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About scuba diving in Turks and Caicos

The Turks & Caicos archipelago is a British Overseas Territory that consists of two island chains that sit atop two limestone banks separated by the 6,000-foot/1.8km-deep Turks Island Passage. The territory's main international ports and harbors are on Grand Turk and Providenciales. Need information to organize an unforgettable diving experience in Turks and Caicos? We have all the information you need about scuba diving in Turks and Caicos. With a total land area of 193sq.mi/500sq.km in the Atlantic Ocean, the Turks and Caicos Islands have the most beautiful beaches, one of the longest coral reefs (104km/65mi across and 321km/200mi long) in the world, making it a premier diving destination. The reef is relatively close to the beach, which makes for accessible beach dives. Reef formations are populated with abundant and rare marine life, thanks to the several protected Marine Parks. The three islands generally visited by divers, Grand Turk, Salt Cay and Providenciales, have three distinct personalities, but share one trait: awesome wall diving. Providenciales has the advantage of being within access to over 112km/70mi of barrier reefs and walls, also many of the dive sites accessed off Providenciales are located in protected areas. Because of this, there’s a huge variety in the dive sites. There are lots of sites off Grace Bay (Pinnacles, Cathedral, Graceland, and W.E. Wreck are some of the best), Northwest Point (Hole in the Wall, Black Coral Forest, Amphitheatre, The Crack), and near Pine Cay. The uninhabited West Caicos offers pristine walls and numerous pelagics (good sites are Elephant Ear Canyon, Highway to Heaven, the Anchor, and Magic Mushroom, field of sponges and black corals inhabited by famous local lobsters), and French Cay has its beautiful G-Spot and Rock-n-Roll sites. Grand Turk reef architecture features diverse tunnels, archways, pinnacles, valleys, and overhangs (coral wall drops from 9m/30ft to over 2,000m/7,000ft). There are over 40 dive sites off the west coast, and some of the best are: Aquarium, McDonald, Amphitheater, Black Forest, and Gorgonian Wall. In Salt Cay, which is famous for its humpback whale migration from December to April, there are 14 moored dive sites. Here the best sites are the wreck Endymion, Northwest Drop-Off, Point Pleasant, and Black Coral Canyon. Also, the reef system of South Caicos is considered the healthiest and most vibrant in the island chain. The best sites are the Arch, the Plane wreck, the Warhead (the wall is the real attraction). 

When to go to Turks and Caicos

Turks and Caicos is a great place to dive year-round, the average annual temperature is 27C/80F. The high diving season is considered to be from January to June. There can be a risk of a hurricane, which runs from June through October, although the diving remains excellent. Air temperatures range between 20-31C/68-89F. The average water temperature ranges from 25C/77F in the winter to 29C/84F in the summer. The water is calm much of the year, and visibility is great (25-40m/80-130ft). Visibility ranges from 30-45m/100-150ft, and the current is mostly low.

 

What to see

Marine life is represented by green and loggerhead turtles, spotted eagle and manta rays, a wide range of sharks, Nassau groupers, lobsters, octopi, parrotfish, barracudas, stingrays, nudibranches, JoJo the dolphin, and humpback whales during the period of migration. There are also pink and black corals, sponges, soft corals, and other sea life. Humpback whales can often be spotted from January through March.

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