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The High Season & the Off Season

Hotels charge their highest prices during the peak winter period, from mid-December to mid-April. If you want to travel over Christmas or in the depths of February, especially around U.S. Presidents' Day weekend, you should make your reservations months in advance.

The off season in the Cayman Islands -- roughly from mid-April to mid-December, although this varies from hotel to hotel -- is one big summer sale, though summer travel to the Cayman Islands has become more popular in recent years. In most cases, hotels, inns, and condos slash 20% to 50% off their winter rates. Dollar for dollar, you'll spend less money renting a summer house or self-sufficient unit in the Cayman Islands than you would on Cape Cod, Fire Island, or Laguna Beach. You just have to be able to tolerate strong sun.

During the off season, beaches are less crowded and you can get good deals, but restaurants are often closed and hotels provide fewer facilities. Some hotels also use the off season to renovate -- so be sure to ask if any work is going on and make sure your room is far away from the noise. If you're traveling alone during the off season, ask about the hotel's occupancy rate -- especially if you want crowds!

Because there are such drastic differences between high-season and off-season rates at most hotels, we've included both for every lodging we review. Incredible savings can be enjoyed if you're willing to wait a few months for fun in the sun.

Weather

The weather during high season from mid-December to mid-April is perfect for hanging out on the beach: It's usually dry, and the cooling trade winds from the northeast moderate typically high temperatures. Sometimes a few days will be windy and cloudy, but these periods of inclement weather usually come and go quickly.

Weather-wise, the best month to visit the Cayman Islands is April, which boasts perfect warm weather before the heat of summer hits in May. In spite of the heat, many Europeans prefer a summer visit. As one visitor who hails from Yorkshire told us, "After a cold winter in the north of England, I've come just for the heat."

Rainy season is from late May until late November. However, it does not rain every day. Often the showers are short (albeit intense) bursts that are followed by clear skies and plenty of sun.

Even though the Cayman Islands are one of the world's leading scuba-diving destinations, divers often avoid the islands in August and September, when tropical storms can churn the waters. However, because the islands have so many dive sites, you can almost always find places to dive, even in August and September.

A Mighty Wind: Hurricanes on the Cayman Islands -- The curse of Cayman weather -- the hurricane season -- lasts officially from June 1 to November 30. But there's no cause for panic: Satellite forecasts give enough warning that safety precautions can be taken if a storm strikes during your visit.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.