Grand Cayman Culture
We Caymanians are proud of our culture and love to share and celebrate with our visitors. With year-round attractions plus special events throughout the year, you’ll leave wanting to come back for more.
Pedro St. James Castle – The grandiose Pedro St. James Castle, located twenty minutes from Georgetown, is the oldest building in the Cayman Islands. Built-in 1780 by plantation owner William Eden, the Castle served as the meeting location for the first parliament on the island in 1831. The abandoned building underwent a multimillion-dollar restoration in the 1990s and now is back on Cayman’s list of favorite historical attractions. Request a guided tour, perhaps by the 7th grandson of William Eden himself, and peruse the theatre, exhibits and gift shop on site.
National Museum – The Nation Museum prides themselves on being a “living connection to Cayman’s past.” Their comprehensive collections of natural history items, art, and other private donations, as well as their rotating exhibits and guest speakers, allow for a glimpse into Cayman’s heritage and culture that is new each time you visit.
National Gallery – Upstairs in the National Gallery, you will find the permanent National Art Collection, comprised of artworks and artifacts, which demonstrates how everyday life has evolved in the Cayman Islands in the last 40 years. Consult the National Gallery’s website for a sneak peek into the current exhibition, found on the first floor. From underwater photography to fashion, the unique creations of transient exhibitions ensure an interesting look into the natural and social past of Cayman.
Blow Holes – Nestled on the south edge of the island, about a mile from the easternmost end, you will find the blowholes. Most spectacular with a gusty wind blowing, the blowholes are ironshore karst formations, shaped such that when waves roll underneath their rocky ledges and rise, water is shot high up into the air. While watching this powerful phenomenon, consider the natural history of the island, and what Columbus would’ve seen during the first ever visit the island in 1503.
Pirates Week – Pirates were some of the first regular visitors to the Cayman Islands and would stop to collect fresh water and protein-rich turtle meet for their crews. In remembrance of the part, pirates played in the history of Cayman, a two-week celebration is held every year featuring the iconic Pirate Invasion at Hog Sty Bay in Georgetown, music, dancing, food festivals parades and more. For historical fun for the whole family, consult the Pirates Week Festival Website and make sure to be here for Pirate’s Week this November.
Batabano – Batabano is Cayman’s national carnival and is held annually in May. This colorful dance parade was created by the island’s Rotary Club in 1983 as a celebration of the combination of historical influences to Cayman, down to its namesake. About the islands’ turtling culture, the word, “Batabano” describes the trails made by mother sea turtles coming onto the beaches to nest. In the present day, Batabano is the country’s yearly tribute to the history and opportunity to unite for the future. Consult Cayman Carnival’s website for more information on how to be a part of Batabano. www.caymancarnival.com
Kaaboo – Kaaboo Cayman is a two-day music and comedy festival happening February 15th and 16th of 2019. Bringing this adult escape to Cayman means it will have the tradition of Kaaboo and the flavor of the Caribbean. The music lineup will feature 19 well-known artists from around the world, as well as several local staples, and you can expect to see the same mix of renowned and local comedians. The festival grounds, located on beautiful Seven Mile Beach will also showcase the best of Cayman’s food and wine. Tickets and full lineup are available at www.kaaboocayman.com.
Taste of Cayman – The best way to experience the total variety of the food scene in Cayman is by attending Taste of Cayman, next scheduled for January 2019. With more than forty vendors showcasing their best adult cocktails, savory concoctions and sweet treats, the scope ranges from street food to gourmet cuisine. Vote for your favorite vendor and increase their chances of winning prize money! For more information or to buy tickets, visit www.tasteofcayman.org.