- Category: Destinations
- Author: Francis Tran
Sun, Sand and Biodiversity in the Turks & Caicos
How is the weather where you live? If it’s not perfect, then you need to be on the islands of Turks and Caicos, where it’s always a good day outside. This British overseas territory is famous for its year-round tropical climate. The archipelago has more than 40 different islands, a handful of which are developed into what is one of the most popular tourist destinations in North America.
To experience some of the best natural TLC that T&C has to offer, Provo’s Blue Mountain should be your first option. You can have a full view of the main island and the Caribbean sea from what is the highest point on Providenciales. And you can treat yourself to one of the luxury villas found here, nestled on the coastline, the weather’s heat cooled by ocean breezes. Many of the properties are located in exclusive private estates, surrounded by sweetly scented tropical foliage. They feature stunning seaside views, luxurious interiors and exotic architecture with a distinctly West Indian ambience.
For those seeking sun and sand, Turks and Caicos’ strong suit is definitely its beaches. Fun science fact: Turks and Caicos’ islands are of coral origin, so its sands are of a much finer quality than, say, Hawaii’s coarser version. The most famous beach in Providenciales is Grace Bay, which consistently ranks as one of the best in the world, with its incredibly soft sand and perfectly clear water.
Since Turks and Caicos’ motto is “Beautiful By Nature,” you would expect the territory’s best attraction to be purely formed in nature, respected and preserved by the islanders. And you would be right. The islands are home to one of the best coral reefs in the world, teeming with colourful sea life, making it a prime diving and snorkelling spot. Such biodiversity makes ecotourism an important part of the islands’ ethos.
If you are interested in ecotourism, read also A Walk on the Wild Side in Costa Rica.
One of the island’s great natural attractions is the salt pan in Provo’s wetlands. This geological feature allows for a great variety of flora and fauna. To observe all this beauty, visit the Princess Alexandra National Park off Providenciales’ north coast. This protected area includes an iguana sanctuary and is an important feeding location for many Caribbean seabirds. You might also catch sight of Turks and Caicos’ 14 unique kinds of plant, reptiles, an unknown number of invertebrates, as well as the reddish egret and West Indian whistling duck.
Chalk Sound is another national park on same island, whose clear waters are separated from the ocean by a thin peninsula. Its calm lagoon allows for excellent kayaking (rentals available) to bird watch and species spot. The nearby Sapodilla Bay Beach and Taylor Bay Beach offer shallow waters that are perfect for taking a dip.