The Turks and Caicos Islands are a British crown colony of more than 40 islands and small cays (only eight of which are inhabited). They offer numerous national parks, beautiful white sand beaches, nature reserves, sanctuaries and historical sites. Despite an increase in tourist numbers and a banking and insurance boom, the islands remain largely uncommercialized and unspoilt with small, personal places to stay and a heavy emphasis on ecotourism.
Grand Turk is the islands' seat of government and commerce, as well as their historic and cultural center. The Turks & Caicos National Museum, situated on the waterfront, tells the story of the oldest shipwreck discovered in the Americas and exhibits rare prints and manuscripts from all of the islands. Front Street has a number of colonial buildings, dating from the early 19th century. They have imposing entrances in the high, whitewashed walls that surround their gardens. There are many delightful bays on the eastern shores of Grand Turk. The island is also an excellent base for diving and fishing.
Things to See & Do
* Cockburn Town
* HM Prison Grand Turk
* Turks & Caicos National Museum
* Front Street
* Diving, yachting & big-game fishing
Cruise Season - Jan - Dec
Currency - US Dollar (USD; symbol US$)
Language - English
Land Area - 500 sq km's
Population - 5,000
Electricity - 2 perpendicular flat pins USA style or with a round pin below
Time - GMT minus five hours
International Country Telephone Code - 1 + 649
Port Location - Cockburn Harbour (South Caicos), Grank Turk, Providenciales and Salt Cay. Harbour facilities on South Caicos are currently being improved. There are plans to build a new port on North Caicos.
The archipelago is off the beaten track for most major cruise lines. However, Fred Olsen Cruises sail to the islands. Boats can be chartered to sail to islands in the Bahamas or Haiti.
Transport Links - Grand Turk airport is 3.2km (2 miles) south of Cockburn Town. There are direct flights from the UK, Canada, The Bahamas, Jamaica, Dominican Republic and Haiti. Caicos Airways runs a regular air-taxi service to all the inhabited islands, as well as flights to Cap Hadtien, Nassau and Puerto Plata. Charter flights are also available.
There are limited coast-hopping and inter-island services. Boats may be chartered at most of the inhabited islands. Taxis are vailable at most airports, but the supply may be limited and sharing is often necessary. Rental cars are available from some local firms on Grand Turk, Providenciales, and North and South Caicos.