Choosing accomodations on Grand Cayman

Aug 28th, 2004, 11:04 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
Choosing accomodations on Grand Cayman

I will be a first-time visitor to Grand Cayman in early December, and need advice on where to stay. I know for certain that I will need a moderately-priced (less than $250.00/night) condo, as I will be preparing all meals "at home" to save money. Other needs:
* Quiet area, with sandy, shallow beach. I won't be diving (can't swim!), and only snorkeling if the water doesn't go over my chest, so a rocky, sea-grassy beach with deep drop-offs wouldn't be good. Perhaps north of Hotel Row on Seven Mile, or the East End? Also, I am travelling solo, so any concessions to children's activities, partying, etc., don't have to be considered. I just want a quiet place where I can walk the beach, wade in a little, maybe put on a mask and stick my face in the water, and preferably somewhere that provides transportation to the Sand Bar at Stingray City. Which leads to the next question...
* Since the only things I plan on doing are going to the grocery store once, and taking a half-day trip to Stingray City, I hate to rent a car. Provided there's a condo that meets the above requirements for beach & transportation to SC, would this wonderful complex also be within walking distance to a grocery store? Or even on the public bus route?
* This one really shows my ignorance of the Island---are any of the beaches good for shelling? Is it illegal to take home things found on the beach, like coral, providing it's not alive?
Thank you so much for any suggestions and advice.
Reanne is offline  
Aug 28th, 2004, 07:15 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 134
Snorkel operaters will pick you up and return you to your condo/hotel so you don't need a car for that. You might check out caymanvacations.com for condos and their locations. Public buses run along 7 Mile Beach Road and taxis are plentiful.
joanie433 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 04:02 AM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
Good to know about the snorkel operators picking up at your condo. I do have the map from caymanvacations.com that lists the condos, but trouble is, there's no description of the beach on the map, and the individual condos described on the Web site only rate the beach location for each condo as "Excellent", "Good", etc. No mention made of if it's rocky, weedy, shallow... I guess that's the kind of information only provided by Fodorites who have been there! From what I have researched, it sounds like just about anywhere on 7 Mile would have a good beach, with the exception of maybe a few areas farther North, and heading into West Bay; I haven't found much about beach conditions on the East End, but it sounds like it might tend to be more on the rocky side over there.
Also, the map on caymanvacations.com only lists Kirk's and Hurley's supermarkets. Isn't there a Foster's somewhere?
I appreciate your tips...thank you!
Reanne is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 04:44 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 134
Beach conditions along 7 Mile are usually quite good. There is no grass and the slope is generally gradual unless a storm has changed it. AT some places,there may be bit of coral as you get into the water, but not enough to cause a problem. If your map shows Coralstone condos, there is a Fosters about a block to the south of there. Beaches on the east side, I believe, tend to have turtle grass.
joanie433 is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 06:13 AM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
Thank you so much! That helps a great deal. I will probably select someplace North of the Westin. Hopefully that will give me a somewhat more secluded location with the type of beach conditions I am looking for. Plus I can take the bus to the grocery store.
Reanne is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 06:59 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Reanne,

From what you've described, Seven Mile beach is probably your best bet. AS far as the beach conditions go, the middle section seems to have the nicest entry into the water. The southern & northern ends do have some erosion problems, and a few rocky areas to contend with. Most areas the slope is somewhat gentle. If you are thinking just north of the Westin, I think you have made a wise choice. Something to keep in mind about snorkeling: Although you may not be able to swim well, you will be very bouyant in the salt water down there. You also have an option of getting a flotation vest so your snorkeling options will be expanded. The public bus system aren't really busses, but mini-vans that cruise up & down the strip. They will have a small yellow or green sticker on the front of trhe vehicle, and they usually honk when they see you walking, and you just wave them down for a ride. Hope some of this helps....
ScottB is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 07:12 AM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
ScottB,

Glad you told me about the "bus" system! Quite a bit more casual than here in the States...I could see myself walking along, only to have a honking van pull up alongside me...

Would you happen to know how the shelling is along 7 Mile? I'm guessing it's pretty non-existant, what with the abundance of reefs around the island.
Reanne is offline  
Aug 29th, 2004, 09:33 AM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Reanne,
I don't think you'll find too much in the way of shells on 7MB. You'll see some pieces of coral, but hardly any shells that I can remember. Not sure if Grand Cayman frowns upon taking anything off the beach.
ScottB is offline  
Aug 30th, 2004, 02:33 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 75
If you are looking for privacy and economy, we usually stay at a small private villa on the north side. It's a gorgeous beachfront place, with TV, radio, games, books, etc, anything you can think of. Not sure about availability, but it's www.maidenplum.com The beach is private, lovely, and shallow, with a protected reef. The cost is about 175-225/night. It's within walking distance to Rum Point, where you can catch a boat to Stingray City. There's a also a beachside bar and supermarket about a mile down the road. With this villa, it's really advisable to get a car, but if you're looking for privacy this is it.
townclose is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 12:35 PM
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
I did look at the Maiden Plum website, but decided to go with Victoria House. It looks far enough north of the main drag to provide some personal space, and it's on the public transportation route. Plus it was within my somewhat meager budget. Next time, though, I think I will look into renting a private cottage or villa.
Reanne is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 04:26 PM
  #11  
NM
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 114
We were just in GC and Victoria House looked very nice (we stayed at London House). We like that end of 7-mile because it is quiet and the beach is great. Have a wonderful trip. If you just sit in the water or float, the sea turtles will quietly swim by you. It is worth the trip!
NM is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 06:50 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 5
We just returned from a week in GC and stayed at the Beachcomber condos. We paid $275 a night but this time of year they run a special for stay 6 nights, get one night free. It was a beautiful location! There was a grocery store, pharmacy, restuarants, car rental, dive shop as well as other shops right across the street! We would definitely stay there again. The beach was excellent and the condo was great and furnished with absolutely everything we needed! Have a great time wherever you decided to stay!
jebridan is offline  
Aug 31st, 2004, 11:32 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
NM---just sitting in the water or floating is right up my alley! Thanks for the good wishes. I wonder if you can feed the sea turtles?...

jebridan---I looked at the Beachcomber's Web site and their condos did look nice, but...had to go for something a little less. That part of 7MB is supposed to be the best, but I have heard lots of nice things about the beach around Victoria House. I'm sure I will be very pleased. Can't wait!
Reanne is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 12:37 AM
  #14  
pnestor
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Reanne -

It is very much frowned upon to take ANYTHING flora or fauna - shells, coral!! Many of the areas (possibly not seven mile beach), are marine/nature reserve type areas. I taught in Grand Cayman for 2 years and when the kids were doing their water safety/diving courses, the government rep who came to the school really pushed the point home about look but don't touch and talk about NOT taking or disturbing anything while diving/swimming!

P
 
Sep 1st, 2004, 03:47 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 323
Reanne,
While you're there, make a visit to the National Museum and check out my mother's (Gene Stevens) shell collection she donated shortly before her death in 1995.
Sue
CaymanSue is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 07:59 AM
  #16  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
pnestor---No, I would never take live marine life (or any other living thing) from the area; I was just referring to things that might wash up on the shore. Sanibel Island, off the West coast of Florida, is the same way; it's a protected environment and it's illegal to take live shells, etc., but it's acceptable to take unoccupied shells. But it sounds like there isn't much that washes up on GC's shores except some bits of coral.

CaymanSue---I would love to take a look at your mother's shell collection, as I am an avid shell collector myself! Thanks for the suggestion.
Reanne is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 09:30 AM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 1,373
Hi Reanne. Another option for you might be Plantana...it's situated on cenrtal-north 7MB and has a wonderful beach. Also in off season (til mid Dec) you can stay for 7 nights but pay for only 5. If you get a non-oceanfront room, it would be quite reasonable.

Kristen1206 is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 11:11 AM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 9
Kristen1206---Plantana was my first choice, but I'm going to be on GC for less than a week, so it was cheaper for me to get an oceanfront condo at Victoria House. Next time I will have a hard decision to make between the Plantana or a rental cottage!
Reanne is offline  
Sep 1st, 2004, 01:05 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 459
GC is such a great island, I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time wherever you stay.

There is restaurant call Eats, that has great breakfasts and is reasonably priced.
meta is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
bridetobe2011
Caribbean Islands
13
Feb 22nd, 2014 03:55 PM
shamrock5
Caribbean Islands
4
Jun 1st, 2006 07:02 PM
cagmo
Caribbean Islands
6
Apr 2nd, 2004 08:24 AM
Jackie
Caribbean Islands
6
Jul 9th, 2002 10:52 AM
Robert
Caribbean Islands
4
Dec 26th, 2000 01:31 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:54 AM.