The tiny but gorgeous islands of the Turks and Caicos are scattered over a long swath of sea to the south of the Bahamas.
The fantastic beaches and the great diving on all of the islands keeps this country in the upper echelon of West Indian destinations for an MSC cruise to the Caribbean.
The country comprises two groups of islands – eight inhabited and around forty uninhabited – separated by the Columbus Passage, a deep-water channel up to 6000 feet deep.
To the east, the Turks Islands include Grand Turk and Salt Cay, the former the long-time home to government, the latter a tiny island named after the salt industry that once dominated the country.
To the west, the Caicos chain includes South, Middle and North Caicos and the island of Providenciales, known as Provo and home to the great majority of the nation’s tourist development.
A cruise to the Turks and Caicos will reveal the major attraction on all of the islands, the coasts: truly sensational white-sand beaches that stretch for miles offering world-class diving, snorkelling, deep-sea fishing and bonefishing.
Inland there’s not much to see other than low-lying scrubby vegetation and, particularly in the Turks Islands, large expanses of featureless salinas from which Bermudian settlers and traders harvested salt during the islands’ early development.