We love to cruise and recently we were on the Carnival Conquest for an 8 day cruise with stops in Grand Turk, Dominican Republic, Curacao and Aruba. We left the kids at home and headed out with 2 other couples to enjoy all that an 8 day Caribbean cruise could bring. One of the things you should do when you’re planning a cruise is to check out the cruise excursions at each of the ports. There are many cruise excursions for all different ages, abilities and tastes. We generally do at least one excursion per cruise and on this one we were excited to book the Reefs and Rays excursion in Grand Turk.
Reef and Rays Cruise Excursion in Grand Turk
At a price of $69.99 for adults and $49.99 for children this excursion lasted 2.5 hours which worked out perfectly for the day we had planned. We spent the morning shopping in Grand Turk and checking out the AMAZING pool at Margaritaville…do that if you’re going, it’s tons of fun.
The morning was very rainy so we crossed our fingers and we were rewarded with sunshine just as we walked onto Grand Turk. On the cruise ship the night before arriving we had the passes to our excursion delivered to our room. We took those with us as we left the ship and just outside of the port authority building there was a stand for the excursions where you present the tickets and they check your name off of a list and put a colour-coded bracelet on you.
We walked 2 minutes to a dock where the boat was waiting, there were about 25 of us so getting going was quite quick. On the 10 minute ride to the area we were going to snorkel, the captain gave us some history of Grand Turk, information about the marine life and a very serious talk about safety. I really appreciated how seriously he took it…even to the point of pausing when people weren’t paying attention and making it VERY clear that we MUST learn all of the safety instructions. I valued that integrity.
We arrived at the reef and put on our snorkels, masks and flippers…man it’s not easy to walk in those! The guides who were in the water with us were so nice, they made sure to gauge everyone’s abilities and for those needing extra encouragement…they were amazing. They allowed us to explore the reef for quite some time and took us out in groups to different areas.
At one point my guide was pointing excitedly, I aimed my GoPro there and although I couldn’t see anything I was interested to see what we’d captured. It was a nurse shark…and my stinking camera wasn’t turned on…talk about massive fail on my part. But we did see the reef and plenty of other fish, my husband was chasing a baby barracuda until a large one began to follow him!
Once we were all back on the boat, we removed the snorkeling gear and rinsed our faces off with the fresh water the crew provided. After a short boat ride we were all stunned at the first sight of beautiful Gibbs Cay.
This is a glorious place where I would love to visit again one day! It’s a veritable playground for wild stingrays…but don’t worry they’re obviously used to human interaction as there are multiple tours throughout the day. When we arrived the crew instructed us on how to handle them safely and please bring water shoes or sandles to wear! Each of us were given the chance to hold the stingrays, pet their tummies and even get a kiss!!
All in all this cruise excursion is definately worth the time and money, you’ll never forget it! The crew was so welcoming and fun and the location…oh Grand Turk how I love you.
I actually took video throughout the day so if you’d like to see it first hand, have a lookie loo below!