A Family Getaway to Paradise: Fun Things to Do In the Cayman Islands

The ultimate family getaway to the Carribean Island

By Kathy E., publisher of Macaroni KID Walnut, Rowland Heights, Brea, La Habra, Calif. January 24, 2023

After visiting the Cayman Islands, I am convinced this Caribbean paradise is one of the best family vacation destinations in the world. I have never vacationed in any of the Caribbean Islands before and hadn't really considered it a family destination until now! It turns out there is so much for families in the Cayman Islands, from "petting" stingrays to exploring caves. I am so pleased to share my insider tips with you so you can plan your own trip!

The Cayman Island Department of Tourism hosted our publisher for the purposes of this review. All thoughts and opinions are the author's own.

There is a long list of family-friendly must-do experiences in the Cayman Islands! There are crystal clear waters, year-round warm weather, sunny skies, and a wide variety of excursions to experience everything the Cayman Islands offers.

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

Getting to the Cayman Islands

The Cayman Islands announced an exciting new airlift option for West Coast travelers via the destination’s national flag carrier, Cayman Airways Ltd in November 2022. This is the only direct flight to the Cayman Islands, which serves West Coast travelers and operates nonstop service from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Owen Roberts International Airport (ORIA) in Grand Cayman. 

In just around 6 hours of flight time, your family can be at the Grand Cayman Island — a perfect, manageable flight time for families of all ages! Your tropical getaway is now closer than ever! As an added bonus, aboard Cayman Airways, you'll experience the generosity of Caymanian culture and adults will be served free Rum Punch aboard every flight, and you'll also receive a discount for the two checked bags on all international flights at a fixed rate of US $25 each.

The kind Caymanians, aka #CaymanKind, couldn’t be more hospitable.

About the Cayman Islands

Nestled in the Caribbean Sea, Grand Cayman is an impressive natural wonder. It is the largest and westernmost of the three Cayman Islands and is home to an expansive list of family activities, accommodations, and excursions. 

Grand Cayman is home to many of the Caribbean's most popular beaches, with snorkeling, scuba diving, and other water sports available. There is plenty to choose from based on your family’s needs and budget.

Seven Mile Beach

Named one of the best beaches in the Caribbean, Seven Mile Beach is among the many reasons why the Cayman Islands is considered the ultimate destination. Situated on the western side of Grand Cayman, the area attracts travelers from all over the world. The ocean is remarkably calm for young kids with white sandy beaches and shimmering crystal-clear waters. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

Where to stay on the Cayman Islands

Hampton by Hilton in Grand Cayman

If you are seeking a completely relaxing, family-friendly vacation in the most beautiful, tranquil, heartwarming soul of Grand Cayman Island, look no further than the Hampton by Hilton

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

Tucked in Seven Mile Beach, the hotel is a beautiful, chic-style hotel that I found incredibly family-friendly. The hotel amenities include a complimentary hot breakfast buffet, poolside snack after 4 p.m., fully equipped fitness room, sunburn relief station, complimentary bicycle rentals, GoPro underwater camera rental, and daily free shuttle service to any of the pristine public beaches and Camana Bay. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

The spacious guest rooms were immaculate, and a majority of the rooms included a kitchenette with microwave and mini-fridge, walk-in showers, and a dedicated seating area for working or relaxing. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

The Westin Grand Cayman

If a prime oceanfront resort is what you are looking for, The Westin Grand Cayman is an impressive scenic beachfront property that offers families an elevated #CaymanKind Island experience. 

The Westin Grand Cayman

Aiming to entertain guests of all ages, you’ll find an abundance of water activities for kids and a plethora of family wellness activities including mindfulness meditation, morning beach yoga, F45 workout classes, water aerobics, and a 24-hour workout studio. 

The Westin Grand Cayman

Pampering is a must at The Westin Grand Cayman! The resort’s exclusive Hibiscus Spa offers a truly restorative experience. Pamper yourself from head to toe with an extensive menu of spa treatments.

Westin Grand Cayman

I was delighted at how glowing my skin felt and looked after a signature facial, it completely cleared my complexion and breathed life back into my fatigued, stressed skin. I highly recommend a spa treatment at Hibiscus Spa. It offers the epitome of what a luxury spa treatment should be — you won’t be disappointed!

Family-friendly activities

Stingray City

This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience at Grand Cayman Island. Stingray City is one of the most popular attractions for visitors of all ages, offering half and full day tours. You’ll get up close and personal with a “city” of #CaymanKind southern stingrays that congregate along a series of sandbars 25 miles off the shore of Grand Cayman, living up to its name, Stingray City. 

Decades ago, fisherman use these sandbars, where the water is about 3 feet deep, to clean their catches of the day. Scraps were left in the water, so stingrays began to associate the sound of fishermen and boats with food. Over time this has turned into visitors swimming with the stingrays and hand feeding them.

The stingrays are gentle and welcoming. It makes for a very unique experience to glide, snorkel, and swim among these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat.

Starfish Point

We took a half-day tour with Five Star Charters that included a visit to Starfish Point. Starfish Point is an enchanting place where you can spot an abundance of starfish located in shallow, clear waters. You can actually hold the starfish in your hands just under the surface of the water, and marvel at their beauty, while being very careful not to bring them out of the water.

Five Star Charters

Cayman Turtle Centre

If you are as much as a sea turtle lover as I am, you won’t want to miss the award-winning Cayman Turtle Centre, the largest land-based tourist attraction where guests get to be up close with some of the most magnificent and ancient animals on earth. 

The Cayman Turtle Centre is the only facility in the world that offers a variety of unique, interactive experiences where you can view the green sea turtles at every stage of their life cycle, from egg to full-grown adult, all in one location. 

Visitors have the opportunity for a closer encounter with the turtles using a two-finger touch in their Breeding Area, a designated area specifically designed to allow female turtles to nest in a natural setting. 

Other points of interest include predator tanks and swimming or snorkeling in a saltwater lagoon filled with vibrant fish species and green sea turtles.

Cayman Turtle Centre

Cayman Crystal Caves

Beneath a lush tropical forest in Northside, Grand Cayman, Cayman Crystal Caves is one of the island’s newest adventures that await you. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

You'll experience a 90-minute guided walking tour where you will see a whole new world, otherwise known as “Cayman Down Under." You will see breathtaking caves filled with massive stalactite and stalagmite crystals, delicate hanging formations, and beautifully formed crystal structures. We found fascinating plant and animal life, many Strangler Balsam trees, air plants, and at one point during the tour we could see numerous bats flying overhead!

Suggestion: Wear comfortable attire for warm weather, walking shoes, and most importantly, apply mosquito repellent!

National Gallery of the Cayman Islands

The National Gallery of the Cayman Islands has an expansive collection of 70+ sculptures, paintings, and art collections from local Caymanian artists. They hold up to eight exhibitions a year and have a collection of permanent displays from the National Art Collection located on the second floor. 

The best thing is that admission is free. Visit their website as they have complimentary weekly structured artistic kids activities for all ages and abilities to enhance skills and expose them to local and international artists. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

Camana Bay

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

An eccentric, family-friendly place to spend the day and evening full of shopping and a vast array of dining options. Youngsters will love to splash around in the beautifully designed water fountains throughout this popular spot. It's the perfect place to watch the sun go down after your meal!

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

Where to Eat

The Cayman Islands is known for its impressive collection of diverse restaurants — it is the perfect place to encourage your mini-me to explore local and international cuisine. 

All of the restaurants I went to lived up to the #CaymanKind hospitality, each with an extensive dining menu that provided a delicious meal with a gorgeous waterfront view. 

Ferdinand's Restaurant at The Westin Grand Cayman

We dined at so many welcoming restaurants, from Thatch & Barrel, Woto, Grand Old House, Coccoloba, to Ms. Pipers, decorated with keepsakes of Ms. Piper’s travels, which inspire all of their dishes, cocktails, decor, and music. 

Cayman Islands Department of Tourism

Each restaurant has family-friendly dining and staff who will dish up your scrumptious meal with a smile. 

Cayman Island Department of Tourism

All of the dishes had plentiful portions, but be sure you leave room for dessert! Desserts are legendary in the Cayman Islands, especially the authentic Seven Fathoms Sundae served at Thatch & Barrel.

Woto Ceviche Sampler  

Grand Cayman Island is one of the few places I have been to that feels like the whole island is one big resort, from the Insta-worthy beaches, delectable food, plenty of family fun activities, and so many locals who live up to the hype known as #CaymanKind. 

I loved every minute I spent in the Cayman Islands. With the year-round mild temperatures, clear blue skies, warm crystal clear waters, and all the excursions and activities, everything at the Cayman Islands is amazing and just as wonderful and picturesque as it sounds.

The island is extremely kid-friendly, and all of the resorts go above and beyond to make sure the kids have as much fun as the parents. It’s a child’s paradise too with safe, calm waters and soft white sandy beaches.

I can't wait to return with my family and make memories with them in the Cayman Islands!

Special thanks to Cayman Island Department of Tourism for hosting my stay.  I very much appreciate how thoughtful, kind, and gracious your hosts were throughout my trip!