I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it yet or not but this was my first trip to a Caribbean island. To an island period. And it was Vishnu’s first non all exclusive island trip. With that being said, I wasn’t sure if it was better to book our preferred excursions ahead of time or when we got to the resort. So we booked a couple ahead of time and decided that we’d wing anything else we wanted to do once we had a better feel for the island. That turned out to be a good plan.
The first excursion that I booked ahead of time was a sunset cruise. After doing quite a bit of research, I decided to book with Sun Charters. The reviews on Trip Advisor made this particular cruise sound like a blast. And it really was!
After everyone was on board (there were about 20 of us), the co-captain handed out cups of rum punch (an island specialty). He called the punch his special vitamin drink. Who was I to say no to vitamins!?
This cruise was a great deal. For $30 a person, we got 2.5 hours of sailing, great views, and booze.
So that was Friday.
On Saturday, we woke up bright and early for our half day snorkeling excursion with Island Vibes Tours. This was also booked ahead of time. I was a tad bit nervous about this one, as I’d never been snorkeling before. Eek! Well, go figure but it ended up being my favorite.
The boat picked us up right on the beach by our resort. After the whole gang was onboard (there were about 16 people with us), we headed out to Turks and Caicos’ own “barrier reef” (the 3rd largest in the world) for 45 minutes of snorkeling fun. You guys, I was pretty good out there in the open water (who cares if I had to wear a life jacket)! I still remember looking down into the water for the first time. It was incredible! So many different colored fish and coral. Simply amazing. I couldn’t get enough. In fact, I snorkeled for the entire 45 minutes. I wish I had pictures to share, but it was similar to what you see on TV. I can’t wait to do it again some day!
After snorkeling, we headed out to shallower waters so that one of our guides and a few others could go conch diving. The conch was going to be used to make a salad during our next stop. It was fun being out in the middle of the ocean just hanging out and drinking more rum punch (they LOVE this stuff down there)!
Our next stop was iguana island, where there are supposedly lots of huge iguanas lying around everywhere. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see any. We did get to explore a little though. It felt like we were on the show Lost! We even got to see one of guides pull out conch meat from the freshly caught shells. Not the prettiest of sights…so slimy!
After eating and hanging out for a while, we were on our way back to the resorts. But before we had to say good-bye, our guides parked the boat in the middle of the ocean, blasted some awesome music, and introduced us to their diving board. If we wanted to, we could use the remainder of the time jumping off the board into the ocean. I did it three times, and it was so much fun! Apparently, Island Vibes is the only company with a diving board. Good pick, Parita!
For $90 a person, we got all of the above plus two awesome guides. Flex and Mo were so funny and made everyone feel comfortable from the get go.
Our final excursion, the one we winged, occurred on Monday afternoon. After a few days of watching people parasail from a distance, we bit the bullet and decided to be those people! We asked our concierge to recommend a good reputable company, and she told us that Captain Marvin’s was one of the best on the island. So at 2:00 pm on Monday, we parasailed 500 feet above the water.
This was an awesome (and slightly scary) way to experience the island with Vishnu for about 12 minutes! The views were breathtaking. It was so cool seeing all the resorts lined up against the beach and the different shades of blue-green water from above. I tried not to think about falling from the sky into the water. Instead, I just looked around the entire time and soaked up the view. It was one I wanted to remember for a long time.
This was the most expensive excursion of the three at $75 a person for 12 minutes of actual parasailing. However, I would say the experience was well worth the money.
That was pretty much it for our paid excursions. I think by selecting these three, we were able to strike a good balance between adventure and relaxation. And now…I want to go back and experience it all again!