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10 Things to Know for Your Trip to Turks And Caicos

February 17, 2024

These useful tips about our islands will help ensure your trip to the Turks & Caicos goes off without a hitch (we hope).
1- Weather and Climate
TCI has excellent weather all year round. May to October are considered the hot months while November to April are the cool months. The temperature varies between 24 and 35 Celsius (75 to 95 Fahrenheit) from the hot months to the cool months. There is also very little rain throughout the year. The locals say there is 350 days of sunshine during the year (and it is very true)! The rain usually falls during hurricane season (June to November). The islands get approximately one to two torrential downpours annually.
The water temperature ranges from 26 to 29 degrees Celsius (79 to 84 Fahrenheit) from hot season to cool season. Some more shallow beaches even have water that is several degrees warmer. It is an amazing place to swim and spend hours in the water!  There is something for everyone all times of year.
2- Long Bay Beach
Long Bay is an incredible three mile (4.8 km) long beach on the southeast side of Providenciales and is where The Shore Club is located (the only resort on this amazing beach).  The water is a breath-taking turquoise, with shallow depths leading off for a very great distance off the beach.  Like nearly all beaches in the Turks and Caicos, the sand at Long Bay is white with perfect consistency.
Due to being located on the southern and shallow Caicos Banks side of Providenciales, Long Bay does not experience any open ocean swell waves that many of the northern and western beaches on the island may encounter, and at times experiences small choppy waves caused by local winds, making it the ideal kiteboarding destination.
On the horizon off of Long Bay Beach is the grounded wreck of the freighter ship La Famille Express. This popular boat charter attraction is located 2.3 miles (3.7km) off the coast and was washed onto the shallow Caicos Banks during Hurricane Frances in 2004.
On top of having some of the best beaches in the world, Turks and Caicos is home to the third largest coral system.
3- The language
When traveling, language barriers can sometimes be a little intimidating. In TCI, English is the sole official language which makes it extremely tourist friendly. You might also hear some Spanish and Haitian Creole since most of the immigrants are from the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
4- Currency
Turks and Caicos use U.S. dollars.  The islands do not accept any other type of currency so be sure to exchange money before you arrive.  You can also exchange money at local banks but they charge extremely expensive rates.  Most restaurants and stores accept major credit cards.
The islands have three major banks: Scotiabank, Royal Bank of Canada and First Caribbean.
5- Costs
Although it is expected on a luxury island – drinks, food, hotels, tours, taxis, etc. are all very pricey.  If you are planning a trip to TCI, make sure your budget is big enough so you can make the most of this amazing destination.
6- Transportation
There is no public transport in Turks and Caicos (no buses, no trains, no Uber, etc.). Hotels are not allowed to have airport shuttle services, but an airport greeter will make sure you get in the right taxi.
Taxis are easily found all over the islands. However, they can be expensive, and charge per person instead of charging per time or mileage. It is advised to negotiate your rate and reach an agreement with the driver before entering a taxi (so you don’t have a bad surprise when you arrive at your destination).  The less expensive and most efficient way to get around is definitely to rent a car (which brings us to point #7: Driving).
7- Driving
Renting a car and driving is definitely the best way to get around in TCI. You need to have a valid drivers license and most car rental places require a minimum age of 23 years old.
It is important to know that, like in the UK, people drive on the left side of the road. Many cars have the steering wheel on the left but some rental cars have it on the right. It takes a little bit of time to get used to driving on the wrong side so take your time and leave plenty of space between you and the car ahead.
Also, the islands don’t have many traffic lights. Instead, they have roundabouts at the majority of intersection, so make sure you know how to safely drive in roundabouts.
8- Attractions
There are many attractions for tourists on the Turks and Caicos Islands. The most popular attraction is definitely snorkeling. Other water sports such as kayaking, kitesurfing, sailing, parasailing and horseback riding are also very popular.
Turks and Caicos has activities for everyone. You can go island hopping, or swim with stingrays, or visit a cotton plantation, or charter a yacht for the day with  Prive Luxury Yachts.
If you are visiting Providenciales, don’t forget to check out the Fish Fry every Thursday night.
9- Local Grocery
Even though Provo has some of the best restaurants in the entire Caribbean region, sometimes you just want to stay in your comfy hotel suite and make a meal.  Luckily, on-island we have the supermarket ‘Graceway Gourmet’.  In addition to fresh produce, fruits and good meat counter, they also have an awesome salad bar, hot counter, sandwich bar, fresh smoothie bar and a bakery!

10- Other Fun Facts

Here are a few other facts that will help you plan your trip:

  • Plugs are the same as North American plugs (120V, 60Hz) so you will only need a converter or an adapter if you are from Europe and using 220V.
  • No vaccinations are required or recommend before visiting TCI.
  • Turks and Caicos islands are in the same time zone as New York (UTC-4:00).
  • PLS (Providenciales International Airport) is the main airport for TCI.
  • And for the best in accommodations, stay at The Shore Club on Long Bay Beach!