Thursday, March 6, 2014

Grand Cayman, Cruise Part 2

I can’t believe it’s been a month since our trip. Some moments it feels as if we had just been lying out in the sand, then in the next it’s as if it’s been years since we had our little vacation. By the look of my pasty white family it appears we never went at all. :)

So, what did we do on this little gem of an island called Grand Cayman?

For those of you who cruise, you know that excursions can be expensive, especially when you are paying for 6 people. Going through the ship is definitely the safer route. BUT, it is also the most expensive.

Because Grand Cayman is one of the least shady of the islands in the Caribbean, I opted to go through Priceline to purchase my excursion.

***Now here are my disclaimers…

*You had better be sure this is the excursion for you because once you pay it is yours.

*Not all excursions offer ship to activity transportation. Make sure you research and plan accordingly.

*There are only a very few islands or places in the Caribbean where I would even consider booking an excursion on my own. Be safe. If you are not sure, book through the ship.

So, I did my research and found this company called Captain Marvin’s Stingray tours.  It is the oldest tour company on the island. And it is FABULOUS. Five stars for sure.

We found their office easily. (It’s right by the doc). The guides were friendly and very informative.

Our first stop was Stingray City. HOLY MOLY. First of all, the water was beautiful. You stand on a sand bar miles from shore and the stingrays flock to the boat. They literally crawl all over you. (Thanks to being fed). At first I was a bit freaked out. Steve Irwin kept coming to mind. But once we got in we all relaxed and had a great time.
 Cossette, was a bit scared at first by how "friendly" the Stingrays were. 

We brought a water camera, but for those of you who don’t want to bother picking one up, the guides take TONS of pictures and will sell you the CD for $50.

Our second stop was the coral gardens. Here is where the snorkeling gear came out. Not as amazing as Stingray City but the water is clear and there is a ton of fish.

After our excursion we headed out on our own to Seven Mile Beach. This beach is famous for a reason. The sand is soft and the waves are minimal. Because this beach is world-renowned it is also very crowded. I was a bit disconcerted, not knowing where to lay down my beach towel, but everyone was very friendly and didn’t even complain when my kids decided that throwing sand at each other was a good idea.

*** Another thing to remember is to bring extra cash for taxi’s, tips, and food. Wear sunscreen and comfy shoes, not just flip-flops.

We returned to the ship having had a wonderful day. Definitely a day my kids will never forget. We were all taken out of our comfort zones, but in a good way. I think sometimes you have to or you miss out.

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