Announcements Turks Caicos Information

The Sands at Grace Bay Announces Renovations and Upgrades Seasonal Closure

During what is normally a slow time in the Caribbean islands, Hartling Group announced Monday morning that it will close The Sands at Grace Bay resort on September 1 through October 14 and will utilize this time for some additional renovations and upgrades to theThe Sands at Grace Bay 2020 popular Grace Bay Beach resort.

“Our decision to close was not an easy one, said Karen Whitt, VP of Sales & Marketing for Hartling Group, however Hartling Group operates three resorts in the Turks and Caicos Islands, The Sands at Grace Bay, The Palms and The Shore Club, and this does provide some options. It is noted that The Shore Club will remain open for business as usual, and The Palms will offer an extended “long-term stay,” option for persons wishing to visit for 14 or 30 days with limited services. More details of that promotion will be shared in another release.”

The resort is currently contacting guests with existing reservations at The Sands with options for their stay. Clients can also contact our reservations department at [email protected] or call toll-free 877-777-2637.

The Turks and Caicos Islands re-opened their borders on July 22, and visitors have been enjoying the usual low-density, high level service and amenities that the TCI has become famous for. The top priority of Hartling Group has been the health and well-being of our guests, employees, and the community. We look forward to resuming normal operations and welcoming visitors back to The Sands at Grace Bay on October 15th.

The sands at Grace Bay Hobie CatThe Sands at Grace Bay is situated on the world-renowned 12-mile crescent of powdery white sand known as Grace Bay Beach. The Sands at Grace Bay continue to gain acclaim showcased by the many awards and positive guest reviews that our resort and dedicated employees continue receiving, including “Best Family Resort” in The Caribbean Journal Travelers’ Choice Awards for 2019; “Guest Review Award;” and Family Vacation Critic once again named The Sands as a “2019 Family Favorite Hotel.” The resort is proud to carry the acclaim as a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence property for the eighth year. Plus U.S. News & World Report has named The Sands as one of the 2019 “Best Hotels in the Turks and Caicos”– a commendation the resort has received since 2015.

This 114-room resort offers accommodations in junior suites and 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom suites ranging from 1,000 to 1,600 square feet, all of which combine comfort-focused amenities and spectacular natural surroundings. Suites also come with fully equipped kitchens appointed with stainless appliances, dining and living room areas, private balconies, washer/dryers and more. The Sands at Grace Bay is the home of Hemingway’s Restaurant and Bar – a legendary beach-side venue and local favorite. Spa treatments by Spa Tropique are also available by appointment.

For additional information or to book, visit – or call toll-free from the U.S. (877) 777-2637 or from Canada (800) 567-5327. Travel agents receive ten percent commissions for bookings made at The Sands at Grace Bay.


Announcements Turks Caicos Information

Sharing Hartling Heartfelt Hospitatlity

The Sands at Grace Bay - Hartling Heartfelt Hospitality

The Sands team members are committed to delivering a memorable welcome with their usual great smiles — but at least for a while, we will stop shaking hands, hugs, and kisses with this in mind the gesture of hands to our hearts is our way of welcoming you with Heartfelt Hartling Hospitality as we work together to keep Turks and Caicos Coronavirus free.



Just For Fun Turks Caicos Information

How to Avoid Constant Screen Time on Summer Vacation

Mom and Dad are taking a break, too.

Summer vacation is just around the corner. For children it typically means freedom from the day-to-day routine of school. However, for parents the words “summer vacation” tend to conjure up a dilemma: how to make sure devices and screens don’t fill every waking minute of every day for two months.

Too much screen time has indeed been linked to sensory overload, lack of sleep, diminished ability to recognize emotions and even genuine addiction. On top of that, by keeping themselves glued to their screens, your kids may be missing out on many of the summer pastimes that have marked childhood since time began, from going to the beach, exploring the neighborhood with their friends to simply dealing with being bored.

In limiting screen time for kids, you are working to create a healthy “play diet” that balances many types of play. You can keep screen time as part of this play diet, while also ensuring your kids get in some social, physical, unstructured, and creative play.

But how to achieve this balance?

Here are some tips for limiting screen time while helping your kids enjoy a fun and memorable summer. And remember: success comes when parents enforce the family rules while demonstrating by by example.

Tips for Limiting Screen Time in Summer

Kids these days use their devices for everything: research for school projects, texting with friends, letting us know they’re safe when they’re out, as well as for gaming and consuming media. Yet kids need to spend time outdoors or reading books, or simply just thinking.

However, it can be difficult to set and then reliably and consistently enforcing rules. As with most everything else in life, developing a game plan can help pave the way for success.

summer screen time with kids

Tip 1: Be Realistic

“Forbidden fruit is the tastiest,” says Lucy Jo Palladino, a clinical psychologist and author of Parenting in the Age of Attention Snatchers. Completely banning screen time may simply double the desire of your kids to get online.

Instead, be realistic: devices are a part of everyday life for kids. Accept that fact, and create a flexible plan that manages screen time.

Tip 2: Start With an Endpoint

Negotiate the length and amount of screentime with your kids ahead of time. Either set firm time limits, or limit screentime to the duration of a specific program. That way, one show won’t flow into the other, and you can avoid commercials.

Because most games don’t have built-in endings (and are, in fact, designed to make kids play as long as possible), set a timer or some other cue that says “time to stop.”

Tip 3: Help Kids Balance Their Day

Kids need guidance from you on a daily plan that includes a little bit of time for everything. Kids whose parents make an effort to limit media use spend less time with media than their peers do, according to a study. As parents, it can be easy to nag kids to try to get them to do things, but this will not necessarily work with limiting screen time.

Instead, it’s best to work on a concrete plan that structures activities throughout the day. This gives kids a sense of predictability, and also lets them know what your expectations are. They can also more easily refrain from turning to devices when bored by focusing on some other activity.

The American Academy of Pediatrics’ worksheets to create a family media plan that can help you and your kids balance their day.

Tip 4: Walk the Talk 

If you want to make sure your kids reduce screen time this summer, it’s important to model behavior. It’s tempting for adults to keep reaching for your phone to check email, texts, Facebook, or the news. But your kids will be the first to call you out for not “walking the talk.” Plus, they’ll pick up habits from you.

Model the media behavior, and enjoy your summer, too!

Why Not Take a Family Vacation in Turks and Caicos?

If you want to make sure your kids have plenty of things to do besides stare at a screen, why not plan a family vacation in Turks and Caicos? Check out our blog post 5 Fun Activities In Turks and Caicos to get some ideas about what to do while you’re here.

Announcements Awards Turks Caicos Information

Winning, Winning, Winning…The Awards Keep Coming for The Sands

We are thrilled to share that The Sands at Grace Bay located along the 2018 TripAdvisor World’s Best Beach in Turks and Caicos continues gaining awards and acclaim — On the heels of our multi-million dollar renovation and thanks to our hardworking staff who serve our guests with unparalleled hospitality!

Our resort is proud to once again carry the acclaim as a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence property for the seventh year. The achievement celebrates hospitality businesses that have earned great traveler reviews on TripAdvisor over the past year. TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence recipients include accommodations, eateries and attractions located all over the world that have continually delivered a quality customer experience.

U.S.News & World Report has named The Sands at Grace Bay as one of the 2018 “Best Hotels in the Turks and Caicos” — an acclaim the resort has received since 2015.

Additionally, we would also like to thank our past guests for your reviews that have made The Sands a 2018™ “Loved by Guests” award winner are based on verified guest reviews.

We are very proud to continuously receive such prestigious awards,” said Mona Beeson, GM of The Sands at Grace Bay. “The Sands truly is better than ever! Having our resort receive such praise demonstrates how much our commitment to excellence, the high level of service provided by our staff, and the affordable luxury we offer on Grace Bay Beach is appreciated and recognized by our guests.”

Announcements Awards Just For Fun Turks Caicos Information

TripAdvisor Names Grace Bay Beach as World’s Best Beach In 2018 Travelers’ Choice Awards

Travel planning and booking site, TripAdvisor®, today announced the winners of its Travelers’ Choice® awards for Beaches. Drum-roll please…Grace Bay Beach in Turks and Caicos won the top honor as the best beach in the world this year, reclaiming its crown from 2016.

According to TripAdvisor, the company has awarded 355 beaches overall, including the top 25 in the world and local lists for Asia, Europe, Africa, South Pacific, South America, Middle East, Caribbean, Central America, Australia, Brazil, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, the U.K. and the U.S.

“Soft sand, clear waters and balmy temperatures are common threads among these Travelers’ Choice award-winning beaches that have delighted millions of TripAdvisor reviewers across the globe,” said Brooke Ferencsik, senior director of communications for TripAdvisor. “The Caribbean and Florida stake claims as the most decorated on the world and U.S. lists respectively, and based on TripAdvisor price reports, travelers can still find outstanding value on warm-weather escapes to these popular beaches this year.”

For the complete list of Travelers’ Choice Beach award-winners for 2018, as well as the latest reviews and candid traveler photos, visit: Travelers can also follow the conversation on Twitter at #TravelersChoice.

The Sands along TripAdvisor’s 2018 World’s Best Beach
Turks Caicos Information

‘Is It Safe to Touch Coral?’ and Other Questions About the Caribbean

Smith's Reef Turks and Caicos
Smith’s Reef Turks and Caicos. Photo by Flickr user Tim Sackton. Image license: Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0).

One of the questions we frequently get from our gets here at the Sands Resort: “Is it safe to touch coral?”

Our typical answer: “Although it’s generally not safe for you to touch coral here in the waters of Turks and Caicos, it’s definitely not safe for the coral. With that in mind, we’d like to provide a brief summary of coral etiquette: how to enjoy and protect coral reefs in Turks and Caicos and the rest of the Caribbean.

Smith's Reef, Turks and Caicos Islands
Smith’s Reef Turks and Caicos. Photo by Flickr user Tim Sackton. Image license: Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0).

Coral Species of the Caribbean

There are about 65 species of hard corals in the Caribbean. Corals provide protection and shelter for many species and protect the coast from erosion and flooding caused by strong currents and waves. The Caribbean is home to its own unique coral reef biota, a direct result of the closing of the Isthmus of Panama 3-4 million years ago. After that, the Caribbean was isolated from the Pacific Ocean.

The Basics of Coral Biology

Corals themselves are in fact colonies of very small animals. The corals live in colonies that may taken hundreds of years to form. The visible part of the coral is its skeleton, while the animals themselves live inside as part of an interconnected colony. The corals feed on plankton that drifts by, and also often form a symbiotic relationship with algae.

In exchange for a safe place to live, the algae use photosynthesis to convert carbon dioxide from seawater into energy for the corals.

Hard corals

Corals can be divided into two main types: hard corals (also known as stony corals, or scleractinians) and soft corals (gorgonians or octocorals). Stony corals are the most important reef builders, but organpipe corals, precious red corals, and blue corals also have stony skeletons.

Soft corals

Soft corals differ from hard corals in that they don’t produce a calcium carbonate skeleton, so they’re not as rigid as other corals. In addition, these corals usually have a unique bumpy or feathery appearance, due to the particular way they grow.

Coral in Turks and Caicos

At least 60 species of coral live in the waters off the Turks and Caicos. Hard coral varieties include staghorn, elkhorn, pillar, star, and brain. Sea fans, sea whips, and sea plumes number among the soft varieties.

Coral Reefs in Turks and Caicos

The Turks and Caicos Islands are home to one of the longest barrier reefs in the world – it’s over 125 miles long, and protects the north shore of the island of Providenciales. The barrier reef is and an ideal spot to observe humpback whales, and with underwater visibility exceeding 100 feet in most locations, the coral reefs, sea mounts and sea walls that surround the islands are perfect for encountering schools of tropical fish, sea turtles, eagle rays and even sharks.

There are also reefs closer to our resort on Grace Bay Beach.

Coral Gardens

Also known as Bight Reef, the Coral Gardens snorkeling area is just a short walk down the beach from the Sands at Grace Bay resort and is one of the most popular snorkeling areas in Providenciales. The shallow and calm waters that can be accessed right from the beach, the diversity of fish, the clearly marked boundaries, and the safely roped off area make this a great spot for families and beginners to snorkel.

Smith’s Reef

Smith’s Reef is actually a number of reefs located close to Turtle Cove, a resort area to the west of the international airport.

Smith’s Reef is a bit isolated and can be a little harder to find than other popular areas, so be sure to ask our concierge for directions.

Other conditions to be aware of at Smith’s Reef include tides and currents. Snorkelers should also watch out for Lionfish. Lionfish are an invasive species that have become common in some parts of the Turks and Caicos. While Lionfish are not aggressive, their spines are poisonous.

Fire Coral in Turks and Caicos

There are several species of coral-like “fire corals” (hydrocorals) that can give stings if touched. It might hurt instantly, or there may be delayed pain or itching, kind of like a jellyfish sting. These stinging corals are typically marked and identified, but it’s one more reason to never touch corals when you are snorkeling.

How to Protect Coral Reefs

The number-one thing to remember about touching corals is that you, as a human, pose the most danger.

Simply touching corals to see what they feel like can cause the death of an entire colony. Oils from your skin can disturb the delicate mucous membranes which protect the animals from

Needless to say, walking or standing on coral will kill the living coral polyps that are the builders of the reef structure. So, as a rule, never stand on coral to adjust mask. Swim well and clear of the reef and kick to keep head out without the possibility of kicking the reef, or search for a sandy or coral free shallow place to stand. Don’t touch, pickup or hold reef life.

5 Ways to Protect Coral Reefs Anywhere in the World

You can also protect coral reefs from just about anywhere in the world. Here are five ways to help:

1. Help reduce pollution

Walk, bike or ride the bus. Fossil fuel emissions from cars and industry raise lead to ocean warming which causes mass-bleaching of corals and can lead to widespread destruction of reefs.

2. Research what you put on your lawn

Although you may live thousands of miles from a coral reef ecosystem, these products flow into the water system, pollute the ocean, and can harm coral reefs and marine life.

3. Don’t litter

Don’t leave fishing lines or nets behind in the water or on the beach. Any kind of litter will harm the reef and the fish.

4. Support reef-friendly businesses

When you travel, ask your dive or snorkeling operators how they protect the reef. Be sure they promote reef-friendly activities, and ask if the organization responsible is part of a coral reef ecosystem management effort.

5. Practice safe and responsible diving and snorkeling

Remember, do not touch the reef. Contact with the coral will damage the delicate coral animals.

Turks Caicos Information

Five Tasty Caribbean Dishes You Shouldn’t Miss

turks and caicos conch festival
Image source:

Often one of the best parts of traveling is the food. And the Caribbean provides excellent opportunities to experience a wide variety of culinary cultures.

Thank to the long and varied history of the region, with connections to Spain, Africa and the American South, every island chain in the Caribbean represents its own unique cultural crossroads.

One of the benefits of this cross-pollination is fantastic food. Here are some tasty Caribbean foods you should not do without.

Jerk Chicken

Spicy “jerk” is a quintessential Caribbean food. The term jerk is said to come from the word charqui, a Spanish term for jerked or dried meat. Meat, fish or vegetables are rubbed with seasonings and then are slowly grilled over a wood fire. As a result, jerked foods take on a spicy-sweet flavor and tender texture that’s unmatched.

Here is a dish that combines Cajun-style shrimp with jerk chicken.


Pepperpot is a spiced vegetable soup that is just hearty enough to be a meal. This stew has a distinctly Caribbean flavor thanks to a taste of coconut. Scotch bonnet peppers or 1 habanero pepper gives Pepperpot its name and its fiery taste.

Chicken and Rice

Chicken and rice, or Arroz Con Pollo, is often called the official comfort food of the Caribbean. Popular in the Caribbean wherever Spanish influences remain strong, this simple dish is a savoury mix of flavors that include tomatoes, garlic and peppers and more. The dish is baked and smells absolutely delicious.

Crab Rice

Crab and rice is our own special treat here on Providenciales. The dish, which features the blue crab common to the Turks and Caicos, is a local comfort food and can be ordered in most restaurants on the island.

Conch Fritters

While conch fritters are said to be the characteristic food of the Turks and Caicos, this dish is said to be a relatively new arrival to the islands.

The Caribbean Queen conch is the native mollusk and number one export for the Turks & Caicos Islands. It’s said that each of the islands in Turks and Caicos produces its own unique flavour of conch meat.

Fried Fish

Fried fish is also a new addition to the cuisine of Turks and Caicos, but it has grown to become a cornerstone of community life in Providenciales.

Every week Provo hosts the Thursday Night Fish Fry near the Bight Park.

It’s a great way to taste local cuisine and also meet the local residents of Providenciales. Conch Festival The Conch Festival is held on the last weekend of November every year in Turks and Caicos.

A photo posted by Conch Festival (@conchfestival) on

This event kicks off the Christmas season on Providenciales. It’s a lot of great food and fun for the whole family.

What’s Your Favorite Food When You Visit Us?

Do you have a favorite food or place to eat when you visit Turks and Caicos? If you do, let us know in the comments.

As well, if you want to get an in-depth look at the cuisine of Turks of Caicos, be sure to check out the @TCIFoodandCulture Instagram feed. The photos are mouth-watering and verge on “food porn.”

Turks Caicos Information

Island Hopping the Caicos Bank

The Turks and Caicos Islands lie in the Atlantic Ocean to the east of the Bahamas, and about forty minutes by plane from Miami and the North American mainland.

The archipelago of 40 cays and islets sits on a sea mount called the Caicos Bank, which rises up from the Atlantic Ocean. Each cay is unique and provides a glimpse of life in the Caribbean in times gone by. And all around is a spectacular shallow turquoise sea of the Caicos Bank.

Turks and Caicos Map
By Flickr user Rian Castillo. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

A String of 40 Islands and Cays

The Turks and Caicos Islands consist of 40 islands and cays (pronounced keys) that rise above the submerged Caicos Bank, including our own island of Providenciales, or Provo. Provo is one of the Caicos islands. Middle and East Caicos can be reached fairly easily from Providenciales. Salt Cay, in the southeast corner of the Caicos Bank, is harder to reach. To the east of the Caicos Islands, across the Caicos Channel,  lies island of Grand Turk.

Exploring the Caicos Islands Chain

While Grand Turk is an interesting place, if you’re staying on Providenciales it’s easiest to plan an adventure to isolated spots on the Caicos Bank, to visit the Caicos Islands.

The Caicos islands are:

  • Providenciales
  • Middle Caicos
  • North Caicos
  • South Caicos
  • East Caicos
  • West Caicos

Each has its own unique character, and provides a glimpse of the Caribbean of days gone by.


The Sands at Grace Bay is located on the calmer, leeward side of Providenciales. Grace Bay Beach is protected from strong trade winds that power the large breakers which are very popular with surfers and kiteboarders on other parts of the island.

Island tours can be arranged from Providenciales, typically by ferry or by plane. The ferry to Middle Caicos leaves from Blue Haven Marina on Leeward, while flights to other cays depart from Providenciales Airport.

North Caicos

After landing on North Caicos you will set off to explore the conch bar caves and venture deep inside the earth with your native guide to view stalactites and stalagmites, bats, white owls and incredible limestone formations.

Middle Caicos

However, now that you’re on North Caicos, continuing to travel on to Middle Caicos is well-worth the effort. A narrow sandy causeway connects the two islands. While it is possible to walk the trail to reach Middle Caicos, it would take far too long.

Caving on Middle Caicos

This adventure begins with a scenic boat ride from Provo to North Caicos—you can most easily get to the caves of Middle Caicos from North Caicos—where you’ll stop along the way to snorkel on the barrier reef.

Middle Caicos itself is home to just 300 full-time residents. It’s a wonderful day trip by boat from Provo.

East Caicos

East Caicos is an uninhabited island but is large in size being 18 square miles. Swamps and mangroves inundate a majority of the island, you can find the highest point of the islands here. There is a splendid 17 mile beach on the northcoast of the island, this is usually only used by sea turtles to lay their eggs because of the large mosquito population.

South Caicos

Located to the southeast of Middle Caicos, South Caicos is not a day trip. Instead South Caicos is a destination in its own right. It can be accessed by water taxi, but it’s far easier to fly there.

Island Hopping in the Turks and Caicos

Full Day Caicos Bank Cruise (Dream Day Getaway)

If you want to truly experience the wild, natural beauty of the Turks and Caicos, a full-day trip up the Caicos Bank to the east of Grace Bay and the Leeward side of Providenciales is the way to do it.

As its name suggests, Caicos Bank is notable for its shallow, crystal-clear water and white sands.

The full day excursion makes a stop at Leeward Reef for snorkeling right from the boat. Leeward reef is located off the northeastern, leeward tip of Providenciales and has been left relatively untouched by development.

The tour also explores some of the more remote cays that most visitors never get to see. One of these small islands is Fort George Cay, less than an hour by boat to the east of our resort.

Fort George Cay is an uninhabited island that once was home to a small fort that protected the Caicos islands from pirates. Some of the gun emplacements still remain, which makes for an incredible beachcombing experience.

As part of its full-day excursion, Caicos Dream Tours provides a delicious BBQ feast.

After lunch the tour resumes with snorkeling at the spectacular coral beds off Pine Cay and exploration stop at Half Moon Bay.

Private Tours to North and Middle Caicos

North and Middle Caicos are the two largest islands in the country. They lie to the east of Providenciales and are connected by a sandbar. Few people live on these islands, and they offer a chance to get a glimpse of the Caribbean of the past.

Both cays feature some fantastic scenery and equally fantastic beaches. Middle Caicos is famous for Mudjin Harbour’s beautiful beach, located on the northern shore of the island and the spectacular Conch Bar Caves.

Plan Your Excursion

The excursions may be conveniently booked by guests of The Sands at Grace Bay at our Tour Desk, located by our main swimming pool. Learn more here.


Turks Caicos Information

How to Move to the Turks and Caicos: a Short Introduction

Provindenciales in Turks and Caicos is regularly recognized as one of the best islands in the world. It’s a nice place to visit, and an even nicer place to live.

In fact, in 2015 Providenciales, or “Provo” was recognized as the number one island in the world in the 2015 by the TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Awards.

Providenciales World's Best Island

Anyone who has ever visited our island can tell you why: perfect weather, friendly people and a relaxed island vibe all combine to make Providenciales a perfect place to visit.

It also helps that Provo is home to the world’s best beach: Grace Bay.

sands grace bay guest comments
Grace Bay Beach and the Bight Reef, near the Sands on Grace Bay

While tourism has rebounded dramatically following the economic downturn of 2007, Providenciales and the Turks and Caicos are only just starting to be considered as a retirement destination.

Over the past decade major infrastructure projects such as a revitalized airport have led to more frequent direct flights to Providencials (PLS).

turks and caicos golf

And, the recovery of the global economy has meant an increase in construction projects on Providenciales aimed at boosting the islands relatively small stock of retirement villas.

If you have considered retiring on Providenciales we have created this short guide to help get you started.

Who Lives In Turks and Caicos?

The islands are home to roughly 30,000 full time residents, and welcome more than 200,000 tourist annually.

The Turks and Caicos is home to a multi-ethnic and international population. People come here from all over the Caribbean and all over the world to work in the tourism sector.

The Turks and Caicos is also a port of call for many adventurers and dreamers who have come here searching for a simpler way of life and a chance to experience the Caribbean of days gone by.

Still, there is a strong and proud local culture here of “Belongers.”

beach soccer

The majority of the “Belonger” population are descendents of Africans who were brought to the Caribbean with Bermudians in the 1700’s to work on the salt pans and later with Loyalists to work on cotton plantations.

But thanks to the charm and beauty of the Turks and Caicos Islands there is also a growing number of “expatriate” residents of North American, European and Asian descent who discovered the magic of

Why Relocate to Turks and Caicos?

Providenciales and Grace Bay Beach are routinely ranked as the world’s best places to visit.

Anyone who ever comes here raves about the sublime beauty of Grace Bay Beach’s powdery white sand and crystal-clear water.

Blue Hills Settlement
By Flickr user Daniel Ross . (CC BY-SA 2.0)

However, Providenciales is more than a place to visit. There is a rich island culture here. There is also delicious food at some of the most sophisticated restaurants in the Caribbean.

If you like sailing, scuba diving or fishing, there are also 40 islands and cays to explore all across the shallow Caicos Bank.

And the weather is sunny and warm for almost the entire year.

Quiet, Safe, Sunny and Warm

In an average year the Turks and Caicos has 350 days of sunshine.

That means there are just two weeks of the year when you may not be able to enjoy a round of golf at one of the top golf courses in the Caribbean.

The average temperature ranges between 85 and 90 degrees (29-32 degrees celsius) from June to October, sometimes reaching the mid 90’s in August and early September.

Grace Bay Beach
By Flickr user Daniel Ross. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

From November to May the average temperature averages an even more pleasant 80 to 84 degrees (27-29 degrees Celsius).

A constant trade wind keeps the climate at a very comfortable level.

Where else would you want to spend the rest of your days?

Where Are the Turks and Caicos?

The Turks and Caicos Islands is an archipelago of 40 cays and islets located about an hour by air from Miami, and about 3 hours by air from New York.

The Turks and Caicos sit atop the Caicos Bank. It’s a massive underwater seamount rising up from the deeps of the ocean floor. Just offshore to the north of the Caicos islands run barrier reefs. To the south lies the shallow waters of the Caicos Bank.

Its 40 islands and cays are perfect for exploring.

Turks and Caicos Map
By Flickr user Rian Castillo. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

While Grand Turk in the east, across the Caicos Channel, is the capital of the territory, Providenciales on the western end is the most populated of all the islands. The main airport is located on Providenciales, as well as many of the resorts and real estate developments.

Besides world-class restaurants and fine dining, Providenciales is also home to convenient, well-stocked shops such as the Graceway grocery chain.


While Providenciales is home to major luxury resorts, the island still retains much of the atmosphere of the old Caribbean.

The main urban center of the island is the Bight Settlement. Besides being close to shopping and services, the Bight is also the location of the Bight Reef, a coral reef within wading distance from the shore of Grace Bay.

Like the Bight, the settlement of Blue Hills is built around a supply of fresh water. Both the Bight and Blue Hills give a real feeling of Caribbean villages. In the Down Town section, near the airport there are retail shops, business offices and banks.

Chalk Sound
Chalk Sound. By Flickr user Tim Sackton. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

On the southwestern end of Providenciales, about ten minutes by car from Down Town, lies Chalk Sound. It’s a large lake with striking turquoise water and an array of small cays.

On the far western end is unspoiled Malcom’s Beach, just adjacent to the magnificent Amanyara Resort. On the eastern end of the island is Blue Haven Marina and development.

How Is Shopping On Turks and Caicos? What About Internet Service?

If you’re considering relocating to Turks and Caicos, be reassured: there’s reliable Internet on Providenciales offered by a variety of providers.


For shopping, many locals depend on IGA’s Graceway chain of supermarkets. Grace Bay, the main tourist area of Providenciales, features Graceway Gourmet, an upscale grocery store with fine, natural and organic foods.

zika virus turks caicos
Photo by Tobias Linman, Flickr

Windward or Leeward on Providenciales?

Generally speaking, when people talk about Providenciales they refer to “windward side” or “leeward side.” Leeward stretches along the northeast coast of Providenciales.

The placid waters of beautiful Grace Bay Beach is on Leeward. The water is so calm on Grace Bay Beach because it is in the “lee” of the wind, and is protected from the easterly trade winds that come in off the Atlantic.


Leeward end is also the location of shallow mangrove swamps. It’s the perfect place to go kayaking or paddle-boarding.

Long Bay Beach, Windward
Long Bay Beach. By Flickr user Jussi Ollila. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The opposite side of the island receives constant trade winds year-round. Thanks to these winds, Long Bay Beach on Providenciales is known as one of the best kite surfing locations on the island.


Long Bay Beach is also famous for its pony rides. It’s one of the wilder and less-developed corners of Providenciales.

Amazing Food

If you travel to the Turks and Caicos today you’ll be able to choose from almost every cuisine on earth.

This is because, as the islands have become more popular as a tourist destination, people have been attracted from all over the world to live and work here.

The island of Providenciales in particular offers everything from sushi and high-end fusion cuisine to Indian and Chinese food.

conch fritters
Conch fritters, the quintessential Turks and Caicos dish.

Of course, everyone who travels to the Turks and Caicos will want to eat seafood, which includes local delicacies such as mahi mahi, tuna, rock lobster and the ever-present conch.

Drought-resistant maize (a kind of corn) does well in the semi-arid conditions of the Turks and Caicos.

As a result, hominy grits are a popular part of traditional local cuisine.

Turks and Caicos Food
By Flickr user Tim Sackton. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Traditional dishes include conch and hominy, cod fish cakes and corn bread. Steamed conch, stewed conch, and stewed fish and grits.

Crab and rice, which features the blue crab common to the islands, is also a local comfort food.

How Easy is It to Travel Here?

There are direct flights between Providenciales Airport (PLS) and many cities throughout North America and Canada, including New York, Atlanta, Miami, Toronto and Montreal.

For daily flight information, please consult the Turks and Caicos Airport Authority.

Provo Airport (PLS)
By Flickr user Stefan Krasowski . (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Besides offering flights to South Caicos and North Caicos, locally-based Caicos Express Airways also offers flights to BahamasCubaJamaicaCayman IslandsHispaniola (Dominican Republic & Haiti), and Eastern Caribbean.


New InterCaribbean  air service also up and running

InterCaribbean Airways has also introduced new flights from their home base on Providenciales, connecting Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic to Antigua and Barbuda. Read more.

What About the Government?

The Turks & Caicos Islands is a British Overseas Territory. A Governor is appointed by the Queen and presides over an Executive Council formed by an elected local self-government.

turks and caicos sports

Government offices are located in Grand Turk, with branches on other islands. The legal system is based on English Common Law.

The Islands’ currency is US Dollars. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Travellers Cheques are widely accepted on Providenciales. Banks will accept all forms of currency for conversion.

Immigration and Visas

For tourist stays up to 30 days, U.S. citizens need a passport, naturalization certificate, or original certified birth certificate as well as photo identification, onward or return tickets, and sufficient funds for their stay.

Turks and Caicos Customs Information
By Flickr user Daniel Ross . (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Working in Turks and Caicos

A work permit entitles a person to work for one employer which applies for and endorses the employee. Spouses and children can be endorsed on work permits for skilled workers. Learn more.

Temporary Residence Permits (TRP)

A TRP can be obtained by the Immigration department for those interested in residing in the islands without the right to work for a limited period of time, generally up to one-year.

Changeover from a TPR to a work permit is not permitted. Children up to age 18 and spouses can be endorsed on a TRP. Learn more.

Visit the Turks and Caicos government immigration web site at for the most current information.

What Are Taxes Like in Turks and Caicos?

Courtesy Sotheby's
Courtesy Sotheby’s

There is no income tax in Turks and Caicos.

There is a one-time stamp duty or land-transfer tax, payable to the Turks and Caicos Government when purchasing real estate, but that’s it.

Stamp duty ranges from 6.5-percent to 10-percent. This is a one-time land transfer tax, based on price and location of the property. There are no capital gains or estate taxes on real estate.

Exploring the Turks and Caicos

Forty islands and cays offer almost unlimited opportunities for exploring for long-term residents. If you love sailing you can visit isolated cays where once pirates roamed. Or you can take day trips to sparsely populated Middle Caicos and North Caicos. Explore further out into the Caicos Bight and reach South Caicos.

Everywhere around you will be surrounded by the shallow crystal-clear waters that have made the Turks and Caicos so famous.

turks and caicos photos

Much of the northern coastline is protected by a long barrier reef, which drops a thousand meters down to the bottom of the Atlantic. The currents and upflows of nutrients make the reefs of the Turks and Caicos perfect for diving.

What’s Healthcare Like on Providenciales?

Providenciales is home to a state-of-the art medical center, Chesire Hall.


Health services provided at the center includes emergency care, dental, dialysis, internal medicine, surgical, orthopedic, obstetric and endoscopic procedures, physiotherapy and diagnostic imaging.

Fay to day healthcare and emergency services are handled by private clinics. There is also a hospital, Cheshire Hall Medical Centre, which many of the services that one would find in the USA or Canada.

If you are not a resident of the Turks and Caicos and do not have an employer, you must sign up for private medical insurance before coming to the island.

A Truly Beautiful Place

Chalk Sound. By Flickr user Tim Sackton. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Turks and Caicos is a safe, pleasant and utterly beautiful place to visit or come to live. While it may not be easy to set up residency, many people do successfully plan long-term stays here. If you have any questions about moving to Turks and Caicos, please leave us a comment below.





Things To Do In The Caribbean Turks Caicos Information

Cool Caribbean Beach Gear For Your Next Turks & Caicos Trip recently featured a “Cool Caribbean Beach Gear For Your Spring Getaway” article highlighting some great beach gear product recommendations that we loved! Here are 3 products featured in the article that our guests may enjoy bringing to use during their stay at The Sands at Grace Bay in Providenciales, Turks & Caicos:

  1. Polk AudioSwimmer Duo – this Bluetooth speaker is perfect for hanging along one of our pool or beach chairs.  It has a dirt, shock and water proof case. You can also use it in your hotel room by attaching it to a mirror with the suction cup that comes included in your purchase. It charges quickly and the battery lasts up to 8 hours.

    Polk Audio
    Polk Audio
  2. Adidas Climacool Voyager  – These quick-drying, lightweight hiking shoes have a drainage system to help keep water out when you’re on wet trails. They would be great for strolls along our Grace Bay Beach as well as handy to take along on boat rides during your Turks & Caicos trip.

  3. Fivesse Beach Backpack – This beach bag is great for enjoying a day along our Grace Bay Beach, for biking around Providenciales or for bringing on a fun day excursion in the Turks & Caicos Islands. It has a water resistant interior, removable water-resistant bags for sunscreen or snacks, an outside towel holder, and plenty of pockets including one pocket for seashells!

    For more cool Caribbean beach travel gear products and recommendations, visit our resort Pinterest page at: