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.





Turks Caicos Information

Day Trips and Excursions in Turks and Caicos

turks and caicos snorkeling map


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 rising up from the Atlantic Ocean. Each cay is unique and provides a glimpse of life in the Caribbean in times gone by.

turks and caicos photos
Image from Wikipedia

If you can ever drag yourself away from beautiful Grace Bay Beach, an entire world is awaiting you here to explore in the Turks and Caicos.

Here are some easy day trips from The Sands at Grace Bay.


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.

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.

North Caicos. Image by Flickr user kanu101. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

North Caicos itself is largely undeveloped. Visiting the island offers a look at Turks and Caicos the way it used to be. The trip to North Caicos can and makes for an interesting day trip from Providenciales.

Learn about planning day-long Turks and Caicos tours through the Sands at Grace Bay >>

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.

Ali West
Image by Flickr user Ali West

Instead, rent or arrange transport to take you to Middle Caicos and its caves.

Image by Flickr user Tim Sackton. Mudjin Harbor, Middle Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands
Mudjin Harbor, Middle Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands. Image by Flickr user Tim Sackton. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

The caves of Middle Caicos are located close to Mudjin Harbour. The limestone bluffs offer some truly unforgettable views of spectacular seascapes here.

Image by Flicker user Ali West. Middle Caicos.
Middle Caicos. Image by Flicker user Ali West. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Besides awe-inspiring views Mudjin Harbour features some truly gorgeous beaches.

Dragon Cay, a small limestone cay, is accessible from the beach at low tide.

Dragon Cay
Image by Flickr user Tim Sackton. Mudjin Harbor, Middle Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

But even if the tide does not cooperate, the beach at Mudjin Harbour provides a unique place to splash in the sea and relax on the beautiful white sand.

Middle Caicos Caves

The Turks and Caicos are famous for having the largest above-ground cave network in the entire Caribbean and a private tour is just the way to explore it. Some of the most striking caves are found on Middle Caicos.

Middle Caicos Caves
Image by Ali West. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

The caves, since they’re above ground, can be explored easily by anyone (with the proper footwear), and offer an interesting glimpse at the natural history and cultural heritage of the Caribbean.

Only recently rediscovered, the caves were once the home of Lucayan Indians, and it’s thought they sheltered in the caves during hurricanes. The Village Caves and the Conch Bar are the most frequently visited caves on Middle Caicos.

Learn more about our Middle Caicos day excursion.

Take a Trip to Caribbean Paradise on 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.

Image by Flickr user spezz. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

South Caicos is a private island. There is accommodation there, but the island is best known for being the location of summer homes and villas of movie stars.

Brian Brake
Image by Flickr user Brian Brake. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Most of the activities on South Caicos involve the water: windsurfing, kiteboarding, snorkeling and scuba diving and even some fishing.

Brian Brake
Image by Flickr user Brian Brake. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

South Caicos is surrounded by shallow shoals and flats—perfect for bonefishing. Airboats are available to take anglers out to the best bonefishing spots.

Exploring Providenciales

Even if you don’t have time to do a day trip to explore more of the Turks and Caicos, our very own island of Providenciales.

Leeward Beach, Provo

Leeward Beach, on the northeast end of Provo, provides a secluded, spectacular beach to explore.

Christine Jackowski
Image by Flickr user Christine Jackowski. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Leeward is a fantastic place to watch the sunset. Leeward is also close to Mangrove Cay, a nature reserve.

Daniel Ross
Image by Flickr user Daniel Ross. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Mangrove Cay provides an excellent place to explore by kayak or stand-up paddleboard (SUP).

SUP is a popular activity in the Turks and Caicos. Our own stretch of Grace Bay Beach on the leeward side of  Providenciales is perfect for it.


Providenciale’s Iguana Island (aka Little Water Cay)

Just off the northeast, leeward tip of Providenciales Little Water Cay, better known as “Iguana Island.”

The cay is a wildlife preserve for iguanas. It can be reached by water taxi from Blue Haven Marina in Leeward and is the perfect family day trip in Turks and Caicos.

Andy Atzert
Image by Flickr user Andy Atzert. License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Little Water Cay is indeed inhabited by a colony of friendly iguanas. They are herbivores (the iguanas eat plants) and are quite friendly and sociable.

Tim Sackton. The Turks and Caicos rock iguana (Cyclura carinata).
Tim Sackton. The Turks and Caicos rock iguana (Cyclura carinata). License: 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

Get Help Planning a Day Trip in Turks and Caicos

If taking a day trip with your family to explore the Turks and Caicos sounds interesting, here are three trips put on by Caicos Dream Tours that pick you up right in front of The Sands at Grace Bay and fantastic exploration in some of the Turks and Caicos’ must-see spots.

reef tours grace bay

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.

Things To Do In The Caribbean Turks Caicos Information

Turks & Caicos information: top 3 things to do

We’re proud to say that the Turks & Caicos are natural paradise that appeals to lovestruck newlyweds, serious explorers, and families with children – there’s something to do here for everyone in this natural playground. However, not everyone is familiar with our islands, so we’re preparing a serious of blog posts that detail Turks & Caicos information.

Today’s topic: things to do on the Turks & Caicos

While the Sands at Grace Bay offers the perfect relaxing retreat, either by the side of the pool, or on a sandy beach with views of beautiful turquoise ocean and even bluer sky, there are plenty of other things to do around the islands if you’re in the mood to explore.

Here are the top 3 things to do here:

1. Scuba Diving

The Turks and Caicos island chain features the third-longest barrier reefs in the world – it’s over 125 miles long, and shelters the north shore of the island of Providenciales.and the reef is perfect for scuba diving.

With spectacular underwater visibility providing excellent opportunities to explore spot the coral reefs, sea mounts and sea walls, as well as encounters with schools of tropical fish, sea turtles, eagle rays, sharks and even migrating humpback whales, the Turks and Caicos barrier reef is a must-see destination for anyone interested in underwater activities.

The Turks Bank is also another popular scuba destination, and is made up of two expansive underwater limestone plateaus. If you’re hoping to encounter turtles, dolphins and Blue Marlin, head to the Turks Bank.

2. Explore Provo’s natural beauty

On terra firm, the island of Providenciales (where Sands at Grace Bay is located) features many salt marshes that act as a watery landing strip for migratory birds including egrets, terns and frigates. Bird watchers can track more than 150 species of birds, such as pelicans, flamingos, osprey and Cuban crows. There’s even a Flamingo Pond that’s home to hundreds of these graceful pink creatures.

If you feel like chartering a tour, there is also habitat on isolated cays for rare iguanas.

The Turks and Caicos are also famous for limestone caves, among the most expansive in the entire Caribbean. Middle Caicos, to the east of Provo, has the most limestone caves. Once on Middle Caicos, visitors are greated by the towering cliffs that climb above Mudjidin Beach. The caves themselves are reached after a short walk across the Cay.

3. Relax on the beach

Providenciales and the Turks and Caicos are known all over the world for superb beaches, romantic sunsets, and an premium mix of privacy and tasteful oppulence. Sit beneath the shade of a beach umbrella and enjoy a magnificent panorama of soft white sand, azure ocean and cloudless skies the color of sapphire by day, and blazing sunsets and sensual moonlight bynight.

Not everyone is familiar with our islands, so we’re preparing a serious of blog posts that detail Turks & Caicos information.

Turks Caicos Information

Introducing the Sands, a Turks & Caicos Luxury Resort

Located only 80 minutes by air from Miami, The Sands at Grace Bay – a Turks & Caicos luxury resort – feels like a different planet – a planet devoted to luxury, relaxation, and beautiful beaches. Our perfect white sand beach, spectacular views, and superb suites make The Sands at Grace Bay the perfect combination of seclusion and sophistication (or so we like to think).

Where we’re located

We’re located about thirty minutes by car up the Leeward Highway from the airport at Providenciales (or Provo), a bustling hub that has really come into its own over the past decade. Provo offers everything from shopping to nightlife, plus plenty of great beaches. What we offer though, is utter seclusion and a taste of the “true Caribbean”, with easy access to the amenities of Provo.

The white, white sands of Grace Bay Beach

The Sands resort sits along world-famous Grace Bay Beach, voted the #1 Beach and Sun Destination in the World by Trip Advisor’s ‘Traveler’s Choice’ Awards. The beach itself is lined with palm trees, and is an easy hop, skip and a jump from the Sands resort itself, which also features private

Close by, there is world-class diving, a variety of water sports, golfing or day cruises to secluded islands. Providenciales also offers many quaint boutiques for fun shopping excursions and a number of historical attractions worth visiting.

Relax by the pool

We also have a free-form swimming pools that’s close to the beach, perfect for families with kids, or honeymooners looking for a secluded spot to relax away from prying eyes.

At the end of the day, why not grab a drink or something to eat at Hemingway’s, a beachfront restaurant. Or, if you want, make the short drive down the Leeward Highway to Provo, where a world of nightlife and restaurants await you.

Creating a home away from home

Our goal is to help families, friends and couples create unforgettable vacation experiences by making our guests feel like they are “home away from home” during their stay. Our friendly and beautiful suites and pristine ocean-front location set alongside Grace Bay in Providenciales are just a few reasons why travelers continue to return to our resort year after year.

The Sands at Grace Bay is a Turks & Caicos Luxury Resort