Know Before You Go...®
Visiting the Cayman Islands will give you easy access to some of the best snorkeling, diving, and fishing in the Caribbean. There’s also lots of shopping and other activities to take part in away from your villa or hotel room, like a visit to the sea turtle hatchery. Use the information within these tabs to learn more about the three islands that make up the Caymans.
- Stingray City
- Bio Bay
- Seven Mile Beach
- Turtle Farm
- Starfish Point
The Cayman Islands were sighted by Christopher Columbus in 1503 on his fourth trip to the New World enroute to Hispaniola. The two islands of Cayman Brac and Little Cayman appeared on a 1523 map and by 1530 were named Caymanas, derived from the Carib Indian word for the marine crocodile.
The first census of the Islands was taken in 1802, showing a population on Grand Cayman of 933, of whom 545 were slaves. Before slavery was abolished in 1834, there were over 950 slaves owned by 116 families. Emancipation paved the way for development of a homogeneous society.
Though Cayman was always regarded as a dependency of Jamaica, the reins of government by that colony were loosely held in the early years, and a tradition grew up of self-government, with matters of public concern decided at meetings of all free males.
The constitutional relationship between Cayman and Jamaica remained ambiguous until 1863 when an act of the British parliament formally made the Cayman Islands a dependency of Jamaica. When Jamaica achieved independence in 1962, the Islands opted to remain under the British Crown, and an administrator (in 1971 the title became Governor) appointed from London assumed the responsibilities previously held by the governor of Jamaica.
News and Notable
Selita Ebanks (fashion model) is a Cayman native. Frequent visitors to Cayman are Daniel Craig, Armie Hammer, Taylor Swift. Mark Cuban owns a home on Grand Cayman, and Tom Cruise not only visits the island, but filmed “The Firm” there!
World-renowned scuba destination
You'll find the Cayman Islands on pretty much every list of top dive sites. And since scuba diving is so popular here, this is the perfect destination to learn to dive, take an advanced course, or get the kids certified. With so many dive sites, it's hard to pick the best spot but Little Cayman and the Captain Keith Tibbets wreck dive on Cayman Brac are among our favorites. And there's plenty of tour boats waiting to take groups out daily and even on night runs.
Kaibo at its' casual finest!
This beachfront restaurant with outdoor grill and wood-fired pizza oven provides for the Casual fine dining in style; locally sourced ingredients, with simple preparation and amazing flavours. There are two special nights to be sure to check out if you are on island: BAREFOOT BEACH BBQ Jump up to live music, get down to limbo, and enjoy authentic local dishes from the BBQ buffet. Every Tuesday 5.30pm – 9pm. $29 Luna Del Mar - Mingle under the full moon and stars at the water’s edge for a feast of 9 shared dishes. This internationally recognized monthly dinner party has a live DJ, bongo drums, fire pit and a sky lantern display. Every Friday nearest the full moon, from 6pm. $55
The farm-to-table movement is strong in Grand Cayman but no where is it more apparent than at The Brasserie, a restaurant complex with its own prolific organic garden and it’s own “field-to-fork” philosophy. A collaboration of Chef Dean Max and owners King and Lisa Flowers, the restaurant is known for pioneering the island’s kitchen garden trend and emphasizing sustainbility and seasonality.
Transportation on Cayman
Getting to Cayman and getting around. Our transportation tips will help make your trip smoother. More good sand advice.
Airlines Flying Here
- Air Canada
- American Airlines
- British Airways
- Cayman Airways
- Southwest Airlines
“Owen Roberts International Airport” is the largest passenger airport in the Cayman Islands and is located on Grand Cayman. Cayman Brac also has its own airport, “Gerrard Smith International Airport”.
Included in the price of your airline ticket.
On the left - valid driver’s license required. A seat belt law is in effect which applies to every person in the vehicle including children. You can drive in Cayman provided you have a valid driver’s license & insurance coverage.
You must be 21 years to drive a rental car. All visitors to the Cayman Islands who intend to drive any vehicle are required to purchase a temporary Visitor’s Driving Permit for US$7.50 each (one-time charge, valid for six months or duration of stay, whichever is shorter) - except individuals who hold a valid International Driver’s License. Scooter rentals are also available on Grand Cayman from a few companies. Riders are required by law to wear a helmet at all times and urged to be extremely careful.
Cayman Weddings and Honeymoons
Vacationers don’t just stay in Cayman villas - they come to paradise to get married and celebrate their honeymoons! Work with a wedding planner on the island to help get a license granted by the Governor. Cost: US$200 (application & license fee) plus a US$12 stamp duty. Documents Required: Passport or birth certificate, Cayman Islands embarkation/disembarkation card as well as divorce or death certificate. If you get married on a Sunday no live music can be played (on a liquor-licensed premises.)
Know Before You Go...® - Cayman Travel Tips
Before making their way to Cayman villas, vacationers like to know a little bit of helpful information to make them feel more at home during their stay. Take a look at our travel tips to make your time in villas in Cayman even more relaxing.