All You Need To Know When Taking A Yacht Charter To The Cayman Islands

When people charter a yacht, they typically only think about all the fun things associated with the destination. In this article, we will cover some of the logistical things to keep in mind when taking a yacht charter to the Cayman Islands.

By George W. • 23 July 2019
The Cayman Islands is made up of three different islands: Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman. Grand Cayman is the main island where 99% of economic activity occurs and if you charter a yacht to the Cayman Islands, then you would be going to Grand Cayman, not Little Cayman or Cayman Brac.

The Cayman Islands was put on the main-stream map in 1993 when “The Firm”, starring Tom Cruise, was released. Grand Cayman offers a great selection of activities, beaches, resorts and restaurants; this makes it an ideal place to visit whilst travelling through the Caribbean on a yacht.

Below are a couple of things to consider when preparing to visit Grand Cayman on your yacht:

1. Where will you keep your yacht?

Cayman Islands Yacht Club
This may seem like a fairly basic question, but there are some things to consider. If your yacht is less than 100 feet in length, then you can keep it at the Cayman Islands Yacht Club. They have long stretches of dock space available for short term rentals. Many yachts visit and stay in this marina throughout the year. The reason why your yacht needs to be less than 100 feet to stay here is because if it over 100 feet, then it won’t be able to access the Cayman Islands Yacht Club. Yachts have to go through a man-made gap in the barrier reef, and then through some canals in order to reach the Cayman Islands Yacht Club. Vessels over 100-feet typically have issues navigating these conditions.

Also, one thing to consider when staying at the Cayman Islands Yacht Club is that if there is windy weather, then your ability to leave will be compromised. If it becomes windy for a few days, then the gap in the barrier reef becomes too rough for yachts to navigate through. If you stay here, then make sure you leave space in your schedule in case it is temporarily too windy to leave. For yachts that are over 100 feet in length, the better option is to moor/anchor off of George Town in the open sea.

The conditions off of George Town, which is on the South-West side of Grand Cayman, are calm about 95% of the time, since the prevailing wind direction comes from the North-East. If it became rough due to a sudden change in wind direction, you could move your yacht to the south-side of Grand Cayman, but this is unlikely to happen, and even if it did, it would only last for 1-2 days. Your Captain can contact the Cayman Islands Port Authority to find out how you can get permission to moor/anchor your yacht off of George Town.

If you decide to keep your yacht off of George Town, then you also need to be careful that you don’t damage any coral on the sea-floor if you drop anchor. Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen was fined by the Cayman Islands government for destroying coral when his 300-foot mega yacht dropped anchor off of George Town in 2016.

2. What will you do in Grand Cayman when you arrive?

You have now arrived in Grand Cayman, but what will you do now?

Luckily, there are many restaurants, shops, and activities to keep you entertained whilst you enjoy your vacation. You can take a private boat tour to visit Stingray City; this is the most popular attraction in the Cayman Islands. Here, you are able to hand-feed and hold wild stingrays, with the help of a professional local guide. Foster’s Food Fair is the largest supermarket in the Cayman Islands; this is the perfect place for your crew to restock the yacht’s supplies. Popular restaurants include “The Lobster Pot” (seafood) and “Casanovas” (Italian).

Any other questions that you may have are best answered by either the Cayman Islands Yacht Club or the Cayman Islands Port Authority.

In conclusion

Grand Cayman is an amazing place to visit on a yacht; it is extremely safe and has a high level of sophistication. It is no coincidence that so many yacht owners have made this a place to visit in the past, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

To book your Cayman Islands yacht charter, please contact the Bluewater Charter Specialists.