Stingray city and Rumpoint

Grand Cayman Travel Blog

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Our cruiseship

There was only one stop before Roatan, where we'd be disembarking, and that was Grand Cayman.  I had lived in Cayman 10 years before, so I was kind of interested to see it again.  It hadn't been one of my favourite places that I've been: too flat and overdeveloped for my taste, and there was such a segregation between the expats living there and the Caymanians, whichI really didn't like.  But it did have some beautiful beaches, and the stingrays are pretty cool.  We wanted to book an excursion in advance, since there's such a limited time in port, and with two boys in tow, we figured that would be easiest.  So we decided we'd do the Stingray City and Rumpoint excursion- Rumpoint was the spot that I had worked when I was there.

Stingray city with the boys
  And I thought the boys might like getting in the water with the stingrays, it's only waistdeep water, so it would be easy enough to hold them. 

Getting off the ship was a bit of a lengthly affair- first a briefing about it, then lining up for the tenders.  Once we were on the dock, we found our tour, and waited for the rest of their guests to arrive.  I wish I had known it would be a good 40 min or so before we left, as Georgetown is right there, we could have looked around a bit to see what had changed.  Anyway, from there, we got on a bus, and over to the dock where the boat for the stingrays was.  The boys were so excited!  We went up top to the wheelhouse and talked with the captain for a bit, he let Deo and Auri have a turn at the wheel.

Arrived at the stingrays, and hopped in, Carley helped pass the boys down to me, and then she got in.  Stingray city is in the middle of north sound, a sandbar that's only about 3 feet deep at it's shallowest point, and then gradually deepens so that you can visit it as a dive too.  The fishermen used to come in to this sheltered area inside the reef to clean their catch, and that started attracting all of the stingrays.  Soon someone came up with the brillant idea of feeding them as a tourist gimmick.  Despite their name, stingrays are pretty safe, unless you step on them (they have a barb mid-way down their tail: they usually bury themselves in the sand, when someone walks in off the beach, if they step on one, then their tail whips up, and the barb goes in-ouch!).

  They have super-soft, smooth undersides, and a rough, sandpapery feel to their tops.  Their mouths are on their underside: they suck the food up, and then have grinding plates.  So they can't bite you, but they can give you a kind of painful 'stingray hickey' (if they happen to suck on your arm instead of a piece of squid that all the boats take out to feed them).  There are dozens of stingrays of various sizes at the site, and they'll come right up to you.  Deo didn't like it, and Carley wasn't too sure of it, but Auri and I had fun!

Then we got back on the boat to head for Rumpoint.  It's owned by the Hyatt: there's a beach,  a giftshop, bar/restaurant, and Red Sail Sports, which rents out beach toys (waverunners, sunkats etc), and goes out on dives- that's where I had worked.

Formal night
  And there's a dock, which was where I thought our boat was heading.

Apparently not!  Rated in the list of excursions as being childfriendly, there was no mention that we'd be anchoring 200metres out in chest deep water, and be expected to wade in holding our beachstuff over our heads.  So glad Carley was along!!  None of the staff offered to take anything: I had a boy on each hip, and Carley carted our gear.  I rewarded her with an insanely priced Mudslide :)

The boys had a great time playing in the sand, while Carley and I sat on loungers, enjoying the sun, and our frosty, Baileys goodness.  We spent probably about an hour there, and then repeated the wade out to the boat.  Boat back to the other side (the island is kind of U-shape, with rumpoint being at one tip, and Georgetown being midway down the otherside), and bus back to the dock, tender back out to the ship.

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Our cruiseship
Our cruiseship
Stingray city with the boys
Stingray city with the boys
Formal night
Formal night
Kiddy pool on the ship: finally a …
Kiddy pool on the ship: finally a…
stingray
stingray
Rumpoint
Rumpoint
Carley with her mudslide
Carley with her mudslide