While Turks & Caicos might be small and lesser-known than several other countries, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t bring in an assortment of famous visitors. The beautiful beaches bring in people of all types from around the world, and the wide range of accommodation options ensure there’s somewhere perfect for each person to stay.
There are resorts located on Providenciales, Pine Cay, and Parrot Cay that bring in stars and celebrities, but many also make use of the luxury rentals that can be found steps from the Turks & Caicos beaches. Since all the beaches are free to access and public, whether on a public or private island, there are many places to explore where the well-known have stepped foot in the past.
Historical Figures Who Have Visited Turks & Caicos Through the Years
The most well-known historical figure believed to have spent time in Turks & Caicos was Christopher Columbus, but he is hardly the only one. Various historical events have taken place in the country and are well worth being aware of. Some of the most exciting visitors from the past include:
- Christopher Columbus – In 1492, it’s believed that Grand Turk could have been the first place of landfall that Christopher Columbus embarked on while searching for the New World.
- Ponce De Leon – Later in 1512, the Spanish conquistador Ponce De Leon, who was the governor of Puerto Rico, was given a royal charter to search for the Fountain of Youth and Bimini. On his way to what is now known as Florida, he anchored at some area in Turks & Caicos.
- Captain John White – Captain John White, an English artist and explored, is believed to have stopped in West Caicos while going to Roanoke Island in Virginia. Based on his historical accounts, in 1587, he was looking to gather salt from shallow ponds but ended up not doing so. Instead, the crew of his ship hunted something called “swanees,” which were likely flamingos.
- Francois L’Olonnais – Sometime in the late 1600s, Francois L’Olonnais operated a pirating operation off of West Caicos and the French Cay. The Turks & Caicos name comes from its use as a pirate base in the past.
- Members of the Royal Family – Prince George, Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles, and Prince Andrew have all spent time in Turks & Caicos from the 1920s to the 2000s. Prince George took the first trip during a relief mission after a hurricane, and Prince Andrew took the most recent trip to Grand Turk and Providenciales.
Other historical figures who have set foot on Turks & Caicos include the Duke of Edinburgh, Lyndon B. Johnson, John Glenn, and Horatio Nelson. Anne Bonney and Mary Reed were famous women pirates who also operated in the 1700s in Parrot Cay.
Recent Celebrities Who Have Spent Time In or Near Providenciales
It isn’t just historical figures who have spent time in Turks & Caicos. Everyone from former members of the Beatles to award-winning actors, and influential politicians have spent time enjoying the white sands and blue water of the islands. A few of the most well-known visitors to Providenciales include the following:
- Paul McCartney – Beatles star Paul McCartney is known to have visited Turks & Caicos by yacht and spent time docked off of Grace Bay.
- Dick Clark – Dick Clark didn’t just visit Turks & Caicos but at one time had a home in Chalk Sound, Providenciales on Taylor Bay.
- Christopher Walken – Famous actor Christopher Walken has not only visited Turks & Caicos but has starred in two films that were shot in the country. The first was Life’s a Beach in 2002, and the second was the 2014 Turks and Caicos film.
- Maria Sharapova – The esteemed tennis start, Maria Sharapova, spent time at the Grace Bay Club Resort in 2006 on Grace Bay Beach. She also modeled for Sports Illustrated while on the islands.
- Alicia Keys & Kenny Rogers – In 2007, both of these outstanding musicians visited Turtle Cove on Providenciales to play at the now retired Turks and Caicos Music Festival.
- Beyonce and Jay Z – The famous couple Beyonce and Jay Z spent time on Providenciales in 2008 and stayed at what is now the Blue Haven Resort.
- Will Smith – Will Smith has frequently visited different areas of Providenciales, including at the remote Amanyara Resort and Grace Bay Beach.
- Bill and Hilary Clinton – The former U.S. President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton visited Parrot Cay in 2011 along with their daughter, Chelsea Clinton.
- Several Kardashian Family Members – Kourtney Kardashian, Kim Kardashian, Kylie Jenner, and Khloe Kardashian have all visited Turks & Caicos over the last few years.
This is only a short list of celebrities who have enjoyed the excitement and fun of Turks & Caicos. Some other stars who have visited that may have names you recognize include Taylor Swift, Julia Roberts, Jerry Seinfeld, Brad Pitt, and Justin Bieber. Other celebrities have homes on the island like Christie Brinkley, Donna Karen, Bruce Willis, and Keith Richard.
Water Sports Champions Who Have Spent Time in Turks & Caicos
Since Turks & Caicos offers some of the most transparent waters, most beautiful beaches, and a large number of water sports so many water sports athletes have spent time in the country. A few of the most notable stars include:
- Tanya Streeter – Tanya Streeter is a world champion free driver who broke the former record on Providenciales in 2002. She descended 525 feet under water with only a single breath of air.
- Rowdy Gaines – Gaines is an Olympic gold medalist swimmer who spent some time in Turks & Caicos and offered support for the Race for the Conch swimming event.
- Kevin Pritchard – Kevin Pritchard is a world champion in windsurfing who visited Providenciales in 2016 in support of the Windvibes event.
- Brian “De Action Man” Talma – Word sports ambassador and pro windsurfer Brian Talma has visited Turks & Caicos on two occasions as an honorary guest for the Windvibes competition.
- Kelly Slater – World-renowned surfer Kelly Slater has visited Turks & Caicos on numerous occasions to enjoy the famous surf spots in the country.
If you’re interested in visiting Turks & Caicos, this article just goes to show that you never know who you are going to run into on the streets or beaches. Providenciales is a gorgeous place with tons to do for people from all walks of life. Consider booking a luxury villa for the best experience on your next tropical vacation.