Cayman IslandsTravel Guide

The Cayman Islands in the Caribbean are famed for exquisite coral reefs, pristine white-sand beaches, and top scuba diving sites. Made up of three islands – Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman – and boasting one of the best beaches in the world, Seven Mile Beach, this is an island destination for your bucket list!

Cayman Brac and Little Cayman haven’t seen much development and offer a unique holiday that’s a bit more tranquil and nature focused. Little Cayman is home to several endangered wildlife species, including the hawksbill sea turtle.

Grand Cayman, on the other hand, offers tax-free shopping, fabulous nightlife, and culinary delights. Then there are outdoor adventures like cruising, island hopping or diving – you may even come across a mysterious shipwreck!

Set in the western Caribbean Sea, this friendly English-speaking destination promises the perfect balance between relaxation and adventure, making it a winner for every kind of traveller.

Ready to discover the must-sees, must-dos and where-tos? Our Cayman Islands travel guide has got the scoop …

Cayman Islands quick facts

Language

National language

English

Beverages

Bottle of Coke/Pepsi (330ml)

GBP £2.41

Local time

Friday

2:13am

Currency

Cayman Islands dollar

GBP £1.00 = KYD $1.06

Eating out

Restaurant meal (casual dining)

GBP £14.13

Electricity

Plug type: A

2 or 3 pins • 120V

Explore Cayman Islands

Where to stay in Cayman Islands?

Choosing your accommodation depends on your budget and what you’d like to include in your itinerary. Most sought-after activities, hotels and resorts can be found on Grand Cayman, but it’s worth spending time on Cayman Brac if you’d like to indulge in tranquillity, or on Little Cayman if you’re a diver.

 

George Town, the capital city, is where the magic happens. Most of the best restaurants, shopping and beaches can be found here. Want to stay as close to the beach as possible? Cayman Villas is a great choice. It’s located along the edge of the popular Seven Mile Beach and within walking distance of Stingray City (more about this attraction later!). Live the island life in your own villa by the sea! Hampton by Hilton Grand Cayman is another favourite close to the beach and attractions – it has its own swimming pool, a fitness centre and even pet-friendly rooms!

West Bay is a fantastic area for those travelling with children. It’s slightly more upmarket than George Town, with plenty of hotels offering kid-friendly facilities. Beach Living at Conch Point Villas is right on the doorstep of West Bay Beach and suitable for larger families keen on a luxurious self-catering getaway. Facilities in addition to the stunning beach include a golf course, tennis court and horse riding.

When you visit the Cayman Islands, you can expect to feel that tug on the purse strings, but it is possible to find a bit more budget-friendly accommodation – especially if you stay in Bodden Town. Such as Casa Tortuga – Cayman Villas, which caters for six people and offers gorgeous views of the Caribbean Sea, a private beach and a swimming pool. There’s also self-catering apartment accommodation at Turtle Nest Inn. Only eight apartments, some with ocean views, means a peaceful, laid-back stay – your way.
 


If you’ve opted to stay on Cayman Brac, the four-star Le Soleil D'or, which calls itself a Caribbean Farm Inn, has everything you need and more – a variety of accommodation including family rooms, a private beach, and a restaurant, where the ingredients used are fresh from the farm.

Little Cayman’s budget-friendly winner is the three-star Little Cayman Beach Resort. Catering for all kinds of guests, from divers to those needing a bit of pampering, it features a dive shop, an on-site spa and a hot tub.
 


Believe us when we say, this is just the start. Book your accommodation today!

Things to do in Cayman Islands

While water sports are a popular activity on the Cayman Islands, there’s a lot more to do and see. Nature lovers will be in their element, as will history buffs, and let’s not forget the island party scene!

A popular attraction for great snorkelling opportunities, Stingray City is a group of sandbars off the coast of Grand Cayman. As you might’ve guessed, this area is home to friendly stingrays and many other marine creatures. Get as close to nature as possible by booking a snorkelling tour with one of the many local operators. Many also offer boat excursions, kayaking and private charters.


See a collection of local visual art that preserves and reflects the culture and heritage of the Cayman Islands at the National Gallery on Grand Cayman. More than an art gallery, you can spend hours here, strolling through the sculpture garden and labyrinth, and browsing in the gift shop.


Tropical island weather and nightlife go together like gin and tonic. Hit one of the many bars across the islands (Insider tip: the George Town port) or the beach clubs for cocktails with an ocean view, followed by dancing on the sand. West Bay Road is known for the most nightclubs, while live music, the arts and dance performances are hosted at the FJ Harquail Cultural Centre on Grand Cayman, making it an ideal dinner theatre venue.  


Cayman Brac is known for its dramatic landscape and rare plants and animals. Several marked hiking trails lead you past historic sites and through wetlands and forests, home to more than 200 species of birds. Diving is also a drawcard – the reefs are teeming with marine life and a bonus is the shipwreck of a  Russian frigate just waiting to be explored.


The longest-standing stone building in the Cayman Islands, Pedro St. James, is an essential stop-off for history buffs, just a short drive from central George Town. It was erected in the 18th century by an Englishman as his luxury home. It has since been restored and filled with authentic 18th-century furniture and artefacts.

 


The mysterious Crystal Caves are hidden in a tropical forest on Grand Cayman. You’ll be able to explore them with a guide, who’ll talk you through the facts about the unique crystal formations, how the caves formed over millions of years, and the species of wildlife that live in the forest. You’ll also hear how the caves once served as a hideout for opportunistic pirates – keep your eyes peeled for hidden treasures rumoured to be left behind!


The appropriately named Little Cayman is the smallest of the islands, with Blossom Village as its capital. It’s popular for fishing and the diving here is among the best in the world. Include the Bloody Bay Wall Marine Park on your diving itinerary, where you’ll encounter the Caribbean’s deepest drop-off of 2 000m (6 000ft).


Looking for an immersive experience? Then a tour is the way to go.

Cayman Islands food and drink

You’ll find strong Jamaican and British influences in the traditional cuisine of the islands, along with plenty of seafood (usually with a creamy, coconut finish). Here’s where you can sink your teeth into authentic local flavours:

Camana Bay is known as a shopping hotspot but it’s also where you’ll come across the islands’ top-rated restaurants. Abacus, famous for its Caribbean fish and cooked-to-perfection steak, is just one of them. The seasonal menu means that there’s always something new added, but you try not to miss out on the prime ribeye steak on the bone or the grilled Caribbean lobster. We’re also sure you’ll be a fan of the fare at Blue by Eric Ripert. Situated inside the fancy Ritz-Carlton Hotel, it offers the Caribbean’s only AAA Five Diamond dining experience, prix fixe tasting menus (multi-course menus at a fixed price) and a collection of hundreds of incredible wines from around the globe. 
 


If you’d prefer to fill up on something with fewer frills, the local street-food culture and beach fare won’t disappoint. There are many food trailers throughout Grand Cayman, most of which tend to line the public beaches. Look out for Al La Kebab, close to Seven Mile Beach, specialising in meat skewers fresh from the grill, and Red Bay Jerk Chicken, stationed at Grand Harbour, and serving delicious spicy chicken.


So, there’s not only Caribbean cuisine on the menu – you can get your Mexican fix on Grand Cayman too. The Casa 43 Mexican Kitchen and Tequila Bar is as authentic as they come. Think pitchers of margaritas, tequilas (of course) and Mexican favourites like tacos, fajitas and churros. Always busy and vibey, just arrive!

On Little Cayman, the Hungry Iguana Restaurant at the Paradise Villas is known for its incredible ocean view paired with unfussy food like curries, burgers and fries, chicken wings and great cocktails.

Visiting Cayman Brac? Then head over to the Tipsy Turtle Bar. Set on the beach and part of a resort, luckily, it’s open to the public. Dishing up light meals and a barbeque on Friday nights with live music, there’s also a stunning deck for sundowners. is as authentic as they come. Think pitchers of margaritas, tequilas (of course) and Mexican favourites like tacos, fajitas and churros. Always busy and vibey, just arrive!

On Little Cayman, the Hungry Iguana Restaurant at the Paradise Villas is known for its incredible ocean view paired with unfussy food like curries, burgers and fries, chicken wings and great cocktails.

Visiting Cayman Brac? Then head over to the Tipsy Turtle Bar. Set on the beach and part of a resort, luckily, it’s open to the public. Dishing up light meals and a barbeque on Friday nights with live music, there’s also a stunning deck for sundowners.


Get a real taste for the local cuisine by booking a tour.

Cayman Islands through your eyes

Where to shop in Cayman Islands?

Where’s the best shopping in Cayman Islands? Camana Bay! Close to Seven Mile Beach, this waterfront town is overflowing with shops with sunglasses, gadgets, clothing, home essentials, jewellery and more. If you’re in George Town, the Bayshore Mall is ideally situated and offers high-end shopping in a charming setting. Here you’ll find the biggest jewellery and watch store in the Caribbean and a stunning lingerie boutique.

Endless Gem & Fashion on White Bay Road, Cayman Brac, is a go-to for affordable fashion, beauty and haircare products, while Little Cayman’s gem is the Seahorse Boutique and Coffee Shop. Admire the gorgeous candles, art pieces and pottery. An ideal spot for gift shopping, relax afterwards with coffee and baked goodies. is ideally situated and offers high-end shopping in a charming setting. Here you’ll find the biggest jewellery and watch store in the Caribbean and a stunning lingerie boutique.

Endless Gem & Fashion on White Bay Road, Cayman Brac, is a go-to for affordable fashion, beauty and haircare products, while Little Cayman’s gem is the Seahorse Boutique and Coffee Shop. Admire the gorgeous candles, art pieces and pottery. An ideal spot for gift shopping, relax afterwards with coffee and baked goodies.

There are plenty of little markets scattered across Grand Cayman, but The Hamlin Stephenson Farmers’ Market in George Town is the most popular. While the locals flock there to grab the freshest fruit and veggies, there’s also a wide array of trinkets and treasures for you to discover. Souvenirs can also be snapped up at the unique gift shop which is part of the Cayman Islands National Museum. It’s situated at the entrance so you can’t miss it.


Looking for a safe and simple way to bring your money when you travel? Our Travel Money Card has you covered!

When is the best time to travel to Cayman Islands?

What do you want out of your getaway? If it’s plenty of beach time and blissful sunshiny weather, book your escape from winter to spring (November to March). Yes, winter is balmy here! There’s very little rain, temperatures average at 29°C (84.2°F), and the Caribbean Sea is at its calmest. It’s high season during this period, but March to April tend to be the busiest when many US families visit the islands during their spring break.

The rainy season is from May until October. During this time, temperatures tend to soar, and humidity is extremely high. You can expect temperatures over 32°C (89.6°F) on most days, along with heavy downpours.

Off-season is mid-April to mid-December and you can pick up some great accommodation rates, but many restaurants may be closed and hotel facilities limited.

Also note that hurricane season takes place from 1 June to 30 November and if you’re visiting during this time, take the hurricane warnings seriously but don’t panic. Download the government’s handy app and get alerts about weather and other emergencies.

Don't miss out. Book your flight today!

How to get around Cayman Islands

Public transport in the Cayman Islands is well-organised and includes buses and licensed taxis. The public buses are extremely affordable and convenient, and there are plenty of routes to choose from. You’ll find most taxis stationed around the cruise ship terminals in the city and outside the airport, but it’s easy to request one online or via phone.

Renting a bike or a scooter is a cost-effective and fun way to explore the islands and there are several hire companies that can help you out.

Keen to do some island hopping? You have two options: by plane or private boat. Unfortunately, there’s no inter-island ferry service, which means the excursion is likely to be pricey (but worth it!). Cayman Airways offers regular flights, lasting little more than half an hour, from Grand Cayman to Little Cayman and Cayman Brac. The planes are small, usually accommodating no more than 15 passengers at a time. Boat charters are plentiful, with uber luxurious yachts available too. It takes about an hour to travel to the sister islands, but remember to book in advance.

Renting a car is a convenient way of getting around in Cayman Islands and driving is on the left side of the road. The best place to pick up a vehicle is at the airport or in George Town. Reserve your car rentals ahead of time to avoid disappointment, particularly during the high season. And the good news is… that’s what we’re here for!

Let us help you organise your own wheels for exploring. Hire a car today.

What are the best beaches in Cayman Islands?

The beaches in Cayman Islands are probably the main reason you want to visit! It’s why everyone wants to visit! Pristine and featuring white sand bordering unbelievably turquoise water – here are a few of the best:

Smith Cove is one of the most picture-perfect beaches, so no wonder it’s the most photographed beach in George Town. A small bay, surrounded by rocks, there are picnic tables and shady spots available, making it popular with families. Be sure to check out the local art and souvenirs at the nearby Pure Art Gallery & Gifts before heading back to your hotel.

The crescent shaped Seven Mile Beach stretches, as its name implies, for almost seven miles, and is the longest beach in the Caribbean. Home to many of Grand Cayman’s most luxurious resorts, this public beach can get very busy during high season. Some of the popular water sports here are wind surfing, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding.


The beaches on Little Cayman are smaller than those on Grand Cayman, with the most popular called Point of Sand. It’s best known for snorkelling and gorgeous pink sand, and picnic tables are also available.

To experience untouched, nearly deserted beaches, head to the southwest coast of Cayman Brac. This is also where you’ll find Owen Island, accessible only by kayak. There are no buildings or residents here, so it’s a completely unique experience.  


Cemetery Beach is West Bay’s pride and joy – a great snorkelling destination and among the best beaches in Grand Cayman. It’s actually part of Seven Mile Beach but more like a quiet corner of it. Wondering where the name comes from? There’s a nearby cemetery that’s behind the beach. The waters here are calm, making it ideal for swimming, and the beach is dotted with shady trees.

 


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