Cruises to Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

3,570 Reviews
Grand Cayman (Photo:Jo Ann Snover/Shutterstock)

About Cruising to Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

Imagine the stereotypical cruise port -- one with white-sand beaches, a plethora of duty-free shops selling jewels and liquor, and de rigueur water activities like snorkeling and scuba -- and Grand Cayman will likely come to mind. The cliche might just be based on the destination, with its lovely Seven Mile Beach, George Town's retail center and plenty of sites for diving, snorkeling and other water sports. Grand Cayman also celebrates marine life at Stingray City and the Cayman Turtle Farm, and even offers a twist on island paradise with the town of Hell (THE place from which to send the quintessential kitschy postcard).

Yet the cliche does have a negative side -- the crowds. It's not unusual to find five mega-ships (we're told there's been up to nine) docked in the harbor at the same time, which makes the tendering process slower than usual and the downtown streets jam-packed. (Building a cruise pier at which ships could berth is oft discussed, but it's never gone beyond the "pre-planning" stage.) The constant influx of cruise passengers keeps the waterfront restaurants bustling, so lunch in port is never a cheap affair. A stroll along the beach quickly turns into an obstacle course of sunbathing tourists, sandy children and water sports vendors.

Visitors have two choices -- embrace the crowds and touristy places with a laid-back island mindset, or escape them. Secluded beaches, like Cayman Kai or Rum Point, are a cab ride away, and even Seven Mile Beach has its less crowded spots. A mall at Governors Square offers designer clothes, housewares and even a healthy cafe for a refreshing change from shell necklaces and overpriced seafood. And the seemingly endless stretches of sea never feel too congested when you're swimming peacefully above coral formations.

  • More about Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

  • Why Cruise to Grand Cayman (Georgetown)?

  • Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Facilities?

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More about Grand Cayman (Georgetown)

Why Cruise to Grand Cayman (Georgetown)?

Pros:

Cruisers will find a pleasant mix of commercial kitsch and off-the-beaten-path fun

Cons:

Grand Cayman can be crowded, with many mega-ships often docking on the same day

Bottom Line:

This is a stereotypical Caribbean port; think beaches, shopping and big-box chain restaurants

Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Port Facilities?

All ships are currently required to anchor in the harbor and tender passengers on to the island. Ships tender passengers to one of two George Town docks (North or South), both of which are right in downtown George Town.

Good to Know?

Be cautious as you walk along Harbour Drive and Church Street, which only have sidewalks on one side of the street at some places. And, just as drivers need to heed left-side driving rules, pedestrians should stay alert for cars.

Getting Around?

On Foot: You'll be dropped a few steps from town, where you can easily walk to numerous shops and restaurants.

By Taxi: Cabs without meters are available at the dock. Rates are fixed and posted, but be sure to confirm the fare before the driver takes off. Most cabs are actually van-sized, and drivers may require a four-passenger minimum before they'll take you anywhere. A ride to Seagrape, a segment of beach on Seven Mile, is $5 per person, each way.

By Bus: You can hail mini-buses that shuttle passengers along the main routes. To hail one, respond with a wave when the driver toots his horn. The bus depot is next to the library (across from Heroes Square Fountain). There are stops next to popular attractions like Dolphin Discovery and Hell, but you may be taking the "scenic" ride when using the public bus (a good way to see the island).

By Car: Avis Cico offers one-day specials to cruise passengers and runs a courtesy shuttle between the port and the rental office (345-949-2468). Out at Seven Mile Beach, Andy's Rent A Car (345-949-8111) has good online discounts. There is a shopping plaza with multiple car rental agencies across from the airport. Americans are required to purchase inexpensive driving permits, but you can buy them at the rental office. Remember, Grand Cayman is a British overseas territory, so drive on the left.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

Local currency is the Cayman Island dollar (visit xe.com for current rates), but U.S. dollars are also accepted throughout the island. The Cayman Islands are an international banking center, so finding a financial institution is not difficult. There are ATMs throughout downtown George Town.

Language?

English is the official language.


Grand Cayman (Georgetown) Cruise Reviews
Grand Cayman has its beautiful Seven Mile Beach, but the rest of the island is just okay. We found Georgetown okay but not especially attractive although its possible we didn't see all of it on our three hour west sRead More
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Soul Traveler
I chose Grand Cayman as I have sucba dives several times before due to the perfectly clear water. Grand Cayman is a coral island so there's not any muddy waters coming into the ocean waters.Read More
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stquentin
A nightmare getting off the constellation to Grand Cayman very very dangerous. Otherwise beautiful area for shopping. Lovely people enjoyed.Read More
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Sail81
Grand Cayman is a beautiful port. Nice people Super clean and safeRead More
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vargas37

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