Grand Turk

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Our first cruise port was at Grand Turk, the capital island of the Turks and Caicos, a British overseas territory consisting of 8 main islands and 300 smaller, mostly uninhabited islands.

The larger, more inhabited islands are Providenciales and South Caicos, but the best snorkeling and diving is on Grand Turk.
 

Grand Turk is only 18 square kilometers and has a population of only 4000. Since the decline of the salt trade, the economy relies on the tourism of cruise ships.

The Turks and Caicos are surrounded by the world's second largest barrier reef. The coral reef just of the cruise port beach was an ideal site for snorkelling and viewing tropical fish.
 

Cockburn Town is the capital city. Its Front Street is lined with 18th and 19th century buildings.
 

The Methodist Church as well as the Library and Post Office attest to the British colonial past.

Cockburn Town has served as the seat of government for the islands since 1766. The town’s streets and architecture reflect the historic influence of the many mariners and salt harvesters from Bermuda.
 

The National Museum presents the history of the now-vanished Taino people, the Spanish and French occupation, the piracy and slave trade, the sisal and salt industry, an exhibit of shipwrecks, and a display about the landing of the Mercury space craft.
 

Cockburn Town is known for its long, narrow streets, old street lamps and gates and fences.

 

Grand Turk is reputed to have been the site of Columbus' first landfall in the new world in 1492.