The Turks and Caicos Archipelago is situated on the Caribbean’s Caicos Plateau, which makes the perfect place for snorkeling in the shallows and diving or deep-sea fishing off the edge of the plateau. Providenciales, or “Provo,” is the most populated island in the archipelago, and the best option for a base of operations during a Turks and Caicos vacation.
The island boasts one of the best golf courses in the Carib- bean as well as luxury resorts and spas. But the real draw of Turks and Caicos is the pure natural beauty. With clear turquoise water, soft white sand beaches and no shortage of options around the island and surrounding cays, the 40+ Turks and Caicos islands are your oyster — or maybe your conch, in this case.
The shopping and nightlife district is sandwiched between the award-winning Grace Bay Beach on the north coast of Provo and Long Beach Bay on the southeast side of the island. Good dining options are plentiful, but the weekly fish fry at Bight Park on Thursdays is a must.
Both Grace Bay and Long Beach have beaches lined with colorful resorts and villas, and the two locations provide different opportunities to enjoy the pristine coast. The Grace Bay area offers snorkeling nestled in the curve of the island at Smith’s Reef and Bight Reef. Not much farther from shore is the second largest reef in the Atlantic, the Turks and Caicos Barrier Reef. Another offshore attraction is Provo’s famous friendly dolphin Jojo, who although wild, has been known to befriend humans. Once you have your fill of snorkeling, Long Beach Bay is a popular kitesurfing destination, thanks to the Eastern trade winds that carry surfers through the waves.
On the southwestern side of the island awaits one of the most stunning attractions, Chalk Sound Lagoon. An almost entirely landlocked lagoon filled with tiny islets, Chalk Sound is ready to be explored by paddle board or kayak. Aside from Frenchman’s Creek Nature Reserve, Chalk Sound Lagoon is one of the few places in the world with “ironshore” landscapes consisting of stunted salt-resistant shrubbery and heavily weathered limestone. The erosion of the limestone cliffs leaves sinkholes and caves that reveal centuries of history, marked by storms and marooned sailors alike.
The stunning natural beauty of Turks and Caicos makes it a truly unique experience. It is no surprise that Providenciales and surrounding islands are thought to be one of the Caribbean’s best kept secrets.
South Bank Marina
This full-service marina and boatyard is located off the island’s south shore along the Caicos Bank natural sheltered barrier. Amenities include a ships store, fuel, haul out, storage, megayacht concierge services, and the boatyard operates the only 75-ton marine travelift in Provo.
Blue Haven is situated in a sheltered cove on the eastern side of Provo. This full- service marina is complete with a concierge service, catering and dry-cleaning, and it can accommodate megayachts larger than 200 feet.
South Side Marina
A quieter marina and popular with cruisers, South Side Marina is on the southern coast of Providenciales, offering water, power, fuel, Wi-Fi, laundry, ice and a small pub.
The oldest recreational marina on the island, Turtle Cove is in the middle of Provo on the north shore, and it provides gas, diesel, water and power, as well as a boat ramp and restaurants. The location is naturally well protected from the elements.
A waterfront beach restaurant and rum bar, da Conch is a reliable spot to fill up on delicious traditional and modern island dishes. The restaurant features live music multiple times a week, and the menu ranges from fresh seafood to ribs, steak, and vegetarian dishes, making it one of the most popular restaurants on the island.
Infiniti is part of the Grace Bay Club. It is an open, gourmet oceanfront restaurant that has received the Wine Spectator award for the past four years for serving hand-crafted cocktails and premium ingredients on its high-end menu.
Coco Bistro is optimally located in the center of Grace Bay. The dining experience happens under the largest grove of palms on the island. The menu consists of fresh local dishes such as conch and local tuna, which cater perfectly to the beachy setting and earns the reputation of one of the best culinary establishments in Provo.