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-   -   Grand Cayman vs Aruba (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/grand-cayman-vs-aruba-196865/)

Susan Apr 10th, 2002 04:50 AM

Grand Cayman vs Aruba
 
My husband and I have been to Aruba 3 times and are looking for a new destination. Any thoughts on a comparison between the two islands. I've read alot that people think Grand Cayman is very Americanized, but also Aruba people say is Americanized.<BR><BR>I feel that Aruba is very tropical around the resorts and are very satisfied with it, but want to try something new.<BR><BR>My question is, does Grand Cayman have this same feel or is it even more Americanized than Aruba?

anon Apr 10th, 2002 06:05 AM

The tropical feel around the resorts is called LANDSCAPING and they have paid a pretty penny for you to get that tropical feeling.<BR><BR>GC has better snorkeling than Aruba, it is very Americanized, very safe, nice beach,nice people, nice landscaping. LOL<BR><BR>I haven't been to Aruba for several years, but have been to GC recently and I feel like I'm still at home when I go there. No feeling of newness or foreign flavor. It's very nice there, don't get me wrong and people don't jump on my back, but if you want that "island feeling" I'd go somewhere else.<BR><BR>Any more I try to hit the islands that the cruise ships don't because the industry has become so huge that it makes it unpleasantly crowded for those staying on islands rather than day tripping. I go to the islands to get away from crowds and traffic, not get into more than I would at home.

Tom Apr 10th, 2002 06:06 AM

I've been to both, and definitely prefer Grand Cayman. They do have their differences. Although Aruba's beaches are nice and wide, I think Seven Mile Beach was much nicer. The biggest factor for us was the snorkeling. Aruba isn't in the same league. The water along Seven Mile Beach is 15 diffrent shades of turquoise, and gin clear. The snorkeling & diving in GC is world class, and although you can do the same in Aruba, it simply doesn't compare. <BR><BR>They are both very americanized. You will find the fast food chains in both. As far as restaurants go, although we enjoyed many meals in Aruba, again, we felt GC's restaurants are better. If you want to get away from the more built up areas, you can easily stay on the north end on 7MB to find solitude. I guess that all depends on your preferences. We felt the best thing to do for accomodations in GC is to get a condo. This saved us a few bucks as we ate most breakfasts & lunches in, and had dinner out. I'd have to say that GC seemed more expensive overall for sure.<BR><BR>One thing that Aruba has over GC is nightlife. There are no casinos in GC. Yes there are few beach bars with live music, but it's definitely a lot more tame. So if nightlife is a big factor, Aruba wins. We are in our mid-30's, and although we like to go out a few times and have fun, We found the limited nightlife in GC just fine. Like I said before, there are a few spots to go dance outside, listen to local bands, and have a great time. <BR><BR>As far as scenery goes, Aruba has some decent spots, but for the most part, is just a desert-like island. GC is very flat, and although not a tropical jungle, definitelt greener than Aruba. I'd say neither are site seeing paradises. Keep in mind than we thought the coastlines on GC are much prettier than Aruba.<BR><BR>I'd guess that if you liked Aruba, you will love Grand Cayman. Just do your homework, and pick the right resort or condo, and you'll be fine!! Hope this helps....just my honest comparison of the two.

Susan Apr 10th, 2002 07:03 AM

Thanks guys!! I appreciate your help!!<BR><BR>Susan

frank Apr 10th, 2002 07:13 AM

I think that you will love Grand Cayman. You will find some of the same Americanized feeling that you get on Aruba but not the same Miami-beach appeal that most people love in Aruba. Grand Cayman is definitely more upscale and classy than Aruba and you don't have to deal with the winds. Snorkling is much much better on GC and the natives are lovely and genuinely friendly unlike Aruba. You might want to look at some of the other out islands to get a feel for the Caribbean however rather than just outposts of American resorts.

Luisa Apr 13th, 2002 11:11 AM

Hello,<BR>I've also been to both and enjoyed GC much better. When we went to Aruba it was quite a few years ago and seems very quiet for nightlife. The beach was also very windy and the sand whipping you made it very uncomfortable. We spent most of our vacation near the pool due to that fact. Is it always windy there? GC was perfect, the beach was amazing. As much as I love the islands I do appreciate alittle americanization. I don't remember any franchises in GC. There was a Blockbuster but that was very convenient for renting movies at night. I remember the beach was beautiful in Aruba like a postcard. But we never could enjoy it because of the wind. I pick GC overall. Why don't u try Barbados or St.Barts. Jamaica would be very island feeling....just some thoughts.


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