Disney Cruise – Grand Cayman

What to Know When Your Cruise Ship Stops in Grand Cayman

The day of a shore excursion is an exciting one! What will see? What will you do? These days usually start early so you don’t miss a thing.

Lots of cruise ships stop for a port of call on the Mexican island of Cozumel and Disney is one of them! The Disney Magic, The Disney Fantasy, and Disney Wonder all have itineraries that take them to Cozumel.

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Arriving in Port

Arriving in port is very exciting! This is a day for exploring. First, set the alarm early so you have time to eat breakfast, gather your things for the day AND get down to the lower level for debarking. (Yes, debark is a real word.)

The large cruise ships can not ‘park’ right next to the land because the water isn’t deep enough. So, you’ll pass from the cruise ship onto a small boat called a tender. You walk from the ship on a bridge with side rails. There is no problem crossing this bridge with strollers. The small tender then takes you about 5 minutes up to a dock. You step easily from the small tender onto the dock. Crew will help you with little ones and strollers.

If you have scheduled an excursion through Disney you’ll head for the meet up area. There you’ll receive a sticker to wear that matches a little sign your leader holds up. This is how Disney keeps things organized with lots and lots of people leaving the ship at the same time. Then, you just follow the leader to meet with your excursion group.

Remember your Key to the World AND a photo ID.  You only need the key to the world to get off the ship but you need BOTH to get back on the ship when you return. I asked what would happen if you forgot the photo ID and was told that security would to escort you back to your stateroom to get it.

Our group met in the lounge and were given Snow White stickers to wear.

boy and girl at port off of a cruise ship

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Shore Excursions

2 Tank Dive Tour

4×4 Jeep Adventure with Boat House Launch

Adventure to the Stingray City Sandbar

Amphibious Bus Land and Sea Adventure

Atlantis Submarine Expedition

Catamaran, Reef and Kittiwake Snorkel Sail

Cayman Bicycle Adventure

Cayman Dolphin Encounter

Cayman Dolphin Extreme Swim

Cayman Dolphin Observer

Deluxe Stingray City Sandbar Snorkel

Discover Encounter and Stingray City

Dolphin Observer and Stingray City

Dolphin Swim and Stingray City

Family Beach Day at Tiki Beach

Glass – Bottom Cruise and Snorkel

Kayak and 2 Stop Snorkel

Nautilus Undersea Tour

North Sound Mangrove Cruise and Star Fish Point

Private Boat, Snorkel and Family Adventure

Rum Point Beach Adventure and Stingray City Snorkel

Rum Point Beach Adventure

Sea Trek Helmet Dive

SeaWorld Observatory Semi-Submarine

Shipwreck and Reef Snorkeling

Shipwreck and Snuba

Stingray City Reef Sail and Snorkel

White House Beach Getaway

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Need Help Choosing the Right Cruise Excursion?

The choices can seem overwhelming! (There are 30 excursion choices for this port of call!)  If you need FREE help with any portions of your cruise let us know. The Educational Tourist has teamed up with Disney expert travel planner, the Pixie Dust Queen. The Pixie Dust Queen plans all things Disney FREE of charge. 

Laura Baustian, PIxie Dust Queen wearing a crown

Worried about animal experiences after hearing negative things in the press? Not ALL animal experiences are bad…

Read about how to tell if an animal experience for your family is good or bad for the animal – here.

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – A Little About Grand Cayman

Money –

Grand Cayman is the largest island of the Cayman islands. This British Overseas Territory (Queen Elizabeth is the Queen here, too.) is a tax haven for the wealthy. They have NEVER had any income tax, capital gains tax, estate tax, death inheritance or wealth tax. Can you believe that?

Why doesn’t the country of Cayman Islands have these taxes? Well, the tax story goes like this..

“Legend has it that King George III rewarded the island with a promise never to introduce taxes as compensation for their generosity, as one of the ships carried a member of the King’s own family.”

This is a really fun legend, but….it isn’t true. No matter the reason for the lack of taxes, people like it! There are more registered businesses here than people! Why? There are NO taxes on corporate profits, capital gains or personal income.

Water –

In spite of literally being surrounded by water, there is no source of fresh water for drinking on the islands. What do they do? Back in the day, the locals collected rain water. Now, there is a desalination plant on Grand Cayman which takes the salt out of water to produce drinking water.

Zika – 

The Centers for Disease Control has no travel health warnings for Grand Cayman as of August 22, 2017.

Check the latest for CURRENT health warnings here before your trip.

As of August 22, 2017 – Grand Cayman is NOT on the list of places with Zika concerns.

Please Check this list for CURRENT health warnings here before your trip.

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Interesting Wildlife

The name Cayman comes from the native Carib word ‘caiman’ which means crocodile.

National symbol is the green sea turtle.

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Flowers and Trees

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Food and Drink

Disney Cruise – Tips for Grand Cayman – Beaches –

The Seven Mile Beach is known as one of the most beautiful beaches in all of the Caribbean.

Odd thought….What is it about a beach that is seven miles long? There is a Seven Mile Beach on Jamaica, too.

It all started with a mouse!

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Since 1928 when Walt Disney created the world’s famous mouse, kids and kids at heart have expected nothing but THE very best from Disney!

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Disney has four cruise ships and each has a godmother. (Well, of course they do, right?) Disney Fantasy, which travels to the Eastern and Western Caribbean, is looked after by godmother Mariah Carey. She christened the ship in 2012 with the blessing, “May God bless this ship and all who sail on it.”

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The Disney Fantasy visits Grand Cayman!

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Grand Cayman is named after the crocodile (caiman in Carib),

Unknown-8but when Christopher Columbus first arrived, he called it Las Tortugas (turtles in Spanish) because there were so many!

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What to do when you visit?

See the sea turtles, of course! 

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Cayman Island Turtle farm is home to 16,000 green sea turtle at any given time. The turtles were once naturally plentiful, so much so that pirate and private ships often came here just to get fresh meat for their crews, but now are helped along by this farm.

At the farm you can:

*Pet and hold the sea turtles!

*Watch Smiley, the 9 ft crocodile, perform.

*View sharks and loggerhead turtles.

*Visit the aviary – get in with the birds.

*SWIM and snorkel with the turtles.

*Eat (grownups can taste the island’s own beer!)

*Visit Butterfly Central to see the Great Southern White butterfly.

Soak up the sun at Seven Mile Beach

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One of the most famous beaches in the world is Seven Mile Beach ….which is only 5  1/2 – 6 miles long thanks to the erosion of Hurricane Ivan.

Pick a spot to roast in the sun and relax, or try your hand at parasailing or snorkeling.

Get wet at Stingray City

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Wade in and pet the stingrays here on a sandbar.

***I have to admit this sounded really awesome until I googled…injuries….uh, no thank you.

Here you can actually go to Hell.

I think there are just 2 things here…the black limestone formations….

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and the gift shop.

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You can mail a letter to receive a postmark from Hell. A conversation piece, for sure!

Wherever YOU travel, The Educational Tourist can give you tips and information you need to make your holiday the family trip of a lifetime!

Ebooks

to keep kids engaged and enthralled (and serve as Cliff Notes for the grown up kids!) Shop here.

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Custom Travel Planning

from just a little to the entire kit and caboodle. Book now!

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Happy travels,

Natalie, The Educational Tourist

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13 Responses

  1. I want to go!! This place looks amazing. My son is a huge fan of Disney already and he loves animals. I think this place could be a winner!

  2. I’ve read a lot about Seven Mile Beach, I am so intrigued. That would definitely be in my itinerary if I were to visit the Grand Cayman. Checking out the sea turtles look like so much fun as well!

  3. yukti says:

    It must be fun for children. I have been to Disneyland and my children enjoyed it. So I can think of this for my younger boy as elder boy is big enough to enjoy this. Will surely do it for my younger one.

  4. Wow,what a beach! It is interesting hearing how places Las Tortugas got their name, but I wonder why it was named Hell? Anytime the name Disney is attached to something, you know it is going to be first class.

  5. Oh Disney do everything so well, that I can imagine a cruise to be just as magical as a day in the parks – and even more immersive! I haven’t been to the Caribbean, but a cruise there would be amazing – only made better by visiting the turtles. Such beautiful creatures!

    • NatalieTanner says:

      You are so right about that! Disney does everything wonderfully! The cruise was fun and the cruise ship was so clean. It really is the perfect cruise.

  6. I have visited Grand Cayman via Norwegian Cruise Line. It was like a paradise. I loved the weather a lot. However, I did not know about this Turtle Farm. I like to experience swimming with the marine animals. I also googled stingray. The first thing that came up was about injuries. Yikes! I still want to visit the Turtle Farm someday.

  7. asoulwindow says:

    16,000 sea turtles? Wow. Though I would like to see them from a distance and not pet them. Disney had been a childhood dream. I might have outgrown the dream but after reading your blog I am interested in visiting it.

  8. onlybyland says:

    It’s my dream to take my daughter on a Disney Cruise. I never really thought about the cruise ports and what to do there. Grand Cayman has plenty to do, she’d love the petting the sea turtles and the stingrays although I’d imagine she’d be scared at first!

    • NatalieTanner says:

      Disney is a fantastic destination for families. They put on a show like none other and the cruise ship was SO clean! They even handed out wipes as you entered the dining room.

  9. Reshma says:

    I so want to visit Disney World! Well, never too old for Disney, right? 🙂 I’m surprised to know it’s named after a crocodile! Loved the virtual cruise!

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