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Old January 11th, 2005, 10:00 PM
lacey230
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Default stingrays grand cayman??

Hi,
I have been reading that the stingrays in grand Cayman have left since the hurricane and only a few have come back.

We are sailing on Feb. 13 and planning on going to Stringray City.

Has anyone been to Stingray City in the last few weeks and have any idea if the amount of stingrays is like pre-hurricane days?
Thanks
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Old January 12th, 2005, 11:18 PM
lfalcon
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

oh yes - we went to the stingray city in dec and no they are all still there - dont know who told you that, but they are quite wrong.

i didnt really like it that much but ill give you some pointers.....our boat captain did not pull in close to the sandbar, thus when we jumped in the water (i am 5'4") the water was up to my neck - which isnt a problem as i can swim, BUT they throw raw octopus in the water before you get out and the stringrays come fast to eat. So, consequently they swarm you and since their mouths are on the bottom, they are basically swimming up on your chest - it was freaky and i hated it. Once i got to the part where the water was a knee height - it was fine. They are docile and wont hurt you but trust me it aint pretty when they are in your face. Plus, they tell you - scream all you want but dont flail your arms....ok well i did both because i freaked out and it attracts them more! i just could not help myself....

the tour we did was hell, stingray and the turtle farm. it was interesting - hell is kinda a joke but it was on the way so i guess it was ok to just stop and take pictures...the island is really damaged from the hurricane though...so city tours are not going to be pretty.

lisa
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Old January 13th, 2005, 08:12 AM
sls
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Lisa,

I'm with you, I hated the stingrays. I couldn't even get my feet planted on the bottom before I was knocked off my feet. My DH said he had never heard so much screaming coming out of me in our 20 years of marriage. Not something I would ever do again.


sls
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Old January 13th, 2005, 08:34 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Well im on the other foot I loved it yes they were everywhere and they do through out raw squid but it was the most exciting thing we did in the Caymans and I would definetly do it again in a heart beat ! I think give it a shot if you dont like it then you can at least say youve done it and dont have to ever do it again !!!

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Old January 13th, 2005, 10:34 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

I'm with Shelly the stingrays were great! My wife and I had a fabulous time, we didn't do a ship excursion we booked on our own through a local company and they were also the best, very helpful and had answers to all our questions.

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Old January 13th, 2005, 10:40 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

My wife and I both loved our excursion to Stingray City. Enjoyed the feeding and interaction. Our guides did not toss squid into the water but put out a float with a bucket of squid that we used to feed the rays. Great experience!!!!

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Old January 13th, 2005, 10:43 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

to those who had good experiences, without mentioning the site what company did you use?
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Old January 13th, 2005, 10:44 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Cocatoo Catamarans

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Old January 13th, 2005, 11:00 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We bought ours through the cruise lines, and i want to clarify that i did not dislike the stingrays - i was just totally taken back when i first got in and they swarmmed me. It was a good experience, and i am happy that did it, i just think people should be aware - especially those that might be a little sqweemish!

Once i was in more shallow water it was fine.

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Old January 13th, 2005, 01:10 PM
Samantha Engle
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We booked the stingray sandbar tour with Carnival on our Miracle sailing on 1/2 and it got cancelled! However, it was due to rough waters, not anything to do with the past hurricanes.
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Old January 13th, 2005, 01:11 PM
Samantha Engle
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We booked the stingray sandbar tour with Carnival on our Miracle sailing on 1/2 and it got cancelled! However, it was due to rough waters, not anything to do with the past hurricanes.
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Old January 13th, 2005, 03:34 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We just got back and had an awesome time! We went with Cap't Marvins. Cheaper than through the ship. They gave us squid and they eat it out of your hands. Do make sure you keep your feet planted on the ground. Not easy cuz they' come right up to you. A must do!! Make sure you bring your underwater camera.
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Old January 13th, 2005, 04:14 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We booked our Stingray tour thru Native Way (Highly Recommend) THere were only about 15-20 people on our tour boat. Loved the Stingrays. Yes the swim around you and slide up and down you, but they are so soft and amazing. WIth the smaller group out guide to into the water and handed you the squid so that we could hand feed the stingrays. We were never bombarded buy them.

Booking a morning tour thru one of the privte companies is much cheaper and the groups are much smaller. Ours was $25.

Have fun

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Old January 13th, 2005, 04:58 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

I just got back from my cruise on the Imagination and went to see the rays. The waters were rough so yes it was difficult to stay on your feet. We were given the option to concel our tour and get our money back, because of this but we all opted to go and everyone was glad we did. Now if you are not a good swimmer and are told that the waters are rough, you may choose to bypass going and do something else. But if at all possible I highly recommend the tour.

There is still quite a bit of hurricane damage. It is a good lesson on how powerful these storms can be. But when you get to talk to the locals, you will find them etremely friendly and very willing to give information on the reconstruction and how everyone is doing. After personally living through several Hurricanes, it did bring back a lot of memories for me that were not overly pleasent, but you do have to remember with hurricanes you do get plenty of notice and a good amount of time to prepare for them. It is not a situation like they had in Asia with the tsunami.

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Old January 13th, 2005, 08:05 PM
lacey230
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Default Re: Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Hi,
We booked through Captain Marvin's for our upcoming 2-13 cruise. After reading all the posts, I hope we have the option of using life vests if we choose. My husband gets a little nervous if the water is over his head and he does not have a life vest on.

Were all of you offered life vests? I think I will call Capt. Marvins back and make sure that life vests are available if we choose to use them.

Anyone that has gone with Capt. Marvin let me know if they had plenty of life vests on board the boat and did anyone take advantage of using them??

Thanks
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Old January 13th, 2005, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Soto Cruises is awesome. Best Stingray sandbar value there is to me. They will pull up to the sandbar so you are in waist deep water when you get out. The boat captains are very helpful and knowledgeable. I took 22 people on their excursion and we all loved it. On my next trip, I'll book directly with them w/o researching other tours. I was very pleased with the tour.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 08:38 AM
sls
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

The ship's sponsored tour we went on was Sting Ray City. We went to the sand bar. We had yellow snorkle vests and snorkle masks. The water was calm and came up chest high but I'm barely 5 ft. We were the first boat out there which may be why the rays swarmed so much. The boat operators give a big presentation on the way out there on what to do - keep your feet on the sea bottom. I just could never do this because the rays kept knocking me over to get to food. I ended up swiming away from the frenzy and watching from a short distance out of the fray. I guess I had romanticized it that I would be watching the sting rays glide through the water not battling it out for a meal.

sls
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Old January 14th, 2005, 09:22 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

I did it to and loved it.. I was totally freaked out at first and afraid but the longer we were there the more I got used to it.. andddddddd I'm going again in May and taking a bunch of relatives and I'm really excited about that.. Have fun!
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Old January 14th, 2005, 10:08 AM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We went with Capt Marvins as well they were great !!! Even took us to a few sites to snorkel !! YES there were life jackets offered we didnt use them but my girlfriend did due to the fact shes not a great swimmer !!! A MUST DO !!!!

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Old January 14th, 2005, 11:39 AM
lfalcon
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

they all have life vests and some people used them. it is definitely a great experience its just if you know what to watch out for - like the swarming i mentioned above, then you can find ways around it. I was a novice - and it took me off guard. i am happy that i did it though.....
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Old January 14th, 2005, 12:54 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Nativeways was awesome and it was the most amazing thing I've ever done int he Caribbean - I think you'll love it. It's a little overwhelming at first but just remember that they won't hurt you. I wish I was going again.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 04:49 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

We're heading to the Caymans in March and will be going with Captain Marvins Watersports for the 3rd time. Book them on your own over the internet--cheaper than going with the cruise ships. We visited two reefs plus did the stingrays with a small group. Much more comfortable than traveling with the herd of people on the ship excursions. Everything is explained on their web site. They are really pleasant to deal with on the phone. If you've ever thought about doing this and don't you will regret it later on. You can always snorkel the first two reefs and then stay on the boat when you get to the Stingray sandbar and enjoy the scene. On one of our trips a young girl was scared so the guide actually carried a ray up to her while she leaned over the back of the boat. Within two minutes she was in the water and was obviously enjoying herself. Don't miss the chance.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 05:42 PM
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Default Re: stingrays grand cayman??

I went on the Sting ray tour with Carnival, in December. But not being a good swimmer, I got off the boat and right back on. The water was a little wavy but you had to jump into 7 ' of water, with a life jacket on, and the current seemed a little swiff to me. I don't like to be in water over my head. I couldn't seem to get to the sand bar, the crew was busy, so I didn't get help. If I would have been able to get to the sand bar, I would have loved it, everyone on the sand bar was having a great time. If I go back to grand cayman, I will book on my own and with a smaller boat and try again. Go and have fun.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 05:53 PM
jim & lolita
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Default Re: Re: stingrays grand cayman??

Just an FYI on some of the other things in Grand Cayman. We have not been able to find a fishing charter, the Nautilus submarine will be down until April, and the 18 hole golf course is still closed - all due to Ivan. (There are probably some fishing charters up and running, but they are most likely booked ahead of us). Looks like Stingray City for us and shopping for Large Ebony Richard rum.
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