Turks and Caicos boat tours offer you all the Island flavour you could dream of

27th October 2018 10:51 am

What better way to enjoy the silky turquoise seas around the Turks and Caicos then via boat? Island hop for fun day excursions, head to some of the best wreck-and-reef dive sites in the world, or simply enjoy the luxury of your own private vessel- Turks and Caicos boat tours with the Big Blue Collective allow you to experience the islands [and the world] from a novel new angle that will leave you feeling revived and refreshed.

Why opt for a Turks and Caicos boat tour with us?

The Big Blue Collective has been delighting holiday-makers for over 2 decades- not as work, but as a true passion. While our signature eco-adventures allow visitors the chance to explore off the beaten track with us, our Turks and Caicos boat tours let you truly embrace life [and fun] on the islands. With the humbling ocean our mistress in adventure, we’re super excited that we have the chance to share our love of diving, paddle boarding and surfing with you. By kayak, board or boat, sharing the secrets of this wonderful corner of the world is a delight.

Luxury island-hopping by boat

If you’re keen to catch up with your sunbathing but still explore the islands, a Turks and Caicos boat tour through the chain is perfect for you. Many island adventures focus only on Provo, with maybe a quick trip to Grand Turk thrown in for good measure, but that means you miss out on a whole lot of fun and adventure! Each island offers something truly unique for the visitor- enough to be an experience on its own- so island hopping allows you to get a little taste of each for yourself. Experience the unique culture and history that bring vibrancy to the islands, from the tender etchings of prehistoric peoples to the plantations and ruins of the salt industry. Of course, you’ll also want to sample each of the beautiful beaches that make this corner of the Caribbean so luxurious, explore the lush and vibrant tropical paradise that makes up the Islands’ ecosystem, and meet the marine, aquatic and land animals and birds that make up the spectacular natural diversity around us.

Expect any Turks and Caicos boat tour to be packed with exciting marine sightings. Life teams in the gentle, warm seas around us. See sharks and brightly coloured fish shoals flash past as turtles sedately paddle to land. Why not take advantage of the dive equipment all of the boats in our ample fleet are equipped with to explore some of the world’s best coral reefs while you are here? There’s even wreck sites and challenging walls to whet your appetite and hone your skills.

Meet our fleet for yourself

Our Turks and Caicos boat tours all make use of our recently revamped fleet, each fully outfitted for convenience as well as luxury. Our private charter boats allow you to shape your vacation around your wants and needs, and our powerboat fleet outdoes every other on the island. Sample our wave-thrashing catamarans, or upgrade to ultimate luxury with our fleet-leading 40 footer, a Hinckley which offers every boating mod-con you could want. Regardless of your choice, each boat comes with an experienced Captain and guide to keep her steady in the water, and they are fully equipped for snorkelling and diving. Don’t know how to dive yet? The Captains are certified to teach you in the open water on the spot. If you’re in the mood for an active holiday, our larger vessels also allow for all the tools needed for paddleboarding, kitesurfing and kayaking.

What destinations await me on my Turks and Caicos boat tour?

If you’re opting for one of our private charter Turks and Caicos boat tours, then there are no limits to what you can do. The day- and the boat- is your own. Nose your way up the stark, enrapturing mangrove channels that line the side of East Caicos and French Cay to see the uninhabited islands at their very best.  Creep softly through the Caicos Cays for a gentle ride on heavenly blue waters. Head to the many offshore dive sites to explore the world under the sea, or moor at the perfect spot to soak up the sun. It’s up to you!

Our Captain and helmsmen all have many years of experience on the waters of the Turks and Caicos. They can read the sea and understand her tides so your journey will always be smooth, and their time spent on the Island year-round give them the knowledge to craft you the perfect experience depending on what you want to enrich your holiday with. In-season, and provided the opportunity is appropriate, you may even get an up-close look at, and possibly interaction with the whales who pass through the Islands’ channels during their yearly migration. It’s almost guaranteed you will meet the dolphins and gentle stingray who flit through the lazy waters, too. The food onboard will be catered to your preferences, so there’s no need to touch land until night if you’re in the mood for waterborne adventure. Bring your own beats and your nautical spirit, and you’re all set!

Tailor-make your very own Turks and Caicos boat tour to suit your needs and spirit of adventure. Take advantage of the decades-long experience of our guides and Captains to plan an eco-adventure whose memories will last forever, or allow the beautiful island setting to revive your spirit and rejuvenate your soul from within. Play in the water, challenge your spirit of adventure, or bask in the warmth of the sun- it’s up to you when you allow the Big Blue Collective to enhance your trip and help you make the memories of a lifetime.


Filed under: Fleet, Private charters

Your own luxury charter boat is docked in the Turks and Caicos

18th June 2018 9:31 am

Are you looking for a true luxury experience when you book through Big Blue Collective? Then private boat charters in the Turks and Caicos may be the perfect way for you to see the islands up close and personal. It’s an experience like no other, offering a perfect blend of cruise and beach holiday vibes with a little extra luxury and your own cocoon of privacy. Once you’ve met our fleet, you’ll understand exactly what we mean!

Why are boat rentals in the Turks and Caicos a good idea?

There can be little surprise that the TCI is a premier destination for a host of watersports, from snorkelling and water adventure right through to scuba diving. Why not indulge in the luxury of being able to pick exactly where and when you play? A private charter boat for your TCI stay gives you freedom of movement and the ability to go wherever you want, finding your own adventure on the way. What could be better?

Big Blue Collective has a unique advantage in this arena- we have the very best powerboat fleet the islands can offer, from wave-beating catamarans to the star of our fleet- a luxurious 40 foot Hinckley that offers every mod-con you could possibly wish for. Our boats are all equipped for snorkelling, and many for diving too, and with the diversity of the fleet you can find the right boat for your plans easily. Our instructors even offer on-the-water dive training for beginners. Pick the right boat, and we can also bring along all the tools you need for paddleboarding, kitesurfing and even kayaking too. Whether it’s a gentle cruise through the Caicos Cays or a trek to the uninhabited and haunting channels of East Caicos or French Cay, your boat is waiting for you to find her.

It doesn’t matter what your plans are, or where you want to visit. Our helmsman are experienced, with years spent on the TCI’s waters giving them the experience to read the tides and sea as well as the insider scoop on your destination. Whether you’re longing for the beaches or the mangrove wilderness, our guides have everything you need to know right at their fingertips. On-board food options are catered to your needs, so all you need to bring is yourself, your spirit of adventure and the right playlist!

Meet the fleet

Still not sold? Then come and meet the super-special boats that make up our unique fleet…you’ll soon find the right match! Boat rental in the Turks and Caicos is never a hassle with Big Blue Collective on your side.

MV Serenity

This stunning sport yacht is outfitted with 300HP four stroke outboard motors, and looks sleek and powerful for all her 47’. She doesn’t lack in comfort and style, either, proving to be quite the head turner among our fleet. No wonder- the Intrepid class yachts have been repeatedly voted powerboat of the year by numerous well respected folks in the know.

On board Serenity, you’ll find a fresh water shower, open air space and shaded seating, a spacious sundeck, and the perfect spot to nap. She has side hull doors and a stepladder to make getting on board a breeze- even from the water. Whether you just want to take a private charter cruise in the beauty of the TCI, or are looking for your companion for a dive trip, she’s perfect all around.

MV White Sands

A powerful and beautiful 42’ catamaran, White Sands steams ahead under the power of her twin Yanmar 311s. With a super-dry, super-stable 21’ beam, this is one spacious boat. She’s equipped with marine heads, fresh water showers and every little luxury. Anchor offshore and soak up the sun, swim, or sip cocktails, she’s your perfect companion. If you’d like a laid-back snorkel cruise, this girl is for you.

MV Live and Direct

The adventure bearer of the fleet, with 15 years of good service on her record, this boat is saturated in the tales of the many visitors who have enjoyed her. She can go anywhere, do anything, and tell you the tales afterwards. As a fast, dry and nippy little ship, she doesn’t sacrifice style for her speed and manoeuvrability.

Her stats? She’s a 40’ catamaran, with two 3555 HP Cummins engines. Think of her as your perfect dive companion, as she can easily fit 6-10 divers, take snorkelers to the reef or explore shallow channels like she’s half the size. If you’re eyeing one of our water safaris, this is your girl. Private boat charters in the Turks and Caicos don’t come better than her.

MV Lady Tamara and MV Little Chill

Though they be little, they be fierce. 295 DC dual console, twin 300HP Yamaha World Cats, these are special little boats that will take you anywhere, anytime, and have fun doing it. From family fun to the ultimate dive ride, they’ll get the job done with a smooth ride, shallow draft and amazing stability even when the sea gets choppy. For 30’ vessels, they hold up to 10 people in true style, and can take 4 divers easily. If a half or full day trip is in your itinerary, you’ve found your girls. Fresh water hose showers and a head is available on both boats.

Private boat charters in the Turks and Caicos have never made so much sense. Each and every one of these powerboats, from the littlest to the largest, offer stability, manoeuvrability, good looks and the promise of fun, surf and sand. Whatever your destination- be it a party on the waves or a serious eco tour- these TCI rental boats will see you there in speed and style.

 

Speak to the Big Blue Collective team today to plan your perfect boat rental experience, and get the low down on each of our unique fleet boats to help you choose the best charter for your needs.

 


Filed under: Private charters

Easy, simple, perfect: day excursions around Turks and Caicos

30th April 2018 9:57 am

Are you heading to the Turks and Caicos? Be sure to add a few day [or even longer] excursions to your itinerary to ensure you experience everything this beautiful island chain has to offer. Big Blue Collective offers you the perfect plan, no matter where you want to head

Explore the fun and vibrancy of Provo or Grand Turks, or get to the heart of the Turks and Caicos with unique explorations to North, South, Middle and Eastern Caicos. Discover sleepy Caribbean towns steeped in history and rich with natural beauty and diversity. Discover the fish industry at Southern Caicos, or explore the wilds of Middle and Eastern Caicos. Big Blue Collective has bases on all the islands, and close to two decades of experience to guide you to experiences that you’ll remember forever

Fun and frolic at play

Providenciales

Provo, the most populous island in the chain, makes for a perfect Turks and Caicos excursion in itself. Rich with beautiful beaches, roaming wildlife and sites to explore, you can easily content yourself getting to know this corner of the TCI. Visit the only conch farm in the world, and learn more about the giant sea snail so vital to the culture of the island. West Harbour Bluff and the Frenchman’s Creek Nature Reserve offers spectacular natural sights, while those with a historic bent can visit the remains of Cheshire Hall Plantation and learn more about it’s fascinating history. There’s even ‘The Hole’, a massive sinkhole with diving potential for those who love water sports.

Be sure to stop at Little Water Cay while you’re here. It’s an unmissable part of any Turks and Caicos excursion. Populated by the unique TCI iguanas, you’ll find them everywhere on their small island home. It’s the perfect stop for a kayaking tour, complete with the smaller iguanas on the lesser islands dotted through the area. Schedule 2 or 3 hours for this unique little slice of the TCI pie!

Grand Turk

Grand Turk makes a perfect day excursion in the Turks and Caicos chain. There’s sports, activities, attractions and sights galore. You’ll have to fly over from Provo, but it’s a quick hop. Gibbs Cay, a small yet remarkable island, offers you the unsurpassable chance to see wild stingrays at play. Protecting the coastline since 1852, there’s also the looming Grand Turk lighthouse to explore. Perched on the northern end of the island, this is also some of the best scenery Grand Turk offers. Explore the beautiful colonial architecture of the area- be sure to stop in at St Mary’s Anglican Church, a local beauty spot. There’s also the Turks and Caicos National Museum to entertain you.

The best of the best of wild Turks and Caicos excursions

Venture out a little further, and let the true beauty of the Turks and Caicos area seep into your soul. Big Blue Collective’s unique eco-tours will leave you refreshed, entertained and enraptured by this singular corner of the world.

North, East and Middle Caicos

With a fun ferry trip to set the mood, and the option to watch a spectacular sunset or sunrise from the deck, this is a Turks and Caicos excursion not to be missed. Middle Caicos brings you the joys of Mudjin Harbour, surrounded with towering limestone cliffs and home to quaint rocky islands and breathtaking caves. The Conch Bar caves are the biggest non-submerged caves in the Bahama-TCI archipelago, utterly untamed by tourism, or head to the Indian Cave and experience its open galleries and skylights for yourself.

Two spectacular plantations offer you the chance to explore their historical ruins, hidden cays dot her shores, and Cottage Pond is offers a sharp blue open strip of water in the centre of North Caicos, home to species seen nowhere else in the world. And of course, there is the beautiful, beautiful beaches at every turn.

Let Big Blue Collective’s experience help you plan the perfect TCI excursion to the North and Middle Islands. Opt for a tour with our talented and knowledgeable guides, or tailor the ‘Heart of the Island’s Eco-tour’ to your specific needs. Keen to try something off the beaten track? Explore the wilder east end of Middle Caicos, with the exquisite Windward-Going-Through channel and Wild Cow Run beach as your final destinations. Plan a picnic on the beach and let us handle the details…you can’t go wrong with this beautiful destination.

Salt Cay

Salt Cay offers something truly unique- an unspoilt Caribbean island far removed from the usual tourist trappings. It’s the destination of choice for divers everywhere, but the uniquely historical salt salinas, rejuvenating atmosphere and beautiful coastal views make it a must-see no matter what you feel like doing. Where else can you stand on a Caribbean beach with the whole area to yourself?

South Caicos

South Caicos showcases the spectacular natural landscape of the TCI, and any Turks and Caicos excursion simply has to include a stop at this unique habitat. Why not try one of our unique eco-tours to the island? Once pivotal in the salt trade, it’s now the home of fishing, kayaking and watersports. There’s simply so much for you to take in, you’ll want to come back and back again. The friendly vibes of Cockburn Harbour set the tone for a walking tour of the historic sites on the island, while flamingos frolic around you. Get to know the fishing trade up close and personal, and round it off with a delectable seafood lunch on the waterfront. Or take to the back trails on our mountain bike fleet, allowing you to explore the area for yourself. Keen and experience kayakers will find spectacular channels, vibrant wetlands and hidden cays waiting for them.

No matter where you venture, any Turks and Caicos excursion will leave you stimulated, enraptured and in love with this unbeatable corner of the world.


Filed under: Private charters, Tourism

What’s the Best Way to Island Hop the Turks and Caicos?

29th January 2018 10:51 am

The Turks and Caicos is a Caribbean archipelago made up of eight islands and dozens of smaller cays. Every island is unique in its own way and each can be a destination in and of itself. However, if you have varied interests and are up for experiencing the country in its entirety and all of its Caribbean beauty, island hopping the Turks and Caicos is going to give you an experience unlike any other.

Why Island Hop the Turks and Caicos?

How you want to enjoy your Caribbean holiday will greatly influence which Turks and Caicos island you want to go. For example, if you like scuba diving, there are some excellent dive sites near Grand Turk island. Or if you’re a history buff, you might be more interested in the Middle Caicos island where you can explore the abandoned plantations and salt flats.

Here are some ways you can choose which Turks and Caicos island to add to your island hopping itinerary.

How to Choose which Turks and Caicos Island to Visit

You want an Instagrammable beach

If you’re going to be in the Caribbean, you almost HAVE to reserve some time in your schedule to just lay on some of the finest, white sand in the world. The beaches of Providenciales Island (or Provo) are world renowned and consistently earn top marks and being among the top beaches in the world.

You have kilometres of beaches that gently slope into the some of the most startling blue waters you will ever see. Some would argue that you don’t know the true color of turquoise until you’ve visited Grace Bay Beach.

Every picture you post on social media is so perfect that you can always tag the photo with #nofilter.

You are a nature lover

The Turks and Caicos isn’t a paradise to just humans. There are scores of aquatic, marine, land, and flying animals that make their home on the islands. While you’re here, you have a great opportunity jump from island to island to watch animals in their native environment.

 

For example, you can take kayak or stand up paddleboarding eco-tours to explore and learn all about the serene mangrove habitats, various nursery grounds, iguana sanctuary, marine life, island birds, and coastal ecology.

If you want to get closer to life under the sea, then you basically have your pick all around the Turks and Caicos. The waters around the islands blooms with life as the reefs and sea walls are natural havens for countless number of fish, sharks, turtles, and coral.

Some of the best islands to experience nature include Providenciales (so you can paddle to Little Cay—also known as Iguana Island), North Caicos, Middle Caicos, and Caicos Cays.

You’ll go wherever the wind blows—literally

The Turks and Caicos is the premier destination for kiteboarding, because it is situated in the crossroads of year round trade winds. Long Bay beach on Providenciales is a great destination for the sport because it allows riders to travel for kilometres.

You want to experience the history and culture

The cultural centre of the Turks and Caicos can be found on North, Middle, and South Caicos. With Providenciales taking the lion’s share of resorts and tourism, these islands are able to retain their history and preserve a non-tourist-centric lifestyle.

If you island hop to these islands, you’ll see remnants of the cotton plantations and salt industries.

Grand Turk Island is the capital island of the Turks and Caicos archipelago and is home to Cockburn Town, the capital city. Here, you can visit museums and historical sites.

How to Island Hop the Turks and Caicos?

Island hopping the Turks and Caicos Islands can be an incredible experience and make for a memorable holiday. You’ll get to try a little bit of everything that makes the Turks and Caicos such a popular Caribbean destination.

Island hopping the Turks and Caicos by plane

Unfortunately, not all Turks and Caicos islands have commercial airports, so flying can only be a part of your island hopping strategy. However, there are many flights to and from the larger islands.

Providenciales International Airport (PLS) is the Turks and Caicos largest airport and has many international departures and arrivals. Providenciales island is the best place to start your island hopping adventures.

The other international airport in the Turks and Caicos is the Grand Turk JAGS McCartney International Airport (GDT).

There are other airports around the islands that will help in your island hopping itinerary. You can fly charter or private flights to these airports, which include:

 

  • North Caicos Airport (NCA)
  • Middle Caicos Airport (MDS)
  • South Caicos Airport (XSC)
  • Salt Cay Airport (SLX)
  • Pine Cay Airport (PIC)

Island hopping the Turks and Caicos by boat

Charter flights can give a fantastic view of the islands, but boats are definitely the best way to truly experience the Turks and Caicos.

If you’re arriving internationally by boat, you’ll have to pass through a port-of-entry—there are several on Providenciales. If you’re island hopping Turks and Caicos in your own craft, you will need to apply for a one-week permit or a longer 90-day Cruising Permit from the harbourmaster.

You can also schedule your own private charters to explore the Turks and Caicos. Depending on your boat captain or charter company, you can go practically anywhere.

Many charter companies even have fleets that carry their own snorkeling, diving, or kayaking equipment so you can jump into the water whenever you need some freedom.

Ready to Island Hop Turks and Caicos?

Turks and Caicos charters and excursions are very popular and spots fill up fast. It’s important that you book early so you can secure a captain or guide to help you customize your itinerary specific to your interests.

Contact Big Blue Collective and start booking your island hopping adventures today!


Filed under: Fleet, Private charters

New Boats for Big Blue Collective

18th January 2018 5:52 pm

The tail end of last season saw some major developments take place off the water. Reinvigorating an aging fleet is no mean feat especially here in the islands. However, with thousands of trips and miles on the clock, the wear and tear of adventure was in evidence on many of our much-loved vessels, including Yes I, Rocking Time and Starfish. These boats and YES I in particular had been instrumental along with LIVE & DIRECT in shaping and pioneering not only the Turks and Caicos catamaran revolution but also our own unique small group adventures over the last twenty years.

YES I especially has pretty much seen and done it all. She’s been everywhere in the Caicos Islands, literally. She has also been the “go to” vessel in training all our captains, guides and crew of where to go and how to do it. She is a legend in every sense of the word.

boating turks and caicos

However, every river runs its course. Over the course of last summer whispers of the quiet evolution were beginning to take shape in the form of three absolute beauties now sitting dockside at Big Blue.

The arrival of Little Chil in early August, a brand new 2017 World Cat would become the ideal partner for the beautiful Lady T. Together these two 30 footers have replaced the roles previously played by Yes I and Rocking Time while also upgrading the guest experience in comfort and space. Ideal for 6-8 guests wishing to chill or explore these vessels are also set up for 4 guests wishing to dive privately.

little chill 2

 

Meanwhile tucked away in the shipyard, four brand new 300 horsepower engines were being rigged and harnessed for Serenity our magnificent 48’ foot Intrepid Yacht. While Hurricane Irma may have delayed her arrival at Big Blue, this stunning luxury vessel was finally cut loose in October ready to explore the Caicos Banks. With cruising speeds well in excess of 30 knots, Serenity is able to cross the waters of the islands in comfort, in style and with speed. Places like French Cay, West Caicos and even South Caicos are now only an awesome boat ride away. This gem of a boat is made for classic Big Blue adventures.

serenity yacht to hire big blue Collective

Last but not least, the arrival of MV White Sands just prior to the Hurricane season completed a full turnaround of our ageing fleet. This 42’ Africat power catamaran takes space and stability to a whole new level. One hardly feels the ocean under foot as she slices the water between the cays. Perfect for 8 – 16 guests, she is made for chilling and cruising. With ample shade, a fore, top and aft deck, White Sands is our latest and last edition in our new five strong boat fleet.

White sands catamaran turks and caicos

The excitement amongst the captains, guides and the sales team has been palpable. Now we want you to join us in the next chapter of our adventures near and far across the Turks and Caicos islands.

Bring on 2018. First in, last out.


Filed under: Fleet, Private charters

Where to Find the Best Turks and Caicos Sailing

9th October 2017 3:09 pm

The Turks and Caicos is one of the premier destinations for sailing because of its prime location in the Caribbean for professionals, amateurs, and casual passengers alike. If you aren’t interested in captaining your own boat but still want to experience the freedom of taking on the open seas, then here’s how you can enjoy some of the best sailing in the Turks and Caicos.

Safety

Before we get into how to find the best Turks and Caicos sailing excursions or companies, it’s important to understand the local geography and how that can impact your experience and safety.

The Turks and Caicos are surrounded by beautiful reefs and are cooled by tradewinds. However, the same natural environment that attracted you to the islands can also be hazards for boaters. If you decide to sail the Turks and Caicos yourself, you should familiarize yourself with the area.

Alternatively, you can charter a boat and an experienced crew to give you an unforgettable experience on the water.

Season

January through March is often one of the best times to set sail in the Caribbean. It’s not too hot yet in the open sun and there aren’t too many storms during this time. However, because of this prime time, prices tend to be higher.

Charter Companies

Charter companies are often the goto resource for when you want to sail the Turks and Caicos. Two ways charter companies are segmented are by the size and tier.

Company Size

Larger companies have larger fleets, which gives some flexibility for any schedule disruptions. They can also offer upgrades. Smaller companies tend to have better service, but a smaller fleet size means it will be harder to book with them as their openings can fill up very quickly.

Company Tier

A company tier describes the age of a fleet. First tier companies have boats that are five years or younger while second tier companies can have older boats. Many boats in the first tier companies have more advanced technology, including autopilot, GPS, stereos, and more.

However, a company’s tier isn’t really that big of an issue for passengers as the technology is more for the crew and captain.

Choosing a Charter

If you’re unfamiliar with sailing or the Caribbean conditions, it’s highly recommended that you choose a crewed charter. At Big Blue Collective, our fleet is manned by a very accomplished and capable crew who are dedicated to providing our passengers with an enjoyable and environmentally friendly experience.

Excursions

Our vessels are set-up as first-rate scuba diving, snorkeling and adventure platforms that are available for private charters across the archipelago. This means you can take a gentle cruise around nearby Caicos Cays or go further to West Caicos, French Cay, and even South Caicos.

No two trips are the same. Our captains will take you wherever the conditions will give you the best experience possible. Our experience of the tides, knowledge of the islands, and awareness of the reefs and wilderness can safely give you a close up encounter with the natural beauty of the Turks and Caicos.

What to Expect

Every one of our vessels are equipped with snorkeling gear so none of our excursions are just a mere boat ride. Each trip out to sea is to an impressive dive or snorkel site where you can immerse yourself with the marine life and beautiful coral.

Depending on the vessel you choose, some of our boats even have space to bring diving equipment, paddleboards, kayaks, and kiting gear.

We expect you to get hungry when you adventure with us. That’s why our excursions provide lunch! Food and beverages are served to your requirements and taste by Big Blue’s very own chef and we have a selection of healthy snacks or meals to choose from.

Book Now

Contact us now and let us know that you are interested in booking a private charter!


Filed under: Private charters

7 Things You Can’t Get from Turks and Caicos Resorts

26th June 2017 11:12 am

Turks and Caicos resorts are world famous for offering the highest levels of luxury and service in the Caribbean islands. You have a lot of variety too, from stylish guestrooms to fully equipped private villas that are outfitted with your own pools and personal chef.

While these five-star Turks and Caicos resorts and hotels are stunningly beautiful and relaxing, they can be a little lacking in things to do. To truly enjoy Turks and Caicos, you need to step beyond the resort grounds and into the pristine beaches, dive beneath the waves, or cruise above the waterline.

Here is a list of activities you might not be able to get from Turks and Caicos resorts—even the all-inclusive ones.

#7 Private Charters

Spending your entire vacation at a Turks and Caicos resort is relaxing, but you’ll actually be missing a lot of what makes the islands so special. There’s so much to see above and below the waves.

Hire a private charter during your stay and you can experience Turks and Caicos in the way it was meant to be experienced. Avoid the tourist attractions and head out into the water. You’ll visit hidden and secluded beaches where you and your group will be the only people in sight.  

Many private charters are also outfitted with snorkeling and diving equipment so you can always explore the sites you visit.

#6 Stand Up Paddleboarding

Stand up paddleboarding (or SUP) is actually offered by some Turks and Caicos resorts, however the rates can get a little pricey and you’ll have to content yourself with being one among hundreds of stand up paddleboarders on the beach.

Instead, leave the resort and rent your own from a trusted vendor. You will have a lot more freedom of where to go and for how long your want to stay out on the water. There are even special eco-tours you can take where you can explore mangrove channels and national parks to safely and respectfully view the delicate ecosystems and nesting birds.

#5 Kayaking

Kayaking is another sometimes-offered activity by a resort. Renting your own kayak is a popular way to explore beaches, shallow channels, tidal creeks, and the cays either on your own or on a tour.

There are even opportunities to join private multi-day kayak expedition where you can venture deeper into the national parks and nature reserves. There are also special hours you can kayak to catch the sunset. These kayak expeditions and sunset hours frequently take place away from the busy crowds that spawn from the resorts along Grace Bay Beach.

Similarly to stand up paddleboarding, kayak rentals are reasonable and there are a variety of options.

#4 Snorkeling

Snorkeling is a must-do activity during your stay at on the islands no matter which Turks and Caicos resort or hotel you are staying at. The area around the islands is perfect for snorkeling, giving you unmatched views of colorful reefs and the surrounding sea life.

While the resorts and hotels are often found near beautiful beaches, these beaches aren’t ideal for snorkeling. They are often full of tourists and the beaches, while lovely to relax and walk on, lack the exciting underwater scenery. You’ll have to venture to more isolated places away from the resorts to get the best snorkeling experience.

There are also snorkeling tours that will take you out to quieter snorkel sites.  Knowledgeable guides can help you identify the hundreds of different fish and describe the important coral reef ecology.

#3 Diving

Like snorkeling, Grace Bay Beach on Providenciales island isn’t suited for diving. What makes the beaches so great also makes for poor diving conditions. The water is shallow for dozens of yards out. Because of this, the hotels and resorts don’t offer the best SCUBA excursions.

If you’re more comfortable with deep waters, Turks and Caicos is a tough place to beat in terms of quality dive sites. You can descend and scale walls that are dozens of feet to over 100 feet that are overflowing with life.

There are plenty of diving companies that can take you to amazing dive sites teeming with fish, turtles, rays, sharks, and eels.

#2 Kiteboarding

Kiteboarding is an exciting activity that many resorts can’t accommodate. Learning how to kiteboard requires PASA and IKO certified kiteboarding instructors, and because it’s such a fun sport, the beginner classes that the resorts do have are often full.

However, since Turks and Caicos is such a hotspot for kiteboarding, it’s easy to find instructors outside of the resorts with decades of experience. Class sizes are small and some even offer private lessons that can help beginners get a good run or an advanced intermediate pick up and refine the more flashy techniques.

#1 Whale Watching

If you are visiting between November to February, you’re visiting at a great time for whale and dolphin watching. This period coincides with the humpback whale migration as they transit towards their northern feeding grounds.

The resorts and hotels hardly ever have their own boats to take guests to see whales but there are plenty of whale watching charters around the island during this time.

Even if you are out on a private charter to snorkel or dive, the boat captains are always in communication and will take you the last sightings of whales if you and the other passengers are game. You might even have the chance to snorkel or dive with whales!

 



The Best Beaches of Turks and Caicos

3rd May 2017 9:41 am

The fact that you’re even interested in the Turks and Caicos islands probably means that you love being near the water and have a high standard for beautiful beaches. If that’s true, Turks and Caicos is one of the best Caribbean islands for you. But with nearly 130 square miles (or 330 square kilometres) of beachfront, where and which are the best Turks and Caicos beaches?

 

Well, it depends.

 

Do you like relaxing? Do you like checking out marine life? Or do you want something that’s a little more unique and adventurous?

 

These are all important factors to determine which Turks and Caicos beach is best for you, but rest assured, those beaches are there.

 

Here’s a list of some of the best beaches to visit while you’re in Turks and Caicos.

Relaxing Beach

With seven main islands, you won’t find a shortage of beaches. Every single island will have at least a couple of beautiful and secluded beaches, but the ones listed here are award-winning can’t-miss spots.

Grace Bay, Providenciales Island

Grace Bay is on the island of Providenciales and is home to some of the most luxurious resorts in the island country. The resorts definitely picked a good spot, and many of them highlight their location for good reason.

 

Grace Bay is picture perfect and is the very image of what people think of when they think of a Caribbean beach: amazingly clean, clear water in various shades of turquoise lapping a beach made entirely of sugar white sand. With virtually no seaweed, rocks, or shells on a long stretch of the bay, Grace Bay is perfect for lounging and soaking up the rays.

 

While several resorts sit near the beach, there are few peddlers and it’s large enough that it never seems crowded.

Taylor Bay, Providenciales Island

Where Grace Bay is on the northeast side of the island, Taylor Bay is on the southwest side of Providenciales. Taylor Bay, like Grace Bay, is one of the best Turks and Caicos beaches for relaxation.

 

The water is clear, calm, and shallow, allowing beach goers to walk dozens of feet into the sea and only be knee deep in water.

 

It’s a good spot if you want to make sure you experience as little human contact as possible without venturing off to a more remote island. Just make sure you pack yourself a lunch and bring plenty of water, sunscreen, and shade.

 

Active Beaches

Relaxing on the perfect beach is a perfectly fine thing to do while you’re on holiday. But sometimes, the sense of adventure can just derail your plans to do nothing. While the Turks and Caicos beaches are known for unwinding, they are also havens for people who just can’t sit still.

 

Here are some beaches that can quench your thirst for adventure.

Pelican Beach, North Caicos Island

Pelican Beach in Whitby, North Caicos is lovely in its own right but a little harder to reach. While some would appreciate if it was easier to get to, the seclusion and quiet is hard to argue against.

 

One of the best ways to get to Whitby is to bike. Biking North Caicos is a great activity if you have the time and opportunity to do it. It’s an easy 12-mile ride that will take you through the North Caicos interior, giving you a small glimpse into the farming community, plantation ruins, and the 250 feet deep blue hole, Cottage Pond.

Long Bay Beach, Providenciales Island

While we know Providenciales Island has beautiful beaches, it also has a couple of beaches that are made for active people and families. Ever tried kiteboarding?

 

Long Bay Beach is in the path of constant year-round trade winds and is surrounded by warm seas, waist-deep waters for hundreds of yards, and pristine beaches: the perfect conditions for kiteboarding and kitesurfing.

 

As Long Bay Beach is a prime location for kitesurfing, there aren’t any shortages of equipment rentals or talented instructors. With consistent wind, it’s a great place for beginners. Or, if you’re more advanced, kick off at Long Bay Beach and ride all the way to the end at Five Cays—an eight mile trip.

Leeward Beach, Providenciales Island

Leeward Beach on Providenciales Island is a lovely and quiet beach. However, it’s also a great launch off point for kayaking.

 

There’s a long stretch of calm water where you can paddle between islands and cays and seeing a wide variety of marine ecosystems. From mangroves to lagoons to reefs to Iguana Island, there are numerous sights to see.

 

You can spend all day traversing the islands by kayak. Fortunately, there are kayaking tours you can do that includes rentals, gear, and lunch. While you’re here, try to keep count of the number of conch shells. There are a lot!

Grace Bay, Providenciales Island

Grace Bay is so long that it makes it onto both lists. On one end of Grace Bay is Smith’s Reef. It is one of the best places to snorkel in Turks and Caicos.

 

It’s in the name itself: Smith’s Reef is home to a beautiful and diverse reef and snorkeling here will you put you face-to-face with colorful fan coral, eagle rays, sea turtles, and more.

 

You can walk straight into the waters and make your own way to the reef. However, there are many snorkeling tours in Turks and Caicos that will take you to amazing snorkel and dive sites.

 

Hidden Beaches of West Caicos Island

West Caicos is one of Turks and Caicos large but uninhabited islands. It’s probably safe to say that the West Caicos beaches will be fairly private and quiet.

 

Honestly, the beaches on West Caicos can be relaxing, but you have to be willing to seek adventure to get there. There are private charters that will take you to some of the best diving and snorkeling sites around West Caicos, and the captains of the boats will happily swing by some of the most beautiful beaches on the island.

 

It takes a little bit of work to get to these hidden beaches, but we all know it’s always more about the journey.



Unique wedding activities when getting married in Turks and Caicos

30th April 2017 7:36 am

It’s hard to top getting married in Turks and Caicos. The spectacular white sand beaches and stunning turquoise waters gives you plenty of opportunities to create picture-perfect moments.

 

Having your wedding or honeymoon in Turks and Caicos will put you in a small but elite group as well. Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner, Tony Parker and Eva Longoria, and Jerry and Jessica Seinfeld all married or honeymooned here.

 

But more importantly, a Turks and Caicos wedding will put you in the perfect place for what REALLY matters: the honeymoon. We’ve previously mentioned some of the most luxurious Turks and Caicos resorts (many of which, offer wedding catering), but this island nation is also the premier location for some of the most exciting Caribbean excursions and activities.

 

Whale Watching

Any wedding can have a live band. But it’s truly a breathtaking moment when you and your new spouse gets serenaded by migrating humpback whales on their way south to their winter feeding grounds (or seas).

 

Whale watching in Turks and Caicos is one of the most memorable experiences for tourists. The best times for whale watching is from December to April, so definitely consider this activity if your wedding or honeymoon falls within this timeframe.

 

While the appearance of these majestic creatures can’t be guaranteed, we can promise that we would make the effort to spot them. Even if you’re doing a snorkel or diving trip, the moment whales get spotted, all of our boats are alerted.

 

Kayaking

With calm waters and shallow channels, kayaking is a favorite visitor activity. Whether you’re paddling into the sunset or just drifting under a full moon, kayaking gives you many ways to enjoy the waters.

 

Many parts of the islands are made of forests of mangroves. If you and your spouse are both adventurists, then kayaking is the best way to truly explore your Caribbean paradise. You’ll learn about the mangrove habitats, coastal ecology, island fauna and flora, and spot animals like iguanas and birds. You can even do multi-day kayaking trips for a truly unique experience.

 

Because a kayaking excursion is whatever you and your spouse make of it, it is a great honeymooning activity whether you are beginners or experienced kayakers.

 

Stand Up Paddleboarding

Like kayaking, stand up paddleboarding (SUP) is a great activity for active newlyweds. And when you go on a Turks and Caicos stand up paddleboarding excursion, you can easily paddle your way into an island national park and nature reserve made up of mangrove forests, channels, coral reefs, and cays.

 

However, if you want a more low-key honeymoon, SUP can also be a relaxing alternative. With calm, clear waters, SUP gives you an unobstructed view beneath the waves surrounding the islands without getting your hair wet.

 

So whether you want an easy 90-minute sightseeing trip or a four-hour adventure, stand up paddleboarding is a low-cost activity that offers the best of both worlds.

 

Kiteboarding

For a truly unique experience, it’s tough to beat kiteboarding on your honeymoon. With year round trade winds, warm ocean waters, shallow coastline, and scenic beaches, couples can let loose after a tightly scheduled wedding.

 

Even if both of you are kiteboarding beginners, our team of instructors has decades of combined experience that will get you cruising on the waves in mere hours.

 

Snorkeling

Put the wedding out of your mind and focus on exploring the coastal marine ecosystem with your new husband or wife. From beautiful reefs to vibrantly colored fish, snorkeling in the calm waters of the islands is one of the best ways to relax after a hectic wedding.

 

The Turks and Caicos islands have plenty of snorkeling sites to choose from, with no two experiences being the same. Snorkel during the night is an entirely different experience from the day, with different creatures taking their turn to be active. Or embark on an adventure like a snorkel cruise or snorkel ecotour or even combine with it stand up paddleboarding.

 

Or, you can keep it intimate with a private snorkeling excursion that will take you to secluded sites and beaches.

 

SCUBA Diving

People from all over the world go to Turks and Caicos for SCUBA diving. And when it comes to diving, smaller is better. New couples will join small groups to keep their diving experiences more intimate, and giving them greater opportunities to see the amazing marine life of coral reefs and walls without the disruptions of too many divers.

 

Dive the world-class reefs and walls in Grace Bay, Pine Cay, NW Point, French Cay and in West Caicos at your leisure. Spend the entire day traveling from site to site to dive unique locations. With favorable conditions and luck, you might even get to swim with whales and dolphins!

 

If you’re both new to diving, there are even diving courses that’ll get you comfortable in the open water.

 

Private Charters

You chose wisely when you decided on a Turks and Caicos wedding or honeymoon. The Caribbean islands are beautiful and there’s no better way for a newly married couple to see it than on an intimate, private charter.

 

Why limit yourself to a single activity when you can do it all on a private charter?

 

Cruise the nearby Caicos Cays or distant West Caicos and South Caicos with your new husband or wife. Stop if you see a spot you like and take out the paddleboards, kayaks, kiteboards, or snorkels for a private adventure.

Biking

While the beaches and ocean are some of the best places to be on a Caribbean island, the island interiors are fantastic in their own right. Enjoy whichever island you are on by bike. Biking the islands is one of the best ways you and your spouse can truly appreciate your honeymoon or wedding location.

 

You can do it on your own (some villas offer complimentary bicycles to their guests) or join a bike tour.

 

The North Caicos biking eco-tour will take you on a 12-mile tour of North Caicos’ interior. You’ll see the farming community of Kew, the Wade’s Green cotton plantation ruins, and the 250-feet deep blue hole, Cottage Pond.

 

So What’s Next?

No matter what you plan to do, your Turks and Caicos wedding or honeymoon will be spectacular. It can be relaxing or it can be full of adventure. In both cases, Big Blue Collective is dedicated to helping you create a memorable experience of your first days as a married couple.



Catlin SeaView Survey

22nd March 2017 10:49 am

During the second week of November Big Blue’s expertise was called upon to help the Catlin Seaview Survey complete their tasks in the Turks and Caicos Islands. The mission of this 5-year global project in conjunction with the University of Queensland in Australia is ‘to record, research, and reveal the world’s coral reefs to all in high resolution, 360-degree panoramic vision.’ Big Blue provided staff, vessels and logistical support across the entire Caicos Islands for the survey team who visited the north shore reefs, West Caicos, French Cay and South Caicos.

 A team from Discovery Channel Canada’s Daily Planet series also flew down to film a short documentary about the Catlin project and they too turned to Big Blue to aid them with local advice and diving support. Look out for this production in the coming months.

The final piece of the jigsaw and not to be underestimated; the financial backers for the whole project is the Catlin Insurance company. The CEO Mr. Stephen Catlin brought down two groups of corporate guests for a little luxury treatment and using our new vessels, a 40ft Hinckley motor launch and a 44ft Manta Cat, along-side our ever versatile ‘Live & Direct’ adventure cat Big Blue delivered once again. We introduced 14 of the guests to the delights of Scuba over two days, facilitated a demonstration with the reef survey team, and conducted one of our signature ecological education eco-tours around the reefs, cays and mangrove ecosystems along the Caicos Cays. If we were able to impress the suits and help keep the Catlin sponsorship and interest alive then our mission was accomplished.

It was a fascinating week and we will closely follow the Catlin Seaview Survey on their continued global quest. The equipment that they are using is state of the art 3-Dimensional filming equipment with technology supplied by none other than media giants Google. The camera also uses a hybrid of facial recognition software to identify coral diseases and thereby aid in the documentation and standardization of coral reef surveys around the entire planet.



New Snorkel cave found on West Caicos!

10:10 am

There is nothing better than discovering new places in the Turks and Caicos and after 16 years of exploring these islands we thought we’d covered most of it. But on Christmas Eve, whilst on a full-day adventure to West Caicos onboard our new luxury vessel, Luna Del Mar, we anchored in a sheltered cove along the leeward coast of West Caicos and discovered something exciting.

Luna Del Mar at West Caicos

It was a beautiful location where the seafloor quickly dropped down to a coral shelf at about 25ft in depth and then continued onto the sandy plain that runs out to the deep wall.  The water was very clear and there was healthy amount of fish swimming along the edge of the shelf. I noticed an open slot in the limestone and swam down to investigate.

With my legs vertically above me I poked my head down through the hole and was very excited to see a largish cave or tunnel extending under the rock to a beautiful opening about 30ft away. The cave itself was clearly providing shelter to a number of fish including a family of surgeon fish. The roof and sides of the cave was a wealth of invertebrate life including sponges, feather-dusters and various miniature corals.

West Caicos cave

We spent a fun hour free-diving down again and again to see the cave and view its inhabitants.

One of our guests, a gutsy 10 year girl, was an excellent free-diver and managed to build up her courage to make it through the cave unassisted. Not a bad feat at 25ft of depth.

West Caicos cave