7 things to do in Grand Cayman with Kids
My husband and I spend 5 days in the Grand Cayman Islands in April. This was our first time to Grand Cayman and we also happened to be bringing along our 5-month-old son. Now before you jump to the conclusion of, “oh man, that had to have been hell,” let me reassure you….it was not. Beaching with a baby can be quite fun! And, although lounging on a beach all day is just fine for me, my husband and son tend to get a little antsy if I don’t have activities planned. This goes for any trip that I organize.
So here are 7 things to do in Grand Cayman that were not only entertaining for us parents, but also easy to do with baby Jimmie.
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1. Pedro St. James – National Historic Site
Pedro St. James Castle is the oldest building on Grand Cayman and stands as the birthplace of democracy in Cayman. We enjoyed walking around the ocean-side grounds that surround the Caribbean great house from the early 18th century. The area spans 7.65 acres and includes original Caymanian cottages, an authentic outbuilding, and multiple gardens. If you are looking for fun “non-beach” things to do in Grand Cayman, this is a great stop for the whole family.
Normally I’m not a fan of certain “swimming with dolphin” organizations. In some cases they treat the animals poorly. However, home of 6 dolphins, Dolphin discovery in Grand Cayman has received an accreditation by Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums on their efforts to providing the highest standards of care to all of their marine animals and for their interactive dolphin programs. They are designed to be educational, sharing knowledge of the marine animals and discussing the importance of conservation and the environment. While we did not swim with the dolphins, we did sit in the outdoor beach bar right next to the pools to watch the dolphins do tricks. This turned out to be fabulous entertainment for baby James. Plus if you aren’t swimming with the dolphins you can go in to explore the sanctuary free of charge.
The center is located just across the street from Dolphin Discovery on the north side of the 7 mile beach. When looking for things to do in Grand Cayman with a baby, this is the perfect place. You can swim with the turtles, explore the massive breeding grounds, and even hold some of the turtles.
4. Blow holes
On our 3rd day on the island, we decided to take a small road trip from the 7 mile beach over to Rum Point. It was about an hour and 10 minute drive so I planned a few stops along the way to break up the drive. We ate lunch in Bodden Town at a cute bungalow overlooking the ocean. Afterwards we stopped by to watch the blow holes. It’ll entertain you for about 20 or so minutes…just enough time to take a break from driving and stretch your legs.
5. Crystal Cayman Caves in Grand Cayman with a baby
This was one of my most favorite things to do in Grand Cayman! After stopping to see the blow holes on the East end, we headed on to the Caves. Afterwards we hung out on the Rum Point side of the island since we were so close. You do have to book the Crystal Cave excursion in advance. Just call the morning of and see what times are available. They seemed to take a group every couple of hours or so. Our group including the guide was about 10 people. He walked us on an easy 15 minute trail through the jungle pointing out types of plants and wild life. Then we made it to the first of about 5 caves. By the time we reached the caves, little man had fallen asleep (as he always does on long walks in the carrier). The caves were so beautiful and something I will forever remember. Baby James, not so much. (Tip: I highly recommend this carrier for traveling with a baby. We take it on every trip and it easily adjusts to mine or Will’s build. I’ve walked with him in this for hours with no back pain and pure comfort for baby!)
6. Visit Hell – Odd things to do in Grand Cayman
Yes, this is an overrated tourist site. But it only takes 5-10 minutes to walk around and it’s fun to say, “I’ve been to Hell!” You stand next to a creepy devil-like statue and stare out at some short black limestone formations. Then walk around the gift shop and perhaps send a postcard “from hell” to a friend.
7. Stingray City, Sunset Cruise (if you’re feeling really brave, bring the baby):
Here’s where you get to learn from our mistakes. I was told that lots of babies have been out to Stingray City on boat tours. When I researched, I even saw lots of pictures with babies in the arms of the parents swimming with the stingrays. There were also super cute pictures with babies holding starfish. Our mistake was booking the sunset cruise instead of the day time tour, which apparently was much more kid friendly. The sunset cruise, although very beautiful with the sunset and all, was more geared towards adults. Upon boarding, I was immediately worried that a fussy baby may ruin the event for the other patrons. Although James did great, I never really relaxed on the entire 3-hour tour.
Also, the sunset cruises were in higher demand so were more crowded. When Will and I were taking turns to swim with the stingrays, there were about 30 other people diving towards them trying to get their pictures. The reason we had to take turns was because that evening the waters were rougher than usual. So getting James off the boat and into the water was going to be way too risky for my taste. One of us had to stay on the boat with the baby while the other got off to swim. If I were to do it again, I would take the day time tour which supposedly would have had way less of a crowd and possibly smoother waters. That tour also does a stop at Rum Point where there are starfish everywhere. Anyways, you live you learn, and hopefully your experience will be better than ours!
What are some other things to do in Grand Cayman that we missed?
For more tips on relaxing with a baby in the Grand Cayman Islands, check out this post – 5 Relaxing Days with a baby in Grand Cayman!