Best Things to do in Grand Turk - Tours and Activities
There are many fun things to do in Grand Turk that range from scuba diving to snorkeling to riding a tram to just laying on a white sand beach. Grand Turk has a variety of activities that are driven by nature and man. You can visit the free public beaches of Pillory, Cockburn Town and Governor’s where the white sand is brilliant. You can snorkel and scuba dive within the Wall which is the third largest coral reef in the world as well as swim with stingrays at Gibb’s Cay. You can take the Grad Turk Tram which gives an integral tour of the entire island from the southern end to the Grand Turk Lighthouse. No matter if you visit the National Museum or just walk along Duke Street, you will enjoy your time on Grand Turk.
Grand Turk Historical Sightseeing Tour by Tram
One of the best things to do in Grand Turk when you want to see the whole island and your time is limited is to go on the Grand Turk Historical sightseeing Tour by Tram. Your 3-hour excursion has multiple departure times and begins when you arrive at the tram station which is moments away from the cruise ship terminal on the southern end of the island. When you board the tram you will set out on your journey that will take you from the southern portion of the island to the northern section and you will listen to unique narrative of the sites as well as the history of Grand Turk. As you travel north on the tram you will view historical sites such as windmills, unique architecture, Governors Beach and the Space Capsule. Once you reach Cockburn Town you will stop for a local food tasting, which is a must things to do in Grand Turk, as well as to browse for souvenirs. You will continue north on the tram while you travel by the Her Majesty’s Prison as well as the National Museum. During your excursion you will view North Creek and Crabtree Park until you reach the only lighthouse constructed in the Turks and Caicos. Constructed in 1852, the Grand Turk Lighthouse is perfect for photographs. On your way back to the southern end you will focus on the wildlife that is attracted to the many salt water ponds or salinas that are left-over from the island’s salt industry days. Your tram ride concludes back at the tram station on the southern end of Grand Turk.
Grand Turk Snorkeling Tours
One of the most popular things to do in Grand Turk is to take your family on a Grand Turk Snorkeling Tour. You will be happy with the wide variety of snorkeling options you have when you are on Grand Turk. Most snorkeling tours last between 1.5 to 4-hours and you will visit a plethora of snorkeling sites like Coral Gardens Reef and the Wall which is an amazing coral reef that has depths of up to 7,000-feet. You will view incredible tropical fish as well as swim with sea turtles and stingrays. Other beautiful spots you can snorkel include Long Cay, Gibbs Cay, Cotton Cay as well as Round Cay. You might even get to watch the captain dive for conch and then taste fresh conch salad for lunch. Snorkeling tours are a great way to keep the family interested in nature and each tour is family friendly.
Cruises and Whale Watching
If you are trying to find the perfect thing to do in Grand Turks then maybe you should think about taking a cruise to go whale watching. Whale watching has become a must do in Grand Turk while visiting the island and viewing these magnificent migrating animals is an adventure. There are a variety of whale watching cruises on Grand Turk which allow you to search and watch humpback whales in their natural habitat. An added bonus when cruising and whale watching is that there is always a thrilling boat ride involved in the excursion. Once out on the North Atlantic Ocean the view of the island is amazing and truly inspiring. You can even add a land excursion with your cruise and whale watching tour to make for a perfect day. Whichever tour you decide to take, you are assured of seeing the incredible humpback whales.
If you like to adventure into the underwater of the clear Atlantic Ocean, then the best thing to do in Grand Turk is to snorkel or scuba dive along the amazing Wall. Located off the shoreline of Governor’s Beach, the Wall is an incredible phenomenon of coral reef that begins at depths of 20-feet and continues plunging to depths of 70-feet to 700-feet to an astounding depth of over 6,000-feet. The marine life that surrounds the Wall is abundant and ranges from manta rays to tuna to barracuda to reef sharks to hammerhead sharks. Often times you view sea turtles, humpback whales and even stingrays. The coral that composes the Wall is fabulous in color and formation with coral heads growing to some 25-feet in height. You can visit the Wall on a number of excursions from snorkeling to scuba diving where you choose the number of tanks that you need to explore this wonderful playground of nature.
If you are searching for one of the more unique things to do in Grand Turk, then you should visit Gibb’s Cay when you want to feel nature at your feet. Gibb’s Cay is located just southeast of Grand Turk and is easily accessible by a short boat ride. You can enjoy the scenery of Grand Turk from a different vantage point. Once on Gibb’s Cay, you will be amazed at the sheer number of sting rays that are swimming in the water. Over the years, the sting rays who reside at Gibb’s Cay have become desensitized to humans and now approach the oncoming boats with passengers. The wild sting ray will gently swim next to your feet in order to entice a treat from you or your companion. The sheer beauty of Gibb’s Cay is worth the trip and the added bonus of sting rays makes this a most memorable experience.
When you are looking for old world charm mixed in with some laidback island attitude, then the perfect thing to do in Grand Turk for you is to travel Duke Street. Located in the heart of Cockburn Town, Duke Street is a section of street that connects with Queen and Front Street. As you are strolling Duke Street you will notice island architecture that is changed by the ever relenting Atlantic Ocean and Mother Nature. There are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants on Duke Street that you are sure to find something you need to take home with you. There are a variety of excursions in Grand Turk that include a wonderful trip to Duke Street that will allow you to enjoy the day in a world of past and present.
Cockburn Town is the best thing do in Grand Turk when you want to view historic architecture, visit a museum or just soak up the environment of a laidback Caribbean town. When you visit Cockburn Town you will be reminded of the 1962 splash down of John Glenn as he fell to earth in his NASA space capsule. The National Museum is full of interesting tidbits about the earliest inhabitants of the island the Lucayan people as well as numerous artifacts from shipwrecks and even messages in a washed-up bottle. Other fabulous parts of Cockburn Town include Duke, Front and Queen Streets which serve up fun. Local white sand beaches include Cockburn Town, Governor’s and Cruise Center which bustle with activity as well as boast tranquility while lounging. You can view the wonders of Cockburn Town through a group tour by coach, on foot or by riding the island tram.
Cockburn Town Lighthouse
If you want to see one of the more interesting structures in Cockburn Town, then the best thing to do in Grand Turk is to take a trip to the Cockburn Town Lighthouse. Located north of Cockburn Town along North Creek and the northern most tip of the island, the Cockburn Town Lighthouse is also known as the Grand Turk Lighthouse. The Cockburn Town Lighthouse is one of the most iconic places on Grand Turk for photographs. The lighthouse was built in 1852 and is made of cast-iron that was constructed with individual panels. The Cockburn Town Lighthouse has had several styles of lights from whale oil to kerosene to electricity and the original Fresnel lens is within the National Museum. Throughout the years the Cockburn Town Lighthouse is believed to be situated where Christopher Columbus made land fall in 1492. Today the lighthouse is a great place to watch the migrating humpback whales of the North Atlantic Ocean.
Governor’s Beach is an ideal thing to do in Grand Turk when you are searching for the most iconic white sand beach on the island. Located along the southwestern coastline of the island, Governor’s Beach is a great place to have fun in the sun. Many people flock to Governor’s Beach to go snorkeling or scuba diving because of the amazing Wall which is the third largest coral reef system in the world and plunges to depths of 6,000-feet underwater. Governor’s Beach is a great place for families to enjoy the day and there are plenty of spots on the brilliant white sands to relax or play a game of beach volleyball. The beach area is a perfect place to view natural wildlife such as reef sharks, sea turtles and humpback whales. Governor’s Beach is part of the larger Columbus Landfall National Park which is dedicated to Christopher Columbus landfall in 1492.
Photo by BB and HH
Turks & Caicos National Museum
One of the more interesting things to do in Grand Turk is to take a visit to the Turks and Caicos National Museum where you can learn about the culture as well as history of the islands. Located in the exquisite historic Guinep House, the Turks and Caicos National Museum is a gem to stroll through the exhibits that range from a message in a bottle collection to the early days of the Lucayan people to when John Glenn splashed down just off the shoreline near Cockburn Town. Within the museum there are plenty of exhibits that explain the salt industry, the many shipwrecks and even the construction of the Cockburn Town Lighthouse. You can visit the museum in a variety of ways from taking the Grand Turk Tram to a day trip by air from the Providenciales to an excursion by coach. Either way you will enjoy a great day of learning about the history and culture - a fun things to do in Grand Turk.
Photo by BB and HH
When you are searching for one the of easiest things to do in Grand Turk, then when you debark your cruise ship just walk minutes to SunRay Beach. Located on the southwestern shoreline of the island, SunRay Beach is a stretch of beautiful white sand and clear blue water that is also known as Cruise Center Beach. SunRay Beach is great for swimming with calm waters and you can go snorkeling although there are better spots in Boaby Rock Point which is a half-mile further south. SunRay Beach is the most southern point of the Columbus National Park which encompasses the whole western coastline of the island. An entertainment plus at SunRay Beach is that there is a Jimmy Buffet Margaritaville that boasts live music and is an excellent spot for lunch or dinner.
Pillory Beach is the perfect thing to do in Grand Turk when you want to get further away from the crowds that are associated with Cockburn Town Beach and Governor’s Beach. Located just north of Cockburn Town along the northwestern shoreline of the island, Pillory Beach has beautiful white sands and is part of the Columbus National Park. Pillory Beach is an ideal place to relax with plenty of casuarina trees for shade as well as space to play beach games. Swimming is good in this protected reef area but snorkeling is only marginal with gullies and shafts that are remnants of ancient coral reefs. Pillory Beach was renamed Cuanahani Beach in 1992 to honor the indigenous Taino’s name for the island. Just north of Pillory Beach is the Cockburn Town or Grand Turk Lighthouse which is a perfect way to view the whole island and North Creek is an awesome way to learn about the early salt industry of Grand Turk.
Grand Turk Lighthouse (Cockburn Town)
The Grand Turk Lighthouse is one of the most iconic things to do in Grand Turk and boasts picturesque scenery of the island from 60-feet above. Located on the northern tip of the island near North Creek, the Grand Turks Lighthouse is also known as the Cockburn Town Lighthouse. The lighthouse was pre-constructed in England before being shipped to the island in pieces of cast-iron that were eventually put together to form the 60-feet structure in 1852. The historic lighthouse is part of the rich history of the island and over the years the light has been powered by whale oil, kerosene and electricity. The Grad Turk Historic Lighthouse Park also contains a lighthouse keeper’s house. Today, the park is an ideal things to do in Grand Turk to watch the migrating humpback whales navigate through the shallow reefs.