We had enjoyed this cruise and itinerary in 2010. It was a delight to return to Grand Turk today and see how it is recovering from hurricane Ike in 2008. We took the two-hour island tour which took us around all seven miles of Grand Turk with stops at the White Gold Building (where all the information on the salt industry is) and the Light House. This gave us a complete island overview spotting many wild horses and donkeys along the way.
The Turks & Caicos are made up of many islands with Grand Turk being one of the most laid back and less developed. It is considered a divers paradise in addition to its notorious pirate history. We saw refurbished local homes, the new hospital, and areas where many Canadians and Americans have invested.
When Carnival developed the port, it infused a tremendous amount of tourism opportunity for this locale and it is slowly adding to the economy. When you get off the ship, you have a duty free area for shopping as well as quite a few stores. As you go into the town, you will find more local goods native to the islands.
A sight we both recommend is the Conch Farm. Even though it is small, it is well done and provides a complete understanding of the importance, nutrition, and value the conch species offers this area.
We were back on the ship for lunch and then did our daily mile walk around the deck. Then, we were ready for a short nap in the Explorer Lounge, our favorite spot. Those chairs could double for a bed.
Dinner tonight was at the Pinnacle Grill with a $25 sur charge. What a treat. We started with a tuna tar tar, followed by lobster bisque and dungess crab cakes. Then Norm had the grilled lamb chops and Maralyn enjoyed the broiled lobster tail. We finished our meal with the Gerry Garcia Banked Alaska along with the rest of our champagne from the night before.
Time for the show in the Main Stage and it was just as energetic as the night before. After the show, we had to make a stop at the shops so Maralyn could try on a jacket. Since this was the third time with the same jacket, it was a charm and she finally got it.
We are not beginning to cover all the activities available on board. When we first started cruising, we tried to experience everything offered. Now, we review the activities the night before, discuss which ones we might want to do and end up doing what we want when the time comes. Sometimes we miss out on things we might enjoy from a wine tasting, craft project, cooking demo, dance lesson, exercise or wellness sessions, computer classes, or interesting lectures. But cruising for us has become our time to relax and enjoy each others company. Whether an activity, reading a book in a deck chair, or just walking the deck, we love being on the sea.
We are using so many Internet minutes at sea, we may continue to write each day, but post the rest when we get home.
Cruisers at heart.
Maralyn D. Hill, The Epicurean Explorer & Norman E. Hill, Journalist
MDH-Board Member & Past President, NEH – Member International Food Wine & Travel Writers Association