Today Keith and I decided to take the kids on a snorkeling expedition in the Turks & Caicos. Although we have snorkeling gear, and we’ve snorkeled off the beach with them before, we wanted to go out to the coral reef and see more fish and wildlife.
We booked a half-day boat trip with Caicos Dream Tours. They picked us up by car from our hotel right after lunch, and dropped us off directly from the boat right before dinner. Altogether the adventure lasted about 4 hours.
First the boat drove us straight to the coral reef. It took about 20 minutes to get there. The boat had about 30 people on board, and a crew of 6 jolly local guys who made sure everyone had a great time. We arrived at the reef and dropped the anchor. Everyone put on a life preserver and flippers and jumped off the boat.
We were a little nervous because although our 8yr old is a super daring, super strong swimmer, our 5yr old (also a strong swimmer for his age) needed a little more supervision. The current was strong and the swells were ginormous – we weren’t exactly sure how it was going to go! Staying on the boat with those giant swells was not an option; we would’ve been sea-sick in no time. So my husband jumped in, I coaxed the little one to jump to him. My 8yr old followed suit and I dove in as well.
As soon as our heads were down and we were looking below the surface of the water, we were fine. The minute we looked up over the water we were not! Thankfully, there were plenty of gorgeous, colorful fish to keep us entertained. Even our little guy was able to swim around and look at the fish. The boat crew threw fruit into the water, so even more fish surrounded us. It was magical to see the coral, the fish and all the sea creatures at the bottom. I wish I had an underwater camera to capture the moment!
When we got back onto the boat, the crew encouraged us to go down the giant slide. We slid down from the top of the boat directly into the water. I’m glad we all did it – it was super fun!
After everyone was done snorkeling and got back on board, the boat speeded towards Half Moon Bay island. The scenery was gorgeous – calm blue waters and lost islands all around. The boat crew dove in and searched for conch shells. They caught about a dozen, and said they would prepare them for us to eat.
We docked on a deserted beach and went off exploring. There were iguanas, sea fans, and coral everywhere. We ate some delicious conch salad (can’t get any fresher!) and relaxed on the beach for a while.
On the boat ride back, everyone was in a great mood. Drinks were served and music was playing – everyone ended up dancing all the way back! We were dropped off at the hotel way too soon. We could’ve danced a little while longer! Altogether, it was an unforgettable experience. The kids loved it and so did we!