Stingray City: How it all started
Welcome to Capt. Marvin's, where our aim is to give you top quality stingray/snorkel tours, island tours, and fishing charters. Our company was established in Grand Cayman in 1951 by Capt. Marvin Ebanks, who is the 'granddaddy' and founder of snorkel trips to the Stingray City sandbar. Capt. Marvin remembers as a boy fishing with his father and stopping by a shallow area in the North Sound to clean their catch. They and the other fishermen noticed that stingrays would congregate and eat the fish scraps that were being thrown into the water.
Once masks and snorkels were in common use, Capt. Marvin took people out to the clear, warm waters of the North Sound to snorkel, pick up some conch, see the stingrays (still from the boat), and his crew would use spearguns to catch fish and lobster. The lunch break was on the beach near Rum Point, and the fresh catch was cleaned and steamed Cayman-style over a wood fire. The conch, meanwhile, was cleaned and marinated with Capt. Marvin's special marinade and served on soda crackers as an appetizer while the fish was steaming. Ms. Anna, Capt. Marvin's wife, would have cooked a big pot of rice and peeled and cooked potatoes in the morning for their famous potato salad as well, to bring along on the boat and serve with the fish lunch.
The trip used to last all day, from about 9 AM until about 5 PM, and those trips are what the old-timers remember that started all the interest in the stingrays, snorkeling and coral in the North Sound. Today the area is world-famous and several generations of stingrays later, they are still living in the wild and coming up to people for their snacks.
Some time in the 1980s some divers decided to get into the water with the stingrays at the shallow sandbar, and from there the trip has evolved to what it is now: interacting with the stingrays in their natural habitat.
Start with a cruise over to Starfish Point for sunset and starfish viewing, then get educated on the upside down jellyfish before going into bio bay to experience this phenomenon (swimming optional) of seeing the bioluminescence, something that only a few places in the world can offer.
Snorkeling at Coral Gardens
Keith educates the group at Stingray City
Trepidation turns to joy at Stingray City
Capt. Marvin's Watersports
Seven Mile Beach Office
Weekdays 8 AM until 5 PM EST
Weekends 8 AM until 4 PM EST
Open every day of the year except Christmas Day, Dec. 25th
George Town Office
Weekdays 10 AM until 3 PM EST
Closed on weekends