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Old 09-05-2011, 06:01   #16
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

There best snorkeling was on Turtle Rock just west of Sapodilla Bay on Provo. There is one shallow dive site, Rock Garden Interlude, on West Caicos that could be snorkeled. Other than that, there are some bommies on French and around the South Dock anchorage area on Grand Turk that can be snorkeled.

We stayed at South Side also (Hi Sharon!) and provisioned at the Graceway IGA on Provo and at Cee's on Grand Turk. Everything was very laid back, the only "crazy" fun was the cruise ship tourists at Margaritaville on Grand Turk, the DJ ran contests as they drank.

By the time you get through southern Bahamas, you will be used to spotting the coral heads, and used to the prices. Liquor is more expensive than Bahamas, beer and soda is about the same.
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Old 15-05-2011, 00:56   #17
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

we were in Turks and Caicos in April. We like to beach our boat and we found it hard to find access to beaches where we could do that. Ft George is beautiful but you really have to be careful and go at high tide even if you have a 3.2 draft as our cat does. We stayed on an off at Turtle Cove Marina. It is well marked now so they don't provide an escort in any longer. Check out our web site, SittonOnTheBeach.com, in early April and we blogged about our experience there daily with quite a few photo's. The AGI grocery on the main highway is the best grocery I have been to since we left the states. It was awesome. The best car rental is there at Turtle Cove. Customs was easy since they will come to your slip at Turtle Cove. We had friends on the south side, Sapillado Bay, and they had a long walk and had to go a couple of times. Everyone who stayed at Southside Marina seemed to really like it. When we were there all the cruisers stayed at Sapillado Bay because they were just waiting for a weather window and the North side is farther. Bob does do a net every morning and seems real helpful. Sharks Tooth is kind of a tradition as well as Tiki Hut right there at Turtle Cove Marina as far as restraurants. Turtle Cove was .95 a foot with a 20.00 additional minimum for electric and water. Still cheap. The docking can be a trick since the docks are short (not floating) and you have only poles to use on the outside. Am I glad it went?, you bet. Will I go back, nope, not unless we are on our way to the Virgin Islands. Exuma's water is just as pretty and not as big a hassle to get to. But we are not big into infrastucture and we are not divers. It struck us as a better fly in destination or a good place to provision on your way South.
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Old 30-08-2011, 08:43   #18
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

Having lived and boated here in the TCI full time for six years now on an assortment of boats, I wanted to pipe up here on the coral heads etc. The first few times you get into water as clear as this, everything within 20 ft. of the surface looks like you can reach out and touch it. We've been out jigging for bottom fish and watched groupers come out of their caves 80 ft. below us. It's that clear.

The coral heads that you need to worry about are not the dark blobs you see. Those dark blobs on the Caicos Bank are typically 8-12 ft. below you. They are usually exposed bedrock or the local equivalent of cobble beds with dark grass or moss growing on them. In some places there is just vegetation on the bottom, which is dark. Also a good place to look for conch. There are plenty of coral heads and rocks that reach upward nearer the surface, with some of them maybe three to four feet below MLW. It's very rare to see a coral head breaking the surface, although we have in some remote spots. But the thing is that in most of the cases we see, the coral heads within about five feet of the surface are not dark, they are brightly colored. The colorful critters like sunlight, and congregate on the highest peak they can find, which is the coral head you want to really avoid. So while we keep a close watch on the dark spots and boat safely over most of them, we immediately divert away from any rock with spashes of color on it.

I'm the same person as "Gringo" btw. We do write a blog about living here as expats. We are VERY familiar with Bob Pratt and Southside Marina. And Simon Anderson. We live down the road, and "La Gringa" is "Polly-on-the-hill" on the morning Cruiser's Net on the VHF. We have a vantage point, a weather station, and a VHF setup at the house that sometimes lets us talk to boats in a 50 mile radius. So we've gotten involved with quite a few of the cruisers passing through here, including the cookouts at SouthSide Marina.

I think that Gringo screen name was already taken when I signed on here, or something like that.
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Old 30-08-2011, 18:14   #19
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

Welcome Aboard Cruisers Forum

Unless the laws have changed, swimsuits on the beach only. Not to be worn in town..
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Old 29-09-2011, 12:01   #20
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

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Welcome Aboard Cruisers Forum

Unless the laws have changed, swimsuits on the beach only. Not to be worn in town..
That's the first I have ever heard of that law, and we've lived here full time since 05. If it's on the books, I can guarantee you it's not enforced.

The way the laws are handled here is pretty cool, as far as we are concerned. Unless you bother someone else enough that they complain, nobody is going to stop you from doing just about anything you want. I've never seen a no shirt, no shoes, no service sign here. We've taken our well behaved dog into a number of restaurants here. Imagine the outrage in the US if you strolled into a restaurant with your dog.

Smoking is allowed at restaurants. We don't smoke, but don't see any problems with people who do here. Most of the restaurants are open air anyhow. You can buy a cold beer, opened, ready to go, at the gas stations.

We've been pulled over and told to buckle up, without a word being said about my passengers and their open beers and rum punches.

the authorities WILL come down on you for fishing in the national park or poaching lobster out of season. Other than that, just behave yourself generally and have a good time.

Any of you cruisers heading through here, we know Bob Pratt and Simon Anderson at the South Side Marina very very well. We live two miles away, and La Gringa is "Polly-on-the-hill" on the morning Cruiser's Net. Sometimes we stop by the Thursday night BBQ's during season. And we've met quite a number of cruisers passing through. Typically people do an internet search before getting here and find our blog.

Randy and Hideko Abernethy on Swinging on a Star were the first ones we met. We took them over to Turtle Cove to meet with another St. Francis 50 but I forget the name of it, or the people on board. Been quite a few more since then.
Some our our house wiring was done by Mike from Dancing Dolphin...we had a well pump installed by Roger from Manx Cat... ( hiring cruisers under the table, gasp!) and if you read the blog you can find a lot of info about Capt. Dave Nichols and the schooner Star of the Sea and their missionary work in Haiti...that whole crew has been to the house for dinner. Ed and Deb, from Ariel...I keep thinking of more and more...Bruce from Sara Jane...

If we can be of any assistance or help, drop us an email.
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Old 28-04-2012, 12:12   #21
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

Hi Canibul. Just read your post from last year re: Turks and Caicos. In particular, your comments regarding coral caught my attention and some expansion on that would be appreciated as it would pertain to the Gingerbread Chanel. This is the route that I intend to follow from Ambergris/Long Cay to Providenciales. On my (older) wavy line chart it looks like a clear and easy sail. In your (or anyone else's) experience, Is that what I can expect?

We expect to be there within the next couple of weeks, so advice appreciated.

thanks Jim
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Old 01-05-2012, 21:31   #22
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

FYI The Turks & Caicos have recently changed their Customs/Immigration fees. It is now $50 to check in and an additional $50 to check out. In addition, if you stay more than 7 days (and you said you wanted to be there 2 weeks), there is an additional $300 fee. We just cruised out of there in April from the Leeward/Windward Islands. T&C is nice, but not worth $400 frankly....lots of other places to go w/o those high fees.
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Old 02-05-2012, 04:05   #23
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

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FYI The Turks & Caicos have recently changed their Customs/Immigration fees. It is now $50 to check in and an additional $50 to check out. In addition, if you stay more than 7 days (and you said you wanted to be there 2 weeks), there is an additional $300 fee. We just cruised out of there in April from the Leeward/Windward Islands. T&C is nice, but not worth $400 frankly....lots of other places to go w/o those high fees.
i think i would leave with out checking out!
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Old 02-05-2012, 07:33   #24
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

Thanks for the info. Certainly changes our plans. It seems that the T&C government is sending a message to discourage visiting yachts
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Old 02-05-2012, 12:46   #25
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

The problem is without check out papers, you cannot check INTO another country. Sometimes they will accept some 'explanation' or send you back.....man w/o a country. grin.
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Old 02-05-2012, 13:12   #26
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

Skip it. TCI does not want cruisers. If they did the fee would not be so costly. Also, there is nothing there worth looking at except for the whales and you can just anchor at Sand Cay and view them on you way to somewhere that you are wanted.
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Old 02-05-2012, 19:37   #27
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Re: Turks & Caicos: First Visit, Need Advice

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The problem is without check out papers, you cannot check INTO another country. Sometimes they will accept some 'explanation' or send you back.....man w/o a country. grin.
Maybe true for DR, but PR or Bahamas don't require a despacho.
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