Snorkeling is a great way to enjoy the salty, warm waters of the Caribbean while vacationing on the Turks and Caicos Islands, the perfect way to get your feet wet and even experience a close encounter with the region's aquatic life.
The warm, clear turquoise sea off the shores of this group of islands is home to an array of marine life including tropical fish, sea turtles, wild dolphins, sharks, rays and sometimes even the gigantic humpback whale.
When you've had your fill of snorkeling off of the gorgeous beaches, you can hire a private charter to take you to the best spots to snorkel on the coral reefs and cays. Thanks to the effort the government has put into protecting the sea life, the waters are clean and the world beneath the surface is thriving unlike anywhere else in the region.
There are a few dive shops or watersports operators that offer snorkeling trips on pretty much every island, offering snorkelers the chance to visit the reefs by the Caicos Cays which are especially well-liked.
Grand Turk is a great destination for those who prefer to stick close to the shore as they do their snorkeling. Several beaches have shallow reefs less than 100 feet off shore, and in waters that are less than 15 feet deep. , White Sands Beach, and Pillory Beach are some of the best loved spots.
snorkeling is great snorkeling destination because there are several healthy reef systems accessible from the shore. You'll find the north coast to have the best options, with the most popular spots being the and , but you'll rarely be disappointed if you aim to get in a little snorkeling from any beach on the island.
The north coast of North Caicos is where adventurous snorkelers will want to head because most of this area remains unexplored. You'd be hard pressed, however, to find a beach that isn't ideal for the sport. Check out Whitby Beach as a favorite snorkeling spot.
For the most part, snorkeling from the beaches of Middle Caicos will involve calm waters and glimpses of juvenile fish swimming in schools through the sea grass and the occasional reef cluster. There are a few beaches around the island, however, that are known for stronger currents. Be sure to always be aware of how the water moves when you snorkel around this island.
Protected by the Admiral Cockburn Land and Sea National Park, South Caicos is home to perhaps the best snorkeling opportunities in the whole of the island chain. Even Scuba Diving Magazine has recognized it as the “Best Overall Destination.”
Salt Cay's claim to fame is that it is one of the only places on earth where you can snorkel near the North Atlantic Humpack Whale. They pass by the island as they migrate to the waters of the Dominican Republic, and many snorkelers have been able to view them as they majestically glide along.
If you want to experience below the water's surface you should consider a visit to. This site is renowned for its divers marine life in waters that extend from 10 to 25 feet deep. The creatures you can expect to see include southern stingrays, frogfish, octopus, sea horses, and peacock flounder. This snorkeling site is located on Grand Turk, in the eastern part of Turks and Caicos.
Northwest Point National Park is another option. Located within a marine park, this protected area offers healthy and amazing snorkeling opportunities. Do be aware, however, that conditions can be rough at times, so only strong swimmers should attempt this site. The rocky coast and several small coves of shallow water offer the best snorkeling.
A third location to consider is. This spot is great for new snorkelers thanks to the especially calm conditions, plus it is exciting when you glimpse a sunken cannon.
A fourth place where you can go snorkeling is The Bight Beach. Provo's favorite sport for snorkeling, this reef can become quite busy during days when the conditions are good. This clearly marked reef starts right off the beach in shallow waters, and is home to many fish who are so used to people that they swim up with no fear. If you want to experience it for yourself, you'll find this site found in Turks and Caicos.
is a fifth option to consider. Offering what most consider to be the best snorkeling off Provo. For starters, it is calm enough for beginners, but the sites are so interesting that experienced snorkelers will enjoy themselves as well. If you snorkel during the day, you'll see sponges, coral, stingrays, and turtles, but if you opt for a night snorkel you'll encounter sea snails, sea worms, prawns, squid, an octopus.
The chart directly below enables you to learn some key facts regarding 26 of the best places to go snorkeling in this area.
|1.6 mi. South of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|Northwest Point National Park||5.1 mi. Northwest of Central Blue Hills||Providenciales|
|1.2 mi. West of Central Dellis Cay|
|The Bight Beach||2.4 mi. West-Southwest of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|3.3 mi. West of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Grace Bay Beach||2.0 mi. West-Southwest of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Gibbs Cay||2.5 mi. East-Southeast of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|North Beach||2.1 mi. Northeast of Central Balfour Town||Salt Cay|
|5.3 mi. North of Central Toby Rock||North Caicos|
|2.8 mi. North of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|1.8 mi. South West of Central Yankee Town||West Caicos|
|20.3 mi. South of Central Grace Bay|
|Cottage Pond Beach||3.8 mi. Northwest of Central Kew||North Caicos|
|8.4 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay|
|0.9 mi. North-Northwest of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|3.2 mi. South-Southwest of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Grace Bay Beach||1.1 mi. West of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Blue Haven Beach||2.2 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|6.3 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay||Pine Cay|
|3.5 mi. Southeast of Central Yankee Town|
|Sandy Point Beach||3.9 mi. West of Central Maria Mai||Parrot Cay|
|Pumpkin Bluff Pond Beach||1.8 mi. North of Central Maria Mai||North Caicos|
|Whitby Beach||3.0 mi. Northwest of Central Boton||North Caicos|
|Davy Bight Beach||4.1 mi. Northwest of Central Blue Hills||Providenciales|
|3.9 mi. South West of Central Cockburn Harbor|
|1.3 mi. West-Northwest of Central Cockburn Harbor||South Caicos|
Some people believe the best snorkeling is located off shore.
If you're ready to go snorkeling during a boat trip, you should consider Crystal Seas Adventures. It is hard to resist the shockingly blue waters that beckon of the coast of Salt Cay, and with Crystal Seas Adventures you don't have to. This company offers a host of different sea adventures from deep sea fishing to snorkeling, and of course, guided tours of the coast.
Another option to consider is Ocean Outback. For those who believe they possess pioneerin' blood, Ocean Outback is for you. With them you are able to channel your inner pirate as you explore a local pirate's lair. They're situated in western Turks and Caicos.
A third option is Silly Creek Water Sports. People of all ages and skill level are sure to enjoy a day on the water with Silly Creek Water Sports. Their staff is happy to share a fun and eventful day with you and your family.
View the table below to read more about day sails and boat trips that offer snorkeling opportunities.
|Barefoot Custom Charters||(649) 232-7447||1.2 mi. East of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Catch the Wave Charters||(649) 941-3047||2.3 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Crystal Seas Adventures||(649) 946-6977||Salt Cay||Salt Cay|
|Island Vibes Tours||(649) 231-8423||0.8 mi. West of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Kenard Cruises||(649) 332-3866||Five Cays Settlements||Providenciales|
|Ocean Outback||(649) 231-0824||4.4 mi. South of Central Blue Hills||Providenciales|
|Shoreline Adventures||(649) 333-4455||1.3 mi. West-Southwest of Central Blue Hills||Providenciales|
|Silly Creek Water Sports||(649) 432-9455||4.5 mi. South of Central Blue Hills||Providenciales|
|Sun Charters||(649) 231-0624||2.3 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|TI Reef Adventure||(649) 441-7710||0.9 mi. Northeast of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
If you're looking for a business that offers snorkeling gear, excursions or similar services, you can check with Reef Peepers Snorkeling. The Half Day Reef Peepers Snorkeling Adventure lasts for three hours and takes guests out on a power catamaran to do some snorkeling. Included is your transportation, conch salad, chips and salsa, beverages, and snorkeling gear. They are located in western Turks and Caicos.
A second company catering to snorkelers is Big Blue Unlimited. Snorkeling is an important part of many of the adventures this impressive tour company has to offer, whether you sign up for a sailing adventure, kayak tour, or a trip that focuses specifically on the sport.
A third option is Salt Cay Divers. The center is near some of the best snorkeling locations in the islands, and these tours can get you to them. They even have access to Cotton Cay. They're located within Salt Cay.
The following chart shows some information concerning 6 firms that offer services related to snorkeling.
|Big Blue Unlimited||Snorkeling Tour Operator||(649) 946-5034||2.3 mi. Northeast of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Caicos Adventures||Snorkeling Tour Operator||(649) 941-3346||2.0 mi. West-Southwest of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Crystal Seas Adventures||Snorkeling Tour Operator||(649) 946-6977||0.8 mi. Northeast of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|Papa J Tours||Snorkeling Tour Operator||(649) 231-0400||1.8 mi. South of Central Cockburn Town||Grand Turk|
|Reef Peepers Snorkeling||Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service||(649) 941-8605||3.5 mi. West of Central Grace Bay||Providenciales|
|Salt Cay Divers||Snorkeling Tour Operator||(649) 241-1009||Salt Cay||Salt Cay|
For more information concerning snorkeling, including useful tips and suggestions for both "old pros" and beginners, read this extensive guide to snorkeling in the Caribbean.
With so many options throughout Turks and Caicos, every type of snorkeler will find something they enjoy – plus, you'll never run out of sites to see.
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