If you are one of those people who only considers a vacation to be a success if sandy beaches and turquoise seas are in evidence, read on. We have the perfect place to fit your criteria, right here in Turks & Caicos.
A holiday in Turks & Caicos is all about the water. Everything you do, in some way, can be traced back to the beautiful turquoise shallows that lap this chain of islands and cays. Nestling quietly in the Atlantic, but with a heavy Caribbean influence, Turks & Caicos is a relatively unknown jewel in the ocean. If you are a water sign, a water baby or simply somebody who just loves anything connected to the sea, it’s time you considered a trip to Turks & Caicos.
Getting here is easy, you can fly direct from the US mainland. Only 90 minutes by air from Miami – it’s closer than the Caribbean islands, so cheaper and easier to get to. Many people first experience the beauty of these islands when they stop off on a cruise liner. But a short shore visit isn’t enough to do justice to this place – it deserves your full attention for at least a week or two.
Just add water
Your days on Turks & Caicos will feature lots of sea-going activities. Chartering vessels from leading island operators such as Grand Slam Charters is a fantastic way of getting your bearings. At www.gsfishing.com they have a fleet of beautiful vessels all offering different experiences. Whether it’s full on deep sea fishing on the hunt for wahoo and tuna, island hopping in the shallows, snorkelling in the reefs from the deck of a yacht or indulging your Robinson Crusoe fantasies with a smaller craft, this leading island operator will have what you need. With years of experience and a deep local knowledge, the staff at Grand Slam Charterswill be able to offer you a fun-packed, safe and memorable day on the water.
The marine life beneath the surface of the sea is extraordinary here. Snorkelling and scuba diving is extremely popular as many of the reefs are easily accessible both straight from the beach and off the deck of a boat. Hours can be spent exploring the rich waters where it is common to see turtles, rays, barracuda, starfish, eels and a huge kaleidoscope of colourful marine creatures. The waters are calm and warm which makes for easy viewing and snorkelling can be an activity enjoyed by all family members, young and old. Just remember to wear plenty of sun screen or, ideally, a T shirt, to protect your skin – when marvelling at the world through a mask underwater, hours can seem like minutes.
As well as water based fun, Turks and Caicos offers exciting alternatives on dry land. On the island of Middle Caicos, be awestruck by the Conch Bar Caves, limestone underground caverns with impressive geological credentials. If stalagmites and stalactites are your thing, head to the caves and prepare to be wowed.
Horse riding along the white sands of Grace Bay Beach is something enjoyed by many visitors. Either early in the morning before the sun heats up, or for the more romantic types, under the moonlight – this peaceful place is all about embracing a slower pace of life, something that’s easy to achieve in the saddle.
However, if a bit of speed and adrenalin in the saddle is desired, bike hire is another activity vacationers can seize upon. With many tracks and trails around the islands, cycling is growing in popularity and makes a great way of exploring areas inaccessible by vehicles.
Somewhere to stay
So what can you expect in terms of accommodation options? Well, you can expect a lot of choice, for a start. Although the tourist industry here has been developed along sensitive and measured lines, resulting in an exclusive and underexploited feel, there’s something to suit all budgets. If a pampering holiday at a spa resort is your dream, you’ll find it here. If you prefer going independent in your own beach side condo – you can have that too. Much of the accommodation is based on the island of Provodenciales (the main island where the airport lies) and one of the best places to start looking for great places to stay in up-scale accommodation, is Grace Bay Beach. This award winning and world recognised beach has been attracting plaudits from the travel industry for years, and the tide of converts is steadily growing.
So if you are seeking a holiday somewhere that allows you to indulge your love of the sea and all that goes with it, why not splash out on an adventure in Turks & Caicos?