The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “outdoors”

Reflections on The Cayman Islands. Starfish Point

The Cayman Islands have to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. Seven mile beach is just that. The downside is the cost. As I understand how things work here, no tax is paid so the government claim their money on all items sold. Hence a litany of taxes and charges are added to each and every bill. An hour in the Kirk supermarket, a lovely clean supermarket that I wish we had in UK, is sadly enough to depress one when looking at the cost of food items. Think of a UK price and then increase it between 2-4 fold.

The Island itself is full of lovely coves and beaches and snorkelling reveals hundreds of fish and other underwater paraphernalia. The hateful sea urchins live surprisingly close to the shore, maybe less than 10 yards in places. Even 20 yards from shore there are moray eel type fish living in their little holes, spitting sand at snorkelers.

Starfish Point is well worth visiting , to see guess what, Starfish. In 20 minutes we also saw a wild dolphin, sea cucumber and an odd red jellyfish. The point is accessible by car but you need to know where to go and where to park. Most visitors come by boat and spend maybe 30 minutes there whilst we spent 2 hours. A hot place and there is no shade and no facilities of any kind.  The official boat trips seem to come earlier in the day and the starfish are collected from a little way out and you can find maybe 6 easily in the shallow waters, maybe more. So, midday is not a bad time to go.

Starfish Point on Grand Cayman

Starfish Point on Grand Cayman

Starfish Point on Grand Cayman

Starfish Point on Grand Cayman

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Winkworth Arboretum

Winkworth Arboretum is a National trust property about 5 miles from Guildford in a quaint town called Godalming. The most striking thing about Godalming is that the houses are massive and the Waitrose in the centre of town even larger. The impression given is that a huge crater was created into which Waitrose slotted to fill the hole, and the road then re-built to bypass said Waitrose. But I digress. The Arboretum is a decent place to walk but sadly the extensed winter meant that few plants were visible today other than the occasional daffodil or snowdrop. No evidence of the Magnolias coming to life.

The walk is also not an easy one, many steps and slopes means that the walk  might not be suitable for all. Can it be recommended? Maybe. One needs to return when spring has made an appearance to be decisive but I suspect it will become a nice place to walk. The Boathouse, is what it sounds, an old hut by the lake, but with chairs and old books in it gives the impression of a real old room. A sign on the door mentions that the NT have applied for permission essentially to have music and alcohol in here. Sounds good.

Winkworth Arboretum IMG_0144 IMG_0148 IMG_0150 IMG_0154 Winkworth Arboretum

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