Awesome Adventure | Swimming with Stingrays on Grand Cayman

By Shivana Maharaj
October 15, 2011

 

stingray in Grand Cayman

Photography By Froggy Gonzalez

Now in its 60th year of operation, Captain Marvin’s Watersports offers several options for exploring the ocean. We decide to take a half-day snorkel excursion, including a chance to swim with the rays at Stingray City. On board, we meet our friendly crew, including Froggy Gonzalez, the photographer for the trip who captures families and couples kissing the rays (a for- purchase dvd is available at the end of the trip). Like a mood ring, the ocean changes colour from turquoise to brilliant indigo, then sky blue. It takes about 20 minutes for us to reach the clear, shallow water at Stingray city. The sand bar is warm, and the thrill of dozens of sting rays brushing up against our legs and frolicking in our midst is unbelievable. Stroking the top of the ray, the texture of the skin is like a wet Portobello mushroom, while the underside is smooth and slippery. After a few minutes of getting used to the rays, we hear fellow passengers using words like “baby” and “cute” to refer to the creatures. Later at the coral gardens, we see colourful displays of fan, brain and Elkhorn coral. The crew does an amazing job calming a young passenger who is afraid of the ocean, getting into the water to comfort the passenger, and acting as a human flotation device. The finale of the excursion is a trip to the barrier reef. The three hour trip is leisurely, and we never feel rushed, but are left to enjoy at our own pace. Here’s to 60 more years!

www.captainmarvins.com

Read more in the Fall 2011 issue of City Style and Living Magazine