When the snow strikes we are quick to plan warm getaways; knowing there is light at the end of the tunnel is all it takes to tame our seasonal affective disorder and keep us motivated. This year, we ventured to the secluded island of South Caicos to the beautifully intimate Sailrock Resort. Unfortunately, we were met with cloudy skies for a few days but, as a testament to the spellbinding nature of Sailrock, our trip was no worse for the lack of sun.
What makes Sailrock unique is the privacy. South Caicos has a population of less than 1,200 people and tourism is relatively light as most tourists don't leave Providenciales; in fact, there are only two resorts on the entire island! This offers the unique opportunity for a peaceful retreat surrounded by crystal clear Carribean waters without any crowds. During our trip we never had to share a beach with more than 4 people. It was magic.
On our sunny days we didn't leave the beach that lined a cove on the western side of the resort. Because of the protection supplied by surrounding land masses, the water in the cove was shallow, warm, and nearly still, making it the perfect spot for sunbathing and water sports alike. The resort offers complementary sailboats, kayaks, paddle boards, and snorkels as well as hammocks and lounge chairs, all of which we took full advantage of! When cooler weather struck we took to bikes to venture along dirt paths to northern most point of the island where we witnessed breathtaking vistas and enjoyed the serenity of the landscape.
Sailrock abuts a stunning nature reserve and the third largest barrier reef system in the world. As Sailrock remains relatively undeveloped, the wildlife truly flourishes. We encountered wild donkeys, barracudas, dozens of starfish, anemones, and a pod of whales who awed us with their flourished breaches in the otherwise undisturbed ocean water. The opportunity to witness such diverse and colorful marine life alone would lure us back to Sailrock.
Inside the resort, our accommodations were dreamy. Our villa was situated off the eastern side of the island which abuts the open Atlantic, spanning uninterrupted until the Western Sahara. Elevated off the beach, the villa was complete with a private pool and, while we were too mesmerized by the cove to spend much time in it, the pool offered the perfect lit focal point around which we gathered every evening when we stargazed. Inside, the rooms were spacious and the kitchen fully stocked but our favorite features were the two private outdoor showers and living spaces accessible from the bedrooms. Waking up with a tranquil yoga flow in your private courtyard followed by an outdoor shower under the warm Caicos sun is our idea of heaven.
The only downside we can think of is the transportation. It can be a bit tedious to get to the island. But please don't let this scare you away!
Leaving out of Miami, we took a quick flight to Provo where we waited rather aimlessly for what we learned was an indefinitely delayed puddle jumper to South Caicos. There are no announcements on when or where the inter-island connections are arriving but there is a charm about the laid-back attitude of the airport staff (a stark contrast to TSA!). When our plane finally arrived, we boarded the smallest aircraft we've ever seen, with foam, numberless boarding passes in hand. To get to the seats, one must crouch down—we learned the hard way that ducking was insufficient to clear the low ceiling—and our tall companions had to slouch to avoid butting heads with the ceiling even while seated.
The anxiety we felt being surrounded by the tattered seats, scratched windows, and crammed quarters quickly dissipated once we were in the sky and met with awe-inspiring views of the vivid teal waters. Seeing the shadow of our own plane glide across the clear rippled water was outstandingly beautiful and oddly meditative.
There is also a decently long car ride from the airport along treacherous dirt roads that was a bit of a beating on our tired travel-strained bodies. We did love the return flight home, however, as we were instructed to wait for our flight on folding chairs scattered in front of an open shed on the tarmac! It was incredibly cool and despite the makeshift nature of the setup, we agreed it was surprisingly luxurious!
All around the trip to South Caicos and Sailrock was remarkable. We will never forget the connection we made to the ocean and the transportation did leave us with some amazing stories to tell our friends upon our return.
*(all images by Sailrock Resort)