Although Cayman is fairly small, the diverse community and idyllic weather encourages an active lifestyle and keeps everyone busy. The real issue will be finding the time to do it all.
One of our all-time favourite outings is a North Sound boat trip with one of the local Caymanian charter boat companies: Frank’s Watersports (Tel: (345) 945 5491 or (345) 925 2783) or Tours Cayman (Tel: (345) 814 0170) and Charter Boat Headquarters (Tel: (345) 945 4340). By organising trips with one of these reliable local operators, you will have access to a wealth of local knowledge and can customise your excursion to suit your family. Tour stops can include Stingray City, the Sandbar, Coral Gardens, Barrier Reef and Kaibo. Not only will your tour be tailored to you, but you will also get to experience true Caymanian hospitality and meet some ‘Islanders’.
If you have little thrill-seekers in the family, you may enjoy a trip to Stingray City and then continue on to Rum Point by jet ski. Action Watersports (Tel: (345) 548 3147) offers two-hour tours on two-man Sea Doo watercraft for US$110 per person. Another sea based activity that is fun for the whole family is a bioluminescence mangrove tour by kayak or electric catamaran offered by Cayman Kayaks twice nightly from Rum Point. For more information call (345) 926 4467, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.caymankayaks.com.
Cayman Sea Elements (Tel: (345) 936 8687 or email: email@example.com) also offer boat tours of the bioluminescent bay, plus boat tours through the mangroves to find birds, starfish, jellyfish, anemones and iguanas. This tour is suitable for children of all ages. For more fun, you could take a banana boat ride with Red Sail Sports (Tel: (345) 949 8745). Kids particularly love to ride with a group of their friends and you’ll have them taking turns for hours. For more information email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, you could take the entire family for a swim with the dolphins at either Dolphin Cove (Tel: (345) 623 2683) or Dolphin Discovery (Tel: (345) 769 7946). Make sure to ask about residents’ discounts. Refer to our Boating chapter for a list of other tour providers.
For an amazing aerial experience of Cayman that covers the Island from North Sound and Stingray City, to East End and Seven Mile Beach, take a helicopter tour with Cayman Islands Helicopters (Tel: (345) 943 4354). Another great way to see Seven Mile Beach from the air is to take a panoramic tandem parasailing ride with Parasailing Professionals (Tel: (345) 916 2953).
Land-based activities for the whole family are almost endless! You could explore Cayman’s attractions, go on cultural tours, play at the parks and playgrounds, build sand castles at Seven Mile Beach or relax at Rum Point. For children and their parents, the Cayman Islands National Museum offers a fascinating look into the natural and cultural history of the Cayman Islands.
The Cayman Turtle Centre in West Bay offers unique opportunities for educational and interactive animal based activities. Visitors can enjoy bird, shark, turtle and crocodile feeding, a nature trail, snorkelling with turtles and the popular waterfalls and Turtle Twister waterslide. Once you have had your fill of wildlife, you could wander across the road for lunch at the Cracked Conch or Macabuca Tiki Bar. Also in West Bay is the Cayman Motor Museum (Tel: (345) 947 7741), which is open from late November to May, 8am-12pm.
On a Saturday morning it is worth going to the Market at the Cricket Grounds in George Town next to the cricket pitch (open Mondays through Saturdays from 7.30am) where parents can shop for local produce and sample Caymanian dishes while the kids explore the interesting stalls. Another worthwhile thing to do is a trip to the Botanic Park which is an engaging outing for the whole family. Large blue iguanas lounge on the grass while butterflies, birds, turtles, agoutis and reptiles dart between the array of native and exotic plants and trees.
You could also stop in at the Mission House in Bodden Town (visits by appointment only) and Pedro St. James in Savannah for a historical trip back in time. For something a bit different, drop by the Crystal Caves (Old May Bay), one of Cayman’s newest attractions, where local guides educate visitors on the history of the caves starting from their creation, to the shaping of the dramatic crystal structures, and up to when the caves became the hiding place for pirate treasure. Call (345) 949 2283 to arrange a visit. Bring the family to the National Gallery and enjoy a range of activities including scavenger hunts, worksheets and guided tours based on the current exhibition schedule and the national collection. Guided tours can be booked in advance by emailing email@example.com.
In Camana Bay, you can take a walk, get a coffee, ride a bike and explore its beautifully landscaped areas. Young children will love playing in the fountains (bring a towel!) and climbing the Observation Tower for a great panoramic view. Books & Books has a wonderful children’s room full of books, puzzles and toys and there is always a good selection of movies at the cinema, as well as a great choice of restaurants for lunch.
Rainy day options include arts and crafts at Art Nest or ten pin bowling at King’s Sports Centre. Younger children (6 months-5 years), can let off steam at the Toddler Play Days at Motions Unlimited. Children aged 6 months-10 years can also try Lil’ Monkeys located at Bodden Place off Shedden Road.