avoid the cruise ship crowds later in the day. Early birds can enjoy breakfast aboard the tour boat and enjoy the cool breeze while on the way to see the stingrays.
Tour the districts
Hire a car, pack a map and hit the road for a real feel of everything Cayman has to offer. At just 22 miles long and eight miles wide, Cayman is easy to explore in a day. Take your time and discover the attractions from the quiet beaches of West Bay and East End, to the idyllic district of North Side.
You’ll find plenty of points of interest along the way. Be sure to stop off at fascinating places such as Fort George in George Town, the Wreck of the Ten Sailin East End,and Gun Bay.
For a lunchtime snack, the islands are dotted with eateries, some with fabulous views of the ocean.
Discover Cayman’s flora and fauna at the Queen Elizabeth 11 Botanic Park .
More than 60 acres of stunning flora and fauna await exploration, just a 30-minute drive from George Town. The park, which has acquired a reputation as a world-class facility for its stunning gardens and bounty of wildlife, is also home to the critically endangered Blue Iguanas, a dragon-like lizard which you are likely to find soaking up the sun along the garden’s paths.
The park has numerous exotic areas to explore. Be sure to visit the Heritage Garden, which showcases the many plants that have played a role in Cayman’s past. The Colour Garden is a vibrant section featuring all the hues of the rainbow, with open spaces and native wooded trees.
The Woodland Trail is a comfortable walk passing through a variety of habitats that contains Cayman’s native flora. Among many treasures, the three-acre lake is a habitat for aquatic birds, andthe Orchid Garden is a wonder to behold. The Xerophytic garden showcases cacti and other plants that need little water to survive. The Botanic Park is also home to a bounty of butterflies.
Explore the deep
Dive 100-feet below the surface in the fully air-conditioned Atlantis Submarine and gaze at magnificent coral reefs and tropical fish from the submarine’s large portholes. Famous for breathtaking underwater vistas, the Cayman Islands is a prime destination for exploring the mysteries of the deep and no trip would be complete without a journey beneath the sea. Several tours are available abroad this 65-foot submarine, including daytime and nighttime excursions.
The air-conditioned, 48-passenger sub makes it possible for everyoneto explore the underwater world together.