Life on a tropical island revolves around laidback activities like strolling along the sandy shorelines in search of sunset spots and shore-side snacking. But on the weekends the island awakens from its tropical slumber and offers up a myriad of activities that appeal to individuals of all sensibilities.
The largest of the idyllic Cayman Islands, Grand Cayman, is big enough to excite the senses and small enough to have kept its charm. Reputationally, one of the friendliest places in the Northern hemisphere, this little rock has much to offer, albeit food, culture or attractions, and we’ve put together our top weekend activities here.
Friday Afternoon Beach Walk
The best things in (island) life are free! Kick off your Friday by kicking up some sand on a sunny beach walk to your waterfront sunset stop of choice. Here, relax and unwind, while you enjoy the island’s most popular activity, watching the sun go down – toes in sand, drink in hand.
Saturday sight-see with a difference
Although Grand Cayman is home to many a tour operator offering beautiful and informative walking and driving tours, why not instead do like the locals do and rent a Jeep to explore the island on your own terms.
If you’re on the lookout for an alternative to day-drinking in paradise (even pirates need a break) dare to take a horseback swim in the sea! A swim atop a horse in the azure waters of the Caribbean is an experience you’re not likely to forget. There are a handful of riding schools that offer refreshing and cooling afternoon and sunset rides along (and in) the ocean.
After dark, adventurers are encouraged to take a shortish drive to Rum Point where one can jump from a kayak and take a swim surrounded by shimmering bioluminescence. It’s something even the locals are unable to grow tired off. There’s something truly magical about the plankton or ocean ‘fireflies’ that draws people from far and near. To protect this enchanting phenomenon, be sure to rid yourself of any harmful and potentially toxic skin and sun-protecting products before entering the bay.
Feed the Tarpons
For a dining experience that will excite and delight both young and old, head to Rackham’s or The Wharf where the Tarpon arrive like clockwork to receive snacks fed to them by the guests.
Year-round sunshine makes the Cayman Islands a golfing haven. For a lengthier 18-hole game day, Northsound golf club is best. For a short and sweet play-day, the 9-hole course at the Ritz Carlton golf club is the optimal choice. Both offer beautifully manicured lawns, lush leafy tropical trees and the slightly startling sounds of Iguanas fleeing and abruptly cliff-jumping into the water.
One of the most exhilarating things to do on a Saturday, as rated by both locals and visitors, is taking a boat out to Stingray city and Rum point, making snorkel stops along the way at some of the world’s most beautifully preserved and impressive coral reefs. Spot sea turtles and reef sharks and the odd manta ray if you’re very lucky. End it off on a lively Soca-note, enjoying live local music and entertainment while you wash down your delicious Caribbean style dinner with world-class Caribbean rum at a local diner.
Sundays are for brunching. It may be last on the list, but the Sunday brunch is not to be taken lightly. Cayman brunches are notorious for getting the better of even the most seasoned veteran brunchers. Come well-prepared. Stay hydrated. Don’t plan on driving anywhere afterwards, and make sure you schedule in a post-brunch catnap before heading out for the evening.