Grand Turk Snorkel and Safari

Trip Start Dec 14, 2013
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Trip End Dec 22, 2013


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Flag of Turks and Caicos Isl.  ,
Friday, December 20, 2013

We got up about 8:00 and went to breakfast. When we got back to the room we decided that Erin would do the Catamaran and Snorkel and I would do the Coast to Coast Grand Turk Safari.  We went to the excursions desk and the Snorkel Erin wanted to do was full so she chose another one that didn't include a beach.  When we got back to the room we read and blogged and then went out on the balcony when Grand Turk came into view.  It was small, flat, yet beautiful with lots of beach and few trees.  We docked about 45 minutes early at 10:15 instead of 11:00. 

Erin had to be at the dock at 11:45 but she left early.  I stayed in the room and read and looked at pictures, then had lunch.  I headed to the dock about 12:20.  I found the kiosk for the safari and then waited for it to begin.  We were in an open vehicle with a canvas roof.  That made picture taking better and it was breezy so it was more comfortable.  Our driver was Eldon.  We drove west on the island past the radar station and then onto John Glenn Drive where a replica of the Friendship 7 which splashed down near here.  We drove past several ponds that originally had been salt water marshes where salt was harvested.  We drove along the beach road and stopped at a street market.  There were two piers there and I walked out one.  A sign at the beginning of the pier said Christopher Columbus Landfall National Park.  This may have been where Columbus first landed.  They are not sure.   I could see a catamaran out near where the water turned deep blue due to a steep drop off call The Wall.  I thought it might be Erin so I took some pictures of it and even got one of it sailing back.  It turned out it probably was Erin.  We drove along more beaches and street markets.  Then we cut across the island and headed out to the end of the island.  We took off on a sand road down to the Salt Marsh River.  We got out and saw a group who were learning about the sea life and had jelly fish, sea urchins, conches, sea stars, sea cucumbers etc.  I touched a sea cucumber and it was slimy.  Then I walked along the river and there were lots of conch shells and other shells.  Our next stop was the lighthouse at the end.  We got out again and took pictures and walked out to the bluff over the Atlantic Ocean.  When we got back to the safari vehicle there were several wild donkeys hanging around.  One of the men got too friendly and got kicked.  We had seen several wild donkeys and horses on the way out.  They were let go when slavery was ended and they stopped the salt collecting.  Now all those ponds are not longer connected to the ocean and have fresh water in them, great places for water birds.  Eldon gave us a fun ride.  You had to really hold on and take off your hat so as not to lose it.  Before long our 2 hour tour was over and we were back at the cruise terminal. 

I met up with Erin who didn’t feel well so we headed back to the Glory and spent the evening in the room taking it easy.
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