Providenciales, or more commonly known as Provo, covers an area of 38 miles and is the most developed island in Turks and Caicos. It is here where most International flights arrive at the Providenciales International Airport (PLS airport code).
Surrounded by beautiful white sand beaches and turquoise water, it is no wonder that Provo has been ranked one of the best beaches in the world by Conde' Nast magazine, Trip Advisor, CNN Travel and by the World Travel Awards several years running!
Grace Bay, which is on the north shore of the island, is host to most of the tourism on the island. Here you will find the majority of the resorts, tourism services, shops and restaurants, as well as the famous 12-mile Grace Bay Beach. This side of the island is where most of the activity takes place.
Our favorite place to snorkel is on Grace Bay, right by the Coral Gardens resort. There you will find a place to rent snorkel gear and an area roped off that you can snorkel around the circle. Be careful not to go inside of the roped off area, as that contains fire coral and can be very painful. Snorkeling around the outside of the roping, you will find so much sealife and also signs underwater with descriptions of the bountiful fish and sealife you can encounter.
After your snorkeling, head to "Somewhere on the Beach" for a drink and lunch. Everyone is very friendly and the lunch is wonderful with great views of the beach.
Villa Oceana is located on the south side of the island on the calm bay of Sapodilla Bay Beach and close to Chalk Sound National Park. Islands Magazine described Chalk Sound as "Beneath the radar: Untouched and off the beaten path, the pristine islets in Provo's Chalk Sound provide an ideal backdrop for expansive thoughts." On this side of the island things are usually much more laid back. There are 10 houses on Sapodilla Bay Beach, 9 of which are rentals. There is a night security guard that patrols the area and beach for all the homes on Sapodilla Bay. You can also rent jet skis at the other end of the beach.
Close to Sapodilla Bay is another off the beaten path beach called Taylor Bay.
On the eastern/Leeward part of the island is Blue Haven Marina, which is where the majority of the boating excursions take off from. Walkin Marina is also located on Leeward and is where the ferry to North Caicos is. Many boating excursions leave from Turtle Cove Marina as well.
Turks has become a popular scuba diving destination due to the warm waters, coral reefs and clear visibility. In Jan - March you may encounter humpback whales as they are migrating from the cold waters of the North Atlantic to the warmer waters of the Caribbean to give birth and search for mates.
A highly recommended day trip would be to North/Middle Caicos! Take the ferry over to get away from everything and spend the day exploring unspoilled beaches! Please look at our Whale Watch page for information on our rental house on Middle Caicos!
A few recommendations:
There are so many wonderful restaurants on the island, so I am just going to name a few of our favorites..not in any specific order!
1. Coco Bistro: Located by Grace Bay Road, the setting here is magical. You will be dining under twinkling lights of palm trees. The food is eclectic/Continental Carribean cuisine. You will definitely need to make sure you have reservations. During the high season, they are sometimes booked 3 weeks in advance.
2. Magnolia Wine Bar and Restaurant: Located in Turtle Cove with sweeping views of the marina. They serve a wide array of dishes from fish, lamb, steak and also homemade pasta. Reservations are recommended.
3. Las Brisas: This restaurant is walking distance from our villa. They serve anything from fresh fish, pizza, steak to paella. The desserts are lacking though as they don't make their own desserts, but they do make a killer mojito!
4. Sharkbite: Great place for a more casual dinner that is considered "bar food", even though they have my favorite dish on island..their almond crusted grouper! Kids love this place as well because it is located in Turtle Cove Marina, right on the water. They put underwater lights in and there's a highly likely chance of seeing sharks and manta rays!
5. Seven: Located at Seven Stars Resort this upscale restaurant serves contemporary island cuisine in a beautiful setting! Your tastebuds will thank you!
6. Bugaloos: This is a great place to check out for lunch. It is located in 5 Cays, not far from the southside of the island. This popular tourist attraction is on the beach, has great drinks, but the ride there is a bit sketchy. Known for their cracked conch, when they run low someone just runs out into the water and grabs more conch from a pen! You can purchase conch shells there, but just beware that you get one that isn't freshly used as the dead fish smell will permeate your luggage and room!
Da Conch Shack is a similar restaurant, located in Blue Hills, where the original Bugaloos used to be located.
7. Stelle: This restaurant is located at the Wymara Resort and villas and is definitely a place to see and be seen. Many celebs seem to flock to this resort. Our last sighting was Michael Strahan and the time before were several NHL players that were vacationing after losing in the Stanley Cup Playoffs!
*there really are so many amazing restaurants on island! Infiniti restaurant at the Grace Bay Club is also wonderful food in a beautiful setting! Also try to hit up the Fish Fry on Thursday nights at the Bite Park! Food vendors and live music!
We can supply you with a list of chefs and catering services if you would like to have someone come to cook for you at the villa.
We also can arrange stocking the house with food/drinks and any provisions that you would like for a minimal charge.
Provo is a huge scuba diving destination. The world's 3rd largest barrier reef sits right off of Grace Bay. There are a number of great diving companies, Flamingo Divers is probably the most popular one.
One of our favorite day trips is a sailing trip on Atabeyra (Sun Charters). They have several different options to choose from but our favorite is a private half day charter. Plenty of room on the boat to move around, sun, shade, bathroom, and beverages!
There are also an abundance of fishing boats for deep sea fishing. One of our favorite companies is Silver Deep. They have different types of boats for different kinds of fishing (deep sea, fly fishing, as well as snorkeling trips) and their staff is friendly and knowledgeable.
Another company that is great (and will pick you up right on the beach in front of the house) is Silly Creek Water Sports. They offer many different types of trips from 1 hour of water sports to half and full day private charters...you name it and they will work with you.
Our preferred car rental company is Grace Bay Car Rental. They are located right at the airport for convenience and we have found they have the best rates. Mention that you are renting a house managed by Island Escapes and they will give you a 10% discount!
For additional information on Provo and the surrounding islands, please go to