The Turks and Caicos see less tourist traffic than much of the Caribbean, which of course lends to their appeal. These forty islands host 230 miles of white sand beaches surrounded by azure sea. The islands are sculpted into a variety of landscapes, from flat, dry coral islands to hilly sand dunes to leafy rolling acreage.
Only eight of the islands are inhabited: Salt Cay, Grand Turk, South Caicos, East Caicos, Middle Caicos, North Caicos, Providenciales and West Caicos. The economy of Turks and Caicos is driven by tourism. Grand Turk is the country’s capital, and the location of numerous historical buildings and ruins. Grand Turk is a diving mecca, with numerous teachers eager to initiate novices and hone the skills of those more familiar with the deep. Cockburn Town has several popular inns housed in historic landmark buildings. In Providenciales, the twelve miles of beachfront along Grace bay are a tourist hotspot. Restaurants, spas and resorts dominate the once sleepy waterfront town. A small local fishing industry maintains the traditions of an earlier maritime era. The sleepier islands of Salt Cay and South Caicos provide a glimpse at peaceful villages where donkeys roam free, and ospreys nest in the ruins of windmills.