Grace Bay on Provo is the longest stretch of sand, at 12 miles, and despite the hotels it is possible to find plenty of empty space, but no shade. There is rarely any shade on the beaches. Most watersports can be arranged through the hotels or tour operators. 230 miles of white sand beaches & coral reefs surround the islands.
Several tour operators represent all day sails, scuba dives or snorkelling trips or you can contact the captains direct or through your hotel. Sailing and beach cruising trips include: Sail the Trade Winds Schooner, Atabeyra, anchored at Leeward Marina, offering Pirates Cay full and a half day sails and ecology tours, cold drinks and snorkelling gear included, call Sun Charters T9415363 or the tour desk at your hotel; Beluga, Leeward Going Through, T/F9464396, VHF 68, 37ft catamaran, private full and half day sails; Sand Dollar Cruises, T946-5238/5407, F9465407, “cruise in comfort” to Little Water Cay, beach and snorkel half day trips, secluded island getaway with umbrella, snorkel, picnic and cold drinks.
Minx, Turtle Cove Marina, T/F9465122,41 ft trimaran, private charters only, up to six people, day, sunset, overnight trips, Captain Mike has 30 years’ sailing experience, 10 doing charters in TCI; Tao, T9464783, F9415510, VHF 77, 56 ft trimaran, four double cabins, 1-2 week cruises in TCI and Bahamas, Captain Dave Matthews has 20 years’ sailing experience, half day cruise, sunset or glow worm; Caicos Cat Cruises, ‘conk out on de big boat’, 45ft catamaran, island exploration under shade, from Turtle Cove Marina next to Banana Boat, T9415389; Two Fingers, T9464783, F9415510, VHF 77, 36ft catamaran, and Arielle, 52ft catamaran, full and half day cruises, snorkelling, trips arranged by Sail Provo, T9464783, F9465527, Email: sail...@tciway.tc Also at Leeward Marina, Catch the Wave Charters, T/F9413047, Email: catc...@yahoo.com, 26 ft Bowrider, comfortable and roomy, specialize in private charters and offer bonefishing, waterskiing, beach cruising, reggae sunset cruises; J & B Tours, T9465067, F9465288, offers beach and snorkelling excursions, barbecues, waterskiing, island getaways, trips to Conch Farm, caves on Middle Caicos, glow worm cruises, fishing and scuba. Silver Deep (see Diving & Marine Life), offers similar beach cruises, glow worm charters, secluded getaways, trips to Middle and North Caicos. Exclusively at Sapodilla Bay, Ocean Outback’s ‘Ultimate Getaway’, all day adventure by 18 ft or 24 ft runabouts visiting settlers’ ruins, pirate caves and rock carvings, snorkelling, beach BBQ, snacks, beers, round trip transportation included, T9410824, or contact tour desk at your hotel. Windsurfing Provo at Ocean Club, Grace Bay, T9465649 and evenings T9465490, Email: wind...@tciway.tc, offers hobie waves, hobie cats, small motor boats and kayaking as well as windsurfing.
Fishing is popular. Provo and Pine Cay have the best bonefishing though it is also possible at South Caicos, Middle Caicos, North Caicos and Salt Cay. May is the prime time. Fishermen have not organized themselves into offering packages, so you have to find your own accommodation and fishing guide. Shop around before committing US$250-300 per day because experienced visitor fishermen have reported a lack of skill, professionalism and simple amenities among local guides. An international billfishing tournament is held annually coinciding with the full moon in Jul, T9464106, F9464771. It is a big event with lots of parties. On Providenciales, the choices are: Captain Barr Gardiner’s Bonefish Unlimited (Box 241, T9464874, F9464960), Light Tackle and ‘Black Diamond’ Fishing and Boat Tours (T9464451), Earl Musgrove. Leeward Going Through Marina is the best place to find and talk to fishermen, or try to reach them on the radio, VHF 16. J & B Tours will arrange full and half day fishing. Gilley’s restaurant will cook your catch. Silver Deep includes bone, fly, light tackle and night fishing in his itinerary.
The most experienced sports fishing operation on Provo is Captain Bob Collins’ Sakitumi Charters, he has been fishing these waters on his 43ft Hatteras since 1989, T9464065, F9464141, US$650 per full day, US$350 per half day, VHF Channel 16 ‘Sakitumi’. There are four deep sea sport fishing operators in Turtle Cove Marina; Sakitumi; Gwod Phrienz (Good Friends) contact Algie Dean, T9464342, F9415144, Email: email@example.com; Gwendolyn, 45ft Hatteras sportfisher, T9410412, 9465321, www.Provo.net/Gwendolyn/ Rates approximately US$400 half day, US$750 full day. On Grand Turk fishing can be arranged through Ossie (Oswald) Virgil, of Virgil’s Taxis at the airport, or PO Box 78, T9462018. Ossie also arranges an annual Game Fishing Tournament in August. On Middle Caicos fishing and boating is arranged through the District Commissioner’s Office, T9466100, with Dotis Arthur and her husband, Cardinal. On South Caicos a bonefish specialist is Julius ‘Goo the Guide’ Jennings, US$20 per hour, who can be contacted through the Club Caribe, T9463444, F9463446.
A US$10 sport fishing licence, for pole fishing only, is required from the Fisheries Department, Grand Turk, T9462970, or South Caicos, T9463306, or Provo, T9464017. Ask your guide whether the fishing licence is included in his package. Spear fishing is not allowed.
Parasailing with Turtle Parasailing, Turtle Cove Inn, costs US$60 a fly, T/F9415389, Email: para...@tciway.tc Provo now also offers tandem skydiving with Skydive Provo, T9410901. Visit the landing zone on the beach southwest of Club Med. Exclusive scooter getaway to North Caicos with Provo Fun Cycles, T9465868. Jetskis are banned from any of the marine parks, although they may be used in parts of Leeward Channel and on the Banks and can be rented from Sun and Fun Seasports at Leeward Marina, T9465724.
Beach Cruiser at the Ocean Beach Hotel, T9467113, offers diving, US$50 for one-tank dive, US$80 for two-tank dive, minimum 4 people, packages and equipment hire available. Snorkelling trips also offered.
There is a 20 ft pontoon ‘flat top’ boat for hire, from Beach Cruiser, offering trips of 1 hour, half day or full day, picnics, snorkelling etc, island hopping and visits to see iguanas on Salt Water Cay.
US$200 a half day or US$375 a whole day, maximum four people, with Beach Cruiser. For unspoiled backwater bonefishing/flat bottom fishing, contact Whitby Plaza for trips on 27 ft launch boat. Lunch included with all day trips.