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First Time Traveler

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Minneapolis
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20 posts
26 reviews
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First Time Traveler

I am heading to Turks and Caicos April 4-11, 2013 and I am beyond excited! Thank you to everyone who answers questions on this forum because you have helped me plan my trip so far. I am staying at the Ocean Club East and I am young (20's) who loves trying something new and then relaxing. I have many questions, feel free to answer any one of them or all of them.

1.Any tips for someone staying at Ocean Club East (We already picked the jr. suite)?

2.Are there any events going on while I am there? I will be renting a car so I can go anywhere (thanks for that suggestion).

3.What is something I cannot miss? What was your favorite part of your trip?

4.I am a major foodie, are there any items on the island that I must try? (Other than Conch, I will be eating that of course)

5. I am not a big drinker, but if I had a drink what should I get? Where can I get it? Should I try a type of rum while I am there?

6.I have read about all of the restaurants on here. Should I make reservations now? and for what restaurants?

7. If you were on a budget what would you do? What is free and fun?

8. Are there any people offering tours, trips, and excursions that are budget friendly? I have read about most of them on here. I would really like to go fishing but they seem to be very expensive.

9. What are some mistakes that first time travelers make?

10. Other helpful advice: I really appreciate any feedback that you can give me. I am looking for unique and non-touristy things to do or hyper-touristy things that everyone that visits needs to do.

There will be a full trip report when I get home. I write a blog about Minneapolis (www.mplsgossipgirl.com) So, the most detailed one will be on there.

Toronto, Canada
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68 posts
4 reviews
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1. Re: First Time Traveler

When you leave customs at the airport pick up a copy of the WhereWhenHow magazine as well as the Dining Guide. They will be very helpful to you. They are located just to the right of the baggage claim area. These magazines are a great source of information about the island as well as the restaurants. The WhereWhenHow has everything covered, Watersports, Shopping, Excursions, Resorts even a Fold Out Map of the island.

Check their website,

www.WhereWhenHow.com

Pennsylvania
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5,047 posts
66 reviews
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2. Re: First Time Traveler

First off, You will never want to leave!!!!!

1. I have never stayed there.

2. Check Wherewhenhow, they have a calendar of events

3. My favorite part was just relaxing on the beach, but the Chalk Sound is not to be missed. Have lunch as Las Brisas. Make reservations about two weeks before you leave.

4. Lobster! I have yet to try it there as we go in June. Not lobster season.

5. I dont' drink either, but I have heard good things about Bamberra Rum and Turks Head beer.

6.Make reservations for all restaurants before you leave for vacation, about two weeks. You will have to plan an itinerary. I do it all the time and it works fine for me. My top pics are : Coco Bistro, Las Brisas, Bella Luna, Baci, Magnolia , Caicos Cafe. ALL of which you need reservations. We go in June and they are always booked solid. Especially Coco Bistro.

7.If you cannot afford a snorkel excursion, you can snorkel off the beach at Coral Gardens. If you like to fish, Start a new thread and ask if anyone would like to go in on a fishing excursion. Walk Grace bay beach, go to Sapodilla Bay, Taylor Bay. Walk around Turtle Cove, shop and have ice cream, take the Ferry to N. Caicos and rent a car and drive to Middle Caicos via the causeway . Things my family and I like to do are: Provo Ponies, jet ski, snorkel with Island Vibes, parasail, rent speed boat and tube. If I had to pick one of these because of budget, I would pick Provo Ponies.

8. As far as budget friendly, not sure, everything to me seems about the same price. About Fishing, see my #7

9. I see a lot of people not using sunscreen. Not renting a car to see the Island.

10. One thing I do before any vacations. I research and research look at maps figure out about where things are before you leave. write down the top things you would like to do, and where you would like to eat and stick to that. or at least try to. I find that if you try and stick to your Itinerary that you will have more time to do things and relax rather than reading and trying to figure out what to do when to do it and where to eat and then before you know it your vacation is over.

Macomb, Michigan
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101 posts
9 reviews
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3. Re: First Time Traveler

We loved Taylor Bay. It happened to be rough and windy on Grace Bay the entire week we stayed there, but Taylor Bay was perfect. It is so beautiful. Grab a carryout from Las Brisas and have a picnic during your time on the beach. I definitely wouldn't skip it.

We also loved the chicken and ribs night at Tiki Hut. Now, we aren't foodies at all but that and Mango Reef were our favorite meals of the week.

Have a great trip!

Minneapolis
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20 posts
26 reviews
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4. Re: First Time Traveler

Thank you! Your response was very helpful. I have been reading the posts on the chalk sound and am planning on going there now.

I have one follow up question.

#6. How do you make reservations for restaurants? I am guessing they don't have open table :). My guess is going to their website and emailing them?

Newtown, PA
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3,383 posts
368 reviews
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5. Re: First Time Traveler

mpl, we've stayed at OCE twice and love that section of Grace Bay. I posted some thoughts in this recent thread.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g147399-i213-k6006…

Pennsylvania
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5,047 posts
66 reviews
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6. Re: First Time Traveler

go to the website, some except reservations via e-mail, some you have to call them direct. then about 3-4 days before you leave, call again and confirm you reservations.

If you have an iphone or smart phone, download trip advisor and save all the the restaurants that you will be going to, and things you want to do. Then all you have to do is click on your saves and the phone number is there for you and just call. easy as that. One thing I am hoping for is for Where When How's app to be available. but I downloaded the magazine to my bookmarks in my phone.

Edited: 15 January 2013, 17:57
Boston...
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758 posts
10 reviews
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7. Re: First Time Traveler

Use the concierge/front desk at OCE, or get a pre-paid cell for the week.

If you rented your car from Grace Bay - they have free phone usage with the car. You just pay for the minutes used.

Ottawa
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653 posts
64 reviews
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8. Re: First Time Traveler

Have sunset drinks (not dinner!) at the Amanyara resort.

Minneapolis
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20 posts
26 reviews
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9. Re: First Time Traveler

Dear Relayer I read your posts about OCE and thats why I chose it. It sounded just like my style and I wanted to spend time at the beach.

We haven't booked our car rental yet but that sounds really helpful.

Thank you everyone for sending me your advice. Keep it coming.

Pryor, Oklahoma
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517 posts
31 reviews
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10. Re: First Time Traveler

Take the ferry to North Caicos and rent a car and then drive to Middle Caicos to see Mudjin Harbor and Secret Beach. That was the highlight of our trip.