Best scuba diving spots in Turks and Caicos
Diving is the top attraction in the Turks and Caicos Islands. Although only 8 of 40 islands is inhabited, it is, for surely, enough for land and water exploring. They have fantastic diving spots. The most popular and most beautiful are around the Providenciales, Grand Turk and Salt Cay. Wall diving is a specialty there. It means diving along an underwater cliff face.
The water is the most of time clear with 25-30 metres of visibility and the temperature is 28-29˚C during the summer time and 23-26°C during the winter. Turks and Caicos are privileged with good weather conditions and approximately 350 days of sunshine annually so, diving is a great choice at any time of the year. Only, you should wear a 5mm wetsuit in the winter, instead of 3mm that you wear in the summer.
Marine life in Turks and Caicos is a diver’s dream paradise. Water world is amazing as well as the one on the surface. You can see corals, sponges, and gorgonians drop to hundreds of feet and pelagic life including sharks, rays, and turtles. Calm and turquoise water provides a great view of everything.
The best diving site around Providenciales island is Northwest Point where the wall starts at 35 feet and going in the 3000 feet depth. There can be seen a lot of black corals, tube sponges, wire corals with abundant schools of fish Creole Wrasse and Mahogany Snapper. Horse-eyed jacks are the signature fish of Northwest point dive site. Popularly called Chimney dive site starts at 50 feet and goes vertically down to 200 feet. The wall is full of wire corals and crinoids in many of the holes. Eel Garden is very popular site among divers. There can be seen many brown garden eels, nurse shark and peacock flounders. Star colours are fantastic and can be found at the 130 feet of depth. The Crack is a site where the crevice cut in the wall is, from 50 feet down to 100 feet. Christmas tree worms and feather dusters are covering that area. On the top edge of the wall is a large pillar colar. Be careful of the sharks. Around the Provo island, near the Grace Bay, can be seen tiger sharks and hammerheads. Divers love to see turtles. The most common is the Hawksbill turtle. By travelling from site to site on the boat, pay attention to the water horizon to see the bottlenose dolphins, widely known as “Jojo”.
Grace Bay Area has very rich marine life in the 14 miles long barrier reef. This area inhabits groupers, barracudas, turtles, sharks and manta ray. At the Aquarium dive spot are huge schools of grunts and snappers form. Reef sharks are very common in the Grace Bay area.
Sandbore Channel is the most stunning site you’ll ever see. It is a deep channel between Provo and West Caicos. Walls there are sloped or sheer. Water is deep iridescent blue. There are a lot of fish species that live here like angelfish, rock beauties, and chromis, lobsters, channel-clinging crabs, eels, pelagics and stingrays too.
Although the West Caicos island is uninhabited on the shore, under the surface is a totally different story. There is a plenty of water life there. It is only 10 miles from the island of Provo. So, take your dive trip. Popular sites here are Becky’s Beautiful Bottom, Brandywine, Coney Island, Devil’s Horn, Elephant Ear Canyon, Pot of Gold, Magic Mushroom and many many others. Humpback whale is very rare to see but it can be seen around West Caicos. That is true excitement! You can find a lot of stingrays playing in the sand, as well as black durgons, star corals, barracuda, orange elephant ear sponge, school of Atlantic spadefish, Nassau Groupers, porcupinefish, honeycomb cowfish, puddinglifes, and trumpetfish.
The French Cay is among the most popular ones for divers because it provides “a sunny playground” in shallow waters. French Cay is located 15 miles south from Providenciales and it is a small atoll, a few hundred feet long. Top of the wall is very shallow (40 feet) and covered with coral clumps and barrel sponges. The best spot is named after the Gorgonian soft corals which abound, G-Spot. There can be found a large sting ray, yellow snappers, blue chromis, queen triggers, goat fish, cow fish, butterfly fish and large barracudas.
The Salt Cay is a small triangular island with 6,74 square kilometres of the surface. It is the diving site of humpback whales because it stands in the centre of their migratory route to the Silver Banks, the Dominican Republic in the Carribean sea. The period of their migration is February and April. There is un underwater plateau of limestone, 190 square kilometres of coral reef area. So, it is heaven for divers. Water visibility is usually 100 feet and more. Interesting explorers can go see shipwreck of the Endymion, 18th-century British warship and nine anchors full covered with corals and sponges. The ship is located at the depth of 10-40 feet. That’s a stunning sight for explorers.
If you are interested in diving and snorkeling while you are spending time in Turks and Caicos, you have a several companies that can provide you a life-time experience. Big Blue Unlimited – [email protected] , Blue Water Divers – [email protected] , Blue Whale Tours & Excursions – [email protected] , Bohio Dive – [email protected] , Caicos Adventures – [email protected] , Dive Provo – [email protected] , Flamingo Divers – [email protected] .