28. March 2012 11:11
White-sand beaches, calm clear water and a bountiful barrier reef make the Turks and Caicos island of Providenciales a hot spot for families, snorkelers and divers.
Some call rock-free Grace Bay Beach the best in the world. For an unusual experience, divers can walk along the ocean floor at Smith's Reef, where underwater signs describe the reef's ecosystem.
Additional destinations include Iguana Island (home of endangered rock iguanas), the country's only golf course, art galleries and a casino.
There are original fishing villages here. These are The Bight, Blue Hills and Five Cays.
Five Cays is still where the fisheries are located.
Blue Hills is a local area with many small local eateries and bars.
The Bight stretches from the Grace Bay Road down to Turtle Cove Marina. There is one of the best places to snorkel from shore here called The Bight Reef. This is located in front of a resort here called Coral Gardens.
There is the most well known tourist area here of Grace Bay. This is where the majority of the resorts are located.
Leeward is at the Eastern end of the island of Providenciales. This is where the leeward Marina is located which is where many of the fishing and excursion companies are located. This is also a very nice residential community, rapidly expanding.
Turtle Cove Marina, is a very popular part of the Island, comprising an extended Marina, Restaurants, some shops and bars. There is a small hotel, a new Condo development for long term and short term rentals, beautiful large homes and some smaller quaint Island homes that are also rented out short term. There is a wonderful place to snorkel from the shore here called Smith's Reef.
Long Bay: This is on the South Shore and is a residential area. There is a very picturesque Beach here. long Bay Beach. It is rockier with many conch shells along the stretch of it. This is a very popular place for horse-riding and walking.
Turtle Tail: This is on The Southern Shore and is the residential area that can be seen behind The IGA Supermarket here. There is a large inland area of water here called Flamingo Lake which is very popular for bone-fishing and Flamingo watching at certain times of the Year. There is a small Marina here where two of the Dive operators go from.
Sapodilla Bay, Taylor Bay and Chalk Sound: These are higher end residential neighbourhoods. Chalk sound is the inland body of water that is the brightest shade of blue you have ever seen. Sapodilla Bay is a beautiful quiet bay. Great for children to wade into. Taylor Bay around the corner is a very beautiful and quiet bay, with some gorgeous homes set along it.
Discovery Bay and Cooper Jack: Residential area comprising extended canal systems for people to have their boats out front of their homes.
Downtown: There are some offices, banks, a few shops and government offices here. They are building a new sports centre downtown now, and there is a new Ball park and Stadium.
Kew Town: This is predominately a local/Haitian/Dominican area behind the Downtown and airport area.