Awaiting Your Return From Shore
of the Cayman Islands, Grand Cayman, is fast becoming one of the Caribbean’s
favorite getaways, particularly for watersport lovers. The Caymans fully
deserve their reputation as a paradise for divers: Translucent waters and a
colorful variety of marine life are protected by the government, which has
designated a number of marine parks. Several ship-wrecks add to the
underwater attractions, and the number of professional diving companies
outrank those in any other Caribbean island. Diving is not the only sport
here, visitors can engage in numerous other watersports, in addition to golf
and tennis. The beaches are gorgeous, with white, soft sand and clear,
blue-green water protected by coral reefs that ensure calm swimming.
When Columbus sighted the islands in 1503, he noted that the surrounding sea
was alive with turtles. Hence the original name of Las Tortugas, which was
later changed to Cayman. The many caves and coves soon became a favorite
hideout for pirates like Blackbeard and Henry Morgan. Many a ship foundered
on the treacherous rocks - often with the help of the inhabitants who lured
the vessels to shore with beacon fires. The legend of the Wreck of the Ten
Sails had a lasting effect on the Caymanians. When the islanders saved
everyone off a shipwrecked convoy in 1788, a grateful King George III
decreed that Caymanians should forever be exempt from conscription and never
have to pay taxes.
Today Grand Cayman is one of the most prosperous islands in the Caribbean,
boasting some 500 offshore banks in George Town, the capital of the Cayman
Islands. It is a small but pleasant town that can easily be seen on foot.
Duty-free stores and local souvenir shops abound. There is a small museum
located in the restored Old Courts Building with exhibits that provide a
good introduction to the history, plant and animal life in the Caymans. The
Cayman Maritime and Trearure Museum near the Hyatt Regency features a
collection of gold and silver relics from sunken Spanish ships.
Awaiting Your Return
Return to Your
Suite and Sail Away to The Next Adventure
and Dancing Await You