Do you love finding places off the beaten path when you travel? A hidden treasure awaits you on Grand Turk when you take a Carnival Cruise. Tucked away about a quarter of a mile from the cruise terminal is Jack’s Shack. A private getaway for your day in port.

The thrill of travel is finding hidden gems along the way. During our Carnival Cruise my family found one of these gems on Grand Turk in Turks and Caicos. Jack’s Shack is a little slice of paradise, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the often crowded cruise port.

grand turk

Experience Jacks Shack on Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos photo credit: Jenn Greene Tween ‘N Teen TravelingMom

Our ship, the Carnival Pride was docked by 9 a.m. and we were on the pier by 9.30 for our day in Grand Turk. When you arrive in Grand Turk you will enter a shopping village. It is not as large as some shopping cruise ports, however it does have a Diamonds International, Del Sol and Ron Jon Surf Shop along with a few other shops. You can get your duty and tax free items while in port if shopping is on your list.


Once you pass through the shopping area you will come upon one of the largest Margaritaville Restaurants I have seen. Offering a large pool, surf rider and multiple bars it’s a great spot to beat the heat with a few frozen cocktails. It’s very family friendly as well. Good food and cold drinks are all in a days vacation right? However, this wasn’t what my family was looking for. We wanted a nice quiet day on the beaches of Turks and Caicos.

There is a free beach available to cruise passengers. This beach is very crowded and offers little to no amenities other than the cruise port restaurants. In searching for the perfect spot to relax for the day we found a hidden gem about 1/4 mile down beach from all the hustle and bustle of the main port. Jack’s Shack!

Grand Turk

Skip the crowded public beach on Grand Turk. Head to Jacks Shack and stretch out on a private beach Photo Credit: Jenn Greene Tween ‘N Teen TravelingMom

We came to find out Jack’s Shack is where the cruise staff also escapes to on their days off. I can certainly see why. It’s quiet, has a gorgeous beach and the friendliest owners on the island.

TMOM Tip: On your next cruise, ask the cruise staff where they like to visit in port. Since they are always at those ports they tend to steer clear of the crowded public places and find great hidden treasures.

Jack’s Shack is the culmination of Jack’s career in waterfront construction around the world. Jack’s last marine construction project was the Grand Turk Cruise port. He met Janet and stayed on island, the rest is history. Together they enjoy sharing their island stories with the cruise passengers that venture out along the sandy beach to experience their slice of paradise.

Grand Turk

My seven year old loved swimming with Topher all day. photo credit: Jenn Greene Tween ‘N Teen TravelingMom

So what is so great about Jack’s Shack? Let’s take a look at a typical day at this island paradise in Turks and Caicos.

When we arrived my family was greeted and escorted to beach chairs, these are free for all Jack’s Shack guests. For only $10 you can rent an umbrella for the day. We rented one as my oldest daughter is fair skinned and the sun did reflect off the crystal clear water of Grand Turk all day.

Once we found the perfect spot on the beach we were greeted by Jack and Janet’s dog, Topher. He is the official mascot of Jack’s Shack. I will warn you, once you start playing fetch with him he wont stop. Topher likes to swim with the kids as well, my seven year old got a real kick out of this experience.


If you want to snorkel there is no charge for gear, Jack offers a basket of free snorkel gear to his daily guests. We found a few turtles, and bright fish upon our snorkel adventure. The water in Grand Turk is very bouyant and you will glide across the water. My 16 year old daughter spent a good two hours searching for sea life that day.

Grand Turk

Experience authentic island cuisine cooked on the porch at Jacks Shack photo credit Jenn Greene Tween ‘N Teen TravelingMom

We worked up quite an appetite snorkeling and playing with Topher. Jack’s Shack has a great island menu including jerk chicken and conch fritters. Served up by singing chef Leroy, this a truly authentic Grand Turk experience. Jack offers a fully stocked bar, just watch out for the rum punch it will sneak up on you.



Did I mention free wi-fi? My teen was beside herself that she could snap-chat friends her adventure on Turks and Caicos.

Jack’s Shack is a hidden gem on a small stretch of the island. On your next visit to Grand Turk take a short walk down beach for a hidden piece of paradise.

What is the best hidden gem you have found on vacation?