The historic capital of George Town, on the southeast corner of Grand Cayman, is easy to explore on foot. If you're a shopper, you can spend days here; otherwise, an hour will suffice for a tour of the downtown area. To see the rest of the island, rent a car or scooter or take a guided tour. The portion of the island called West Bay is noted for its jumble of neighborhoods, many featuring ornate Edwardian homes built by seafarers, nautical tour companies (and real fishing fleet) at Morgan's Harbour, and a few attractions. When traffic is heavy, it's about a half hour to West Bay from George Town, even with the newer bypass road that runs parallel to West Bay Road. The less-developed North Side and East End have natural attractions from blowholes to botanical gardens, as well as the remains of the island's original settlements. Plan on at least 45 minutes for the drive out from George Town (more than an hour during rush hours). You need a day to explore the entire island—including a stop at a beach for a picnic or swim.
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Things You Can't Miss
Dozens of Grand Cayman dive shops lead tours to legendary destinations such as Devil’s Grotto and Snapper Hole; great snorkeling sites abound as well.
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Throw down a towel, get a cool drink and enjoy this postcard-perfect white-sand shore with plenty of activities for adults and safe swimming for kids.
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Walk forest and wetland paths at Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park to see colorful gardens, orchids, a variety of birds and endangered blue iguanas.
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Green sea turtles are the stars at Cayman Turtle Farm, where you’ll also enjoy sharks, tide pool creatures, a free-flight aviary and a butterfly trail.
© Stephen Frink/Corbis
Dozens of rays congregate at this shallow sandbar site, swirling around wading visitors who offer bits of squid to entice them near enough to touch.
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Built by a wealthy planter in 1780, this stone “castle” has been beautifully restored to showcase the island’s past, from the slavery era to democracy.
© M. Timothy O'Keefe / Alamy
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