Turks and Caicos: 4 Water Sports to Try in When You’re Tired of Relaxing3 min read
Grace Bay in Turks and Caicos is known as one of the best stretches of beach in the entire world. Its white sand and blue-green water are calm compared to the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, and it provides the perfect spot to spend hours lounging with a good book and even a cocktail. It’s what initially drew my husband and me to visit Turks and Caicos.
But I also knew the desire to sit on the beach with a book would wear off after a few days, and we’d want to have other activities lined up throughout our time.
Turks and Caicos offers more than just ridiculously beautiful beaches to relax on. It’s got plenty of other fun activities to do all over Providenciales, which we discovered as we explored the island in our tiny rental car. Here are some fun activities to take part in while you visit absolute paradise.
SUP on Grace Bay
Many resorts on Grace Bay offer free access to snorkel gear, stand-up paddle (SUP) boards, kayaks and Hobie Cats for when you tire of relaxing. It’s a great way to try something new without committing.
The bay’s calm waters make trying SUP boarding a little easier than in the Atlantic Ocean. But beware—it’s harder than it looks, and it’ll test the strength of your arms and your core.
Swim in the Shallow Water of Princess Alexandria National Park
Finding our way to this beach was a little tricky, but the solitude and calm, shallow water were well worth turning around once or twice in our tiny rental car. From Grace Bay Road, turn left onto Sandpiper Avenue, a sand and rock road, then look for a small sign for Princess Alexandria National Park parking.
This beach is absolutely stunning—and there’s a great chance you’ll be one of the only visitors. We spent our time swimming in the shallow water, looking for sea life with our video camera and relaxing in the water. Enjoy the solitude—and feel free to use the free beach chairs.
Jet Ski on Sapodilla Bay
Shallow and calm water in Sapodilla Bay means it’s a safe spot for children and adults to play and swim. But the bay is also a great place to inject some adventure into your trip. We rented jet skis right on the beach and explored the coast of Providenciales, including an abandoned pirate ship (really!), some massive multi-million dollar homes and various beaches on the coast.
Sapodilla Bay beach is about 10 miles away from Grace Bay. While you’re there, drive through Chalk Sound National Park to see turquoise water and small, rocky islands.
Snorkel (and More) on a Boat Tour
Turks and Caicos is known for its snorkeling because of the reefs surrounding the island. Most resorts and rentals offer snorkel gear that you can rent or borrow, but for the best experience (and fit), you might want to bring your own gear.
If you’re a watersport newbie like myself, one way to try snorkeling is on a half- or full-day boat cruise. These tours combine views of the island from the water, some snorkeling out on the reef, a visit to a deserted island, fresh conch ceviche and the chance to swim and play in open water.
It felt a little intimidating to jump into the middle of the ocean with gear and start snorkeling. But guides are welcoming and the group is encouraging—so there’s really nothing to do except jump off the boat and strap on your fins.
The water is so clear off the coast of TCI that you can easily see the reef 20 to 30 feet below. Snorkeling not only gives you the chance to see all sorts of sea life—you’ll also get a great low-impact workout.