It’s Christmas in the Cayman Islands, and we’ve got everything but snow! The holidays here are always a special time for family and friends. Twinkling palm trees line the roads; homes and yards are draped in sparkling, colourful lights; and the smell of homemade treats wafts down the decorated streets. If you’re looking to get into the Christmas spirit, here are a few insider tips that include feasting, shopping for gifts and taking time to admire spectacular holiday decorations.
10:00 am: Begin with Breakfast
On a beautiful Caribbean island like Grand Cayman, even breakfast has a tropical twist. At Anchor & Den in Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort, you can wake up with Coconut Coffee and a Caribbean Lobster Omelette. Camana Bay’s Waterfront Urban Diner offers hearty creations like Island-style French Toast: three slices soaked in coconut milk and topped with toasted coconut and strawberry compote. Known for its gluten-free, paleo friendly and farm-to-table philosophy, The Greenhouse’s all-day breakfast gets spicy with jerk options.
Sample traditional Caymanian holiday dishes, including Christmas beef, heavy cake and Christmas sorrel.
1:00 pm: Gift Hunting
After you have indulged, it’s time for some serious shopping! With Christmas around the corner, retailers will have special discounts to lure you in. Head to Camana Bay; the stores located there offer everything from jewellery, sunglasses and clothes to electronics, beauty products and books. Downtown George Town will have a majority of shops open and is an excellent spot to pick up duty-free items like perfumes, watches, leather goods and more. For a local’s tip, head to Cost U Less in Governors Square. They have fantastic deals on electronics, homewares, appliances and more.
5:00 pm: Relax & Refresh
Take a break from all the celebrations to enjoy pure decadence at the Seafire Spa! Give your precious skin the nourishment and hydration it needs with a 60-minute Cayman-inspired Coconut Body Scrub treatment. Locally sourced coconuts are incorporated in this ultra-moisturising and softening treatment for the body. Complement this service with a 30-minute Thémaé Instant Radiance Facial, which is exclusive for this festive season! Your skin will be visibly rejuvenated and smoother with a radiant all-over glow.
7:00 pm: Brilliant Views
After the sun sets, take a drive around the Island to view the spectacular light displays. Many of the Island’s roundabouts are glittered with sparkling lights and decorations. For a real showstopper, head out to Shamrock Road and visit the Crighton family residence. For four decades, the Crighton home has captured the imagination and joy of families with its extensive and elaborate Christmas exhibits, making it a top destination for holiday lights. Park on the side of the road and walk through a true Winter wonderland of lights displays. On the return drive, take the South Sound Road and visit the home of Maureen and Maxine Bodden located across from Sunset House. Their spectacular display never ceases to amaze both young and old and attracts hundreds of visitors every night.
As the night winds down, stop back into Camana Bay and see an impressive array of lights for your viewing pleasure. This is the perfect place to finish the evening as you stroll around The Paseo and the waterfront Crescent areas, where you’ll find one of the most stunning Christmas trees on Island. It also allows you the opportunity to grab a gelato or nightcap from the many restaurants and bars in the area.
Did you know?
The annual Crighton Christmas extravaganza was founded by family patriarch Rex Crighton, who was known to dress up as Santa Claus and give away candy and gifts to visiting children.
See how the Sister Islands celebrate Christmas. Weekend escapes to Little Cayman and Cayman Brac are quick and convenient with Cayman Airways Express, which offers up to 10 flights a day between Grand Cayman and the Sister Islands.
Author: Ray Williams