Turks and Caicos 2017

  Turks and Caicos 2017   Two years ago we met Doug and Stephanie at Sharky’s Bar at Club Med in Turks and Caicos and as they put it we became their dive friends.  Last year we met them at Club Med Columbus Isle (San Salvador). We all thought going back to T and C Club Med this year was a good idea. We flew into Providenciales.  We got our luggage, cleared customs and went to find the Club Med Shuttle. I thought the woman at the shuttle stand looked familiar but I could not place her. I thought she might have been the bartender at the San Salvador Club Med but I later found out I was wrong. I remember the greeting by the GOs (Gentils Organisateurs is the translation) being a little more enthusiastic two years ago but I suppose some of them might think the song is a little stupid. Once we checked in we unpacked and went to find Doug and Stephanie. We found them at Sharky’s where we had met almost two years ago. Sharkies The exterior of the buildings hadn't changed much. The shingles on the roof needed replacing, the buildings needed a coat of paint but the rooms were very clean. Turks and Caicos is not cheap but Club Med is probably one of the cheaper ways to enjoy the island. Club Med After a few drinks at the bar we decided go to the diveshop and reserve diving for the next day. When we were here two years ago it was during the summer and it was hot and the ocean was calm. Spring is windy and cool. We were not prepared for the cool weather. The water temperature in the summer is 81 degrees in the spring it is 78 degrees. It may not sound like much but when you are in the water for an hour scuba diving three degrees makes a huge difference. Club Med represents the level of their resorts by the number of prongs in their logo. T and C is three prong and Columbus Isle is four prong. We were perfectly happy with T and C until we went to Columbus Isle. T and C seemed a little shabby after that. Grace Bay restaurant which is the buffet restaurant located near the front desk had suffered a fire so it was not open. Lucayan which previously required reservations was now the buffet restaurant. We did spend time on the beach but the water was cold and it was windy so it wasn’t great beach weather. We ate at Lucayan for breakfast and dinner almost every day.  The food was good but I missed the ceviche and lamb that they served at San Salvador. Breakfast was excellent if you stood in line at the omelet bar. Doug got along really well with the omelet lady so he always got his omelet first.  We usually went to Sharkys for lunch. Our last night at the restaurant we made reservations at Sharky’s which turned into a steakhouse at night. It was better than I expected. It is on the beach so the ambiance was great, they broke out the white tablecloths to dress the place up and the steaks were good. We arrived on a Thursday which is fish fry. Fish fry is held in a parking lot in Provo. There are many food booths to buy dinner or drinks. There is a stage with a band too. It has been packed the last time we were there. Kayaking in the mangroves We took two tours. We kayaked through mangroves. We saw a baby ray and lemon sharks. The other tour was a tour of North Caicos. We took a water taxi to North Caicos and we were met by Valentine. He had a passenger van to tour us around the island. Mr Valentine and us He toured us around the island, showed us an old sugar cane plantation, brought is to  Mudjin for lunch. There were caves and a beach near the restaurant and the restaurant was packed so we explored for a while we waited for a table to clear. Wade's Green Plantation The beach was beautiful but it was windy. I could imagine the beach on a calm hot day, it would be beautiful. He also brought us to another deserted beach and gave us coconuts to quench our thirst. Beach near Mudjin   Karen and Stephanie drinking coconut milk   Karen and I When we were here two years ago we had great diving. We saw sharks on every dive and many large grouper. The diving was fairly easy. We had to be at the dive shop by 7:30 am and we were usually back by noon or 1 pm. This year it was very windy and it was early in the year so the water was still cold. It was so windy that we had to motor two hours to West Caicos to go diving. It was a long bumpy boat ride. On our first dive Karen’s dive computer died. When we got back we walked to town to get the battery replaced. We found Dive Provo and they changed the battery in Karen’s dive computer and I didn’t want to take any chances so I had them replace the battery in mine too. Afterward we stopped at Jimmy’s Dive bar for a beer. We put ourselves into the stocks while there. We also went to Graceway grocery store to get some supplies. [Jimmy's Dive Bar   Karen and I in the stocks   The beach is beautiful at Club Med Dive Boat Pier It was a good vacation but we will never go to T and C this early in the year again. Karen and Stephanie liked San Salvador much better, they don't want to go back to T and C in the near future. Beach at Club Med   If you want to visit T and C on a budget Club Med is a good way to do it. The rooms aren't fancy, the food isn't fancy but compared to the $200 a day you'll pay just for food on the island, Club Med is a good deal.

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