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Best and Worst Times to Visit Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman
The best time to visit Grand Cayman is March and April. Credit: Pixabay license

The best time to visit Grand Cayman is March and April. The worst time is September during the hurricane season. But these aren’t the only good and bad times.

It is because of the sometimes extreme temperatures and rainfall that the Caymans have distinct spikes and dips in the number of tourists who visit each month. Grand Cayman, the main island, is often one of the most popular destinations in the Caribbean, especially with western Caribbean cruises.

The chart below using data from the Caribbean Tourism Organization shows that March is the most popular month of the year to visit followed by December and July.

Popular Times to Go

December through April are especially popular times to go because of low risk of rainfall and more moderate temperatures. Northerners also want to get away from the cold and snow of winter. December and March also are popular because of winter and spring breaks from schools.

Cayman Islands Visitor Statistics
Cayman Islands overnight visitor statistics; © Caribeez.com

July has a jump in visits for families in part because school children are out for the summer. Even though July is a popular month, it is not necessarily a good time to go because of the reasons below.

It should not be a surprise that January through April also happen to be popular months to visit the islands via western Caribbean cruises because of their ideal combination of cooler temperatures and low rainfall.

Best Times to Go

The Caymans have one major event that also may impact the best times to go there. It is Batabano, the country’s biggest festival, which is scheduled for early May each year.

Otherwise, it is clear that December through April are the best months of the year to visit Grand Cayman, especially early April. April is a good choice because it has the warmest weather of the entire five-month dry season.

Hurricane Season

Grand Cayman monthly rainfall
© Scott S. Bateman

But it’s not just the heat that matters when visiting the Cayman Islands. It’s also the historical rainfall patterns.

The Cayman Islands hurricane season goes from June through November. The rainy season goes from May through November.

September and October are clearly the least popular months to go because of a high risk of heavy rains along with hot temperatures. September is the worst month of the Caribbean hurricane season, which officially goes from June through November.

Over a 30-year history, the islands have averaged less than two inches of rain from January through April and a little more than two inches in December, according to the Cayman Islands National Weather Service.

Rainfall starts to climb in May. The rainiest months in Grand Cayman are September and October during the height of the annual hurricane season. Hurricanes rarely hit Grand Cayman directly. Instead, they pass through the vicinity and bring heavy rains and wind to the island.

Average rainfall jumps to more than five inches in May, June and July. It exceeds six inches in August and jumps again to more than eight inches in September and October. December rainfall drops back down to about three inches.

Worst Time to Go

May through November, and especially September and October, are the worst months to visit Grand Cayman because of hurricane season.

Grand Cayman travel guide | Cruise port tips | Best time to go | Tourist attractions

Average Temperatures

Grand Cayman is somewhat unique among major Caribbean destinations because it is one of the few islands that has average daytime temperatures exceed 90 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer and fall.

These hot temperatures start in May and last into November. They make a difference for anyone visiting the Caymans by cruise who plans to spend more time shopping, dining and visiting attractions than spend time on the beaches.

The heat may be less of an issue for anyone planning to spend a week there mainly on the beaches during the day and shopping or having fun in the cooler evenings.

If hot temperatures are an issue, it is better to visit the islands from December through April when they average in the upper 80s Fahrenheit.

Cheapest Times to Go

© Cayman Islands Department of Tourism

September and October are the riskiest months to visit Grand Cayman because of the higher than normal amounts of rain. But they are sometimes the cheapest months to visit.

Hotels, resorts and cruise ships don’t like unsold rooms and cabins, so they are more likely to offer discounts to attract customers. Cruise lines can reduce the number of ships that visit Grand Cayman in the fall, but hotels and resorts can’t reduce the number of rooms.

Frugal travel planners can look for good deals during these months while keeping an eye on the 10-day weather forecast. If the forecast looks good, they should consider taking a last-minute trip to Grand Cayman if they also spot an attractive discount.

Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas. He is the author of four books about cruising in the Caribbean, Alaska and Mexican Riviera.
April 11, 2024

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