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December 5, 2009

Grand Time in Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman was our first port of call on our cruise. After a day and a half at sea, it was nice to be able to get off the ship and stretch our legs a little. Because we were unable to dock right up close, we had to use the tendering service instead of walking off the ship. Tendering is a way of getting from the ship to the land in smaller boats, similar in size to life boats or catamarans. It was not a long tendering ride from the ship to the dock; maybe 10 minutes or so.  We pulled into the dock and were helped off by very kind and organized crew members.  We walked through the security gates and into the bustling streets of Grand Cayman.

Colorful stores and upbeat music greeted us as we strolled through the streets, popping into shops here and there. We had a chance to taste some excellent Tortuga rum cake – chocolate flavour, my favourite! – and visited one clothing store that had two giant parrots in cages on the balcony. Another store had three large iguanas, which were sunning themselves contentedly and didn’t seem to notice the crowds of people oohing and aahing over them.

We had hoped the shopping would be good in Grand Cayman, but to our dismay, we didn’t find the prices we had been hoping for. We had heard from a few different people that the shopping in Grand Cayman wasn’t as good as in Cozumel, but we had also heard that some of the stores (particularly the jewelery, sunglasses and liquor stores) offered great deals to shoppers who were affiliated with a cruise line. While we did encounter some reduced prices for cruisers, we didn’t find any prices that were as great as we’d hoped, so we didn’t end up doing very much shopping in Grand Cayman. I bought one bottle of perfume that we can’t get here in Canada, and it was at a reduced priced, so that was a good deal.  Without a lot of good deals to check out, we left Grand Cayman and went back to the ship. The weather had been beautiful, we had enjoyed our walk through the streets. The only downside had been the slightly elevated prices in the shopping. With Cozumel coming the next day, we hoped we would be able to find some better deals.

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