Map tips: each color represents a different day. Click a marker to learn more about the spot, and click the star in the map header to save the entire map under Your Places in Google Maps.
Day 1: Get settled
- Turtle House (lodging)
- Graceway IGA (groceries)
- Babalua Beach
Our flight arrived around 2:30, took awhile to get through customs and got our rental car which we had booked through Ace. Onsite, worked out fine. If you’re getting a rental car, they drive on the left.
Drove to the Turtle House, also known as Sarawack Apartments, which was about 10 mins from the airport and on a very, very rough road. Checked in, went to get groceries at the IGA (very expensive, as is everything) as we planned on making almost all our meals. Drove back and walked 10 minutes to Babalua Beach.
Day 2: kids’ beaches
- Taylor Bay Beach
- Sapodilla Bay
We read that Taylor Bay Beach is the best place on the island for small children because the water is calm and shallow. That is 100% correct and the best place to go as a family. You can go out hundreds of feet into the water and never be more than waist-deep.
It’s a little tricky to find – you have to get to the Chalk Sound National Park area and turn down Ocean Point Drive. There is parking on the right side of the road for around 10 cars and the path to the beach is immediately beside the driveway to Sul Mare Villas.
We spent the morning there and had lunch down the road at Las Brisas. Expensive, food was just ok. It’s across the street from the entrance to Sapodilla Bay, which is more of the party scene but still good for everyone. You can rent jet skis and grab a drink or souvenir from the beach vendors.
Went back to our place and swam in the pool for the rest of the evening.
Day 3: more beaches
- Grace Bay Beach
- Sunset Beach
- Long Bay Beach
Started the day at Grace Bay Beach, which is considered one of the best, if not the best, beaches in the world. There is free public parking at the lot in the map. It was nice but much rougher with bigger waves so we only stayed for about an hour.
Drove down the road to Sunset Beach, which has a very small parking lot at the end of the road that shoots off the left of Sandpiper Avenue. It’s a little more rocky, which makes for nice pictures, but not a must-see.
Long Bay Beach was another one we heard was great for kids, and it was much calmer there. Follow directions for The Shore Club for free parking, and at the end of that road there’s a short boardwalk to the beach. Ate our packed lunch there and swam for a couple hours.
Back at the Turtle House, walked to Babalua Beach again in the evening and had dinner in.
Day 4: kayaking with turtles
- Mangrove Cay
- Taylor Bay Beach
Spent the morning in the pool and headed out to Big Blue Collective for kayaking at high tide (12:30, checked the day before). It’s easy to get to Little Water Cay (aka Iguana Island) to see a bunch of iguanas and check out Half Moon Bay, but we just went out for an hour to see Mangrove Cay (10 minutes from the dock).
The water color is unbelievable and we saw a lot of turtles, which was what we wanted to see the most.
Went back to Taylor Bay Beach for sunset.
- Turtle Tail Drive
We spent the morning at the pool again, had lunch and drove down Turtle Tail Drive before heading to the airport. I’m not sure if the views get better if you go all the way to the end, but we went about halfway and turned around. Wasn’t worth it.
The water in Turks and Caicos was stunning – the bluest blues and greenest greens. Our favorite area was Chalk Sound and Taylor Bay Beach, as you could wade out hundreds of yards and still be in water below your waist.
Everything is very, very expensive, which you’ll know when you start looking for lodging. Some of the villas are ridiculously expensive and fun to look at. We got a good deal on a rental car, booked a cheaper place not on the water, and ate in for all our meals but 1 to keep it reasonable.
Year traveled: December 2019