I used a fabulous limousine service as part of our wedding. The owner is George Smith and the service is Cayman Executive Limousine (www.caymanlimo.com). It was affordable, elegant and we had a blast!
We knew that our hotel was in walking distance of the local grocery store but we didn't know that there was construction on West Bay Road blocking sections of the sidewalk. It was difficult at times to cross the street unless the cars stopped to allow us to cross. There are no traffic lights on this side of Seven Mile Beach so you can imagine how congested the road can be after everyone seems to get off work at the same time. We went ahead and rented a mid-size vehicle (Suzuki Llana) from Andy's (near the airport.) Unlike other rental agencies, they do not include our pickup from your hotel as a charge. The rate was $108 for three days. They only charge for 24 hours so remember that when you rent from them.
There's very little public transportation, so your better off renting a car, moped, or motorcycle. The roads are safe and in good condition, just make sure your comfortable with driving on the left side of the road.
A rental car is a must, especially if you're staying on the east end of the island as we did. It's pricy (like everything else), but well worth it. We were there for a week, and had the opportunity to drive just about everywhere on the island. Doesn't take too long to get used to the left-hand side of the road. The roads outside of George Town are still pretty torn up from Hurricane Ivan, so go easy. There are speed limit signs, but no sign that anybody really paid any attention to them - I wound up getting passed a lot, and it seemed prudent to slow down, pull over to the left and let them pass. We got a little car, a Toyota Vitz, which served us well. Love to be able to find one here. Great gas mileage.
The best way to get around for those on a budget is the bus.
They are in fact mini-vans and don't really have designated stops (exept its departure point).
You can find the bus just behind the Library in George Town.
They are quite frequent, efficient, not expensive and a good solutions for those who stops on Grand Cayman during a cruise.
If you plan on staying longer, it may be a good idea to rent a car.
The local public buses leave from the library on Edward St. They are like VW buses and sit up to 10 people in a pinch. The cost runs up to $2-3 usd to go about Grand Cayman. They all have blue license plates to identify them by. It's a good deal if you don't mind loud reggae music. Tour buses, like the one shown, are also a good deal if you want a ride with explanation.
Mostly all the conviences are within walking distance to your hotel like the beach/pool, stores and restaurants. Anything too far to walk to will require taking a tour, cab, or bus. Also, renting a car, may be an option.
Our hotel was centrally located so we either walked everywhere or called for a cab. The cabs were reliable and clean, but expensive, however, everything in Caymans is expensive.
The bus is a very non-conventional van that drives up to the curb and stops at the driver's discretion. We used this method a few times, I was a bit nervous but we fell right along into the routine after the first or second time. You enter an old van and then get shuttled between various pick ups and drop offs of locals at different "bus stops". It was a bit weird, almost like being in a friend's car except that we were in a strangers car, it was not offial at all, like gypsy cabs. I wouldn't do this on my own, I was with my hubby so it was fine and also it was always during the day. I tell you we had some good times chatting and laughing with the locals.. I think it was something like $2 USD a per person and less for Cayman money. The drivers are very accepting of USD.
Tour buses are not really our thing so we didn't try this, but it must be a viable method of transportation to the sights.
Rental cars, one thing I regret is not getting a rental car at least for a day or two, there were some great restuarants that would have been nice to visit (about 30 minutes from where we were staying) that we just couldn't get to because of distance and cabs would have been way too much. I would recommend getting a rental car!!!!
One thing I learned is that having your own means of transporattion means alot and that is something we certainly always take for granted, not any more!
Well, taxi's get you further faster. But it's always fun being dropped off in a foreign place and exploring on foot!
I would recommend a taxi if you've only got a short time (ie arriving/departing via cruise ship), otherwise, you'll wear yourself out trying to see everything.
When on Grand Cayman without your own transportation, try the local bus....It's convenient, relatively timely, and very cheap. If you have the time to just wander, this is the way to go. Why pay $35-$50 (US) for a "3-hour all inclusive tour of the famous sites" when you can see the same sites in about the same amount of time (faster if you want) for about $5.00 or less......
It's the National Flag Carrier of the Cayman Islands.
It takes only 70 minutes from Miami with a B737-200 aircraft!
A plus: if the weather is clear you profit from superbe turquoise sea and islands panoramas.
Did you know?
The turtle has played a significant role in the history and development of the Cayman Islands. The logo - Sir Turtle - honors that contribution.