Shopping in the Cayman Islands

Despite the Cayman Islands high cost of living, visitors can still find luxury items at discounted rates

Photo credit: © Cayman Islands Department of Tourism
 

The Cayman Islands is one of the most visited watersports destinations in the world, with diving being a top activity. Still, there is more than enough to keep vacationers occupied on solid ground. Shopping for souvenirs and discounted goods is one way to spend some of your time.

The cost of living in the Cayman Islands tends to be higher than many places in the United States, and the United States Dollar (USD) is worth 20 percent less than the Cayman Islands Dollar (CI).

Where to Shop

The best shopping in the Cayman Islands is found in Georgetown, where a good selection of duty free, luxury items can be purchased. These are often discounted up to 30 percent, but it helps to know how much you would be spending back home so you can determine if you are getting a good deal or not. Most of the shops here are located within walking distance of the cruise terminal, which makes it a very popular shopping locale. Malls such as the Bayshore Mall are located in the heart of Georgetown if department store shopping is your desire.

In addition to the major shopping center that is George Town, dozens of other smaller shopping complexes can be found in other towns throughout the Caymans. Grand Harbour Centre is one of the islands' newer facilities. The Countryside Shopping Village is located in Savannah.

The best way to ensure that you are picking up a locally made craft is by visiting the Cayman Craft Market. Not only is it a great location to browse carts set up by local vendors, but the park like setting provides a place for a relaxing stroll. The Farmer's Market Cooperative is another location where you can support local vendors, by purchasing everything from produce to crafts.

Gifts and Souvenirs

Despite the lower value of the U.S. Dollar in the Cayman Islands, there are plenty of deals to be had. The products with the best value will be high quality goods from foreign countries that are often deeply discounted, and locally made handicrafts.

Like anywhere else in the Caribbean, you will find fun souvenirs in the Cayman Islands, such as key chains, shot glasses, t-shirts, post cards, and coffee mugs with the words “Cayman Islands.” These are affordable, widely available, and great options for you to bring home. Perhaps you are looking for something a little more unique. Artwork, shell jewelry, wood carvings and woven items make for excellent take homes, as well as bath and beauty products such as soaps, perfumes, and facial scrubs. Recently, underwater photography has begun to take off, so be on the lookout for art galleries that feature these unique prints. Don't forget the edible items, like the oh-so-popular rum cakes, jams and jellies, seasons and salts, and locally distilled rums.

If you enjoy shopping for souvenirs or gifts you might want to visit Too Hot Downtown, which is located in downtown Georgetown. A nice mixture of fun apparel, souvenirs, and gifts, Too Hot is all about offering shoppers unique options and are particularly proud of their T-Shirt selection. If you have questions, try calling them at (345) 949-7428.

A second option is Blue Iguana Souvenir Outlet, which is located 0.6 mi. (1.0 km) from Too Hot Downtown. With over 1600 unique souvenir items available at Blue Iguana Souvenir Outlet, you can be certain that you'll find something "Cayman" for every person on your shopping list. The convenient location on the waterfront in George Town allows you to stop in as you tour the popular tourist area. Find them on South Church Street .

A third place to consider is One 345 Swanky Shack. On the racks and shelves here you'll find clothing, accessories, and souvenirs that define the island. They can be found at 65 North Church Street, on Grand Cayman.

The table just below provides more details concerning 20 of the gift and souvenir shops in the Cayman Islands.

Gifts and Souvenirs In the Cayman Islands
Name Phone Location
American Greetings (345) 949-0442 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Beautiful Home & Gifts (345) 945-3637 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Blue Iguana Souvenir Outlet (345) 943-5000 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Caymania Duty Free (345) 949-4380 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Conmac Gifts & Souveniers (345) 947-7790 East End, Western part of the Cayman Islands
Duty Free (345) 945-2160 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
East End Garden & Gifts (345) 947-0737 East End, Western part of the Cayman Islands
Gifts With A Difference (345) 945-1907 Seven Mile Beach
Gifts With A Difference (Nixon) (345) 949-7229 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Gwen's Gift Shop-Hades Hideaway (345) 949-1177 Grand Cayman
Harley Davidson Grand Cayman -- Downtown Georgetown
Kc's Souvenirs Beachwear & Cosmetics (345) 949-1237 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Klassic Luggage & Gifts (345) 943-4438 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Last Chance Souvenir (345) 945-4024 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
One 345 Swanky Shack (345) 949-3080 Downtown Georgetown
Pure Art Gallery and Gifts (345) 949-9133 1.2 mi. South-Southwest of Downtown Georgetown
Suntracker (345) 949-9059 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Too Hot Downtown (345) 949-7428 Downtown Georgetown
Too Hot Westshore (345) 949-7428 Seven Mile Beach
World Gift Imports (Cayman) (345) 946-6292 0.2 mi. Northwest of Central Seven Mile Beach

Specialty Shops

While locally made goods will undoubtedly provide visitors with the best deals, cameras and camera accessories are also available at excellent prices. Jewelry is another option. Name brands such as Bacarrat, Cartier, Gucci, Lalique, Tiffany, and Versace are available at discounted prices throughout the Caymans.

One of the popular specialty retailers in the area is Eden Rock Diving Center. They are located in Georgetown, in western the Cayman Islands. Specializing in excursions to Eden's Rock and Devil's Grotto, Eden Rock Diving offers equipment rentals, guided snorkeling, and guided dives. With options available every day of the week, you'll be able to see two of the most prominent underwater sites in the area during your island stay. You can find them at 124 South Church Street, on Grand Cayman.

A second option is Lobster Pot Dive Center, which is found less than a mile away from Eden Rock Diving Center. From introductory courses all the way up to Divemaster, the first professional rating, you'll learn from the best on island when you sign up for dive training with Lobster Pot Dive Center. You can even take specialty dive courses that will teach you about specific areas of interest such as Enriched Air Nitrox, wreck diving, deep diving and underwater photography. Guests can find them at 245 North Church Street , on Grand Cayman.

Deep Blue Divers: Operating in partnership with Lobster Pot Dive Center, Deep Blue Divers is run by Master PADI Instructor Nick Bucklet who has been voted the "Best Dive Operator for Cayman Diving and Scuba Diver Certification" by Destination Cayman. Dive operators do not get more knowledgeable than this, so if you're looking to learn from the best, this is your chance. They can be found at 245 North Church Street, on Grand Cayman.

The chart just below shows some details regarding the specialty shops in the Cayman Islands.

Specialty Shops In the Cayman Islands
Name Type Phone Location
Artifacts Ltd Antiques and Used Merchandise Dealer (345) 949-2442 Downtown Georgetown
Balaclava Jewellers Ltd Jewelry Store (345) 945-5788 0.5 mi. North of Central Seven Mile Beach
Bodden Town Art Shop Art Gallery (345) 943-2827 Bodden Town
Cathy Church Underwater Photo Gallery Art Gallery (345) 949-7415 0.8 mi. South West of Downtown Georgetown
Cayman Diving College Dive Shop (345) 945-1611 Georgetown
Cayman Islands National Gallery Art Gallery (345) 945-8111 Seven Mile Beach
Deep Blue Divers Dive Shop (345) 916-1293 Georgetown
Divers Down Dive Shop (345) 945-1611 Georgetown
Divers Supply Dive Shop (345) 949-7621 Seven Mile Beach
Divers World Dive Shop (345) 949-8128 1.2 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown
Divetech at Lighthouse Point Dive Shop (345) 949-1700 West Bay, Western part of the Cayman Islands
Eden Rock Diving Center Dive Shop (345) 949-7243 0.3 mi. South West of Downtown Georgetown
Effy Jewelers Georgetown Jewelry Store (345) 945-9003 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Happy Fish Divers Dive Shop (345) 547-5699 West Bay
Indigo Divers Dive Shop (345) 525-3932 Grand Cayman
Kennedy Gallery/Cayman Fine Art Art Gallery (345) 949-8077 1.7 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown
Lobster Pot Dive Center Dive Shop (345) 946-8685 0.5 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown
Sandon Feat Gallery Art Gallery (345) 949-7263 Seven Mile Beach
Topaz Handcrafted Jewellery Jewelry Store (345) 949-7661 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Waterman Cayman Surf Surfing Gear Store (345) 769-7873 0.7 mi. South of Central Seven Mile Beach

Clothing and Apparel

Hoping to find some new clothing during your vacation? Perhaps you would enjoy Lladro Boutique -- which is located in downtown Georgetown. Lladro is one of the most recognized brands in porceline figurines has a boutique in the Cayman Islands. The prefect spot to spend some of your duty free allotment, Lladro Boutique has a passion for creating artistic pieces that will stand the test of time. If you want to be sure they're open , call them at (345) 949-7477.

Another place to consider is Devil's Hangout -- which is found 6.1 mi. (9.9 km) from Lladro Boutique. When you shop at Devil's Hangout, you are leaving the idea of getting your friends and family a traditional souvenir behind. Instead, pick up a t-shirt that says "I've been to hell and back," a coffee mug with flames up the side, or even some "hot as hell" sauce to spice up your food at meal times. They're at 77 Hell Road, on Grand Cayman.

A third apparel shop you might enjoy is Atlantic Kids Clothing. Atlantic Department Store has everything needed to outfit your entire family. As one of the largest department stores in the Cayman Islands that centers on clothing above all else, this is the spot you'll want to hit to shop for everyone at once.

The chart directly below enables you to get some details regarding the 20 apparel shops in the Cayman Islands.

Clothing and Apparel In the Cayman Islands
Name Type Phone Location
Allee Designer Fashion Boutique Boutique (345) 946-6464 2.0 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown
Arabus Boutique Boutique (345) 949-4620 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Atlantic Department Store Department Store (345) 945-5824 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Atlantic Kids Clothing Department Store -- Grand Cayman
Cartier Boutique Boutique (345) 949-7477 Downtown Georgetown
Cayman Shoe Shop Shoe Store (345) 945-7414 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Ching Boutique Boutique (345) 949-0084 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Devil's Hangout T-Shirt Shop (345) 945-3322 1.0 mi. West of Central West Bay
Fefe's Boutique Boutique (345) 947-2492 1.9 mi. West of Central Savannah
Funky Monkey General Clothing Store (345) 943-8659 0.5 mi. North of Central Seven Mile Beach
Infinity Fashions Boutique (345) 949-1063 West Bay
Juana's Fashions Boutique (345) 945-7926 2.0 mi. West of Central Bodden Town
Just Add Water Boutique (345) 945-4208 0.5 mi. North of Central Seven Mile Beach
La Sherie Fashion & Design Boutique (345) 949-7431 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Lladro Boutique Boutique (345) 949-7477 Downtown Georgetown
Lorna's Exquisite Fashions Boutique (345) 949-9628 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
One & Only Boutique Boutique (345) 945-7074 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown
Penha Boutique (345) 949-6513 Downtown Georgetown
The Beach Boutique Boutique (345) 949-8128 1.2 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown
Young World Fashions Boutique (345) 949-6313 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown

Food and Grocery

Need to pick up some food supplies? Premier Wines & Spirits is located in Georgetown, in western the Cayman Islands. Premier is open from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. If you would like to call before booking a room, do so at (345) 943-3333.

Another option is Hurley's Marketplace, which is found a short distance away to the southeast of Premier Wines & Spirits. Hurley's is closed on Good Friday, Christmas, and New Year's Day. Throughout the rest of the year you'll find them open from 7:00 a.m. You'll be able to find them at 1053 Shamrock Road , on Grand Cayman.

Cayman Taffy Company: Cayman Taffy Company offers over 20 taffy flavors as well as a number of chocolate treats, toffee, peanut brittle, and caramel popcorn. Every piece of candy is made in the Cayman Islands, so you know that you will enjoy quality and freshness with every bite. Call them at (345) 943-2333.

You can look at the table below to learn more.

Food and Grocery Stores In the Cayman Islands
Name Type Phone Location Island
Big Daddy's Fine Wine & Spirits Beer, Wine, and Liquor Store (345) 948-8186 West End Cayman Brac
Billy's Supermarket Grocery Store (345) 948-1321 Cayman Brac Cayman Brac
Cayman Taffy Company Confectionery and Nut Store (345) 943-2333 1.2 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Foster's Food Fair-IGA Grocery Store (345) 945-3663 1.1 mi. East of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
General Nutrition Center Nutrition and Body Care Store (345) 945-7690 1.1 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Hurley's Marketplace Grocery Store (345) 947-8488 2.2 mi. East of Central Georgetown Grand Cayman
Kirk Supermarket Grocery Store (345) 949-7022 0.6 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Paradise Coffee Coffee and Tea Store (345) 943-3388 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Peperman's Coffeehouse Coffee and Tea Store (345) 945-3751 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Pioneer Bakery Bakery (345) 948-0519 Grand Cayman Grand Cayman
Premier Wines & Spirits Beer, Wine, and Liquor Store (345) 943-3333 1.3 mi. Northeast of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Shopsmart Grocery Store (345) 943-2319 0.6 mi. Southeast of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Tortuga Rum Company Georgetown Bakery -- 0.9 mi. East of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
West Indies Wine Company Store Beer, Wine, and Liquor Store (345) 640-9492 1.8 mi. North of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman
Wine & Glass Ltd Beer, Wine, and Liquor Store (345) 945-1325 1.3 mi. South-Southwest of Downtown Georgetown Grand Cayman

...Name brands... are available at discounted prices throughout the Caymans...

 

Duties, Taxes, and Tips

Though there is absolutely no sales tax in the Cayman Islands, duty fees depend upon the item that is purchased. Any item manufactured in the Cayman Islands, such as art, native crafts and jewelry, photography, and Tortuga rum cakes is duty free. It is important that you are aware that some stores in the Cayman Islands use the phrase “duty free” in their title. Do not be fooled. Only stores in the airport or at the cruise terminal are completely duty free. These other stores may have a few duty free items, but not all.

Shops in the Cayman Islands accept the legal currency, which is the Cayman Island Dollar, as well as the U.S. Dollar, traveler's checks, and major credit cards. You will find that more stores are open between the hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A few other tips to keep in mind are as follows:

  • Cruise ship passengers descend upon George Town early in the mornings, so if it is possible, save your shopping trips for the afternoons. This will help you to avoid the crowds.
  • Be aware that haggling and bargaining is not commonplace in the Cayman Islands as it is in some other Caribbean Islands. Trying to do so with a salesclerk will be considered as poor form.
  • It is illegal to export products made from turtle, as well as Caymanite.

Whatever you plan to pick up, shopping in the Cayman Islands is a must. Not only will you need to bring home souvenirs for your friends, but you'll want to make sure you choose something for yourself as well. Be it a luxury item or a handmade craft, there are many great products to be found on the islands.

 

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