Safe to travel alone in Turks and Caicos?

Old Jun 5th, 2009, 06:11 PM
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Safe to travel alone in Turks and Caicos?

I am wondering what seasoned travelers think of my plan to visit the Turks and Caicos in mid July - all alone. I am separated from my husband and will be traveling without my children - have vacationed in Anguilla but think I'd rather not be there by myself....just yet, anyway. I am not interested in venturing out for nightlife....just the beauty of the beach by day (and shelling, if I'm lucky...) Any input would be appreciated....many thanks!
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Old Jun 5th, 2009, 08:46 PM
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Turks & Caicos (Providenciales) and Anguilla are my two favorite beach vacations, and I have travelled to both solo within the past two years (I'm female). So, I think it sounds like a great plan for you to go to Provo (I'm assuming that is the specific island in TCI you are planning to visit) alone.

Safety (or the perception of safety) is very subjective, and everyone has a different comfort level. Safety is always something I think about when planning vacations, but as a never-married woman who lives in the Washington, DC area and as a frequent solo traveler (business and vacation), I suspect that my comfort level with travelling alone may be different than yours. If you have specific concerns about safety, you may want to share them so people can address those concerns. I know there has been more crime in the last few months on Provo, but I still feel like it is among the safer places to visit (I'm currently looking for flights to book my third trip there).

In Provo, I would definitely recommend that you stay right on Grace Bay beach, probably somewhere on the central part of the beach (between Club Med and the Alexandra), so you won't feel too isolated or have to drive or take taxis everywhere. Grace Bay is an amazing beach; I don't think you will be disappointed.

Compared to Anguilla, I think Provo is a little easier for a first time solo traveler. As much as I loved Anguilla, the logistics of getting there are a little more complicated, and I was a little scared to rent a car and drive on the left all week, given that my only previous experience driving on the left had been one day in Provo. It also took more effort to convince myself that I wouldn't feel out of place by myself in Anguilla, because it has a reputation as being a really romantic destination with fine dining. Provo can be romantic and has upscale restaurants too, but I think there is more of mix of vacationers (more families and other groups, even some solo travelers) in Provo and restuarant choices that are more casual.

Good luck with your decision.
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 03:41 AM
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I wouldn't hesitate to travel to Provo alone. I agree that staying on Grace Bay Beach would provide the best experience.
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 04:17 AM
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My first trip to Provo was alone. Before getting married, I actually traveled extensively alone, because everyone else around me had families, and I had to see the world!

Having said that, I wouldn't hesitate, it's an excellent choice. Traveling alone, I would take a couple of extra percautions. For ex., I would rent a car, especially for the nights as to get around different restayrants, plus during the day to explore. (especially Pelican Beach, while you won't find many small shells, you'll find big white conch shells to bring back!)

I had been to Anguilla alone, then went with family a couple of times. T&C is similar-flat, dry, scrubby with gorgeous beaches. I might even give the beach edge to T&C. Don't get me wrong, Anguilla is one of my favorites, but T&C is my fav.

T&C is easier to navigate. The "hub" is one straight long road, so even driving on the left is actually not bad. All the resorts are nice, and most are condos with full fridges, etc (depending what room catagory you pick) and most have restaurants. T&C is a little more family friendly, not quite as romantic. There are more water excursions, not only will you meet people that way, but they'll take you by boat to stunning beaches that you'll think are pure bliss, the most gorgeous you'll lay eyes on. The excursions also sometimes dive for conch in waist high water-you keep the shell, and snorkel for sand dollars. The main beach is long, and lined with resorts, so you can walk to numerous places, and shops and restaurants. You can excellent snorkel off the beach at Coral Gardens.


There had been a rash of crimes in April-it has seemed to calm down and they've caught the main perps. Would this stop me? No, I've traveled alone enough to learn all the precautions, and lucky me, never had anything happen in the world. T&C overall is safe, I was actually alone in April there. (I've got stories of being at airports in Europe that were bombed, or I was at Atlanta Olympics when it was bombed--so my point is, use common sense where ever you go!) T&C has no vendors, no one approaches you, locals are basically shy and will talk to you after you've spoken to them first.

So overall, I think it's an excellent solo choice!
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 04:39 AM
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Thanks to ALL of you - I am thinking that it might be a really good choice too - I live in Hampton Roads, VA - near Virginia Beach, so I have been near the water all of my life (not like the Caribbean, of course) and I find that I gravitate toward the beach for most of my vacation plans....

I was actually trying to decide whether to "play it safe" and go to Sanibel Island, FL instead...but you all have me leaning toward T&C.....and I will be looking at places to stay that won't drain every penny I have. If you have recommendations for a place, preferably with a view of that stunning water, I'd love to hear!
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 05:20 AM
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Actually, I just did some more homework and discovered the Alexandra Resort - it looks as though it might be affordable - wondering if anyone has stayed there recently?
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Old Jun 6th, 2009, 06:01 AM
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I stayed at the Alexandra in December 2007 (also at the Royal West Indies in April 2007). Both are good mid-range options on Provo. I wouldn't hesitate to stay at the Alexandra again. It is fairly new (the newest building was completed in 2008, and the oldest "timeshare" building was renovated this year). The rooms are comfortable, with some upscale finishes (granite, nice tiles, comfortable beds). I stayed in the studio there, which was smaller than a studio at RWI and does not have a full kitchen, but it was more than adequate for my needs.

The only caveat I would have about recommending the Alexandra to a solo traveler is to say that I felt a little uncomfortable walking on the road behind the Alexandra at night. The Alexandra is not right on Grace Bay Road, and the road behind it (Princess?) was dark without a lot of foot traffic. After my visit, I read about some incidents where tourists walking on that road were robbed. Having said that, this is not a deal breaker for me, since this risk is easily mitigated by renting a car, taking taxis after dark, or walking along the beach instead of on the road. The Alexandra has a restaurant that is open for dinner, and within about a 7 - 8 minute or half mile walk, there are several other options at the Regent Palms (Parallel 21 and more casual pool bar), Somerset (O'Soleil and more casual option), Sibonne (Bay Bistro), and the Sands (Hemingways).
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Old Jun 7th, 2009, 04:53 AM
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As a Hampton Roads girl myself, I think I might be able to help. I've been traveling to Provo for 7 years on my own-I do own a condo there-and I feel totally comfortable. Of course you need to be careful, as you do anywhere, but I've never felt unsafe. A condo on Grace Bay is you best bet, the beach & water are stunning. Summer is one of my favorite times, as the water is completely calm and clear.
If you have questions feel free to email [email protected] and I'll try answer them.
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Old Jun 7th, 2009, 05:04 AM
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Provogal...What Condo development do you own in? We are looking to buy and are strongly considering The Somerset.
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Old Jun 7th, 2009, 08:55 AM
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Well, if you're looking for high end, then Somerset is a good choice. Stay away from 7 Stars, as they're having big time management problems right now. I own at Ocean Club, which I absolutely love. The people there are the best-most have been there longer than I have owned-and it's a very friendly place. More to my tastes, which run to "old Caribbean", with large screened porches and casual style.
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Old Jun 7th, 2009, 04:07 PM
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Thank you Provogal...
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Old Jun 7th, 2009, 04:24 PM
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I just got back from VA Beach/Newport News! Let me tell you, it was insane! Soccer matches were going on, and every hotel was sold out.

Traffic wasn't as bad as expected though for a Sunday--so driving in T&C is actually a piece of cake.

Were you planning on renting a car? Alexandra is pretty nice for the money-granite, pillowtop beds. But there are dark spots if walking at night-so if you have a car it's better.

I highly recommend a car if traveling solo anyway.

I always have a fun time in VA Beach (I live a couple of hours away, so it's a fairly easy day trip when traffic cooporates) but I love, love love T&C.
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Old Jun 17th, 2009, 12:04 PM
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Oh, how funny - what a small world....I live in Norfolk...grew up in VB...wouldn't have gone down there during that soccer craziness for all the tea in China. I always manage to avoid the oceanfront and hit the bayfront instead....that is the one very nice thing about living in the area.
Anyway....I am now looking into Gansvoort Wymara, since I've heard it mentioned....I thought I had made my mind up to go to the Sands, but we'll see.....the more information I have, the better. But I'll keep checking in.....
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Old Jun 17th, 2009, 12:11 PM
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Gansvoort is not near much....West Bay Club ( bad food) and T&C Cluok, not great food) ...Sands is in a much better location to walk to many dining options and shopping. However, if you want to just stay "on resort" ,Gansvoort is getting lots of buzz, excellent restaurant and celebs staying there...B & C list, lol
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Old Jun 18th, 2009, 05:30 AM
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I think that Provo would be a great place to travel for a single person and Grace Bay would be my choice too. It is the central area and would be the safest IMO. As another has stated the crime wave earlier in the year has been strongly diminished with the arrest and deportation of many individuals.
I would stay at many of the previously mentioned resorts that are located in the central area (like from Villa Renaissance to the Alexandra).
The Somerset would be a nice place to go as a solo traveler - you would not feel alone but the resort is not over run.
Regent Palms would also have some activity too and is a nice property.
Point Grace would be really quiet.
As nice as the new Wymara (Gansevoort) resort is, the location might not be ideal for a solo traveler.
Caribzack- I love The Somerset and have stayed there. I would love to live there!
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