Cayman Island events can make good additions to vacation itineraries and complements to outdoor activities such as snorkeling and diving. As far as the Cayman Island festivals are concerned, there are two major ones that are responsible for attracting a number of tourists. There's also an annual fishing tournament that anglers of all passion levels can enjoy. Checking the Cayman Island events schedule can be an excellent idea when planning a trip, as you just might come across something that can add some extra substance to your vacation experience.
Every year, two main Cayman Island festivals take place, and they include the Batabano Festival and the Pirates Week Festival. The Batabano Festival is also known as the Batabano Carnival, and it is akin to the lively Carnival celebrations that are celebrated in other Caribbean destinations. The locals don colorful costumes, and music fills the air. The music is mostly a mix of calypso and soca rhythms, and steel drums are employed adding some extra Caribbean flare. A marine theme dominates the Batabano Carnival, and visitors are encouraged to put their own costumes on and join in the street parades. Among the most common costumes are stingray costumes, as stingrays are one of many creatures that are found in good number in the area waters. In fact, at Stingray City, snorkelers and divers can swim with stingrays. It's one of the top things to do in the Cayman Islands. The Batabano Carnival essentially celebrates the coming of Spring, and it is held in late April. Before the adult festivities take place, a junior carnival is held.
The Pirates Week Festival is held in late October and celebrates the island's pirate history. Of all the Grand Cayman Island events, Pirates Week just might be the most fun, as visitors and locals alike dress like pirates and revel in a Carnival-like atmosphere. Across Grand Cayman Island, the Pirates Week celebrations erupt, with fireworks adding to the jubilant and festive affair. Pirates used to frequent the Cayman Islands centuries ago, hence the Pirates Week celebrations, and things get started with a mock pirate landing at the harbor in Georgetown.
The Grand Cayman Island events represent the bulk of the events and festivals that take place in the Cayman Islands. Another one that visitors might enjoy is the Taste of Cayman Cook-Off, which is held in July. The top restaurants on the island showcase their stuff during over the course of a weekend during this savory event, and on Monday, the event is capped off with a chili cooking competition. The winner of the chili cooking contest gets to go to Reno, Nevada, for the chance to compete in a world competition. For those who want to try some Cayman Islands food favorites and some innovative culinary creations, The Taste of Cayman Cook-Off can be an excellent event to add to the itinerary.
The Cayman Island events can revolve around any number of things, and since fishing is one of the most popular things to do in this Caribbean island territory, it only seems appropriate that there should be a major fishing festival. Much like the annual fishing tournament in Bonaire, the Cayman Islands International Fishing Tournament includes a number of different fishing competitions, and participating anglers can win some tantalizing prizes if they do well. The bulk of the action for this April festival takes place in the Georgetown Harbor.
The Grand Cayman Island events aren't limited to celebrations, a food festival, and a fishing tournament. Every year in June, the Queen's Birthday is celebrated. The Cayman Islands is a British overseas territory, and there are many allegiances to the motherland. June 19 is the date for this affair, with the Government House at Georgetown being the center of the action. One of the main features of the Queen's Birthday is the parade, which sees participants dressing up in military outfits.
These are the main Cayman Island festivals, but they aren't the only ones worth keeping in mind when planning a trip. For sports enthusiasts, the Cayman International Sevens is one of the Grand Cayman Island events that might be of interest. This rugby competition attracts teams from the world over, and since these teams are competing for a pretty hefty purse, the players tend to give it their all.
The Cayman Island events calendar is a relatively full one considering the small size of the islands, and this means that there is bound to be an event that piques your interest. The Cayman Arts Festival, for example, can satisfy the need for some cultural exposure, and families who are looking for an interesting vacation idea can always plan their visits around Family Week on Cayman Brac. The former is held over the course of a couple of weeks in February, and it features concerts and other events that are celebrated on all of the islands. As for the Cayman Brac Family Week, it offers families the opportunity to enjoy a variety of fun activities, from checking out slide shows about the islands to venturing out for some birding. The scavenger hunt is surefire hit with the kids, and the activities can also include short cruises and fun-filled snorkeling adventures.
Image: Patrick Gorham