Grand Cayman offers several great shore diving opportunities that will compliment your week of boat diving. The “house reef” for Grand Cayman Dive/Off The Wall Divers is Cheeseburger Reef, so named for it’s proximity to Burger King and conveniently located just behind our home, the Lobster Pot Dive Center.
The reef is spread over 3-4 acres of the ocean bottom and contains vibrant coral colors and abundant marine life. Often spotted on the reef are large turtles and a resident school of tarpon. Don’t be fooled by the sands in the shallows. Here, you will come across number nudibranchs (lettuce leaf sea slugs), juvenile flounder, sea hares (a/k/a water bunnies), box crabs and squid ranging from juvenile to full grown.
Other shore diving around the island includes, but is not limited to:
- Lighthouse Point (Divetech) – this site offers a wide range of diving from a shallow mini-wall (about 30yds of shore) to the deep wall, much farther out. On the “main/deep” wall, you’ll find several large pinnacles that highlight the area. Because of location, you can sometimes experience a slight current.
- Turtle Reef (SunDivers) – this site features a large group of tarpon that call a “grotto” home with a mini-wall that could be termed “inverted”. Beautiful sponges, hard corals and wire corals are found throughout this site. One can dive this site 50 times and never see the same thing. Many consider Turtle Reef “the best shore dive in Cayman”. The site offers shallow diving, deep diving, an abundance of marine life, and just don’t be surprised to see the unusual.
- Cobalt Coast Resort (Divetech) – if you are into macro photography, give the shallows and miniwall at CCR a try – spectacular.
In general these three sites range from 15-25ft. in the shallows to 60ft. at the base of the miniwall. The “main” wall starts about 50-60ft. and “drops”.
It is customary to rent tanks from the respective operator at the site and at all locations around the island. EAN tanks are readily available at the above location too.
- Sunset House (Sunset Divers) – the house reef of Sunset House/Sunset Divers is home to the Cayman Mermaid. Or, if you want to venture 10 minutes out, you’ll find the small, front-end loader, the wreck of the David Nicholson. EAN available.
- Don Foster’s (Don Foster’s Diving) – here, the house reef for Don Foster’s Dive Shop features a solid reef formation running from 10-15ft. down to 60ft. Once you hit the 60ft. mark and see the sands, begin to look for southern stingray and the beautiful spotted eagle ray. An addition to this site is a small sculpture of a scuba diver, made from old bicycle parts. EAN available.
- Eden Rock/Devils Grotto (Eden Rock Divers) – an old staple of Grand Cayman shore diving, the two sites, divided by a patch of sand are highlighted by the numerous swim-thrus they offer. Look out for the schooling tarpon and during certain times of the year, swarms of silversides. EAN available
- Wreck of the Cali (Divers Down) – just off the dock behind Divers Down is where you’ll find pieces of the Cali, lying in 30ft. of water. This site is often busy with cruise ship snorkelers, but can be a wonderful shallow dive any day of the week.