The second stop on the cruise was George Town, Grand Cayman. Father Tom and I had convinced Josh and Sara to join us on the excursion we were taking. Below is the description in the brochure.
Island Tour & Tiki Beach –
OVERVIEW: Enjoy the best of Grand Cayman with an island tour as well as time at Seven Mile Beach. HIGHLIGHTS: Enjoy an island tour that includes the Observation Tower with its panoramic views of Grand Cayman and stops at Hell to view the jagged rock formations and the rum cake factory to sample some delicious rum cake. Your tour concludes at Tiki Beach on Seven Mile Beach to relax or take a swim. A lounge chair and a welcome rum/fruit punch are included. The facilities include toilets, changing rooms and fresh water showers. NOTES: Additional beach activities available at guest’s expense and discretion. Snacks and drinks are available at a beach restaurant at your expense.
Because this port of call was so small we had to get into a smaller boat to get to the port. Once at port we were going to get into a small tour bus. Well there was some kind of problem with a bus being broken down so people were getting re-arranged into the buses that were present. So basically our bus was filled to capacity like sardines with no breathing space. This was not an issue for our little group of four because we managed to get good seats.
The first stop, at least I think it was the first stop was the Rum Cake Factory. Ahemmm. When I was a young girl and visiting my homeland of Puerto Rico we did the Barcardi Rum Factory Tour, in which we got to see the inside of the factory and the whole process of making rum and it was quite interesting. So I imagined this tour would be something similar. Ahemmmm.
Well not so much. The rum cake factory was no more than a small storefront in which they had everyone line up and you get to sample the rum cakes, which were yummy and I would have bought one but they did not have the flavor I wanted and some rum. Well, since I already had my Jamaican Coconut Rum
no need to purchase any more. Here are some of the pictures I took on that bit of the tour. There is more of the tour past the pictures.
We never did make it to the Observation Tower, which I imagined would be a nice place to stop and take pictures. Actually there was a bit of dissention in the group regarding that stop. I believe the stop where the Tower was located was near a shopping center but most of the shops were closed because it was “Box Day
“–I believe this is a U.K. holiday, the day after Christmas. So the driver convinced the bus load
that maybe we shouldn’t stop. Well, I looked out the bus window and there was a very pretty park and bay–so who cares if the stores were open–I didn’t come to shop I came to look at the scenery. So, I am like excuse me but I think we should take a vote on this and be democratic. Huh, well wouldn’t you know it no one, not even my tour buddies raised their hands to support me. I was so pissed. Well, the next part I don’t really remember the exact words but apparently I was so pissed that I said something along the lines of God-karma- and putting a curse on everyone. So, we don’t get off the bus–mind you some of the people are squished like sardines so I would have thought that a bit of leg stretching would have been in order.
Well, there is a God and there is karma because we could not continue to the next destination spot because all of the drivers were on a schedule to make sure not one venue gets over crowed. So instead of stopping by the bay for about 10-15 we all got to sit in a hot bus with no air conditioning while the driver stops in front of this pink house and starts to talk about the wood on the roof, the white sand that was brought on the lawn to simulate snow or some such cockamaney story–the bottom line was we were trapped sitting on the hot bus listening to some boring story because no one had wanted to get off at the bay. Yes, sir I would say that is instant karma.
The next stop was Hell. No, seriously that was the name of the town.
Hell, Grand Cayman island
Hell’s Gift Shop, Hell, Grand Cayman island
Hell’s Service Station, Hell, Grand Cayman island
Hell is a group of short, black, limestone formations located in Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. Located in West Bay, it is roughly the size of half a soccer field. People are not allowed to be amongst the limestone formations but viewing platforms do exist for visitors.
Hell got its name
There are numerous versions of how Hell received its name, but they are generally variations on “a local official exclaimed, ‘This is what Hell must look like.'”
It is also claimed that the name “Hell” is derived from the fact that if a pebble is thrown out into the formation, it echoes amongst the limestone peaks and valleys and sounds as if the pebble is falling all the way down to “Hell.”
Regardless of how it first came to be called Hell, the name stuck and the area has become a tourist attraction, featuring a fire-engine red hell-themed post office from which you can send “postcards from hell”, and a gift shop with ‘Satan’ passing out souvenirs while greeting people with phrases like ‘How the hell are you?’ and ‘Where the hell are you from?’
Below are my pictures of Hell. The story continues past the pictures…
L to R, Sara, Tom and Josh
The last stop on the tour was the beach–yeah finally!!!! It was beautiful and uneventful. Of course the talk at dinner that night was a recap of the day and how I cursed a bus-load of people because they didn’t want to get off of the bus.