Anguilla or Turks & Caicos?

Old Jul 11th, 2004, 06:39 AM
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Anguilla or Turks & Caicos?

We are deciding between T&C (Royal West Indies) or Anguilla (Frangipani)in November to celebrate our 10-year anniversary. Has anyone been to both islands? Which do you like better and why? I know both islands are expensive (for meals) - is one much more so than the other? Thanks for your input!

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Old Jul 11th, 2004, 07:28 AM
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I have been to both and found them to be two of the most similar islands I've visited.

I think the costs are almost the same, and both places have a lot of dining choices.

If you like diving or snorkeling, Turks and Caicos is much better, and I liked Grace Bay better than the beaches on Anguilla, but that's just me. (I found Grace Bay to be one of the top 3 beaches I've ever been to.)

Anguilla is nice because you can take a day trip over to St Martin/St Maarten.

If I had to go back to either one, I would most likely choose Provo.
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Old Jul 11th, 2004, 01:42 PM
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Have been to both islands 16 times each. They are very similar in some ways. Both are coral islands so flat and not a lot of vegitation. You don't have the lush rain forests etc of volcanic islands. Provo is more developed than Anguilla. There are about 33 beaches on Anguilla to explore and on Provo the best beach Grace Bay Beach is about 12 miles long and fantastic. It constantly ranks among the top three beaches in the Caribbean by readers of Conde Nast and Caribbean Travel and Life. On Anguilla we always stay at Frangipani which we really like. Have stayed at six different resorts on Provo before settling on Coral Gardens--Only place on Grace Bay the reef comes right in to the beach to snorkel. Royal West Indies is very nice but next to Club Med. I would look at The Sands which is nice. There are lots of very good restaurants in all price ranges on both islands. More "shopping" n Provo but think the "entertainment" on Anguilla is better if you are into a little night life. Suggest you do one island for your 10th and one for your 11th anniversary. I think your decision might be based on Frangipani availability as people book up to a year in advance and it's very small and intimate. Suggest you call the 1-800-892-4564 and check on the dates you want to go and if they are full look at Provo. Snorkeling off the beach on Anguilla is best at Shoal Bay East but on either island you'll want a car to drive around and explore. You can also get ahold of JR at Shoal Bay East or Calvin ar Crocus Hill for a snorkel trip. Chocolat does a day sail/snorkel trip to Prickly Pear and Sandy Island. Good source of info on Provo is www.wherewhenhow.com the on line magazine of the Turks and Caicos. If you have any other questions feel free to e-mail me at [email protected].
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Old Jul 11th, 2004, 02:12 PM
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Diana, I'm curious. What are the other 2 most beautiful beaches? Thanks
 
Old Jul 11th, 2004, 02:18 PM
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Diana, I wanted to add a comment about your possible visit to Bequia. We were there for about four nights in September. Please do a trip report when you get back. The Bequia residents were some of the nicest people we have met. Have a good time.
 
Old Jul 11th, 2004, 02:52 PM
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owa,

I would say the beaches of Anguilla and the beach at Isla Mujeres - Playa Norte - round out my Top 3.

I also think the beaches of Cancun and of Playa del Carmen are stunning as well.

btw, my criteria is blindingly-white sand and amazingly-colored blue/geen/aqua water that defies description.

Secondary is funky beach bars and great local restaurants.

I "collect" beaches as a hobby, and those are my favorites.
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Old Jul 12th, 2004, 02:10 AM
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HowardC, I sent you an e-mail. Did you get it? [email protected]. Thanks
 
Old Jul 12th, 2004, 03:49 AM
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I've always heard that both those islands are similar but I've only been to Turks and Caicos (at the Royal West Indies).

One thing that might be a consideration is ease of access. TCI had direct flights from Boston, NY, Charlotte and Miami. Whereas to get to Anguilla is first a flight to St Martin and then a ferry over to the island. I wouldn't think this would be a major factor, but if everything else is coming out balanced, this might just help tip the scales.

In any event, congratulations on your anniversary, and I hope you have a great trip.

Ken
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Old Jul 12th, 2004, 06:09 PM
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Thanks everyone for your helpful replies, its given us a few more items to consider which will help us decide which island to visit.

Ken, did you find the noise from Club Med intrusive when you stayed at RWI?

Howard, we had actually considered Coral Gardens but crossed it off our list - we thought that with the great snorkeling there the beach in front of the hotel might be too crowded. Do you find that's the case?

Thanks,
Ann
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Old Jul 13th, 2004, 03:01 AM
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We didn't have any problems with Club Med noise. During about 5-6 in the evening we could hear a little bit of carribean type music, but that's about it, and our room was on the side of the resort towards Club Med. But it was a studio, which places the bedroom towards the center of the RWI resort. Suites, on the other hand, have the bedrooms towards the outside of the resort, and a living room towards the inside.

There are several resort review sites... its always fun to read other people's takes on a resort you've been to. I don't recall anyone complaining about Club Med noise from either RWI. I've actually only heard one second hand reference to it.

We enjoyed the resort so much that we're heading back in November.

Someday I would like to get to Anguilla, and the Frangipani resort sounds wonderful. Its a pretty nice dilemma you have.

Ken


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Old Jul 13th, 2004, 05:50 AM
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Ann--I have some ideas and suggestions. please e-mail me at the address in my post above. When in Nov do you plan to go ???
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Old Jul 13th, 2004, 07:31 PM
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Howard,
We are flexible with the dates in November - will book based on best availability and prices. I emailed you earlier, let me know if you don't receive it.
Thanks for your suggestions,
Ann
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Old Jul 17th, 2004, 10:02 AM
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annkelley,

It is such a good feeling when I can answer a question posed on this board
My husband and I have been to both and absolutely LOVED both of them. We are still novices compared to Howard... but
I'll give you my opinion. As has been stated - both have the amazingly white sand beaches and turquoise blue water that is just breathtaking. Fine dining is as good as I've ever had on any carribean island. The only thing that would have to tip the scales towards Anguilla would be that I truly loved the locals. From my experience they were just extremely warm and friendly people... they wanted you to Love their
Island. I enjoyed hearing their stories about how their island came to be. But both islands are wonderful... you can't go wrong with either!!

ML
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Old Jul 22nd, 2004, 06:12 PM
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Ken in Mass - Thinking of staying at RWI. Which studio suite did you stay in (botonical, oceanview or oceanfront)? Looking at their resort map it looks like building 1 is the only one that is ocean front and the others are oceanview or botanical. My question is what building did you stay in and what type of view did you have? Are there washer/dryers in the studios? Thanks in advance for your help!
 
Old Jul 23rd, 2004, 04:24 AM
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Hi Kendall,

We stayed in suite 314 which would have to have been a botanical. I think we might have made more use of the deck had we not been on the first floor, although with the tall hedge, we had a fair amount of privacy.

We don't usually pay the extra for oceanview or oceanfront largely because we don't spend all that much time in the room.

There are washers and dryers in the studios.

We're headed back in November and while I would prefer a 3rd floor room, I wouldn't mind at all if we ended back in 314.

Good luck in your planning and have a great trip.

Ken
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Old Jul 23rd, 2004, 05:47 AM
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HowardC: Thanks for your full replies to the other posts, and sorry to plague you. About Provo: We were there once about 10-12 years ago, when Club Med first opened. We had a pleasant time, but were sorely disappointed by the snorkeling. The only snorkeling we had was off the boat-- which we don't enjoy nearly as much as just walking into the water and disappearing among the reefs and fish for hours and hours at a time. That's the kindof thing we do all day at St. John (and there are so many different places to snorkel there!). Is Provo anything like that? You mention that one spot where the reef comes close to shore. But my sense is that it's not an "endless" reef, not one you could snorkel all day. Is that correct? In short, I'd love to learn that Provo is a great place for snorkel nuts (we love to disappear into the sea for 3-4 hours at a time). Another poster somehwere else mentions Virgin Gorda for that kind of thing-- but even there, we found that one has to take a boat out to most places (and even Little Dix isn't great compared to Caneel). Thanks for responding!
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Old Jul 24th, 2004, 05:30 AM
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Shore snorkeling in Provo is limited: a small area by Coral Gardens, a better one (in my opinion) at Smith's Reef, some by Malcolm's Road Beach. It does not compare to St. John in this respect. However, we like to take LONG beach walks, for which Provo is perfect, and we enjoyed the absence of cruise ship passengers.
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Old Jul 27th, 2004, 05:28 PM
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Ken in Mass: How did you reserve your room at RWI (US sales office, contacting the resort directly in T&C, travel site i.e. Expedia, etc.)? Do they have maid service? Thanks again in advance for your help.
 
Old Aug 7th, 2004, 03:49 PM
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What's the T&C weather and water temp in early November? I would imagine the water starts to cool off by then. Is it too cool to snorkel or swim?
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Old Aug 7th, 2004, 05:23 PM
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We went last year right after Thanksgiving into December. The water was very warm, even for those early morning snorkling at Coral Garden where we stayed. It was great to get up early and go out while my hubby slept in. That early in the morning I was able to see some of the shy eels. I didn't find Coral Gardens to be crowded, when there were people, that was a good time for a long walk or sit on our beachfront balcony.
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