Could there be a more glorious way to start the day? After enjoying our breakfast we hopped on the tender for Grand Cayman.
The Cayman Islands are best known as a banker’s paradise, but with miles of pristine sand and clear water, they’re also a tropical paradise. One of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean, Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach, is just a five minute walk from the cruise terminal. Our own secluded slice of paradise — that’s what we found just behind the Wharf restaurant, about a 15 minute walk from the cruise terminal, in an area called Harbor View Beach.
Grand Cayman is awash in sensational snorkeling, so on our walk to Seven Mile Beach we stopped at a dive shop and rented gear for $12. We also couldn’t resist stopping in at Island Glassblowing, which is right on the way to Seven Mile Beach.
There are several great spots for snorkeling close to the port. You can dive in off the pier behind Casanova’s Restaurant, just a five minute walk north of the cruise terminal. You can also grab a cab and take the 10 minute ride to the Marriott Hotel on Seven Mile Beach, considered one of the best snorkel spots on the island.
If you’re looking for more excitement you might want to try your hand at Grand Cayman’s most popular attraction, Stingray City, where you can pet, feed and swim among these odd-looking creatures with the dangerous sounding names. The stingrays were drawn to the area — reachable only by boat — by fishermen who used to clean their catch here. It’s a port adventure you can book through Disney Cruise Line.
Explore the seas without getting your feet wet by hopping aboard one of the many submarines or semi-submersible tours, also bookable aboard the Disney Magic. One perk of booking your excursion through the ship? Disney guarantees they’ll wait for you if the excursion runs late. That can definitely make for a more relaxing day in port!
Over 1 million cruise passengers a year come to Grand Cayman. Many of them decide to submerge themselves in shopping, instead of underwater experiences. Easy enough to do, since the shopping district in Grand Cayman’s capital, George Town, is directly across from the cruise terminal.
However you decide to spend your day in port, it’s easy to have a grand adventure in Grand Cayman. Interested in finding out about all the ports aboard this Disney Magic cruise? We started out in historic Galveston, Texas … tomorrow we’ll be exploring our final port — Cozumel, Mexico.
Andrea Guthmann is a Midwest Emmy Award-winning broadcast, print and digital journalist. She spent many years as a TV producer for WTTW, the PBS station in Chicago. Her writing’s been published in the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Parent and on-line travel sites. She’s also the Midwest blogger forTravelingMom.com.
A native Floridian, Andrea’s now a big (windy) city mom of 3, who range in age from pre-school to high school. She loves sailing Lake Michigan and visiting the world class museums and restaurants in her sweet home Chicago, but loves escaping from the Midwest winters!
Disclosure: Disney Magic is hosting the author and her guests for purposes of this review