stingray sandbar

Stingray City, Captains Log, children

20 January 2015 - BABY KISSES & STINGRAYS!

Always a complete delight to host the young adventurers that come out on our tours ..... we hope that our love for nature and the beautiful sea creatures leaves a mark and a memory forever.

Tour Time : 11:30am

Guests from : Celebrity Reflection Cruise, Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, Sunshines Suites

Star Stingray : Snowflake

No Shows : 2

Snorkelling at the  Coral Gardens  in Grand Cayman

Snorkelling at the Coral Gardens in Grand Cayman

A lovely, relaxed excursion today - the sun was doing the Caribbean proud - with only 13 guests on board the interaction was even more personal than normal.

The snorkelling at the Coral Gardens was spectacular, with inquisitive tropical fish eager to say hi. Beautiful coral formations witnessed - an incentive to work harder at protecting the Reef for certain.

Loved our little adventurer on-board today and what a kiss Snowflake the stingray was given! We hope that somewhere in that young mind, the memory will remain for years to come, and that he will  treasure this very special moment.

A truly great day out with our island visitors today - we hope they had as good a time as we did!

This little adventurer was all hands with Snowflake the Stingray - awesome!

This little adventurer was all hands with Snowflake the Stingray - awesome!

Stingray City, Captains Log

RIP CAPTAIN MARVIN

We cannot let the passing of an island legend go by without bidding him farewell.

Captain Marvin, who is credited with being the first Caymanian to commercialise Stingray City in Grand Cayman, passed away late December 2014 aged 98.

Captain Marvin - the pioneer of Stingray City Grand Cayman (photo - The Cayman Islands Business Journal)

Captain Marvin - the pioneer of Stingray City Grand Cayman (photo - The Cayman Islands Business Journal)

Many of the local Cayman fisherman can still relate first hand stories of how it all began - with their day's catch being cleaned at the sandbar before making their way home. Gradually, the stingrays became accustomed to this easy buffet, and friendly to the folk that brought it.

The enterprising and social Captain Marvin would meet visitors to the island asking what attractions should to be visited. And so, on a borrowed sailboat, he took his first tourists to snorkel and visit the stingrays in the North Sound - 1951 was the year.

In those days, all kinds of rays were to be found, including Eagle Rays, Leopard Rays and Manta Rays and more conch than you could ever imagine. His tours would last all day long and include a lunch on a beach near Rum Point - he would prepare whatever he had caught and serve this up with his wife's famous potato salad.

His business flourished from then, and has been kept as a family concern providing employment to his children, grand children and even great grand children!

We wish we had had the honour of listening to some of his stories, of which he must have had many. We are privileged to be a part of this industry and will strive every day to take care of what he started.

So long Cap'n - we salute you and look forward to exchanging stories on the other side!

Snorkel, Stingrays, private tours

28 December 2014 - Chartered Tours in Grand Cayman

Awesome, awesome private tour today!

What an absolute pleasure it was to host this fun and adventurous group! We collected them at the Kaibo Yacht Club (this can be done for chartered tours and in select other circumstances), and it was sunny smiles and laughter from the get-go.

Their choice of attractions to visit? Some of the best in Grand Cayman of course. First stop on this excursion was the Secret Garden - a beautiful spot that Captain Mario has discovered with prolific coral and tropical fish - today Barbara joined us and brought along 3 other stingrays with her including Stumpy (a name earned because of her very short tail). We managed to get some stunning photos of the children interacting with them, and we hope these images will be with them forever.

Along the way, we agreed to find some conch for our guests - as stated in a previous post, we no longer retrieve conch on our standard tours as we feel they have been over harvested and their numbers are now so low. However, we have made exceptions to this policy for our private tours (if requested).

Stingrays play ......

Stingrays play ......

Stingrays rest ......

Stingrays rest ......

This time we left the best for last! Stingray City Sandbar was incredible and we arrived when no-else was there. Pure vacation bliss! Just us, the Caribbean Sea and the stingrays all round, eager for squid and kisses. 

It was a sad but fond farewell at the end of our time together, but we sincerely hope to host our new friends again in the not too distant future. Till we meet again!

Captains Log, Excursions, sunset, Snorkel

23 December 2014 - Sea Tours in Grand Cayman

Tour Time : 9:30am & 2:15pm (afternoon tour left late - read about it below!)

Guests from : MSC Divina cruise, Carnival Splendour cruise, Westin Hotel, Plantana Condos, Caribbean Club Condos, Marriott Hotel, Comfort Suites Hotel

Star Stingray : Frosty

Our hearts were heavy that the wind had not yet died down and we expected choppy conditions again for our guests. How we wish the perfect weather for all our excursion guests!

However, the Caribbean sun was doing her best to lighten everyone's spirits, and put on quite a show. Today we visited our "Secret Garden", a beautiful snorkel site which Captain Mario has recently discovered, and boy we were not disappointed! An absolutely gorgeous display of coral formations and tropical fish - this stop was a great highlight of the tour.

Stingray City Sandbar was hugely enjoyed by our guests despite the gusts of wind, and Frosty played a big part in bring smiles to their faces! This is what vacations in Grand Cayman are all about.......

 Tours to Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman
 Tours to Stingray City Sandbar in Grand Cayman

Our afternoon tour ran approximately 30 minutes late as we had stopped to rescue two people in distress. The choppy conditions had taken their toll on their small boat and they were sinking rather quickly despite the best of efforts. Most of our afternoon guests were wonderfully understanding, although some preferred to cancel. Nonetheless, a super time was had and we were hugely rewarded with a beautiful sunset at Starfish Point where the Grand Cayman sun took our breath away, yet again!

A Grand Cayman sunset 

A Grand Cayman sunset 

Starfish Point, Stingray City, Captains Log

22 December 2014 - Stingray City Tours in Grand Cayman

Tour Time : 9:00am & Private Chartered Tour at 2:30pm

Guests from : Westin Hotel, The Meridian Condos, The Castle in East End

Star Stingray : Lilly & Snowflake

The island is buzzing with excitement - Christmas in Grand Cayman is a Caribbean delight. The sunny, tropical climate often leaves visitors from colder climates a little off balance, but we are sure they are lapping up the warmth whatever attraction they choose to tackle for the day!

We enjoyed two excursions to Stingray City Sandbar, snorkel sites and Starfish Point today - how lucky can we get? The first tour was a standard tour, and the second a private excursion for a wonderful group staying at the Castle in East End. 

Chasing Barbara the stingray

Chasing Barbara the stingray

Snorkelling at Coral Gardens brought Captain Mario's favourite stingray out to play, and play she did! The Caribbean ocean once again provided an underwater beauty spot with fabulous coral, tropical fish and a lovely school of Grunts.

A school of Grunts surround us while snorkelling

A school of Grunts surround us while snorkelling

Circling above us was a lone seagull, hoping to grab a take-away lunch - they can be very cheeky at Stingray City Sandbar. When feeding the stingrays at the sandbar, the initial knee-jerk reaction is to pull away and hold the squid up in the air - and that is when the seagulls pounce!! Incredibly quick - before you know it is just your hand waving about above your head, whilst a happy bird disappears into the horizon. 

In-coming squid thief!

In-coming squid thief!

Starfish Point, was, as usual, stunning. Our excursions guests relaxed and pondered the Sea Stars and breathed in the fresh tropical air. 1st Mate Dwayne and a guest enjoyed a touch of American football during the stop - definitely working up the appetite for pizza!

Cayman vacation - relaxing, exploring and having fun!

Cayman vacation - relaxing, exploring and having fun!

The stingrays were an eager bunch at the Sandbar, ready to share the love (and the squid!). We call squid Stingray Popcorn - they can't stop eating it!

What a smile - what a moment! Cradling a stingray at  Stingray City  in Grand Cayman

What a smile - what a moment! Cradling a stingray at Stingray City in Grand Cayman

The second tour of the day was a private chartered tour for a lovely group enjoying their holiday at the Castle in East End. Private tours are definitely the best way to visit these attractions, and are surprisingly affordable if you are a group. These excursions are a fantastic way to celebrate a destination wedding or another special occasion! 

Our private tour guests enjoying their visit to Stingray City Sandbar, Grand Cayman

Our private tour guests enjoying their visit to Stingray City Sandbar, Grand Cayman

And of course, to round the day off ....... a splendid Caribbean sunset watched in awe from Starfish Point, before setting off to drop our guests back at the Kaibo Yacht Club. Another gorgeous and memorable day in paradise!

Grand Cayman sunset from Starfish Point

Grand Cayman sunset from Starfish Point