Trip Report: Providenciales Turks and Caicos

Old Nov 7th, 2006, 04:41 PM
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Trip Report: Providenciales Turks and Caicos

Island and people: Very pretty beaches although the interior is kinda scrubby. People are very soft spoken and friendly for the most part. I really like them. Also met a couple of people from Trinidad, Keisha from the car rental agency and another guy who gave us a ride to the airport. Got to know the lady at the gift shop right next to the Barefoot Café on the road side. She talked quite a bit about the area. It turned out her daughter was going to school in our state(Washington).

Beach etc.: This was our first time to the Caribbean area. We absolutely loved it and really relaxed the whole time. Grace Bay Beach and the water were awesome! Water was very warm and you could stay in it for a long time. Saw JOJO the dolphin a couple of times as well as some large stingrays. Went snorkeling at Coral Gardens and saw some pretty fish. Diane saw a large turtle. My mask leaked a little and I would like to get a better snorkel that closes when a wave washes over it. Should have heeded the advice of some and spent more on equipment.

Went to Sapodilla beach but didnít stay long. This would be a very nice beach for kids as it is so shallow. Both the south and north parking areas were full of garbage. Not so very good. Hope they remedy it.

Enjoyed the Conch Farm. Was fun to see how they grow them.

Resort: The Royal West Indies (RWI) was presented to us as the best value for the money from Fodorís site. We were so glad we took the advice. The landscaping is beyond words in my opinion. Different areas of the pools, especially the back one which is the only one we used are so private as the shrubs are placed perfectly.

We typically went to the beach in the morning until around noon, then hit the back pool to spend the afternoon reading and relaxing.

We had a studio unit which was fine for us. Very tidy and clean and the cleaners kept it spotless every day.

The only other resort we spent any time walking around was the Sands. This looks very nice also but the landscaping does not even come close to RWI. Not sure why the keep the shrubs so low.

Met several owners at RWI and got a card from one of them for an ocean front 1 bedroom unit. Not sure if we would spend the extra money on oceanfront though as we enjoyed being close to office and back pool and hottub which we used almost every night.

We were surprised at how muggy it was some days but that was OK as we could go in the water. There are Geckos everywhere, running across the path in front of you as you walk around the resort. Very neat.

Eating: We spent an average of around $50 to $60 a day including stuff we brought and bought from Graceway IGA. We do not eat much, especially on vacation, so ate two meals a day. Typical day started the morning with bagels or muffins on the patio. Snacked til around 5:00pm then went to eat at at restaurant. TIP: If you eat before 6:00pm at a lot of restaurants you can eat off of the lunch menu for a around a 1/3 of the price of dinner. We are not real foodies for fancy dinners anyway, would rather eat stuff off of the lunch menu. The exceptions to that are a good fish or steak dinner.

Ate lunch at Hemingways twice and loved it. Ate at Mango Reef twice, very good meals. Ate at Danny Buoys, chicken pot pie. Was OK, but we could not finish, and virgin daiquiris were $6.50 and the worst ones we had on the island. Virgin Daiquiris at Mango and Hemingways were $4.00 to $4.50 and very good.

Ate dinner twice, at Aqua Terrace, very good meals, I had steak and Diane had some kinda noodly stuff. Bill came to $67.00 with tip. Ate at Coco Bistro, wow what a setting under the palm trees. Menu has gone up quite a bit in price and is up there with Coyaba or Graceís Cottage pricewise. Also very limited selection on menu. I had Wahoo Napolean and Diane had Chicken and Tiger Shrimp. I ate the shrimp as she doesnít like. Meal came to $93.00 with tip and two virgin daiquiris. Another option would to go for dessert but this place is a must see.

Driving: Rented a car from Grace Bay Car Rental for the whole week. Glad we did, nice to go shopping and stuff when you want. http://www.gracebaycarrentals.com. This is a new rental agency that an expat Canadian, Todd Foss and his wife started. The business seems to be doing good and he is buying more cars. He only has a couple of 4-wheel drive vehicles so they are hard to get, not sure if he will be buying more. The car served us fine. He picked us up at the airport and showed us around a little before going to his office and doing the paperwork. Todd and his assistant Keisha were very professional and helpful in getting us on the road quickly and answering questions throughout the week. He even made dinner reservations for us one night! You canít beat this kind of service. The car was a 1994 Toyota Corolla with right hand drive. Very clean and easy to drive once I figured out how to drive a right hand drive car on the left hand side of the road! Wow what an experience. I only hit the wipers instead of the blinkers a couple of times though. 

Roads were pretty good, I drove mostly on the Leeward Highway, Lower Bight Road and Grace Bay Road. Blamona asked about the SouthDock road to the Chaulk Sound area. They are still working on it but it is mostly finished and in pretty good shape.

You have to be very careful when driving. At night some Belongers seem to drive with their lights on high beam or not on at all! Also driving the speed limit is a joke as you always have people on your tail. But I guess that isnít much different than here.

I want to go back some day! Very relaxing place.

Posted a few pics at http://s131.photobucket.com/albums/p316/yalerider/
password is provo.
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Old Nov 7th, 2006, 05:32 PM
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Thanks for posting! Your link says no pictures.
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Old Nov 7th, 2006, 06:04 PM
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caribtraveler: click on the blue Provendenciales, that's how I saw them!
Yalerider: Excellent report. Was it windy and wavy for you? Usually the water is crystal clear, and beach super wide. Always gorgeous though. I never get tired of those shades of turqouise.
I love RWI, find it the best bang for the buck.
Glad you had a nice trip!
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Old Nov 7th, 2006, 06:23 PM
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"Help me," she squeaks in a voice not unlike that of The Fly. I've got mounds of laundry from our last trip left to do. and my husband pulls out his Fodor's Caribbean and immediately begins to read aloud about the Turks and Caicos. Your report was really good, full of details which I like. I may be inspired now to do our summer clothes and get them ready for another trip. I'll remember the RIW and we'll start budgeting for oceanfront. Enjoyed it. Thanks
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Old Nov 8th, 2006, 07:30 AM
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The first couple of days were wavy and we got some rain, which I liked as it was so hot. Very refreshing. We liked the waves but the sea settled down the last few days and the water cleared up.
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Old Nov 8th, 2006, 08:24 AM
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Thanks Blamona. Just viewed the pics. Thank you for posting them, yalerider.
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Old Nov 13th, 2006, 07:55 AM
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No problem. Sorry so many pics of water. I couldn't stop taking pics as it was so beautiful!
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Old Nov 13th, 2006, 12:58 PM
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Great report..thanks for sharing! Will look at the photos tonight.
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Old Nov 13th, 2006, 02:19 PM
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Thanks for posting, Yalerider. We stayed at RWI this summer and thought it was nice. The beach at Grace Bay is something else!! The water was was all different shades of turquoise -- loved it!

Thanks for sharing your pics, too!

Beachgirl
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