10 Curiosities About Turks And Caicos Islands
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The Turks and Caicos Islands are world renowned for its stunning beaches, luxurious resorts and welcoming atmosphere. But there is more to this tropical paradise than meets the eye.
Here is a look at the top 10 curiosities and interesting facts about the Turks and Caicos Islands you should know.
Turks and Caicos has their own “ambassador dolphin”
You might have never heard of Jo Jo the dolphin, but in Turks in Caicos he is quite the local celebrity. Jo Jo is an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin and one of only a handful of dolphins around the world who voluntarily interacts with human beings in the wild.
Loved by the islanders and visitors alike, the government recognized JoJo as a National Treasure 1989, and has appointed a warden to protect him. There is even talk of providing him with a luxury Caribbean villa with a saltwater swimming pool.
As JoJo is a wild animal, there isn’t any guaranteed location or time to see him. He’s frequently seen swimming in the waters off Grace Bay Beach in Turks and Caicos, and in the cays off the eastern end of Providenciales.
If you are lucky enough to encounter Jo Jo on your visit to the Turks and Caicos, just remember he is a wild animal and never attempt to touch him or feed him.
Welcome to natures biggest bathtub! Swimming in the waters surrounding the Turks and Caicos is almost like taking a bath, as in the summer months the ocean stays a balmy 82-84F. In the winter months it will be a little cooler, only dipping down to 74-78F, making the Turks and Caicos an ideal winter getaway.
The year-round balmy waters it partly thanks to the fact that most of the Turks and Caicos Islands are surrounded by shallow waters and reefs helping the Caribbean sun turn these waters into a luxurious salty bathtub!
The Turks and Caicos are located in the Atlantic, not the Caribbean
Here’s a Turks and Caicos fact that surprises most people: With its beautiful turquoise waters, white sand beaches and tropical climate it would seem that the Turks and Caicos is a Caribbean island, but it’s actually located in the Atlantic!
Although the Turks and Caicos is technically located in the Atlantic ocean, it is still very much part of Caribbean culture, and its history and culture is very closely tied to its surrounding Caribbean islands.
The Turks in Caicos Islands are actually comprised of about 40 different islands and Cays, which might make it sound like it’s a big island nation, but it’s actually one of the smallest countries in the Caribbean.
But that doesn’t mean there’s not an endless number of beaches! This tiny island nation packs nearly 250 miles of pristine coastline over its 40 islands and cays.
Miles And Miles Of Soft White Sand
It’s one thing to say that Turks and Caicos has over 250 miles of coastline, but how much of that is actually pristine white sand beaches you might be asking yourself?
Just over 200 miles of the coastline is made up of some of the softest most pristine white sand beaches you will ever set foot on! This means that you will always be able to find your own slice of beach paradise wherever you go in the Turks and Caicos!
Explore The Largest Above-Ground Caves In The Caribbean
The Turks and Caicos Islands contains one of the geological wonders of the Caribbean, the Conch Bar Caves which form one of the largest and unique cave systems in the region.
The Conch Bar Caves, located on Middle Caicos, is the largest above-ground cave system in the Bahamas-Turks and Caicos Islands archipelago. They are believed to have been used at one time by the Taino people, who migrated to the islands at least 1,000 years before Columbus’ arrival.
This unique cave system was formed millions of years ago when the Turks and Caicos Islands were still beneath the sea. Rain and groundwater shaped and eroded the limestone, forming the magnificent caverns.
The underground system of caves extends for approximately 1.2 miles, almost reaching the sea. Over millions of years, flowing water has created many wonderous shapes and several entrances to the main passageway in the system. Several remarkable stalactites and stalagmites have joined to form pillars within the system. The interior, featuring incredible contours can be compared to a lunar landscape. Limestone pillars reach up from pools of water in the system and the levels rise and fall with the tides of the ocean, while several passageways flood.
Like many other underground systems, it has a unique environment, and this means that there are astonishing examples of flora and fauna to be found, such as the four species of bats which inhabit the caverns.
The Caribbean Space Race
In February 1962, the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union was in full swing. Both nations had developed spacecraft to send humans into space, and the astronaut John H. Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth on 20 February 1962 in his spacecraft called Friendship 7.
After a flight lasting 4 hours, 55 minutes, and 23 seconds Glenn splashed down in the waters just off of Grand Turk Island. Glenn spent the following days on Grand Turk Island undergoing a full medical evaluation and no doubt enjoying the tropical hospitality of the Turks and Caicos.
Vice President at the time, Lyndon B. Johnson arrived to pick up Glenn for the flight back to the United States. And despite the early hour of their departure, a large part of the local population turned out to see Johnson and Glenn and celebrate their part in the space race.
The Oldest Shipwreck In the Americas
The Turks and Caicos Islands have long attracted treasure hunters combing the shallow and treacherous waters along the islands in search of long-lost treasure. Numerous shipwrecks and treasures have been found scattered throughout the coastline of the Turks and Caicos, but none have been as exciting or mysterious as the Molasses Reef Wreck, discovered in 1976.
Initially thought to be Christopher Columbus’s ship Pinta, this was later proven to be incorrect and the Molasses Reef Wreck (circa about 1513) has not been identified yet, despite numerous efforts.
Despite efforts to identify the ship, archeologist all agree that the Molasses reef wreck is the oldest shipwreck ever found in the western hemisphere. Today you can see a part of this fascinating history of the Turks and Caicos at the national Museum on Providenciales where artifacts from the molasses reef wreck are housed.
Home To the World’s Smallest Snake
Book a Turks and Caicos vacation in 2023 and keep your eyes peeled when hiking in the Turks and Caicos Islands, as you might just come across the smallest constrictor snake in the world. The Caicos pygmy boa only reaches a mature length of about one foot and is only a threat to tiny lizards, which they attract with an orange colored tail tip that they use as a false worm to lure their prey.
Famous Movies Filmed in The Turks and Caicos
With such an enchanting backdrop it’s no wonder numerous famous movies have been filmed in and around the beaches of Turks and Caicos.
Some of the islands famous silver screen appearances include movies like, Bahama Passage, filmed in 1941 mostly at Salt Cay, Paradise Virus (2003), Lifes a Beach (2002), Turks and Caicos (2014) and the ongoing reality TV dating series, Too Hot To Handle.
Numerous celebrities have also been flocking to the Turks and Caicos, snatching up secluded holiday homes away from the hustle and bustle of other Caribbean Islands.
Christie Brinkley owns a luxury villa, Lucky House, on Parrot Cay. Fashion designer Donna Karan has been a long-time property owner in the Turks and Caicos. Actor Bruce Willis owned one of the more luxurious villas on Parrot Cay for years, in addition to real estate on Ambergris Cay
Book Your Stay To Explore The Wonders Of The Turks And Caicos.
If your Turks and caicos vacation in 2023 includes exploring all of the curiosities that the Turks and Caicos has to offer with one simple booking, look no further than one of the best resorts in Turks and Caicos, Aqua Divina for all your luxury tropical Turks and Caicos vacation needs.
Aqua Divina is one of the best luxury villas in Providenciales, and not only do they offer a wide array of luxury villas ranging from 1 to 8 bedrooms that can accommodate up to 24 guests, but the lush tropical property is also located just a stone’s throw from the stunning leeward beach.
Everything at Aqua Divina is tailored to deliver the ideal holiday experience, and that includes having a manager on call 24 hours a day to help you book watersports, snorkeling adventures, food tours, hiking adventures to the outlying islands, excellent insider recommendations on where to get the best local seafood, the best family orientated adventures or even where to party the night away. When you book your stay at Aqua Divina all of your holiday needs will be expertly taken care of with one simple booking.
And when you are not cruising, diving, or tanning on the nearby Grace Bay Beach, you can pass the hours in your villa or enjoy the amenities on site, which include a swimming pool, BBQ, or simply lounge on your patio with a cocktail and watch the sun set on another perfect day.
When you arrive at one of the best resorts in Turks and Caicos expect nothing but all-around comfort, convenient facilities, exquisite design, welcoming staff and gentle relaxing ambiance.
Book your all-in-one luxury vacation getaway with Aqua Divina today!