I collect refrigerator magnets and that's the first thing I buy whenever I go to a particular destination. I buy at least five and bring them home as gifts, too.
You can buy refrigerator magnets at different gift shops. I prefer to buy refrigerator magnets that are made of rubber because even if they fall from the refrigerator, they won't break unlike those made of ceramics!
Refrigerator magnets price range from $1.99 to $4.99.
When visiting a location, I can tell how healthy their ocean is by looking at their fish market. If they are selling a lot of big fishes in their local fish market, that means that their ocean is very rich with coral reefs and there is not a lot of over-fishing or commercial fishing.
Also, I can tell how big the empty shells they are selling at tourist areas.
At the Cayman Islands, the ocean is very healthy with sealife.
I saw a lot of vendors selling empty conch shells in Spot's Bay.
Cayman Islands is famous for it's offshore banking. Rich people come here and but not sure it they come here for shopping since I didn't see a luxurious shopping mall. However, I saw some jewelry shops- mostly catering to tourists.
What to buy: Jewelries
What to pay: Depends on what you buy
If you are thinking of buying a t-shirt, buy it over here or at the Shellections in front of the beach. They have a lot of selection. If you collect refrigerator magnets or keychains, don't buy it here. There are vendors at the back of the mall close to the "stepwell". They are much cheaper.
What to buy: T-shirts with Cayman Islands print.
What to pay: They are actually sold for "buy three and get one for free". The nicer ones are more expensive. $18.00
Honestly, I didn't even shop here because the shops are very touristsy and most of the shops cater to the rich people like those expensive jewelry shops. And, there was no arts and crafts stores or shops that I could find. What appeals to me in my travels are the uniqueness of the area- what kind of products the people are selling that originated from their area...
I didn't see anything I like that is appealing.
What to buy: I bought refrigerator magnets and bought their money for my niece DJ.
We travel to the Caymans at least once a year. The prices are much higher than the US for most goods, especially alcohol, which is almost TWICE the price! The good news is you can bring a LOT of alcohol! Per person: 4 bottles of wine, OR a case of beer, OR a half gallon of hard liquor.
There are a few things that cost less if you can find it duty free, like cameras. But clothing, jewelry, most other things are so expensive that most of the locals do that kind of shopping in Miami.
There are a few ways to save on shopping and lots of other things, by looking for coupons and duty free prices. We always use the coupons in their local magazine, Cayman Activity Guide, and that saves us about 10% or more on almost everything. They have a website too, but you have to register, then you can save on car rental, hotels, condos, things like that. The website is www.caymanactivityguide.com.
Have fun! I hope this helps.
What to buy: Duty free and anything with coupons in the Activity Guide magazine.
What to pay: Most prices 30% higher than US. Alcohol and tobacco more than 50% higher than US.
Save 10-40 PERCENT with the Activity Guide magazine coupons
The waterfront area is just teeming with shops with every type of jewelry your heart could desire. The "Anchorage Centre" is a nice little complex with more than its fair share of jewelry stores, cigar shops, gift shops and the like. My favorite attraction was the parrots in the court yard who could have cared less that everyone wanted their photo.
What to buy: The Cayman Islands have been granted duty-free status in perpetuity by the British Royal Crown in thanks for help given to the royal family. That being the case, this is a terrific place to purchase gold jewelry, diamonds, tanzanite, and emeralds. Tortuga rum, cuban cigars and upscale watches are also some of the more sought after items. Because the prices of jewelry in the islands can be substantially less expensive than on the mainland, and in addition it is duty-free, many people find that taking a nice cruise and getting good value for your money in purchasing jewelry here is a win-win situation for them. Still, every country has a different limit on how much can be brought back into the country duty free I think it is about $800 or so per person for the US. Check your country's duty-free limitation before you empty your wallet buying jewelry!!
What to pay: Although this is a duty free port, you should keep in mind the currency exchange when shopping. $1 US = $1.25 CI (2003).
What to buy:
Hard Rock Cafe used to be found in only major cities around the world. It was unique if you had a Hard Rock Cafe T-shirt from some far flung place around the globe. Now you can find one almost anywhere. Grand Cayman's Hard Rock Cafe restaurant faces the waterfront and is on one of the main roads, and close to the cruise ship arrival pier so it has great views. The prices here are not budget-friendly for sure, but not outrageous; if you have a taste for some American food especially great hamburgers, try the Hard Rock Cafe.
While I have really enjoyed meals at other Hard Rocks around the world in the past, what I really like is their pins. I purchased one here with a stingray motif in 2001; about $8.50US. I thought it was worth it at the time because I never thought I'd be back. But this year (2003) luckily I was fortunate enough to take another cruise which stopped in Grand Cayman and found pins were mostly the same price. Not bad! While collecting pins can be a fun hobby without too much expense, knowing that these pins do appreciate somewhat in value takes away a little of the guilt.
If you have an AAA card (American Automobile Association), you should receive a 10% discount on merchandise as well as food which makes it a little better buy.
What to pay: $8.50 and up
What to buy:
What are the Caribbean Islands without a little rum? The "rum cakes" here are delicious and unique to the islands. The most famous brands in Grand Cayman are "Tortuga" and "Captain Rackham's." Try some of the free samples vendors entice you with because there are many flavors. We purchased the original rum flavor and pina colada (the best!) at 32 oz. each for less than $20 which I thought was a great buy.
Rum cakes also make terrific gifts and people seem to appreciate them because you can't readily find them at home and they are more representative of the islands than the ever present tacky souvenirs which are usually made in China anyway.
What to pay: We paid $20 US for two 32 oz. cakes.
If you've finished the books you brought with you go to the Book Nook in the Galleria (7 Mile Beach) for more reading material. They have all the latest bestsellers and books on Cayman. Great kid section. Not touristy stuff.
What to buy: Books on Cayman, boardgames, gifts, books, largest and best selection of greeting cards I've seen in a long time.
Don't shop in Georgetown while the cruise ships are in town b/c prices are marked up. The rum cakes were cheaper at the airport than in town....and we all know how expensive it is to shop in an airport.
What to buy: Big Black Dick rum....yes that really is the name. They market it by saying "Hope you had a good Big Black Dick experience in Cayman."
Free Tortuga rum cake!! I can't remember but I think I tasted about six different kinds
What to buy: Tortuga rum to take home, Tortuga rum cake, Cigarettes very cheap at the duty free shop at the airport. I bought a carton of Nat Sherman's (the world's most elegant cigarette.) The carton cost me $10.00. They sell here In Kentucky $6.89 per pack.
What to pay: Average to less than average
This store sells clothing that changes colour under bright sunshine. They also have branches in St. Thomas, Cozumel, St. Maarten, Key West, Nassau, Puerto Vallarta and Alaska.
What to buy: You can purchase many t-shirts displayed inside the store.
The George Town shopping district caters to the cruise ship crowd. If you're there off-season, you'll find a lot of stores closed even in the middle of the day if there is no ship in the harbor. At high season stores are open during normal business hours.
What to buy: I like to pick up some rumcakes for friends and family at one of the many cake outlets. My favorite is Captain Rackham's.
Typical duty free shopping. Your expected Columbian Emralds, T-Shirts, Liquor, etc. Everything in Cayman is more expensive.
What to buy: Diving is very reasonable here. Instruction is cheaper then in Key Largo. Groceries are not too bad. It is much better then dining out every night.
What to pay: Dinner for two: $150 - $300.
Gasoline: $2.50 -$5.00 a gallon.
Taxi: $15.00 airport to smb.
Rental car $300-$600
On the beach at Bodden Town, 1 bedroom, living room, kitchen with rental car costs about 60% of a...more
553 Old Robin Road Queens Hwy, North Side, , Grand Cayman, Caribbean
Good for: Couples
403 Gerrard Ave, KY2-2001, Caribbean
Good for: Business