The Cayman Islands is a British Overseas Territory that comprises the Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman islands. The three islands are the peaks of the Cayman Ridge, an undersea mountain range. Their terrain is mostly flat and there are no rivers on any of the islands. The coasts are protected by offshore reefs that attract numerous divers from all around the world.
All three Cayman Islands offer great opportunities for scuba diving and snorkeling. Almost 400 dive sites are found all around the area, with about 240 of them located around Grand Cayman. Of all the islands, Grand Cayman is the most visited, but there is plenty to see around the two smaller ones as well.
Scuba diving in Cayman Islands. Photo by Ocean Frontiers Diving Adventures
The Cayman Islands offer good diving conditions year-round, but the high season runs from mid-December through mid-April. The rainy season starts in late April and lasts until November. However, rainfall usually occurs as showers and thunderstorms in the evening, so there will still be a fair amount of sunshine even during the rainy months. Hurricanes are most likely to occur from August to October.
The water temperature at Cayman Islands peaks at 30° C/86° F in September and does not typically fall below 26° C/78° F in February, making it perfect for year-round diving.
The currents around the Cayman Islands are typically mild, especially around the Grand Cayman island where there is little to no current. The region is perfect for beginner divers, with plenty of dive sites to accommodate any needs and preferences.
The water visibility around the Cayman Islands often exceeds 30 meters (100 feet), making it one of the best in the world.
Wall diving in Cayman Islands. Photo by Ocean Frontiers Diving Adventures
Most of what goes on at the Cayman Islands happens in and around Grand Cayman, the largest island within the territory. Grand Cayman is surrounded by the Cayman Wall that drops thousands of feet underwater. There are great wall dive sites on each side of the island, and some are also suitable for beginners.
Among the most popular dive sites here is the USS Kittiwake, a large vessel that’s now an incredible artificial reef. Also unmissable is Stingray City, a spot where divers and snorkelers can share the water with hordes of friendly southern stingrays.
Cayman Brac is the second-largest island and offers plenty of choices for novice and experienced divers alike. A must-see here is the MV Captain Keith Tibbetts wreck that has several entry points where wreck divers can enter to explore the interior of the ship.
Buccaneer Reef, located just a short swim away from MV Captain Keith Tibbetts, is one of the most well-known dive sites around the island, with its mini wall and beautiful coral heads. Divers should also stop by Radar Reef for something a bit more different – the garden of sculptures that offers some nice photo opportunities.
Little Cayman is the smallest and least inhabited of the Cayman Islands. It’s a wonderful place to relax and get away from the hustle and bustle of tourists. Although small, it offers one of the best diving spots in all of Cayman Islands – the Bloody Bay Marine Park. The nearly vertical wall known as Bloody Bay Wall is covered with coral that’s home to numerous tiny bioluminescent sea creatures. What’s more, the living rock also fluoresces.