sandbar

Excursions, Captains Log

26 March 2015 - Good news, bad news in Grand Cayman

This year is shooting by, and nothing illustrates it more to us than checking on when we last posted news to our blog!

Another way of looking at the world 

Another way of looking at the world 

We seem to have gotten over the horribly moody weather experienced since November / December last year (and all the way to the first half of this month!), although having said that, we are warily eyeing some conditions towards the end of this coming week. But it has been exciting for our crew to have our island visitors enjoy some calm conditions and stunning Caribbean colours!

The last four weeks have been very busy for the island, with an enormous pressure to try and accommodate guests wanting to visit the stingrays and do some amazing snorkelling at the reef. Of all the times for Captain Mario to get sick, this was not the best! He landed up in hospital having an operation to drain a cyst in his hand, and was most definitely not a happy chappy. Even his little girl pushing buttons and moving his bed in 16 different directions did't get the full smile going. He was released early this morning and was down at the cruise terminal by 8:00am back in full swing and ready to go! Thank you to the doctors and nurses at the George Town Hospital who were responsible for his amazing treatment!

Ready for business - even in hospital! The Acquarius sign by Captain Mario's bed .....

Ready for business - even in hospital! The Acquarius sign by Captain Mario's bed .....

There was great excitement when one of snorkel guests found a new Moray Eel during a visit to the coral reef. The other two, Elvis and Physcho (aka Brutus & Beverly), are well known to us, but a new younger one has now joined the crowd! As soon as Captain Mario found this out, like a flash he was in the water and got a gorgeous photo of her!

And here "she" is ... the new younger Moray Eel found at the Reef - Captain Mario put her at approximately 4 feet and possibly 2 years of age - ain't she a beaut? The crew have not yet named her.

And here "she" is ... the new younger Moray Eel found at the Reef - Captain Mario put her at approximately 4 feet and possibly 2 years of age - ain't she a beaut? The crew have not yet named her.

More fun and delightful news was hearing back from a couple that had sailed with us in December. The lady had suffered severe motion sickness, but Captain Mario told her he suspected that it was more than just that ..... so it was awesome when they contacted us to say he had been right, she had made it safely through the her first trimester of pregnancy and they are expecting a boy! Wonder if they will call it Mario??

We also had a very special tour with the Purkey family. Their family first toured with us a couple of years back, and it was devastating to hear that shortly after they returned from holiday, their oldest son tragically passed away. We went out in search of a stingray to be his name sake, and it took us quite a while to get a "feeling" for the right one. But upon discussing the characteristics with the family, we knew we had found right stingray, and it was named "Trinton". The family made a return cruise, but oh how cruel was it that the day they anchored in Grand Cayman, the weather was beyond safe and we could not take them out to see him. That day left a whole in our hearts. So it was with mixed feelings that we accepted another booking from them for a week back, hoping like crazy that the weather would be kind, that Trinton would turn up for a visit, and that we could all share a very special moment. We won't go into it too much, but let's say that the crew were more than touched to see Trinton come visit and say hi to the family. We would not have traded that moment for anything in the world. We will look after him for you Purkey family!

Taken too soon but always remembered - Trinton Purkey

Taken too soon but always remembered - Trinton Purkey

On a less happy note, it is with great sadness that Captain Mario still reports bad treatment of our beautiful stingrays by some operators. He witnessed one picking up a stingray right out of the water and holding it over the heads of some guests for a photo - this is something we find appalling. Captain Mario was in the process of upping anchor and leaving the sandbar so was able neither to chastise the operator, nor even take a photo as proof, but it breaks our hearts that this kind of abuse continues. It is simply so wrong. He also reported finding a dead starfish at Starfish Point .... yes, anything could have caused this, but too many times we witness operators and visitors taking the starfish right out of the water! We always stress the importance of respecting our beautiful creatures to all our visitors, and we wish all operators did the same. Let's hope we can continue to educate everyone and change their attitudes and actions.

Stingray and anchor at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman

Stingray and anchor at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman

Captain Mario has reported some pretty amazing snorkelling moments of late, not least the finding of the new comer eel! Excitement has also been generated by the the large Barracudas that have been spotted, one over 5 feet! Our excursions guests have enjoyed seeing a congregation of Bermuda Chub (Captain Mario estimates there must have been over 100 of them!), a congregation of Stoplight Parrot Fish - pretty awesome and a huge Spotted Trunk fish enjoying body polish at a "cleaning station". But his favourite moment of all was spotting a Tiger Grouper - oh, he did not stop babbling about the sighting for a while!

We have included some of the photos from the last few beautiful tours, and we hope that you enjoy them. Come visit soon!

Stingrays

STINGRAY SANDSTORM

During a snorkel stop on one of our recent tours, Captain Mario was fortunate enough to capture one of the stingrays going under cover ..... below is the sequence and the end result. I think they look like they are dressing up like ghosts for halloween when they do this, and it never fails to raise a chuckle from me - I find myself waiting for them to say Boo!

Going, going, gone ..... mostly

Going, going, gone ..... mostly

Stingrays do this for three possible reasons - resting, eating or hiding. At the sandbar, we often see one or two of them buried in the sand, and presume that this means they have had enough handling and want a break from the visitors. We respect this and leave them alone.

Stingrays are opportunistic eaters, meaning that they lie in wait for their next happy meal to come on by. Obviously, their food recognises them, and the stingrays create these sandstorms to cover themselves until the unsuspecting victim happens by. Shrimp, squid and other sand dwelling molluscs form a part of their diet, and the ray's mouth is perfectly situated at the underside of the body in order to suck up these tasty morsels - and quite a suck they have too!

Below is a video that the awesome Michael Maes has on his YouTube channel which shows some of the sandbar stingrays eating Lionfish heads, and it is quite clear how they suck up the food.

 

The last reason the stingrays may be doing this is to hide from predators. In the North Sound in Grand Cayman, they do not have to deal with a lot of predators, but a Hammerhead shark has been seen recently, and this shark is one of the stingray's worst enemies. The barbs are not removed from our stingrays, so they retain their natural defines system, which is only fair. Hope we host you soon!

22 February 2015 - Sighs all round

 Best snorkel sites in Grand Cayman

Clearly, as can be seen in the photo above, even the stingrays were smiling to see things getting a little back to normal after the last few days.........

Tour Time : 8:30am

Guests from : Disney Wonder Cruise, Marriott Beach Resort Grand Cayman, Sunshine Suites Hotel, residents

Star Stingray : Snowflake

No Shows : 0

Enough already! We have been forced to cancel tours since Thursday, so it was with a sigh of relief that we managed to get out again today. We have had to console so many disappointed island visitors who were looking forward to meeting the stingrays .......

Barbara, the stingray favoured by Captain Mario, was all of the guests. Captain Mario said that at one point she seemed even to be hugging his head she was so happy to see him! Below are some photos of the stingrays who came to visit us at the snorkelling site at Coral Gardens.

Captain Mario also reported great jollity from all the other operators who were also just SO happy to be out again, and of course, the guests who had been worried they miss this awesome adventure completely were quite giddy with excitement. Very good spirits all round .....

Daughter hides behind mom, mom is bravely handling the situation......waah! Surprise when Snowflake picks up her nose for a kiss, mom ALMOST loses it. Then mom re-assesses the situation, steadies herself and BAM she goes in for the kiss! Awesome!


Captains Log, Excursions, Stingray City

4 February 2015 - BRIGHT BUT CHOPPY

Tour Time : 9:30am

Guests from : Celebrity Equinox cruise, Serenade of the Seas cruise, Disney Magic cruise

Star Stingray : Stumpy

No Shows : 8 (oh boy, that hurts!)

Nosy little Needle Nose at Stingray City in Grand Cayman

Nosy little Needle Nose at Stingray City in Grand Cayman

It's not only stingrays that you get to meet at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman, there are other cute little critters who dart through this area as well. Above is the Needle Nose - very pretty fish who reflect the silver blue of the caribbean ocean so very beautifully - faster than light these little guys! We often see conch, are sometimes spoilt with a King Helmut, and Blue Runners are seen darting about between the people. Don't forget the sea gulls who hover above trying to steal the squid from your hands!

Today was somewhat choppy but oh so wonderfully bright and cheerful. Our guests took on the tour with gusto and we had an amazing time with them. The waters were back to the beautiful blue and the clarity of it was truly awesome. 

We are expecting some idyllic conditions tomorrow, so can't wait to share photos (Captain Mario - take lots!), but the weather is not looking too happy for Saturday and Sunday - ugh! Well, you never know ..... it can change in hours!

Hope you all have a beautiful day and come visit us soon!

Cradling "Stumpy" as  Stingray City  in Grand Cayman

Cradling "Stumpy" as Stingray City in Grand Cayman


sunset

29 January 2015 - BLEH!

Give us a break now ...... enough of the winds already!!!

Wow. We have never experienced this much wind over such a length of time. It sure hurts business (and slap in the middle of high season too!), but worse is the disappointment on the faces of guests when we tell them tours are cancelled - that leaves a really bad taste in the mouth.

Today was especially hard - three beautiful ladies who had booked over 6 months ago - gran, daughter and granddaughter - bubbling over with excitement at meeting the stingrays. How hard it was for Captain Mario to tell them it was not going to happen.

The winds had been howling all night and we had hoped against hope that it would all have cleared up by morning. NOT! It was tough, but at the 12th hour, Captain Mario knew it was safest to cancel, and his decision was proven sound when the Marine Police also closed the sandbar.

The next 24-48 hours doesn't look too much better, so we can only hang in and hold thumbs. Them stingrays are going to be real hungry when we see them again!

Stuck on land ... but hey, could be worse .... could be stuck in snow!

Stuck on land ... but hey, could be worse .... could be stuck in snow!

Captains Log, Excursions, Stingray City, Stingrays

28 January 2015 - BARBARA'S BACK!

"Barbara" and her Mona Lisa smile - welcome back!

"Barbara" and her Mona Lisa smile - welcome back!

Tour Time : 9:30am - left at 10am - read all about it!

Guests from : Carnival Breeze Cruise, Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, Brilliance of the Seas - cancelled visit

Star Stingray : Snowflake

No Shows : 0

High and lows today! The day started off rough - literally - not the best of conditions, with quite high winds blowing in such a way that the Brilliance of the Seas cancelled its visit to the island, and Carnival Breeze decided to drop anchor at Spotts - which is on the other side of the island to the normal cruise terminal. Can you imagine the consternation this can cause - all the tour operators racing out to Spotts trying to find their guests ...... Captain Mario did a sterling job of it, but the tour left late as can be expected under these conditions.

With the ship now anchored in Spotts, it was unfortunate that we had to leave Starfish Point out of the tour - not enough time to do this AND get them back to the ship on time. But now for the good stuff....

snorkel-excursions-grand-cayman-28011502

Over the last week or so we had been missing the Captain's favourite stingray Barbara. The crew and office staff were becoming a little tense about her disappearance. It must be remembered that the Cayman stingrays are in open water - they are not closed in any manner. Barbara was also born without a tail, which of course, is the stingrays defense against predators. But JUBILATION! Today, while at the snorkel site, there she was - all smiles and cuteness, playing with our guests and flirting up a storm. Happy phone calls were made to the office to let everyone know Barbara was back!

grand-cayman-stingrays-28011503

The other great part of the day was the awesome caribbean sunshine - the ocean was gleaming with emerald and sapphire colours, so even though the surface was choppy - the colours were delicious!

Snowflake did the honours today, kissing our guests with great abandon and hopefully leaving them with lifelong memories. We always hope that our "girls" turn each visitor into a stingray ambassador. These beautiful creatures are fished to extinction in some parts of the world - their "leather" used in fashion pieces and their flesh sold as scallops. We get cold shivers thinking about this truly hope that guests of the sandbar start moving against these practices.

Everyone made it back to ship safe and sound and on time, and we can't wait to share these photos with our guests - we hope they all come back soon.

And welcome back Barbara - you had us really worried girl.

Mwah!!! Snowflake wins another admirer!

Mwah!!! Snowflake wins another admirer!

Excursions, fish, sunset, snorkel

AWESOME DAY IN GRAND CAYMAN

The 24th January served us up an incredible day. 

Living in the Caribbean is lucky for so many reasons, but for us, the best reasons would be the climate and the beauty that we see on a daily basis. Even just taking the school route offers up a glimpse of the beautiful tropical blues along Seven Mile Beach - one almost wishes to be stuck in a traffic jam!

But there come days when Grand Cayman just goes a step further and produces a day which is stunning beyond words, and we all get excited about it, and get especially worked up about sharing such a day with our tour guests. 

It is on these days that Captain Mario's wife and child hound him half to death to be taken out into the North Sound. They do not often get this opportunity, but on days with these conditions - well, no is not accepted for an answer. Mandy adores the stingrays and cannot collect enough photos of them, while Gina adores Starfish Point and no family tour can be completed without stopping at this island attraction.

Captain Mario stopped off at a beautiful spot for the snorkelling - a little out of the usual site but along the barrier reef. The propellors had hardly stopped turning before Mandy was in the water, where she was met by a gigantic Mutton Snapper who surprisingly accompanied her for most of her visit - how wonderful! His size is not easy to see from the photo below, but he must have been at least 3 feet long - usually they are rather timid as the locals fish for them, but this guy was quite happy to tag along.

The massive Mutton Snapper that joined us for the snorkel along the Barrier Reef

The massive Mutton Snapper that joined us for the snorkel along the Barrier Reef

What a beauty of a Queen Angel Fish found at the Barrier Reef in Grand Cayman

What a beauty of a Queen Angel Fish found at the Barrier Reef in Grand Cayman

A school of Blue Tangs float on by during our snorkel visit

A school of Blue Tangs float on by during our snorkel visit

Conch Shell in Grand Cayman

Conch Shell in Grand Cayman

The reef was splendid - Mandy felt that there was a certain magic in the water and was amazed to see so many fish and corals - an enormous Queen Angel Fish and a school of one of her favourite fish, the Blue Tang, were some of her pleasures. Add to that the fact that she found four live conch and her day was already made! We used to fish for conch for our standard excursions, but changed our policy this year - we feel that they are already over-harvested and hardly see any these days. You can be sure no-one will be told of these conch's whereabouts!

After the snorkelling, and during our boat ride to Stingray City Sandbar, we were treated to a beautiful rainbow hitting land on the North Side. Wow, we did not think it could get too much better, but we were wrong. 

 Things to do in Grand Cayman

Once again, Mandy was testing Captain Mario's patience with wanting to spring into the ocean before the propellors had stopped twirling ...... can you blame her when you see the conditions were like the photo below?

Incredible conditions at Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman

Incredible conditions at Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman

The above image was taken from on-board "Big John" - the waters were so clear you could see right to the sand bar bed with the ripples of sand caused by the flow of the ocean. The first sight was of a ginormous stingray burying herself into the sand - we were delighted to see that she was very, very swollen with pregnancy and can't wait to have her little ones darting around. She eventually stopped "digging" and lumbered over for a kiss and some lovin' .... got a picture of her in Captain Mario's arms, just resting there for a bit.... we made sure to give her plenty of stingray "popcorn" (squid) to keep her nicely fed for her babies!

One very pregnant stingray burying herself at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman

One very pregnant stingray burying herself at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman

 Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman

The "girls" felt the magic of the day and cavorted with us and the other sandbar visitors with great abandon and a lot of kisses and hugs and snuggles were shared - oh what a time was had! Mandy and Gina were in 7th heaven! It was tough to leave this spot, but Gina was in nagging mode by now, and Starfish Point was obviously next on the itinerary.

On the way over to this heavenly beach on Grand Cayman, we were given a hint of what to expect, with the skies and clouds forming incredible shades of blue and greys. Gina was extremely verbal in her delightful find of 4 starfish with excited yelps and squeals heard by all. But those quietened down when the sunset put on an astounding show. When even a four year old is heard to say "lets sit quietly and watch the sunset" you know it has got to be a good one! Below is the proof .... what a magical day to enjoy and witness. On days such as these, one can only be hugely grateful to be living surrounded by peace, surrounded by beauty and surrounded by hope - hugely lacking in so many parts of the world. Thank you.

Sunset from Starfish Point in Grand Cayman

Sunset from Starfish Point in Grand Cayman

Snorkel, Captains Log, Stingrays

8 - 12 JANUARY 2015 - WHAT A WEEK!

BLEH!

These past few days have not been the highlight of our year so far ... weather was tropically moody and in some cases, bad enough for us to cancel tours AGAIN! We mentally banished the Cayman weather to the naughty corner for some time out ....... today appears somewhat better - let's hope it worked!

Nonetheless, we have had the pleasure of great company and enjoyed visitors from all over - cruise guests included NCL Epic, Carnival Dream, Carnival Splendour, Navigator of the Seas and Caribbean Princess. Some of the overnight guests includes those from hotels and apartment such as the Marriott, Sunshine Suites and Plantation Village.

The family that snorkels together ...... Grand Cayman snorkel excursions

The family that snorkels together ...... Grand Cayman snorkel excursions

The Coral Gardens proved to be the best snorkel site for the prevailing conditions. Water clarity was good if not perfect and our excursion guests enjoyed their time with the accompanying stingray while marvelling at the abundance of tropical fish. Captain Mario still avoided Starfish Point on some of the tours due to the continued presence of jelly fish - and of course, the first day he decided it was safe to go back, was the only stung by one!

Dwayne, our 1st Mate and otherwise known as the "Stingray Whisperer" had a flirty moment with one of his favourite stingrays "Snowflake" and Captain Mario managed to catch some photos of their interaction which is very beautiful. We are very pleased to see that "Frosty", who was looking rather skeletal and ill at one stage, seems to have recovered with a little bit of extra help from our crew. She is now looking absolutely gorgeous, chubby and happy!

Snorkelling with Stingrays in Grand Cayman

Snorkelling with Stingrays in Grand Cayman

Stingrays, stingray city

12 JANUARY 2015 - STINGRAY WHISPERER

This is a title which makes our 1st Mate Dwayne act like a teenager in love ..... he gets a little twinkle in his eye, acts kinda shy, his face lights up with a special grin and then you can see his mind has gone off to swim with the "girls" ......

There is no denying that he has a very special way with the stingrays who are the star attraction at Grand Cayman's famous sandbar where we take our tour guests to meet, feed and even kiss  them.

While Captain Mario is a complete sucker for "Barbara" ("Dark Vader" is being mentioned a lot more these days too!), Dwayne's heart is shared by "Snowflake", "Kim" and "Lilly". He is fiercely protective about the ladies, and wastes no time in correcting anyone who is not treating them with the respect they deserve. But if you REALLY want to see Dwayne at his best, you gotta see him helping the kids kiss his girls ...... his gentleness and patience is palpable, and his face literally beams ..... we think he will make an awesome Grandpa one day!

Yesterday, Captain Mario got the chance to capture some of the interaction between Snowflake and Dwayne - a little dance and little bit of playing hard to get, but in the end, always giving each other reciprocal affection. We hope you enjoy this as much as we do!

Excursions, Captains Log

5 JANUARY 2015 - STINGRAY CITY SHORE EXCURSIONS

Tour Time : 9:00am & 2:15pm

Guests from : George Town Villas, Regal Beach, residents, Comfort Suites, Villas of the Galleon, Cayman Reef Resort

Star Stingray : Dark Vader and Frosty

At anchor at the  Stingray City Sandbar  in Grand Cayman

At anchor at the Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman

After two days of very strong winds gusting to over 24 knots, we were relieved to be able to take our tour guests out today. A word of advice - don't leave sea excursions to the last day of your vacation - if the weather turns difficult, you can miss some favoured attraction and be left feeling horribly disappointed.

Soaking up the Caribbean rays

Soaking up the Caribbean rays

Today was still windy, but definitely worth doing - water a little choppy, but the conditions sunny and favourable. We had been alerted to the fact that there were a lot of jelly fish at Starfish Point, so gave our guests, on both the morning and afternoon tours, the option of avoiding this spot. They were wisely in favour of this change, although all a little sad at missing the Sea Stars.

We hosted some lads who were identical twins - that caused some confusion for the photo editor (and some giggles). Why so many photos of the same chap??? Good thing Captain Mario was around at the time to answer the question :-)

Sunshine, stingrays and smiles in Grand Cayman - Frosty gets the cuddles in this photo

Sunshine, stingrays and smiles in Grand Cayman - Frosty gets the cuddles in this photo

All in all, a great tour hugely enjoyed by the crew, the fish and the stingrays who had missed the visits - and, we hope, our guests!

Stingrays, stingray city, Lilly

LILLY & DWAYNE AT PLAY .....

They say photos never lie (except when overly photoshopped!), but we think this series of images taken at Stingray City in Grand Cayman clearly show the love that our "Stingray Whisperer" and 1st Mate has for the stingrays! These photos show "Lilly" frolicking around our tour guests, and then swimming straight into the arms of Dwayne - and you can see the delight on his face ...... and then the snuggle and kisses .......


Captains Log, Excursions, Stingray City

20 December 2014 - Grand Cayman Stingray City tours

Tour Time : 9:30am (departed 9:30am)

Guests from : Island Princess cruise, Aida Bella cruise, residents

Star Stingray : Barbara

 Grand Cayman snorkelling is the best in the Caribbean

It is tempting to say that "Barbara" was the star of today's tour, but I think perhaps she came second today.

Although she was the perfect host at Stingray City Sandbar, cuddling and kissing her gorgeous heart out, there was one tour guest who had NEVER set foot in the ocean before, and she did it today, with us, with stingrays swimming around. WAY TO GO!

We have hosted many island visitors who are unable to swim, and they have trusted our crew enough to join in the snorkelling and maximise their visit to some of Grand Cayman's best attractions. But to have someone who  has never even put her foot into an ocean before, do it with us AND do it with stingrays .... well ... we think she is a pretty awesome woman!

Mom has never been in the ocean before .... but she did it with us and the stingrays! Kudos!

Mom has never been in the ocean before .... but she did it with us and the stingrays! Kudos!

Unlike yesterday's tour, today everything went perfectly and the excursion was great. The gorgeous Caribbean sun was out and the island was bathed in the holiday feeling again ... if there were any destination weddings on the go today, we are pretty sure that they were accompanied by huge sighs of relief after the tropical cold fronts we have been experiencing!

And yes, Barbara, you can go back to being the star again tomorrow!

Captains Log

18 December 2014 - Stingray City Tours Grand Cayman

Tour Time : 10:30am & 2:15pm - CANCELLED DUE TO SEVERE CONDITIONS

Guests from : Norwegian Epic, Carnival Magic, Nieuw Amsterdam, Comfort Suites, Marriott, Sunshines Suites, Grand Cayman Beach Suites, The Reef Resort

A rather misleading title for this post ...... more like NON Stingray City tours in Grand Cayman!

 Grand Cayman tours and excrusions

Cruise visitors and on-island visitors alike all excited about visiting the beautiful stingrays at Stingray City Sandbar during their visit to Grand Cayman, only to be informed by Captain Mario that after an awful lot of consideration, both tours for today were to be cancelled. We can be happy without sunshine, we can keep our guests protected from rain, but high winds are a cause for concern and create unsafe conditions. Swells and waves are experienced, and it is not optimal to have a 41 foot boat raising up and down by over 6 feet while guests snorkel or cuddle stingrays close by.

 
 Snorkel Grand Cayman
 

It is never an easy decision for the Captain. He is well aware that this may perhaps be the only opportunity they have for this experience, and how very disappointed they will be at a cancellation. But we prefer to put the safety of our excursion guests before "wants" and before financial consideration. There are operators who will go out in these conditions, but we are not one of them.

Let's hope this weather passes soon - it has been one of the longest cold fronts that Captain can remember........

Captains Log, Excursions, Starfish Point

14 December 2014 - Shore Excursions Grand Cayman

Tour Time : 08:30am (departed 8:30am)

Guests from : Disney Wonder, Cayman Reef Resort, Grand Cayman Beach Suites, The Island Club

Star Stingray : Frosty

Grand Cayman woke up to island wide grey skies which prompted some booked guests to perform the dreaded "no show" - guests who don't let tour operators know that they will not be joining the tour after all - without letting them know! This causes such frustration and extra cost to a small family company like ours, but we are always determined to remain faithful to the guests who do show! And wow, what an excursion it was!

A Sergeant Major performs a spectacular photo bomb at  Coral Gardens

A Sergeant Major performs a spectacular photo bomb at Coral Gardens

The beautiful Caribbean sun broke through by around 9:00am and the tropical waters were glowing with vibrant colour again, and our vacation visitors were more than ready for the adventure!

The outing was filled with stingrays accompanying our group at the snorkel site, incredibly clear waters at Starfish Point (where everyone was awed by the beautiful beach and the Sea Stars), and Stingray City Sandbar provided snuggles and kisses with "Frosty". One young chap enjoyed the stingrays kisses immensely and kept coming back for more and more (making Frosty feel very good about herself)!

Captain Mario discovered the world of "selfies" today - promptly borrowed some glasses from one of the kids on-board and had a ball with the camera ....... this will be the beginning of many such photos, we are pretty sure!

Captain Mario has discovered selfies ..... oh dear ....

Captain Mario has discovered selfies ..... oh dear ....

Such a delightful tour - it was difficult to choose photos to share. So. We have put them in an album showing some of the best pictures so that you can enjoy them - this is THE LINK to the Flickr album.

Have a special week and Grand Cayman greetings from us all!

Stingrays

MIRANDA .... GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN!

Yup, we get to know and name most of the stingrays that we meet at the Sandbar in Grand Cayman!

Meet "Miranda"

We named her after a bride who held her destination wedding on Grand Cayman, and then chose to have a post-wedding chartered tour for her bridal group to wind down. This stingray was the centre of attention at the sandbar that tour, and was very, very, VERY loving towards the new husband. If you look closely, there is a white spot on her left wing, which looks like a wedding ring! So with all the affection she was showing the groom, and the wedding ring, VOILA! she became Miranda! We had not seen her since that tour, but here she is again - and good to have her back.