As temperatures continue to lower and COVID infection rates unfortunately rise across the United States, for many, future travel plans will likely take an international turn. Not to worry, we just so happen to know a great place to look.
Earlier this month, Cheap Caribbean officially launched its Turks & Caicos Beach Crawl Package in honor of its 21st birthday. Taking the stress out of trip planning, the package includes flights, a five-night hotel stay at Seven Stars Resort, airport transfers, and the type of excursions that make for a great vacation. And we’re not just saying that. We had a chance to experience the Beach Crawl for ourselves so that when the booking window opened — which is from now until January 31 — we could guarantee our readers would get their money’s worth.
Speaking of money, packages start at $10,500 for two passengers and the travel window is April 25-30, so whether you’re thinking of vacaying with your bae or your bestie, make sure your travel companion is someone who’ll still be around come spring.
In the meantime, check out our guide to the Beach Crawl below so you know exactly what you’re getting into — and why you shouldn’t hesitate to get into it.
A negative COVID-19 test is required to enter the Turks and Caicos, as is vaccination, which alleviates some of the fear associated with traveling during these unprecedented times. All travelers must obtain authorization to visit the islands via the TCI Assured Portal. Likewise, a negative COVID test is required to re-enter the United States and Seven Stars Resort makes it convenient to test right on site prior to depature.
Included in the Beach Crawl package is a five-night stay at Seven Stars Resort located right on the picturesque shore of Grace Bay which, depending on your view, you can see from the spacious balcony or terrace of your junior suite. The size of the outdoor space is only matched by the large bathroom which has a standing shower, separate toilet area with a bidet, and a jacuzzi tube. Should you turn your vacation into a girls trip, you and all of your besties could get ready for a night out at the same time. And if turning in early is more your vibe, I guarantee you’ll experience some of the most restful sleep you’ve gotten in a long time atop the property’s cushiony mattresses.
A Private Boat Charter with Lunch is one of four excursions included in the Beach Crawl and a staple activity of any good Caribbean getaway. Snorkel in the middle of the ocean, test your penchant for adventure with a dive off of an abandoned ship, or simply sip some rum punch as you ride the waves and take in the scenery.
The Mangrove & Iguana Tour
Experience more island wildlife with this excursion. While inside of a kayak, you’ll paddle alongside marine creatures in the mangrove estuaries like conch, which you’ll no doubt have eaten in a variety of ways by the end of your travels. Afterward, enter an island to learn more about those four-legged creatures with tails waiting outside your hotel room from time to time — the rock iguanas — and other island animals like birds and crab.
North and Middle Caicos
Turks and Caicos is made up of several small islands, and while Providenciales, where you’ll fly in for your week of R&R, is the main hub of activity, you’ll be remiss if you don’t experience the serenity of North and Middle Caicos. With a combined population of less than 3,000 people, you’ll essentially have a beach all to yourself during your day excursion, which is a short 15- to 20-minute ferry ride from where you’ll be staying. There are also some must-see activities on the island tour as well.
The Conch Bar Caves
Normally, I wouldn’t call bat sight-seeing a must-do, but if you can get over your Halloween-like view of bats — and any fears of the dark — stepping into the Conch Bar Caves of North and Middle Caicos will make you feel like a conquerer in the end. Full of stalactites, stalagmites, and those other flying creatures I mentioned, you’ll journey your way through a maze of different underground cave rooms (personal flashlight and tour guide in tow) to experience the wonders of mother nature. Just make sure you wear sneakers that have a good grip as you navigate rocky, slippery surfaces.
Wade’s Green Plantation
If your spirit is up to it, a visit to Wade’s Green Plantation offers a glimpse into the ways in which slavery impacted the island. A five-minute walk along an uneven pathway bordered by a wall of rocks built by slaves ushers in the gravity of the space as you make your way to that main property. Your tour guide will not only explain the history of the plantation but also the changing views on the significance of the land and why it remained undiscovered for so long.
Though a visit to Miss B’s Restaurant on North Caicos isn’t included on the tour, this is an upgrade that’s worth every penny. Owner Miss B is as inviting as her menu of staple island delicacies like conch fritters, rice and peas, snapper, conch salad, coleslaw and more. This is a detour you won’t regret.
Da Conch Shack
Ask any local on the main island of Providenciales for a food recommendation and the first place they’ll tell you is Da Conch Shack. Equally known for its island vibe as it is it’s dishes — which include vegetarian options –stop by on Wednesday night for live music or Friday evening for a live DJ. You can’t go wrong with good tunes and a satisfied tummy.