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What's the difference between these two excursions??


Stina76

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I am looking at doing the Stingray, Turtle Farm and Hell combo excursion and on Carnival's website, there are two that look almost identical except one is a little cheaper? Anyone know what the difference is? And which do you prefer?

 

This the first description:

 

Discover Cayman - Stingrays, Hell & Turtle Farm

Description: Combine the natural beauty and cultural heritage of Grand Cayman with incredible Stingray City Sandbar in this all-in-one combination excursion. Full Details

Duration: 4.5 Hours

Pricing From: Adult: $65 Child: $65

 

This the 2nd description:

 

Stingray Sandbar, Hell & Turtle Farm Experience

Description: Experience all the major highlights of Grand Cayman in one tour. Full Details

Duration: 4.5 Hours

Pricing From: Adult: $75 Child: $75

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The only difference I can see is a Photo op stop at the Old Homestead. Definetly not worth $10 more. We have done this tour with Nativeway for less$$.

 

It is a great way to experience Grand Cayman. Only negative is there will be no beach time, just a view of the sands and surf.

 

Bon Voyage

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I 2nd the Nativeway suggestion. I have taken the Stingray and Island tour twice, and loved it both times! Both trips we only had 4 people total, the 2nd time we had our own boat to ourselves, it was so awesome pulling up to Stingray City on our own personal boat where there were tons of boats FULL of people. YOu can not go wrong with this company, they really are great. YOu will get a much better tour for way less $$$. I can post my review upon request.

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We enjoyed our time with Nativeway. Personally, we were part of a group and the tour was split in two parts: Island Tour and Sting Ray sail. Since we had already previously swam with the rays, we elected to take only the island tour at half the price. Again, because this was a private group, this was allowed.

 

On a positive note about a tour with Nativeway, the day we were at Grand Cayman, the ship cancelled all of its 'water' oriented tours due to rough seas. Well by the time our Sting Ray portion was scheduled the seas were calm and Nativeway sailed to the sand bar. Our fellow cruisers loved their time with the Rays.

 

Bon Voyage

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I would love to see reviews of this tour with Nativeway! I love these boards as I saw this company here and there and realized everyone is going with some of the others posted - I want the small groups! We travel a bunch in the US and our family loves to see many things both historical and fun so I thought doing both parts with a small group will be so awesome! I am very excited! And you 2 confirmed my suspicions!

 

SSHHHH!! Don't tell too many people until after the end of March so mine is not crazy full too!!:p

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I typed this review up a couple weeks after I got home...it is long...but I know people like long reviews! Let me know if you have any questions about anything I may have left out....

 

 

October 21st

Our first stop was Grand Cayman, we had booked an excursion that included an Island tour and Stingray City. Turns out that we were the only ones booked on this excursion so we had a private tour all to ourselves! I had used this company for the same tour last year and loved them; we only had a total of 4 people on that tour as well. We got on a tender, docked, and found our company…we had about an hour to kill before the tour started so we walked around and shopped a little bit. I bought a T-shirt. There were MANY companies trying to sell us tours while walking around in the port area.

When it was time to meet up with them we met our guide, Sheldon, and followed him to our vehicle for the day which was a nice SUV. He drove us through town, pointing out important beaches, hotels, etc. We stopped at the Governors house, a Rum Cake Factory, Hell, and the Turtle Farm before Stingray City. We actually had nice weather this day, which would turn out to be the ONLY day we had nice weather. Hell was the same as I remembered it from last year only this year we got to meet to owner who dresses up like the Devil. We only got to meet his wooden cut-out last year. He asked us where we were from and said WV, he promptly took out a photo album and showed us his wedding pictures because his wife is from WV also. Well he says “one of his wives”, he is Satan you know! I eventually got a kiss from him on the cheek outside while my family was dropping mail in the mailbox…eventually he kissed both DM and DS as well! Actually they kissed him too, the devil gets a lot of lovin! He was great, we took several pics of the whole ordeal. While we were looking at the rock formations, our guide was telling us all about Hell and its history and ended up catching an iguana for us to look at. This caused a crowd to gather and he started telling everyone else about the place as well…I guess they didn’t have as great of a guide as we did!

Last year when we went to the Turtle Farm our guide was able to come in with us, but this year they weren’t allowed (he would have to pay to get himself in). But he set us up with another guide inside so we weren’t left to wander alone. This guy was pretty good, he worked there so he knew everything about the turtles. We got to hold some of the smaller ones, and tickle their chins when they would start to flip out (calms them down, it’s the cutest thing!). The tour inside lasted about 30 mins, then used the restrooms, checked out the gift shop & hatchery, and met back up with our guide outside. I know there is a small controversy over the Turtle Farm (some of the turtles are used for local consumption) and I later discussed it with him. He assured me that it was a very small percentage of them that were harvested, and they were very strict with it. Turtle can only be sold on Sundays, so you can only get it from restaurants or buy it to consume at your home on that day. They do not export the meat at all, and basically reminded us that every country has their own delicacies that foreigners might find gross or wrong. This is something that they have consumed for generations, and there is absolutely no commercial fishing of the turtles in the wild, they all come from the turtle farm. As a Marine Science major, I absolutely love sea turtles and could never eat one, but I understand that this is their culture and I respect it.

On to Stingray City, we had our own boat, it was a smaller one, 25ft, but it was GREAT! It was so nice to be sailing out to the stingrays passing boats that were absolutely packed with people (one of them was another popular company commonly mentioned on these boards). We just waved and continued on for our own personal experience. The boat was actually our tour guide’s personal boat. When we got to the sandbar we got all of our stuff together and jumped in. I had asked the captain, Fabian, what the water temperature was like and he said it was pretty cold…it was warm, really warm! Well you are no longer allowed to feed the Stingrays anymore, just the guides, but they still rubbed squid on our arms so that they would come up on us anyways. They do not know why tourists aren’t allowed to feed them, there haven’t been any accidents. DN was excited to go out there but once she was in the water and saw them she kind of freaked out and got back on the boat and just watched. She later said that she didn’t expect them to be so big and so many. She eventually pet a small on that the guide caught and brought to her. DM loved it! She said she was a little scared at first but once she got a mask on and went under the water with them she LOVED it! She had never done snorkeling before so she had never experienced anything like that before. Again, it was so nice to have our own space and not be in the middle of a huge crowd of people. Our guide also went out and found a large starfish and a conch for us to see.

On the way back some storm clouds came rolling in but we made it back in the SUV before it let loose. We were worried that it would be raining while standing in line for the tender but it quickly stopped raining. Once back at the port we used the restrooms (clean enough!) and got right on a tender, no lines this year! So all in all we had a blast on this tour, and if we go back, I will use them again for a different tour. He said they are building a couple dolphin encounters on the island and they will eventually offer a tour that includes this. I can not say enough good things about this company, I wish them the best.

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Great review - thanks! One quick question - did you wear your swimsuit all day or did you change into it and when.

 

We wore our suits the whole day under our clothes...there really is no time or place to change. So we ended up getting back on board with wet clothes. But no biggie, because so were a lot of people!

 

Actually if you should go on the Island Tour part 1st, which is what we did both times, at the Turtle Farm there are restrooms...we only had a few minutes to use the bathrooms and see the giftshop, but I suppose if you can change quickly then you could change clothes there. But that would be your only chance. Easier for me to just wear the suit.

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