Author Topic: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman  (Read 2520 times)

dari

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Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« on: September 21, 2015, 17:57:39 UTC »
Hi,

We've been to Grand Cayman and, more importantly, Little Cayman.  We are wondering if someone can compare Little Cayman to Cayman Brac.  We loved both diving and snorkeling (we’re crazy for both activities…) on Little Cayman.  And the island was lovely and relaxed, so we're trying to decide if we should return there, or try Cayman Brac.  Thanks for any input.

D and D

dari

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2015, 19:44:20 UTC »
and yes, we are too.   subscribers, that is.   
it's just not registering us!
 :D
D and D

amith2

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2015, 18:14:59 UTC »
Since no one seems to want to reply, I'll take a stab at it. Hope it's not too late.
 Brac is more developed than Little Cayman,  but still nothing at all like  GC.  The North/West side of the island has small towns, shops and commerce.  The South/East side has a few resorts, condos and homes. The East end of course has the bluffs.
Although there are a few dive operation on Brac, by far the biggest and busiest is Reef Divers out of Brac Reef resort,  which also runs out of Little Cayman Beach Club. If you stayed at LCBC you will find Brac Reef an almost identical experience-- friendly, well run operations that cater to your every need.  The diving on both islands is very similar, perhaps the tops of the walls on LC are a little shallower.  The walls on both islands are fantastic.    In short, if you like LC you'll like CB, just expect little more to do and see topside.  Hope this helps.

dari

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2015, 18:28:46 UTC »
Hi Amith2,
Thanks so much for your reply!!!  that's very helpful.  covers almost every topic!!!

i have one more question.
we are both fanatic divers AND fanatic snorkelers.  did you do any snorkeling when you were in both places.  we found some really fun snorkeling sites on Little Cayman (really really fun  :D)  and we want to know if that's true on cayman Brac as well.

again thanks so much for being the one person!!!! to reply!
take care
dari

amith2

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2015, 18:44:06 UTC »
Snorkeling is possible in front of Brac Reef but it is very shallow in the lagoon and the reef even shallower.  If you rent a car or scooter and ask at the dive shop they can point you to some good sites on the North side.  Again, it's about the same as LC.

dari

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2015, 18:54:50 UTC »
spectacular!  thank you so much!  we will definitely wander the island.
just a weird note.  we'd never encountered 'scads' before little Cayman.  Scads and scads of Scads!!!!.... (we actually researched the word origin and that is almost definitely where the word comes from.)  it was amazing.
that's great, Amith2.
again, thank you!

carriemak

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2015, 21:48:59 UTC »
Here is my opinion: every time I have been on Cayman Brac I wished I were on Little Cayman because the diving is so much better.  There aren't any bad dives sites on Little Cayman, they are all absolutely stunning.  I was on Little Cayman in August for my 20th visit and am counting the days until I return again.  Little Cayman Beach Resort and Cayman Brac Beach Resort are owned by the same family so they are pretty much the same.  What sets the 2 islands apart is the diving.

amith2

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2015, 22:50:19 UTC »
I kinda have to disagree with you in some ways.  Yes, there is some stunning diving on LC, especially Bloody Bay, but in the last few years, most of the shallower places on the north side seem, in my opinion, to be a little beat up.  There are far more dive boats competeing for sites on LC.  The walls on Brac offer diving that's just as spectacular, although perhaps not offering as good an interesting shallow water safety stop depth.  That all being said I'm looking forward to being in LC next week. 

aquaboy

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2015, 19:23:39 UTC »
I think the diving on Little Cayman is far superior.  Unbelievable sheer walls, often dropping off into the great abyss.  There's also a large amount of swim-throughs, canyons, chimney's etc.  It's all about structure.  Fish population is average at best on both islands.  The bulk of Brac dives are much deeper, and not very interesting.  There's absolutely not a thing to do on either island but dive, which is fine with me.  Both "Beach Resort" accommodations and dive operations are first-rate.  If you go to one of these resorts, make sure to do the afternoon (3rd) dive each day.  You will probably only have a few people with you on the boat, instead of a full group.  Have fun!

-hh

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2015, 20:36:00 UTC »
A couple of things.

First, my (unfortunately now a bit dated) personal map for shore diving sites on Cayman Brac:  http://www.huntzinger.com/dive/brac/brac-shorediving.html

Second, I'm going to agree with asmith2's comment about declining reef conditions on Little Cayman's north side, specifically in the famous marine park.  One of these years, I'm going to digitize and post a longitudinal study of those reef's health ... if I get to it within the next five years, I'll have had 30 years worth of photographic data.  The blunt reality is that these moorings have never had any fallow rest period since Paul & Donna Ingles put them decades ago while working for Gladys Howard, and they're being loved to death. 

I kinda have to disagree with you in some ways.  Yes, there is some stunning diving on LC, especially Bloody Bay, but in the last few years, most of the shallower places on the north side seem, in my opinion, to be a little beat up.  There are far more dive boats competeing for sites on LC.  The walls on Brac offer diving that's just as spectacular, although perhaps not offering as good an interesting shallow water safety stop depth.  That all being said I'm looking forward to being in LC next week.

A nice comparison; what many divers love about LC's northside marine park dive sites is that they're so shallow, which allows for long dives.  This also makes them quite excellent to also snorkel too.  Whereas most Brac wall dives are typically ~60ft to the top of the wall, which isn't good for snorkeling, plus it makes for shorter /deeper dives.   For shallow reef dives, the Brac is quite comparable to Little ... better, if you like Spur & Groove formations, as LC's northside is more akin to spot reefs (when it isn't so shallow that it is literally just hardpan). 

And while some folks really like LC's sheer wall sites (such as Great Wall West), from an UW photographic interest perspective, "Big and Flat" is actually quite limiting.  These walls are also in shadow, since they're northside walls - - that can be good for UW photographers composing sunball backgrounds, but not so good for non-photographers.   As such, they might prefer a dive on the plunging southside walls of Cayman Brac fully lit up in the sunshine...

...and when it comes to canyons and swim-throughs - - particularly if you like a large amount vertical relief - - while there is some nice stuff, particularly in LC's Jackson's Bight area, there's IMO more of it on the Brac and overall, a bit more satisfying.  Case in point, Paul's Anchors doesn't have anything like the Brac's Anchor Wall:  http://www.huntzinger.com/gallery/index.php/Brac/IMG_6095-anchor

-hh

DocV

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Re: Cayman Brac and Little Cayman
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2015, 02:50:29 UTC »
.  One of these years, I'm going to digitize and post a longitudinal study of those reef's health ... if I get to it within the next five years, I'll have had 30 years worth of photographic data. 

I'd dearly enjoy that, hh.

Cheers,

DocVikingo

 

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