An overview of two different excursions to Stingray City Grand Cayman, a fun trip to a shallow sandbar where you can see stingrays.
Disclosure: At least some of this trip was either comped or provided at a media rate. Post may contain affiliate links. All opinions are our own.
If you are considering a trip to Grand Cayman, you’ve probably heard about Stingray City Grand Cayman, a series of sandbars that attracts stingrays into its waist-high waters. While admission to Stingray City is completely free, you will need a way to get there. Visitors arrive from a variety of different ways – tour boats, private boats, and jet skis. We’ve been twice – on a press trip to Grand Cayman we took a tour boat from Captain Melvin’s, which is located right across the street from the Westin (where we stayed), and on our Jetblue Getaway trip, we booked an excursion at the Westin Grand Cayman.
Stingray City Grand Cayman
Captain Melvin’s Stingray City
After waiting a little while for some additional passengers (all of whom were cruise ship passengers in port for the day), we headed out on the boat. About 25 minutes later, we were parked at Stingray City, which was already crowded with numerous tourists from other boats. Our crew gave us a brief overview of how to handle the stingrays, and then we all headed off the boat.
My 7-year old daughter was a little nervous to enter the waters, but she braved it. The stingray handler had us all get in a circle around us, and he showed us how to hold the stingrays. They also provided the braver members of our group with some squid to feed the stingrays. Because legend has it that you’ll get 7 years of good luck if you kiss a stingray, many of us lined up for a chance. My daughter was a little too scared to kiss the stingray, but I was willing to brave it for a chance at good luck.
After we returned to the boat, we drove a slight distance away to a snorkeling site. We were provided with flippers, snorkels, and life vests (if we wanted them), and we jumped off the ship to snorkel. The waters were pretty choppy, but my daughter and I were still able to see lots of fish.
At the end of the trip, shuttle buses were available to take us back – some to the hotel, some to the cruise ship, and some to another excursion.
Westin Grand Cayman Excursion
Our second trip to Stingray City was similar. However, because it was on a Sunday, Stingray City seemed to be much quieter. It appeared that there were no cruise ships in port that day. Our journey included a trip to Stingray City, followed by an afternoon at Rum Point (one of my favorite places on Earth).
Like the first excursion, this boat had a photographer who took pictures. I recommend bringing along some cash, because some of these vendors don’t accept credit cards.
Have you been to Stingray City Grand Cayman?
Get Our 7 Travel Tips
Subscribe to get 7 essential family travel tips and our weekly newsletter filled with tips, tricks, and info for family travelers.