This little nest is unique to Grand Cayman in many ways. It sits on a stretch of beach in Bodden Town, the island’s first capital, well away from more developed Seven Mile Beach, yet it's just 10 miles from George Town and the airport. The main building is a charming 8-room, white-washed inn with arches and a roof with terra-cotta tiles. There are also ten condos in two other buildings that have bigger two-bedroom, two-bath suites. All rooms are well maintained, freshly painted, and have fully equipped kitchens. If you're a cook, plan to prepare your own meals here, and if you like to grill there is a large gas grill sitting on the pool terrace. You are welcome to pick some of the fresh herbs growing in small beds by the front door of the inn.

It has the homey feel of a B&B, with creams and sun blocks in a basket sitting in the breezeway that faces the beach. Make use of the free lending library of pocketbooks and board games, or a movie to watch on your DVD player. There are also 95 channels on HDTV.

What really makes the Turtle Nest Inn special is its location in the geographic center of the island. In addition to being only 10 miles from the airport, it’s 20 minutes to the east end, and about the same up to the north end, where you can visit Rum Point or Kaibo Beach Club easily. (The inn makes it even more appealing as a base to explore the island with packages that include rental cars.) Unlike some of the more expensive options at Seven Mile Beach, the expanse of sand in front of the inn is large and uncrowded and dotted with mature coconut palms and comfortable beach chairs. The beach is also wide enough to take a long walk in either direction. You can snorkel on your own beach, in the shallow waters inside the reef where you'll see colorful fish. Alain & Marleine, are attentive owners and they will loan you some snorkel gear, or one of their sea kayaks at no charge. There are two ocean-front swimming pools of respectable size, each at terrace level.

You can have an affordable beach vacation here, and explore the island's culture in more depth. Shop at the local market and explore the small town and see what life is like for typical Caymanians. The historic Mission House is just down the street, and it's rich with island history and a talkative guide to show you around. While at Seven Mile Beach visitors watch the sun set, at the Turtle Nest in Bodden Town you see it rise.