Grand Cayman or Aruba

Old Oct 1st, 2005, 09:53 AM
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We've been to both and we prefer Grand Cayman hands down.
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Old Oct 19th, 2005, 04:15 AM
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We were in GC in 1994 and 2003. In 1994, we stayed at the Radisson - now the Marriott. In 2003, we stayed at the Holiday Inn, now the Courtyard Marriott. Our first trip to Aruba was in 2004, and we stayed at the Marriott on the beach. We utilize hotel points.
We had no complaints about any of the properties.

While our trip to Aruba was nice, we doubt we'll return. It was more crowded than GC, even in early June. While most will say GC is Americanized, we found Aruba to be even more so. It's also very arid and not quite as scenic as GC, in our opinion. Plenty of restaurants to choose from, and one in particular has the only master chef in the Caribbean. The food was wonderful. The other restaurants we went to on Aruba were just OK but perhaps we didn't choose well. I thought the water was somewhat "cold" for the Caribbean, at least when we were there. We were not fond of the tradewinds, which made dining outside at night unpleasant. I was constantly wedging a napkin between my thighs. Sometimes on the beach you'd get hit with a spray of sand. If you're into snorkeling, this is not the island to visit. All that being said, there is nothing "wrong" with Aruba; it just was not our cup of tea.

We so enjoy the restaurants on GC and the overall feel of the island. Not to mention it is one of the quickest islands to get to. We did the Stingray City trip both times and the second time was even better than the first, with the cheapest Stingray City trip on the island proving to be the best trip. It's hard to say exactly why we like GC so well, but we just do. Of course, the snorkeling is wonderful!

I'm so glad to hear the Marriott has more beach back. When we stopped by to see it our last time on GC, it was barely big enough for a lounge chair. I think we'll try staying there this next time since we noticed it is much nicer (at least the lobby is) since it was the Radisson.
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Old Oct 19th, 2005, 10:27 AM
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waggie, the beach at the Marriott comes and goes... and most recently it has mostly gone again... the hotel looks gorgeous, they spent $15m remodelling this year, but the beach is only enough for (as of two weeks ago) about 50 chairs at most... for a 300 room hotel.
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Old Dec 25th, 2005, 06:58 AM
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We have visited Aruba twice and will defintely return. We recommend the Bucuti on Eagle Beach. Palm beach is too crowded and commercial. We will be visiting GC in March for the first time. Have reservations at the Reef. From what we've read it sounds like the place for us. Also recommend Poipu beach in Kauai.
Cheers to beers
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Old Jan 10th, 2006, 12:19 PM
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Wow...I love both those islands. If I had to pick...

I would say Grand Cayman. I don't know post-Ivan but it was such a beautiful beach and the snorkeling was incredible. The food and service fantastic and weather perfect. Aruba is my second favorite and I'd happily return there also. Aruba had more of an excitement to it [festivals, night life, etc.] if that's what you like.

Toss a coin, you'll be so happy with either choice!

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Old Jan 10th, 2006, 01:09 PM
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I have been to both islands fairly recently. Grand Cayman is more expensive, but also more beautiful in terms of lush greenery and flowers. True, the interior is arid and flat on both, but there is much more greenery around the exterior of Cayman. Aruba weather was nicer as there was a constant breeze and the people were more openly friendly. Caymans are friendly, but much more reserved in comparison. The snorkeling was way better on Cayman. There wasn't much nightlife on either island, however Aruba has tons o'casinos. I felt the better value was Aruba in terms of money, but I really liked Grand Cayman. I felt instantly comfortable there-even traveling alone. Aruba I felt more like a tourist. Shopping for high end items like jewelry-Cayman wins hands down. Shopping in general is a toss up for me. Cayman has the cruise-ship crowds, but also has Stingray City. Aruba not so much cruise ships, but not much to really see. Beaches at both were great, if all you want to do is get a tan, swim or do water sports.
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Old Jan 14th, 2006, 08:31 AM
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WE have been looking to find the sun enjoy some snorkeling, and find a quiet romantic get-away. I am thinking of Grand Cayman Island. Does everyone think it will fit the bill for a March 2006 trip? Any advice about a hotel that was good? And, do you like it better than any of the other Islands?

Thanks in advance!
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Old Jan 15th, 2006, 06:07 PM
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Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts may want to post your question as a separate thread instead of reply to another post. having said that, I think Grand Cayman would be great for what you are looking for. try reviewing or posting specically under Grand Cayman in this forum too.
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Old Jan 16th, 2006, 12:28 PM
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We just went to GC recently, and have been to Aruba. I think the deals are better for trips to Aruba - we used MCM Tours travel agency when we went, and they were wonderful ( -- our trip included breakfast and food/bev credit.

GC had the most beautiful water I have ever seen in my life, and I would definitely return. Actually, I would return to either of them.

Aruba was not as lush (green) as GC, but when we went our main goal was to relax and hit the beach and we didn't care that the island was like a desert beyond the resorts. It was interesting to take photographs of my husband standing next to a giant cactus and the ocean in the background...

Aruba has more trade winds, but they keep you cool in the heat.

Enjoy your vacation - either way I am sure you will have a wonderful time!
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