A few months back, my family and I had the opportunity to go to Turks and Caicos, and island in the Caribbean! Not only my husband and two kids, but my sister, brother-in-law, and my two nephews. I know, awesome right?
It was an absolute dream and I of course have a million and one pictures, but considering all the questions I’ve been asked about the trip since we got back, I thought it might make it easier if I broke the trip down into three categories in hopes of answering most your questions as well as share our adventures. The three categories I am going to cover are:
Excursions + Activities
The trip was based around the conference I was there to attend called Social Media on the Sand. As to not add to the length of this post, look for my write-up on the conference in another post coming soon.
One of the most asked questions I’ve gotten was about how difficult it was to fly there, especially being on the left coast and with the little ones. My kids are 4 and 6 and my nephews are 11 and 12, so we’ve got the kid age range pretty covered. Our two families took different airlines to get there from Southern California. We took JetBlue and had to fly through New York City and my sister took Delta and they flew through Atlanta to get there. Unless you are planning on staying overnight somewhere on the East Coast, most flights from the West Coast are red-eye flights to the East Coast and then direct flights from there to Turks and Caicos in the morning. Our kids did great with the red-eyes, and slept the whole way and so there weren’t any problems. If you are really worried about the red-eye with your kids, you can always fly earlier in the day and spend the night in your connecting city and then get to the airport the next morning. The flight to Turks and Caicos is not terribly long, even coming from New York. The only hiccup we had was with weather. The weather was storming on the day we were arriving that they ended up having to divert us to the Dominican Republic for a few hours as the storm passed. Otherwise, arrival was smooth and getting through customs and onto a hotel van was easy.
Flying home was a lot easier as we didn’t have as long of a layover as we did on the way there. We left Turks and Caicos around lunch time were home to San Diego by the night. Easy peezy!
We stayed at Beaches, the all inclusive family resort. For those that have not stayed at an all inclusive resort, what that means is that your room and food are included in the price. Depending on the resort, there can be extra expenses (alcohol, babysitting, excursions, etc.), but for Beaches, I can tell you, there were very few if any extra expenses. Our room, or should I say suite was fabulous. We had a huge king bed in the room and a day bed with trundle in the other room which was great for the kids. We did not spend a whole lot of time in our rooms but they were comfortable and came with snacks and drinks in the refrigerator that were restocked daily.
The staff was very accommodating throughout the resort and all spoke perfect English (for those that wondered if they spoke English.)
There are different villages within the resort and all of them were quite nice. Each village’s architecture (Caribbean Village, Key West, Italian, French, etc.) reflected that part of the world. Including the pools
The pools were awesome. I’m not sure exactly how many there are, but there are at least one in each village as well as the water park. Each pool has swim up bars with both kid friendly drinks and alcoholic drinks. They had lots of varieties and could make you pretty much anything. There were a number of different restaurants throughout the resort. They did have different times throughout the day that they were open as well as different days when some restaurants were open and some were not. I would recommend taking a look each day before heading out to see where and what times the restaurants were open. There is only one restaurant that requires a reservation and that was the hibachi grill. Pick a night, you’d like to dine there and set your reservations. Other than that, the food was delicious everywhere we went. It felt weird not tipping, but that is all part of the all inclusive gig.
The Beach!!! I can NOT tell you how many times I was asked about the water and the beach. Yes my friends, this was one of the most incredible beaches I’ve seen in my life. The sand is white and felt like sugar on your toes.The water is the most brilliant color blue in all the world and it was warm, even in October! Of course you would find most of the resorts guest down at the beach during the magical hour as we all watched the most magnificent sunsets. The skies turn all different colors and pinks, oranges and purplesI only wish I could have captured the brilliance on film.
Excursions + Activities
There is definitely no shortage of things to do at the resort. There is of course the beach! Days could be spent just hanging on the sand making castles, and enjoying the crystal blue water.
There were floating rafts throughout the resort anchored to the ground which was so much fun to swim out to and float around and relax!
There are also a ton of ocean sports included in your stay at no additional fee including: Kayaks, Snorkeling, Hydrobikes, Windsurfing, Paddle Boarding, Scuba-Diving, Hobie® Cats, and Glass Bottom Boats.
I mentioned when traveling we came during a storm. We did have some pretty substantial down pours while we were there, but it was warm and seeing as we were already in the water, it did not bother anyone too much. What that did mean though was that we did not have the best luck with getting out on the boat to snorkel. We did some snorkeling off the shore, so we did get some time in the water, but due to cancellations, our timing did not work at getting out on the boats. I would recommend getting your name on the list for the snorkeling boats first thing in the morning or the next as they do fill up. We did however have an absolute blast on the boats and water activities. We were excited that even the little was able to join us on all the activities. We went out on the glass bottom boat as well as the Hobie® Cat. Always fun to see the resort from the water.Through the conference, I was able to take an excursion to a natual reserve, with a group of friends, to what they call Iguana Island. It was a small little island that was about a 15 minute boat ride away from the resort. It is flat an uninhabited by humans. It got its name Iguana Island because there are lots of these guys roaming around. If you love nature and love exploring, then I highly recommend this excursion.
There were also a ton of activities to do throughout the resort as well for all ages. There are land sports including tennis, volleyball, croquet, basketball and much more. What we found really fun is that there are camps for the kids of all ages every day. There are planned parties and activities for each of the age groups, toddlers, kids, tweens and teens. There is a train that runs through the resort for the little ones, there is an arcade and game area for the tweens. There is an Xbox Play Lounge for the whole family. Sesame Street is a sponsor of Beaches and so throughout the resort there are a ton of activities to interact with your favorite characters. Whether its learning to bake, science experiments, or even just seeing them around the pool. It made the kids so HAPPY having so many different opportunities to meet each of them. There is also a really fun entertaining Sesame Street Parade with music and dancing that was really one of our favorite parades to watch.We even had a character breakfast that is still talked about at least once a week at our house even months after. SO FUN!
Our favorite part of the resort was the water park!It isn’t terribly big, but packed full of fun. There is a floating river, four fun water slides, a wave pool and pirate ship splash pad area. It was a good mix of things to do for the whole family. All in all, the trip was amazing. How cute is my sister and her family in this picture? We stayed for 5 days and I would definitely say I wish we we could have stayed longer. If you are looking for a family getaway, Turks and Caicos should definitely make your list! I’m dreaming of going back tomorrow 🙂