Caribbean & Atlantic

Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman

Have you ever imagined relaxing in the sun on the whitest sand beach, while being mesmerized by the bluest and clearest of oceans, and listening to the soothing rhythms of the ocean waves?  Then pack your bags and plan a vacation to Grand Cayman Island. While there, you can also scuba dive, swim with stingrays, or shop until you drop, duty-free.

Grand Cayman is the largest and most developed of the three Cayman Islands. Situated in the Caribbean Sea, it is 167 miles northwest of Jamaica. Originally, a dependency of Jamaica, the Caymans are now a self-governing British Overseas territory. Tourism and finance are its major industries. In fact, 90% of its products are imported, contributing to a high cost of living, despite the lack of any taxes.

In addition to Grand Cayman’s unspoiled beaches, its excellent reputation for scuba diving, deep-sea fishing, and duty-free shopping are the reasons 1.7 million tourists travel to this island Paradise annually. It is a major port destination for cruise ships, having average winter temperatures of 75 º. With a low crime rate, it is a popular tourist destination.

Seven Mile Beach has achieved the distinction of “The Caribbean’s Best Beach” from Caribbean Travel and Life Magazine. This crescent-shaped beach is actually 5.5 miles long, but who is measuring? The water is so incredibly clear here. It is a great beach for swimming, as the ocean floor is shallow and you can walk out for quite a distance. Pets are welcome, and barbecue grills are available on the beach.

Scuba Diving has long been a major draw here and Grand Cayman has established itself as a mecca for diving due in part to the clarity of the waters. It is home to some of the best dive schools and diving experiences, having over twenty registered dive companies. Being a PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Center, Cayman Diving School offers various courses for the novice to the instructor, 

Stingray City is the most popular attraction for snorkelers and non-swimmers. You may easily find this to be the highlight of your trip. It is amazing being able to stand in three feet of water with two dozen stingrays swimming next to you. It is an interactive experience as you mingle between them and even feed them.

Georgetown is the capital of the Cayman Islands, with a population of 30,000 people and over six hundred banks. It is a shopper’s dream with a large selection of duty-free products. A favorite souvenir from here is a rum cake, made locally at Tortuga Rum Company on Church Street.

Hell is a small town, which is a tourist trap that consists of a gift shop and post office, where you can buy postcards and mail them with a postmark from Hell. Its name came from its black rockscape.

http://www.caymanislands.ky/tour_guide/about_grand.aspx

http://www.infoplease.com/country/profiles/cayman-islands.html

http://www.cruisecritic.com/ports/newport.cfm?ID=1

http://www.caymannetnews.com/pdfs/cruise_PR_2010Feb.pdf

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