There are so many wonderful reasons to visit Grand Cayman. And so much to do when you get there. Grand Cayman is also one of the best villa Destinations in the Caribbean. Lucky for us, we have visited the island many times and here are a few of my favorite things from a very long list of what we feel are the best things to do in Grand Cayman. For additional information, visit ExceptionalVillas.
Some hear the word Stingray and immediately recoil in horror, especially at the thought of frolicking amongst them. What you must remember however is that there are several types of stingray and the species found in these coastal waters are gentle and friendly creatures.
A trip to Stingray City usually incurs a three-hour boat excursion which includes various stops for snorkelling along the way. Once you arrive at the shallow sandbar which is barely three feet deep, you will enter the turquoise blue water and become surrounded by dozens of these beautiful stingrays. You can interact with them as much or as little as you like; the guides will reassure you. It is very thrilling to feel them gliding again you. You can touch, photograph and even feed them, if you’re feeling brave enough.
Orchids, Butterflies & Blue Dragons
For nature lovers, Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park is a wonderful place to visit. Here, you can Zen and zone out whilst strolling amongst exotic floral displays, palm trees and lush greenery in the most beautifully kept tropical gardens on the island.
In the Heritage Garden, you can even get a taste of life in the early 20th century in Grand Cayman, where a pretty pink traditional-style cottage is surrounded by fruit trees, traditional crops, medicinal plants, and a cook room. The Floral Colour Garden needs no further explanation than its’ title. The walkway through this area of the park brings you into a rainbow of colourful flowers with the scent of lavender to make it even more relaxing.
When you explore The Lake area of the park, you’ll encounter beautiful native birds such as tri-coloured Herons, Moorhens, Stilts, Coots, Egrets and rare West Indian Whistling Ducks. For some, the highlight of a visit to the park is the chance to see the Blue Iguana Habitat. Only two decades ago, these fascinating creatures were facing extinction.
The National Trust of the Cayman Islands created this captive breeding ground at the park. You will have the rare chance to see the Blue Dragons up close – it really is an extraordinary experience. A visit to Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park is always a highlight of my annual trip to Grand Cayman.
Eat Like a Local
When planning any trip to anywhere, be it work-related or a holiday, the first thing we do is research food! Dining in lovely restaurants is always something to look forward to, but what I most enjoy is eating where and how the locals eat, particularly in the more exotic parts of the world. Grand Cayman is no exception.
Without a doubt, you will find the most wonderful restaurants on this island, with incredible ocean views, impeccable table service and mouth-watering gourmet dishes. You will also find Fish Shacks and Caribbean Old-Style restaurants serving up locally caught seafood and farm-to-table seasonal dishes in casual settings.
On a recent trip, we had lunch at The Heritage Kitchen located in the West Bay area in Boggy Sand Road. This quaint roadside shack restaurant is run by Caymanians for Caymanians whilst extending a warm welcome to visitors. The handwritten menu board changes from day to day, depending on what delights the local fisherman bring in. You will order your food at the kitchen window and take a seat on a wooden bench which offers views of the Caribbean Sea.
Our plate of Coconut Mahi Mahi with sides of homemade potato salad, rice & beans was beyond delicious. We chatted with a friendly local family and observed with humour, a very proud cockerel strutting his stuff amidst the tables. The memory of that hour or so that we spent at Heritage Kitchen will always stay with me and more importantly will always put a smile on my face (and my taste buds if that’s at all possible).
Mudslides & Starfish
Rum Point is located on the North side of Grand Cayman. It is a relatively quiet area, frequented more with locals than tourists, but it is a place where I highly recommend spending, at least, an afternoon of your trip to the island. If you have never enjoyed a rather unattractively named Mudslide Cocktail, you will have to try one at The Wreck Bar, the place where it was first created.
There is also a wonderful beach at Rum Point where the water is warm, calm, and shallow. You will find an excellent snorkelling spot close by to the pier. For more exciting water fun, you can rent jet skis and paddleboards.
There is a weekly evening barbeque at Rum Point with an array of delicious barbeque dishes and live entertainment. If you are travelling over from the Seven Mile Beach Area, you can travel to and fro on a RedSail Catamaran – the journey home under the stars is a memorable experience.
As the name suggests, Starfish Point is a gathering place for these beautiful marine animals, found in a variety of shapes, colours and sizes. The Starfish naturally congregate in the area but they come and go as they please, so the number of starfish you see here may vary. The water at Starfish Point is crystal clear, so you may take stunning photos of them, but it is forbidden to take them out of the water.
The Cayman Islands and Grand Cayman is a hidden gem of the Caribbean. With so much to do and see, it is hard to beat whether you are a family, a group of adults wishing to enjoy a vacation together, or looking for somewhere to enjoy a special occasion. For the best experience, you can visit villasbarbados.com.