Cayman Brac

The island is named for its high-rising bluff, called "brac" in Gaelic.

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Cayman Brac


For a diver, the main attraction here is a big one, the M.V. Tibbetts, a 330-foot long Soviet destroyer that rests in 50 to 100 feet of water.

This historic cold war relic, sunk in September, 1996, is complete with guns both fore and aft. Hatches into the ship have been barred off to ensure diver safety.

Painted a bright white when it was first sunk, the ship is starting to grow a coat of algae, and marine life is becoming more pronounced.

After diving, rent a car and go exploring. Several big caves, including ones which many islanders sought refuge in during the devastating 1932 hurricane, are open for exploring. You won't need a flashlight.

Skull Cave and the Bat Cave are the two most popular. Your rental car company or hotel can provide directions. With the roads running parallel to the coast, you won't get lost.

Cayman Brac has its own special semi-precious stone called Caymanite, found only in the 140-foot high bluff on Cayman Brac. All the Caymanite jewelry sold elsewhere originates here.

If you want to visit the workshop of a local Caymanian who crafts the stone into rings and ear rings (and who naturally has the items available for sale), visit N.I.M. Things in the village of Spot Bay. Prices often are substantially less than in Grand Cayman. Closed Sunday.

On top of the high bluff which dominates the Brac's east end is the easily accessible road leading to the light beacon at the tip of the east end. This is good birding territory, especially for brown boobies, frigate birds and peregrine falcons.

But the major interest is the Brac Parrot & Reserve, home of the Brac parrot which is similar in coloring but slightly smaller than the Grand Cayman Parrot.

These parrots used to nest on Little Cayman, too, but apparently were wiped out there by the 1932 hurricane which destroyed all of the large trees required for nesting. Only about 400 Brac parrots remain. Look for marked hiking trails here, too.

For dining on the Brac, La Esperanza (948-0531) in Stake Bay on the north coast, and the Captain's Table (948-1418) at the Brac Caribbean Village on the east coast are two of the favorite choices. La Esperanza is noted for its jerk chicken while the Captain's Table features fresh fish and seafood.

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