Dining Out Grand Turk Style

Dining on Grand Turk may not be an epicurean delight, but if you are looking for quaint Caribbean rustic atmosphere you will certainly find that here on Grand Turk, as well as some good locally caught fresh fish dishes.

First let me explain the difference between Providenciales (the most popular island in the Turks and Caicos Islands) and Grand Turk.  Providenciales has been recently developed witn in the last 15-20 years as a affluent playground.   5 star hotels line the famous Grace Bay beach and with each hotel comes an upscale restaurant.  The island is about 20 miles long and development has spread out across the island on it’s pristine beaches with gorgeous hotels with spas and lovely villas with pools.  So if you are looking for a totally pampered vacation spot this is the place for you.

Grand Turk on the other hand couldn’t be any further from that picture.   Grand Turk is the capital of the Turks and Caicos Islands, it still has several antique buildings that line the main street with charming lime washed walls that run along each side of the narrow historical street, Duke Street.  The island is small, only about 7 miles long and 2 miles wide, views of the sea can be seen from almost anywhere.  There are no hotel chains or 5 star hotels, in fact there are only a handful of 2 story hotels,  a few Bed and Breakfasts and a handful of self-catering vacation rentals.    Scuba diving is what Grand Turk is most noted for, however the beauty under the sea is not the only beauty Grand Turk has in store for it’s visitors, the beaches are quite beautiful as well.  The restaurants here are mainly out of doors with several of them being decks on the beach or in a outdoor garden, simple, rustic but charming and the menu consists mainly of simple cuts of beef or chicken and freshly caught fish, but a fried grouper sandwich and a rum punch offered under a blanket of stars, in my book, can’t be beat.

I will probably miss a dozen local restaurants in this listing but I’m hoping this gives you, the reader, an idea of what we have to offer here on Grand Turk.

On Duke Street, the main historial street in town you will find the following restaurants:

The Bird Cage – Restaurant and Bar – Located with-in the Osprey Beach Hotel compound with wrought iron tables nestled between a tranquil pool and the turquoise sea.  They have a bar situated within a wrought iron cage and so the name.    Their menu usually consists of some kind of steak, chicken dish, sometimes pork and fresh fish, all usually accompanied with a simple salad, rice and peas or potato.    Once a week they offer a cookout with entertainment.  Mitch Rollings and friend musicians play into the evening while guests dine and dance.  Last March my girlfriends and I  enjoyed the cookout while Mitch played guitar and sang while  his two friends accompanied him on a saw (cut the log type) and a white paint bucket with a broom handle and string – as a base.  Great music and a lot of fun.  Serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.  They are one of the few restaurants that actually take credit cards which is always a plus for any traveler.

The Sand Bar – Bar with light menu – A tiny building with a large deck on the edge of the beach.  The bar is decorated with beach glass, tile and wood.  Their menu is more of a bar menu with grouper sandwiches, shrimp salad, quesadillas, hamburgers etc.  Their music is loud, playing often the likes of Jack Johnson.  Many of the transplanted locals gather here for drinks.

The Secret Garden – Restaurant and Bar – Located inside the gardened courtyard of the Salt Raker Inn, a delightful historical inn.  Tables with white cloths are situated under a pergola in the shade of the trees.  Serves breakfast, Lunch and dinner.

Further from Town you will find the following restaurants:

Bohio – Restaurant and Bar – Located within the Bohio Resort compound north of town on the other side of the salina.  The restaurant has seating both inside and outside with views of the sea.  It is probably the most upscale of the restaurants on the island.  They have an extensive menu and probably one of the few places that can serve you specialty drinks like cosmos or pina coladas.  They also have a cookout one night each week with a local band to entertain you.

Doo Doo’s Ribs  – Barbecued Ribs –  Located on the corner of Osborne Road and a side street opposite the old burial grounds.  They serve barbecued ribs on Friday and Saturdays only from about 11:00am to about 9:00pm.

Barbies – Located on Front Street across from the brightly painted gift shops.  She serves a variety of conch, conch fritters, chicken fingers, sandwiches etc.

Island Times – Located north of town in a green building by the water.  Serves Dinner. (I have not tried it yet)

Cool Beans – Located on Light House Road on the right hand side heading toward the lighthouse.  Serving homemade ice cream with sugar cones and sandwiches.

Mookies Pizza – Located on Hospital Road on the right hand side heading north.  Serving pizza as well as sandwiches and sometimes breakfast.

The following restaurants are open only when the ships are in:

Salt House –  Breakfast and Lunch – Located on Osborne Road on the left just past the Windmill Plaza.  They serve breakfast and lunch when the ships are in.  They do accept credit cards.

Local Village – Bar and light menu – Located on Airport Road on the right just before the cruise ship terminal.  The serve local foods and have a juice bar where they serve freshly squeezed juices, from fresh fruit delivered from the Dominican Republic, a nearby island.  They only serve lunch and dinner and only when the ships are in.

Jacks Shack – Bar with light menu – Located on Airport Road on the right just before the cruise ship terminal.  Watch for a small sign that directs you to Jacks.  They are located on the beach side of Oasis Diving.  It’s a bit hard to find.  Jacks is a bar that serves, jerk chicken, burgers and hot dogs only when the ships are in.

Margaritaville – Restaurant and Bar – Located within the cruise ship terminal.  They offer a menu of burgers with fries, nachos, quesadillas etc.

There are many local restaurants I have not listed and do not know off but I am sure if you look around and are adventurous you can find a few “off the beaten path” bars and restaurants.

I hope this has been helpful.  There is more information about the island of Grand Turk on our website as well http://www.grandturkvacationrental.com

Crabtree Apartments, Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands  “A better way to stay.”

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