Grand Turk

April 11, 2023 – Monday – Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands

2023 Panama Canal Cruise

Our ship arrives at Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos Islands this morning on time, tying up at the pier by 8am. Since I don’t have an excursion booked and have no plans, I take my time getting ready. I prepare a bag of laundry for my room stewards to take away, which is free for me since I’m a 4-Star Mariner. I go to the Main Dining Room to have a leisurely breakfast, joining a couple from Maple Ridge. They are returning home aboard the ship after staying the winter in Florida, where they have a modular home. They sailed to Florida from Vancouver last Fall as well, so they usually avoid travelling by air completely.

I put on sunscreen and take my Canon R5 camera, leaving the ship around 9:30am for a stroll along the lovely beaches and to explore the tourist village – all very handy right at the end of the cruise ship pier. There’s really nothing here that interests me, but I take a few photos and then return to the ship after about an hour, since the Carnival Sunrise arrives, which means they have to close the quite narrow pier until she is safely tied up.

I go up to the Sea View pool to sit in the shade and sip on a beer to rehydrate after my time ashore in the heat. After freshening up in my stateroom, I have a lovely lunch in the Lido: baked short rib lasagna. The Carnival Sunrise is playing loud music from the ship’s decks, and they also take the party ashore by staging a very loud beach party all afternoon.

Green Flash on the setting Sun over the ocean & through clouds

After our departure, the ship heads south, so my stateroom is facing west as the Sun sets. A few clouds have formed on the horizon, which means there is a chance to see the Green Flash at the forecast 7pm sunset, I have my Canon R5 at the ready with the 100-500mm telephoto lens, and capture my first photographs of a Green Flash – very exciting!

Pianist, singer, entertainer John Bressler performs on Main Stage

I go to the Main Dining Room for dinner, having two glasses of Pinot Grigio with a seafood devilled egg starter, fresh cod diablo main course, and a chocolate and whiskey torte for dessert. I’m seated with two American couples this evening, excusing myself a bit early to attend John Bressler’s performance in the Main Stage. He is an old rock-and-roller, piano player and singer, who uses some great comedic banter to entertain the audience. As it turns out, his performance is the best on this voyage in my opinion! John Bressler | Facebook

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