Island Tram Tours

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#1
Eustis, FL
13 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
Has anyone done the Island Tram Tours trip recently? Is it truly a Hop on Hop off bus? We have contacted the company directly & asked this question but still haven't gotten a straight answer. Can you actually get off the tram at any of the stops (lighthouse, beach, etc.) & stay as long as you want & then catch the next bus? Our intention is to get off at the lighthouse, explore, take make pictures, then hop back on the next bus that comes after we are done. Then go to one of the beaches along the route, picnic, snorkel, swim, etc. for a couple hours before catching the next bus that comes along at that point & head back to the cruise terminal. Is this possible on this tour?
#2
Maryland
51 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
Originally posted by jwbausch
Has anyone done the Island Tram Tours trip recently? Is it truly a Hop on Hop off bus? We have contacted the company directly & asked this question but still haven't gotten a straight answer. Can you actually get off the tram at any of the stops (lighthouse, beach, etc.) & stay as long as you want & then catch the next bus? Our intention is to get off at the lighthouse, explore, take make pictures, then hop back on the next bus that comes after we are done. Then go to one of the beaches along the route, picnic, snorkel, swim, etc. for a couple hours before catching the next bus that comes along at that point & head back to the cruise terminal. Is this possible on this tour?
I'd be interested to know this too JW, but it doesn't seem like there is anyone interested in responding. Have you asked the question in your particular Roll Call? We are traveling there at the end of January (2015) on the Holland America Line Nieuw Amsterdam.
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Always ready to cruise and travel
#3
Maryland
51 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
JW, I found some reviews of the tram on another site. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractio...nd_Caicos.html (I hope this is allowed and I am not breaking any rules - if I am, I shall soon know about it I suppose). It doesn't sound to me like it is a hop-on-hop-off (and we have been on a lot of those - London, Paris, Barcelona, Washington, DC). I think the island is just too small. I read elsewhere that there are golf carts available and that my be the way to go.
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Always ready to cruise and travel
#4
Maryland
51 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
JW, I may be recanting my last response. My wife found this page on the Grand Turks (http://www.cruisecritic.com/ports/ne...int.cfm?ID=155) within the HAL page and under "Shore Excursions" it mentions a hop-on hop-off tour. So I don't think I am sure of anything any more!
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#5
762 Posts
Joined Sep 2012
Originally posted by slothead tom
JW, I found some reviews of the tram on another site. http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attractio...nd_Caicos.html (I hope this is allowed and I am not breaking any rules - if I am, I shall soon know about it I suppose). It doesn't sound to me like it is a hop-on-hop-off (and we have been on a lot of those - London, Paris, Barcelona, Washington, DC). I think the island is just too small. I read elsewhere that there are golf carts available and that my be the way to go.
We had golf carts. The island tram tour that was just outside the gates was at a couple of stops when we were. It did not appear to be hop on hop off as the driver was waiting for the people , however, I can not be sure.

Golf cart rental from Karib Auto Rental. FB page karibarental
Email. Karibarental rental at g mail
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#6
Eustis, FL
13 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
OK, after I didn't get any responses to my post before our cruise, we went to Grand Turk last week & searched around for the now infamous Island Tram Tours. We were directed to the pier beach by the tourist information desk to a lady with a yellow umbrella. She didn't get there for a while after we did and told us the tram cost was $25. She called over the driver/guide to give us details. He said that because it is slow season, they were probably only going to run one tram & they would give everyone some time at each stop to look around. The last stop was going to be Governor's Beach. If you wanted to stay at the beach for awhile, you would have to find your way back by taxi (at your own expense) or walk. That didn't sound very appealing to us. We checked with the Grand Turk Express tour booth & they described what sounded to us like a true Hop On Hop Off Bus that made four stops (downtown Cockburn, the lighthouse, Salt Museum & Governor's Beach) with another bus coming every 30 minutes for $19. We took it, and it was just what we were hoping it would be. By the time we made it to the Salt Museum, it was closed. But otherwise, we were pleased.
#7
Maryland
51 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
Originally posted by jwbausch
OK, after I didn't get any responses to my post before our cruise, we went to Grand Turk last week & searched around for the now infamous Island Tram Tours. We were directed to the pier beach by the tourist information desk to a lady with a yellow umbrella. She didn't get there for a while after we did and told us the tram cost was $25. She called over the driver/guide to give us details. He said that because it is slow season, they were probably only going to run one tram & they would give everyone some time at each stop to look around. The last stop was going to be Governor's Beach. If you wanted to stay at the beach for awhile, you would have to find your way back by taxi (at your own expense) or walk. That didn't sound very appealing to us. We checked with the Grand Turk Express tour booth & they described what sounded to us like a true Hop On Hop Off Bus that made four stops (downtown Cockburn, the lighthouse, Salt Museum & Governor's Beach) with another bus coming every 30 minutes for $19. We took it, and it was just what we were hoping it would be. By the time we made it to the Salt Museum, it was closed. But otherwise, we were pleased.
This is good info JW. I'm glad you were motivated to post, post-cruise.

Thanks,
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Tom
Always ready to cruise and travel
#8
Eustis, FL
13 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
Originally posted by slothead tom
This is good info JW. I'm glad you were motivated to post, post-cruise.

Thanks,
You're welcome. It actually made two stops in town, only a couple hundred yards apart. I would suggest getting off at the second stop (to save time) & back tracking a little to the history museum. It has some interesting Columbus era shipwreck artifacts & a very enthusiastic & informative hostess. Its an extra $5 pp, but if you've got enough time in port, its worth it.
#9
Texas
244 Posts
Joined Nov 2012
Originally posted by jwbausch
OK, after I didn't get any responses to my post before our cruise, we went to Grand Turk last week & searched around for the now infamous Island Tram Tours. We were directed to the pier beach by the tourist information desk to a lady with a yellow umbrella. She didn't get there for a while after we did and told us the tram cost was $25. She called over the driver/guide to give us details. He said that because it is slow season, they were probably only going to run one tram & they would give everyone some time at each stop to look around. The last stop was going to be Governor's Beach. If you wanted to stay at the beach for awhile, you would have to find your way back by taxi (at your own expense) or walk. That didn't sound very appealing to us. We checked with the Grand Turk Express tour booth & they described what sounded to us like a true Hop On Hop Off Bus that made four stops (downtown Cockburn, the lighthouse, Salt Museum & Governor's Beach) with another bus coming every 30 minutes for $19. We took it, and it was just what we were hoping it would be. By the time we made it to the Salt Museum, it was closed. But otherwise, we were pleased.
We did this tour last December. It was nice. The drivers explain history of island and some neat info about things as you pass them. They stay 10 minutes or so at each stop, and if you'd like to stay longer there really is another van every 30 minutes or so. The Lighthouse area is gorgeous!
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#10
Southend UK
443 Posts
Joined Aug 2013
Originally posted by jwbausch
OK, after I didn't get any responses to my post before our cruise, we went to Grand Turk last week & searched around for the now infamous Island Tram Tours. We were directed to the pier beach by the tourist information desk to a lady with a yellow umbrella. She didn't get there for a while after we did and told us the tram cost was $25. She called over the driver/guide to give us details. He said that because it is slow season, they were probably only going to run one tram & they would give everyone some time at each stop to look around. The last stop was going to be Governor's Beach. If you wanted to stay at the beach for awhile, you would have to find your way back by taxi (at your own expense) or walk. That didn't sound very appealing to us. We checked with the Grand Turk Express tour booth & they described what sounded to us like a true Hop On Hop Off Bus that made four stops (downtown Cockburn, the lighthouse, Salt Museum & Governor's Beach) with another bus coming every 30 minutes for $19. We took it, and it was just what we were hoping it would be. By the time we made it to the Salt Museum, it was closed. But otherwise, we were pleased.
Thanks JW, I've also spent some time trying to get a grip on this one. I've made a note of the 'Grand Turk Express Booth' to look for. I assume they are completely seperate to the Island Trams people?

Many thanks

Keith (Southend, UK)
#11
Texas
244 Posts
Joined Nov 2012
Originally posted by Southendweather
Thanks JW, I've also spent some time trying to get a grip on this one. I've made a note of the 'Grand Turk Express Booth' to look for. I assume they are completely seperate to the Island Trams people?

Many thanks

Keith (Southend, UK)

Yes, they are separate. The GT Express will actually take your keycard info and bill your tour to the ship. No cash necessary, or at least they did 2 years ago.
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#12
762 Posts
Joined Sep 2012
Thanks for the hop On Hop Off information.
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#13
Boca Raton, FL
168 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
About a year or so ago we had reservations with Island Tram Tours and they never showed up. Spent the time looking for representative and even the local police tried to help. Finally someone said they weren't there because the transmission on tram was broken. However, no one ever emailed me to let me know even though we had reservations. Never again!
#14
Illinois
83 Posts
Joined Jun 2012
Originally posted by jwbausch
OK, after I didn't get any responses to my post before our cruise, we went to Grand Turk last week & searched around for the now infamous Island Tram Tours. We were directed to the pier beach by the tourist information desk to a lady with a yellow umbrella. She didn't get there for a while after we did and told us the tram cost was $25. She called over the driver/guide to give us details. He said that because it is slow season, they were probably only going to run one tram & they would give everyone some time at each stop to look around. The last stop was going to be Governor's Beach. If you wanted to stay at the beach for awhile, you would have to find your way back by taxi (at your own expense) or walk. That didn't sound very appealing to us. We checked with the Grand Turk Express tour booth & they described what sounded to us like a true Hop On Hop Off Bus that made four stops (downtown Cockburn, the lighthouse, Salt Museum & Governor's Beach) with another bus coming every 30 minutes for $19. We took it, and it was just what we were hoping it would be. By the time we made it to the Salt Museum, it was closed. But otherwise, we were pleased.

Marking this to come back to. Think we might try the hop on hop off January 29, we'll be there noon til six though. Any one know the duration if you stay on the same van all the way or when the last run is?
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#15
Eustis, FL
13 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
Originally posted by TBird879
Marking this to come back to. Think we might try the hop on hop off January 29, we'll be there noon til six though. Any one know the duration if you stay on the same van all the way or when the last run is?
The day we were there, we were the only ship in port. We arrived at 11 & I believe the first GT Express bus pulled out around 11:30. I would guess if you stayed on the bus straight through without getting off, it would probably only take about an hour and 15 minutes or so. The last tour bus was leaving Governor's Beach at 4 (although you could catch a straight shuttle later). So, I would guess the last tour bus would depart the terminal area somewhere between 2:30 & 2:45. Don't know for sure though, because we left on our tour at noon & stopped everywhere except the salt museum & came back on the Governor's Beach shuttle around 4:30. Now, our port times were 11 to 5, so you can probably add an hour onto our times for your cruise.
#16
Louisiana
203 Posts
Joined Jul 2006
We did the Grand Turk Express last week. It is $19.00 p/p, billed to your ship account. We actually stayed on the first bus for an entire 'round', takes about an hour, then we went back out and made a few stops. There is a bus every 30 minutes (give or take) and they said the last one is an hour before the ship leaves. The driver was very knowledgeable about the island, made for a great tour (our first time to be on this island).
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#17
211 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
Hi we go in March where do you pick up the Tram Tour for 19.00? Is it just outside of the cruise terminal? And they just use your ship and sail card? That would be great.
#18
Kansas City (Gladstone) , MO
3,790 Posts
Joined May 2006
The lighthouse was mentioned on here in Grand Turk. I love lighthouses. Can we walk to it, or do we need to take a Taxi or tour guide? Can I go inside, or just see it from the outside?
#19
Texas
244 Posts
Joined Nov 2012
Originally posted by beshears
The lighthouse was mentioned on here in Grand Turk. I love lighthouses. Can we walk to it, or do we need to take a Taxi or tour guide? Can I go inside, or just see it from the outside?
It's on the other side of the island from the cruise port, so you can't really walk to it. I'd probably suggest the tram tour, you may as well get all the information about the island while you drive to it! The whole tour probably takes an hour if you stay on the same van the whole time.

When I visited in 2012 you couldn't go inside, I was there again 2 months ago, but we only saw it from the helicopter, so I'm not sure if things have changed or not.

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#20
Kansas City (Gladstone) , MO
3,790 Posts
Joined May 2006
Love the picture of the light house. So if we take the Island Tram tour, it should take us to the lighthouse? Can we get this tour, once we are off the ship without having to book it ahead of time?