AFAR: Turks and Caicos

8 Nov

Salt Cay. Photo:

Some good news: I’m going to the Turks and Caicos at the end of the month! Turks has been an island that’s been on the back of my mind so I’m tickled turquoise that I got invited to photograph a resort and the island. *Fist pump.

Parrot Cay Ariel View. Photo: Parrot Cay Resort

Naturally, I started to do some research and here are some random findings that I found interesting:

  • TCI consists of two islands: Grand Turk (think Old Town) and the Providenciales (also known as Provo), where the tourists go
  • The capital of Turks and Caicos is Cockburn Town in Grand Turk
  • Population is 30,000 and the common phrase is “Alright, Alright,” the common way of saying hello
  • Club Med’s resort Turquoise opened in 1984 and will be 30 in 2014
  • Conch is the local delicacy. It’s pronounced “Conk”
  • There’s a conch farm and a conch festival (held Nov 25 to 26).  I’m sure you’ll hear the full report!
  • Bill Cosby and Denzel Washington consider Pine Cay, an 800 acre island, their vacation escape
  • Queen Elizabeth II last visited the island in 1966
  • L’Raye Cinema is the only movie theatre on the island and opened in Provo in 2007 with three screens

The beach at Amanyara Resort on Malcolm Beach. Photo: Aman Resorts

  • The local beer is called Turk’s Head; though rum punch also seems to be the popular local drink
  • Jacques Cousteau called Provo one of the ten best diving spots in the world
  • Provo’s barrier reef runs the full length of the island’s 27 km
  • What I read in a guide book: “absolutely no spear guns or Hawaiian slings allowed.” Because that’s the FIRST thing I’m thinking of putting in my carry on when I go to an island
  • For a beach dream, Bambarra Beach is the secret travel writers don’t want you to know about
  • Salt Cay on Grand Turk is one of the best places on earth to see a whale. There’s about 7,000 North Atlantic Humpback Whales from January to March
  • There are also many flamingos on the island. Flamingos! And iguanas.
  • The government adds an 11% tax on all restaurant bills
  • Development is happening –and quick–so a green belted area has been planned so no structure over three stories tall is built
It’s nice to be getting “afar” and I can’t wait to share my trip with you!

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