Make sure you get around to experiencing at least a few of the suggestions below. They won’t disappoint!
By Simon Hénault
Let’s first hit the nail on the head: we drive on the left side of the road in the Turks and Caicos Islands. Exciting, right? Don’t worry, it’s easier than it seems, and driving around Providenciales is a must. We’re friendly and understanding, plus you’ll enjoy being a master of your own mobility.
Yearning for a slower pace? Consider cycling, walking, paddling or swimming to discover some of our most beautiful areas. Your holiday, your choice.
So where do you go?
Anywhere. Providenciales is only 38 square miles, so you can see everything in under a week. Sure, we definitely encourage you to discover our Sister Islands, but for this first of a series of articles, we’ll focus on what we affectionately call “Provo”.
Go West, like a local
If you’ve rented a car (and you really should), throw a few beach chairs and a cooler in the trunk, so you’re not limited to restaurants or bars. You may want to set up a temporary camp here and there on the island.
Located in Blue Hills, Da Conch Shack is recognized among the best beach bars in the world. Indulge in conch salad, fritters or any other way we cook up this local delicacy. And speaking of “local”, if you’re into photogenic views and dining with your feet in water, local restaurant Omar’s Beach Hut, located in Five Cays, will literally charm your socks off.
Head to Chalk Sound and walk a little ways to Sapodilla Bay, the ideal spot to spend a couple of hours with small children. If extra seclusion is more your vibe, Taylor Bay is nearby. It’s quieter, and if you suddenly feel 20 and fearless, you can even jump off the cliff. While you’re there, explore the turquoise waters of Chalk Sound on SUP, kayaks or on Las Brisas’ pontoon.
Turk’s Head Brewery produces our 3 local beers: I-AIN-GA-LIE LAGER; GON-TA-NORT AMBER ALE and DOWN-DA-ROAD IPA. You can also book a tour of the facilities.
In 1992, the government established a non-profit organization to protect, conserve and promote the cultural, historic and natural heritage of our islands called the Turks and Caicos National Trust. Cheshire Hall Plantation in Provo made the list. With over 5,000 acres in the early 1800s, this cotton plantation had close to 400 slave workers. Take a 30-minute guided tour ($10/person) to learn about this historical site. It’s the only one on Providenciales.
Ride like the wind
On a breezy day, you’ll quickly understand why Long Bay Beach is considered among the top places in the world for kitesurfing—yes, another ‘best’ award! Curious about giving it a go? Specialized schools are more than happy to get you started.
Leisure and luxury
Visit The Shore Club, the Blue Haven Marina or the Turtle Tail area to sneak a peek at some spectacular homes. Among them, the Wymara Villas and pink Villa Mani, a neighbor of Prince’s former palace, iconic purple driveway include.
North Caicos or Middle Caicos: what to expect
Caves, harbours, blue holes, plantations, cays, trails, lagoons, ponds and even a national park. North and Middle Caicos feature loads of non-beach natural attractions that are simply stunning and unique. As day trip destinations, you can’t go wrong. Imagine high limestone cliffs, hidden beaches, fascinating dry caves, the bluest sinkholes, plus endangered birds, plants and reptiles that can’t be found anywhere else. Hop a ferry and have a National Geographic moment, or two, that you’ll remember for a lifetime. In Turks and Caicos, our motto is “beautiful by nature” and we live up to the hype.
Golf, snorkeling, tennis, shopping, the Thursday night Fish Fry, homemade ice cream and more dining venues than we can list.
Overwhelmed? Don’t be. It’s simple to find your way around and local owners have made it their mission to help you out. For example, we, at White Villas, created a detailed, step-by-step 2-day itinerary for driving around Provo. And don’t forget the water. It’s really all about the water, here. Discovering Providenciales by sea is a whole other ball game. But we’ll save that for another post.
For more information on the Turks and Caicos Islands and to begin planning a vacation please visit Turks and Caicos Islands Official Tourism website.
Simon Hénault resides in the Turks and Caicos Islands and is the developer of White Villas which features 8 private villas on Providenciales. Family-owned and managed, it’s unique offering represents a safe, affordable alternative to the all-inclusive circuit, with attentive, family-oriented service that won’t break the bank – A travel option appreciated by their guests as their +100 5-star reviews testify. Visit WhiteVillas.net for detailed information or contact Simon by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 1 649 345-3179.