mbg Beauty Director
mbg Beauty Director
Alexandra Engler is the beauty director at mindbodygreen and host of the beauty podcast Clean Beauty School. Previously, she’s held beauty roles at Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire, SELF, and Cosmopolitan; her byline has appeared in Esquire, Sports Illustrated, and Allure.com.
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November 9, 2022
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Travel can restore your well-being. We’re here to help you on that journey with Well-Traveled, a go-to destination for travel recommendations and tips. Our Well Traveled series is presented by Delta Air Lines, the premier airline helping you travel well. Fuel your flight with health-conscious options, and arrive feeling better than when you left.
I’m just going to say it: Turks and Caicos is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been. The crystal-clear waters, soft white sand beaches, and picturesque weather conditions all make for a breathtaking experience no matter where your eyes wander.
The group of archipelago islands has become a world-famous travel destination (many of the beaches here are considered some of the most iconic around the globe), which has spurred luxury wellness retreats for those searching for eco-minded tourism.
While the island of Providenciales is the most trafficked–and Grace Bay its most iconic stretch of beach–there are many other areas to explore. So while there, be sure to get a little adventurous and see what else the islands have to offer.
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With the island’s famously pristine white sand, beachside is the place to stay. Here, the best resorts for spectacular ocean views and adventures.
Part of the world-class Aman resort group, Amanyara is the brand’s Turks and Caicos outpost. Like all their luxury offerings, this hotel has unparalleled views, serene aesthetics, and peerless accommodations. It’s very secluded compared to the rest of the island: The hotel is nestled next to the turquoise blue waters and beaches of the Providenciales’ North West Point Marine National Park, which gives the air that you’ve found your own private slice of paradise.
For a true reset, ask about the individually tailored Wellness Immersions, which are private retreats specifically designed for your well-being goals with the aid of nutritionists, private trainers, therapists, and medical specialists.
Grace Bay Club
One of the most iconic resorts on the island, this is for those looking for timeless beach settings. Grace Bay Club sits among a long stretch of one of Turks and Caicos most picturesque beaches, so you’ll likely want to spend most of your time taking in the views, getting your feet in the sand, and enjoying the calm waters. But when you’re not doing that, the hotel has plenty of other activities to try, from snorkeling and diving to deep-sea fishing.
Como Parrot Cay
As the only hotel on Parrot Cay, this resort feels like a ticket to your own private island escape. Simply step into one of the airy, sun-drenched rooms or villas, and you’ll feel transported. The hotel group is known for integrating well-being rituals and habits throughout the properties through their Wellness by COMO Shambhala programs–and you’ll see that through their spa offerings (which are influenced by Ayurvedic traditions), design choices, restaurants, and activities. Speaking of activities, you can take a snorkeling eco-tour, visit a banana farm, and bike around the island.
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Listen, if all you do while here is spend time at the beach in front of your hotel, then there’s no problem with that. They are world famous for a reason, so you should enjoy them. But if you want a few more activities on the agenda, there are plenty of water-related excursions for you to experience:
Boat around the islands.
One of the best experiences I’ve ever had in my time traveling was in a small boat tour around Providenciales. During the boating excursion, you can snorkel, swim, and explore secluded, idyllic beaches. From group gatherings to private charters, there are many options to choose from at all price ranges, so you’re sure to find one that fits your interest and budget. Most tours will pick you up on the beach outside your hotel, too, so you don’t need to worry about getting to a dock beforehand.
In some cities, you bar hop. In some areas, you want to visit all the parks and natural wonders. In some metropolitans, it’s all about checking off all the museums and cultural institutions.
And in Turks and Caicos, you beach hop. While most hotels have a small share of beach to bathe on, we do recommend getting out and seeing all the sand the island has to offer. If you’re not already located on Grace Bay, it’s worth a visit to see what is often considered the best beach in the world. Long Bay Beach offers perfect conditions for kiting. And Half Moon Bay is only accessible by private boat, which makes it feel extra secluded and special.
Visit Chalk Sound National Park.
Forget the blue lagoon; this is a vibrant turquoise lagoon. Chalk Sound National Park is an almost fully landlocked, very shallow lagoon in the southwest of Provo. Because it is a protected area, motorized boats are not permitted–so kayaking is the preferred option for exploration.
Scuba dive to see the stunning corals.
For those who can dive, the 14-mile barrier reef on Providenciales’ north shore and the wall off Grand Turk island are a must-see. Let’s start with the north shore: This expansive barrier reef north of Provo allows for many areas of exploration. But for the most famous attractions, the 7,000-foot wall off Grand Turk island is considered some of the most spectacular diving in the area. There’s also some wreck diving, but usually those trips need to be arranged for small private groups. For beginners or those who don’t dive often, we recommend booking a guided tour.
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Enjoy colorful dishes and fresh seafood at these favorites, beloved by locals and visitors alike.
Enjoy an evening among the palm trees at this fine dining experience: The restaurant is settled on land that was once a nursery and is now the largest palm grove on the island. The guests are scattered alfresco, so you can see the stars and palm leaves above as you laugh, drink, and eat. The menu is full of fresh catches and unique takes on local favorites. The conch two ways should not be missed.
Infiniti Restaurant & Raw Bar
Grace Bay Club’s premier restaurant is open for non-guests and worth a visit no matter where you are staying on the island. Not only does it serve fantastic dishes and boast the freshest raw bar, but it also offers ocean views and a welcoming ambience. Given it’s an island, seafood tends to be the main attraction at almost all the restaurants–but Infiniti also has a full vegan and vegetarian menu for those who only eat plant-based.
Indigo is the restaurant in the Wymara hotel and is helmed by award-winning executive chef and culinary director Andrew Mirosch. The dishes are globally inspired but cooked with local tastes and techniques–which means the dishes taste like no other. Sustainability is also a passion point for Mirosch, so most of the ingredients used can be traced back to local farms and fishermen.
If you’ve decided to stay at Amanyara, you’re in luck. Their restaurant is one of the most exquisite on the island, using locally caught seafood, organic ingredients, and produce grown in aquaponic vegetable gardens. Certainly it deserves a spot as one of the best restaurants in Turks and Caicos, but it’s only open to guests.
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Sun and sand are the name of the game here. Pack accordingly.
Gigi Pip Gwen Wide Brim Sun Hat
The brand only makes hats, so they know a thing or two about quality structureProducts are made in factories that ensure fairly treated employees
The sun and sand are bright here. So protect yourself with a sunhat that comes with UPF. This option is made with wheat straw and will look so stylish as you walk along the beach. If this isn’t your style, rest assured that the brand has several versions to pick from, so you’ll certainly find something that suits your aesthetic.
Left On Friday Weekender
Sizes range from XS to XXL22 designs to browse29 colorways across all designs (you can mix and match the two-pieces)
A comfortable, yet stylish, swimsuit is a must. Left On Friday makes options that look good while lounging by the pool–and feel good when out for a swim, boat ride, in a kayak, or wherever your day takes you. The suits are made from a special Smoothing Dream Fabric that is durable, doesn’t fade in the sunshine, and feels oh-so-good on skin.
Able Macy Sandal
3 colorwaysMade with EVA outsole, which is comfortable cushioning and the best shock-absorbing material on the marketComes with a lifetime guarantee
Turks and Caicos is a good mix of luxury accommodations and beachside fun. You’ll want a stylish sandal that fits both occasions. These sporty options will not only hold up with beach hikes, but the design mimics some of the most popular high-end sandals in style right now.
ThinkSport SPF 50+ Mineral Sunscreen
Broad-spectrum UVA and UVB coverageWater resistant for up to 80 minutesContains antioxidants from aloe, olive oil, jojoba oil, cranberry seed oil, and more
If you haven’t picked up on the Turks and Caicos vibe by now, let’s reiterate right here: You’re going to be spending a lot of time outdoors in the sun. Strong sun. Did we mention there’s going to be a lot of it? Protect your skin with this mineral-based SPF that works for both the face and body. The formula is biodegradable and doesn’t contain any ingredients known to harm coral reefs or marine life.
AMAN x 111Skin Nourishing Gold Algae Eye Mask
Includes a powerful, innovative ingredient that can produce glutathione, which is the “master antioxidant” in the body
This newly launched collab includes eight eye masks to bring hydration and healthy aging ingredients to the delicate under-eye area. Pop them on after the beach before you head out for dinner for a quick refresh.
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The country is world famous for the long stretches of stunning white sand beaches–there’s truly nothing else like it. And when you first step onto the soft white sand and wade into the calm waters, you’ll immediately understand how special it is.