Turks & Caicos Islands Travel Guide
About Turks & Caicos Islands
The Turks & Caicos Islands is a British Overseas Territory located just 575 miles southeast of Miami in Florida. Synonymous with luxury and known for its spas, world-class facilities await you on this picturesque island.
Forty different islands and cays make up the Turks & Caicos Islands, but only six are currently inhabited; this includes Providenciales, North Caicos, Middle Caicos, South Caicos, Grand Turk, and Salt Cay. There are also two large islands (West Caicos and East Caicos) that were settlements during the Victorian era but are no longer inhabited.
The Turks & Caicos Islands, with tagline beautiful by nature, boasts many uncrowded beaches and is home to Grace Bay Beach, an 11-mile stretch of pristine sand that in years past has been voted as the world’s best beach by Tripadvisor travelers. The diving in the Turks & Caicos Islands is also spectacular – the reefs are teeming with colorful tropical fish, but that’s not all that can be seen. Large stingrays, sea turtles, barracuda, sharks, snapper, lobster, and grouper can be seen on the miles-long underwater Wall of Grand Turk, offering the novice and the seasoned diver a feast for the eyes.
Visitors to the Turks & Caicos Islands can also find an array of water sports to engage in, such as Jet Ski rentals, boating, and parasailing, which is as calming to do as it is to look at. The Turks & Caicos Islands is a paradise for the interested traveler that provides more options than you ever thought possible.
Music and food intertwine to make your Caribbean experience delectable. Internationally acclaimed chefs offer fine dining cuisine that has hints of French and Caribbean influences. Your evening dining experience will be memorable as you look out at some of the most incredible sunsets the world offers.
Shopping is a truly enlightening experience on the Turks & Caicos Islands. The island does not have the trendy chain shops that dot the landscape of almost every beach town in the United States and some in the Caribbean. It is made up entirely of boutique, individual shops that offer beachwear, original art, woven textiles, iridescent seashells, and other unique items you’d expect to find in a beachside shopping gallery.
The Turks & Caicos Islands provide the tranquil vacation you have been looking for. Take a stroll on the beach at sunset and revel in the beauty of the island. Sip Turks Head beer and have a conversation with a local or visitors to the island. There’s no better time to enjoy life than right now. There’s no better place to do it than on the Turks & Caicos Islands.
Where To Stay In The Turks & Caicos Islands
Visitors to Turks & Caicos Islands stay in a wide variety of accommodations, including private rental, guesthouses, and luxurious all-inclusive hotels. Some of the best hotels in the Turks & Caicos Islands include:
- Ambergris Cay
- Amanyara Resort
- Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa
- COMO Parrot Cay, Turks & Caicos
- Grace Bay Club
- The Palms Turks & Caicos
- Point Grace Resort
- Seven Stars Resort & Spa
- The Shore Club Turks & Caicos
- West Bay Club, Grace Bay Resorts
- Wymara Resort & Villas
Activities In Turks & Caicos Islands
Major tourist activities in the Turks & Caicos Islands include:
- Touring the capital city of Cockburn Town, stopping at the Turks & Caicos National Museum to learn about the history of the islands
- Taking a guided tour through the cathedral-like limestones caves on Middle Caicos
- Snorkeling and diving the wall – a coral ridge that runs the length of Grand Turk
- Birdwatching within the national parks for over 170 species of birds found on the islands, including Cuban Crows, Flamingos, Pelicans, and Ospreys
- Whale Watching (late January through early April) for Humpback whales around the islands of Grand Turk and Salt Cay
- Visiting Provo to check out Caicos Conch Farm, and educational site and seafood farm
- Exploring Salt Cay, once a prime center of the salt industry now part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Swimming and relaxing and one or more of the islands beautiful white sand beaches, including Grace Bay Beach, often voted one of the best in the world
Facts About Turks & Caicos Islands
193 square miles
Turks and Caicos Islander
British Overseas Territory
Telephone Country Code:
left side of the road
Conch: cracked, steamed, fried or in coconut milk
Providenciales International Airport
120 V/60 Hz – plugs are US standard two and three-prong
Visa Information For The Turks & Caicos Islands
The Turks & Caicos Islands is a British Overseas Territory, and as such, the United Kingdom immigration rules apply. That said, visas are not required for citizens of the United States, Canada, and most European and Commonwealth countries.
All visitors to the Turks & Caicos Islands must have a valid passport and an ongoing ticket upon arrival as well as a way to support themselves, and prearranged accommodations. If you want to stay in the Cayman Islands for longer than three months, you will have to apply for an extension.
How Long Does It Take To Get A Visa For The Turks & Caicos Islands
With a valid passport and supporting documents, it typically takes seven to ten days for a Turks & Caicos Islands visa application to be processed by the nearest British Consulate or Embassy. An approved visa application grants entry to the Turks & Caicos Islands for three months.
Is It Safe In Turks & Caicos Islands
In comparison to major American and European cities, the Turks & Caicos Islands is relatively safe as crime levels are low. That said, it is though recommended that visitors be vigilant at all times, especially when away from the major hotels and tourist areas.
How To Get To The Turks & Caicos
Most visitors to the Turks & Caicos Islands arrive via the Providenciales International Airport (IATA: PLS, ICAO: MBPV), located on Providenciales.
From Canada, book flights to the Turks & Caicos Islands via:
- Air Canada: Toronto–Pearson
- Air Canada Rouge: Montréal–Trudeau
- WestJet: Toronto–Pearson
From the United States, book flights to the Turks & Caicos Islands via:
- American Airlines: Charlotte, Miami (Seasonal: Boston, Chicago–O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Philadelphia)
- American Eagle (Seasonal): Miami
- Caicos Express Airways (Seasonal): New York–JFK
- Delta Air Lines: Atlanta
- JetBlue: Fort Lauderdale, Newark, New York–JFK (Seasonal: Boston)
- United Airlines: Newark (Seasonal: Chicago–O’Hare, Houston–Intercontinental, Washington–Dulles)
From the United Kingdom, book flights to the Turks & Caicos Islands via:
- British Airways: London–Gatwick
From Europe, book flights to The Bahamas via:
- Condor : Seasonal: Frankfurt
Within the Caribbean region, book flights to the Turks & Caicos Islands via:
- Bahamasair: Nassau
- British Airways: Antigua
- Caicos Express Airways: Cap-Haïtien, Grand Turk, Port-au-Prince, Santiago de los Caballeros, Santo Domingo–Las Américas, South Caicos
- InterCaribbean Airways Cap-Haïtien, Grand Turk, Nassau-BAH, Kingston–Norman Manley, Port-au-Prince, Santiago de los Caballeros, Santo Domingo–Las Américas, South Caicos
- SkyBahamas Airlines: Freeport
- Sunrise Airways: Cap-Haïtien
When To Go To The Turks & Caicos Islands
The most popular time to visit the Turks & Caicos Islands is mid-December to mid-April when the weather is warm and sunny. The low season for the Turks & Caicos Islands is from August to late October when temperatures are sweltering and muggy. There is also a higher risk of tropical storms and hurricanes during this period.
Major events attracting visitors to the Turks & Caicos Islands include:
- February: Valentines Day Cup, model sailboat races
- April: Turks & Caicos Kite Flying Competition
- April: Salt Cay Day
- May: Big South Regatta
- May/June: Caicos Classic Annual Release Tournament, fishing competition
- October/November: Caribbean Food & Wine Festival
- November: Conch Festival
- December: Maskanoo Street Festival
- December: Junakoo & New Year’s Eve Street Party
Weather In The Turks & Caicos Islands
The weather in Turks and Caicos is warm year-round. The temperature ranges between 85°F and 90°F. Trade winds keep the area cool. The island is extremely popular during the January through April high season. The Grand Turk Game Fishing Tournament in July and the Turks & Caicos Conch Festival in November are also popular times of year to visit.
Getting Married In The Turks & Caicos Islands
Couples looking to get married in the Turks & Caicos Islands will need to apply for a marriage license via the Registrar Office. This license takes two to three working days to process.
In addition to the completed application for marriage, both the bride and groom will need their:
- birth certificates along with driver’s licenses or other forms of identification
- certificates of no impediment or single status report
Also, if applicable:
- divorce papers, i.e., decree absolute and/or death certificate of spouse
- proof of parental consent if under 21, stamped and signed by a solicitor
- proof of name change by Deed Poll stamped and signed by a solicitor
Persons must be on the island for 48 hours before applying for a marriage license.
Two people are required to witness the marriage.
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