As the name suggests, the Turks and Caicos is made up of two groups of islands, the Turks Islands and the Caicos Islands. The Turks Islands consists of Grand Turk and Salt Cay, and is separated from the Caicos Islands by the 20 mile wide Turks Islands Passage. Grand Turk is about 70 miles from Providenciales and 50 miles from North and Middle Caicos. Because of the distance, no public ferry service is offered from Grand Turk to any island other than Salt Cay. No international flights regularly land on Grand Turk.
Visiting Grand Turk by cruise ship is easy. All immigration and customs matters are handled by the cruise lines, so it's a breeze to land. Due to time constraints, it's really not feasible to see any of the other main islands in the country when visiting Grand Turk by cruise ship. Check out the Grand Turk Cruise Center for more information.
All scheduled international flights into the Turks and Caicos arrive at Providenciales International Airport (PLS). You'll need to take a domestic flight from Providenciales to get to Grand Turk. Two local airlines offer regular flights. Normal flight time from Providenciales to Grand Turk is about 30 minutes and return fares usually cost between $100 and $190.
See Getting to the Turks and Caicos Islands and Grand Turk JAGS McCartney International Airport (GDT) for more flight and airport information.
Your initial stop once you arrive in the country must be at a port-of-entry. There is one port-of-entry on Grand Turk and several on Providenciales. The harbormaster has the authority to grant leave to enter for one-week. If you wish to stay longer or cruise among the islands, you must get a Cruising Permit (valid for 90 days), and/or visit an immigration office.
The waters around the Turks and Caicos and especially Grand Turk have many reef and shallows hazards, so proper charts are a necessity for navigating among the Turks and Caicos Islands. The foremost publisher is Waveyline Publishing of Grand Turk, which produces detailed electronic and printed charts of the Turks and Caicos archipelago.