5 not-to-be-missed experiences in and around Grand Cayman

An island of guilty pleasures, Grand Cayman is one of the most luxurious destinations in the Caribbean. The option to effortlessly explore many of the island’s natural and manmade treasures is the very thing which makes Grand Cayman a seductive place to visit. Known for its delectable cuisine, the island lures some of the best chefs in the world, making it a foodie’s playground for international fare and seafood dishes. Safe and friendly, the popular “seven-mile” stretch of shoreline is flanked with a mix of ritzy hotels, fabulous restaurants, and a fun nightlife scene. Whether you are swimming with stingrays, or soaking in the sun at the posh Ritz Carlton, the experiences of the Cayman Islands will not disappoint.

Dining at La Dolce Vita

One of the best dining experiences on Grand Cayman is at a restaurant in Georgetown (on North Street) called La Dolce Vita. Among the many lavish places to dine, this Italian restaurant, owned by a family from the Piemonte region, stood out. The gnocchi were utterly tender, melt-in-your-mouth good, and the calamari and caprese salad superb.

Visit the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park

This beautiful wilderness preserve (approx. 60 acres) offers a scenic trail through wetland, cactus thicket, orchids and bromeliads, buttonwood swamp and patches of mahogany trees. While exploring the park, visitors may encounter possible sightings of the anole lizard, chickatees, the endangered blue iguana (the last blue iguana in the world), and a variety of bird life species. The Floral Colour Garden, traditional Cayman home and lake are all worth strolling to during you visit.

Taking in the Night Scene

In the evenings, after the sun withdraws its streaming rays from the pearly shores, hit the lively streets and head to Decker’s Grille and Lounge. This open-air bar plays a rhythmic mix of salsa, reggae, and French creole music. The blood orange mojitos are divine and the bartenders, friendly and informative. The most attractive part of this sultry lounge is the great crowd and its proximity to most hotels on Seven-Mile beach.

Petting Stingrays

Although it may be cliché to do this, I recommend the experience because it is sublime. Petting eight-foot stingrays, while standing on the edge of a natural sandbar in the middle of the clear Caribbean Sea, is one of those truly memorable travel moments. As one of Cayman’s biggest attractions, private tours to Stingray City can be easily arranged at any luxury hotel on the island.

Have a Picnic on Owen Island

Easily one of the most stunning beaches in the Caribbean, Owen Island, is the perfect place to have a picnic. The island’s soft, white sand and blue lagoon whisks away any lingering stress from your demanding lifestyle at home. If you plan a day trip to Little Cayman (which I strongly recommend) you can go by rowboat (Owen Island is approx. 590 ft. off the shores of Little Cayman) and have your lunch at a secluded spot under swaying, fringed palm trees.

Maria Russo is the Editor-in-Chief at Memoirs of a Travel & Food Addict.

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Comments (1)

  1. G Runya says:

    From what I’ve found, La Dolce Vita is more popular with tourists than the locals. It’s a bit pricy, which makes sense considering the target market, but definitely worth checking out.

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