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The Amorous Dance of the Turks and Caicos Islands

Love is in the “Water” with this unique monthly mating ritual off the coast of Providenciales

It’s a sight to behold, and not just because it’s impossible to take photographs.

Each month, just like clockwork, glow worms perform a scintillating mating ritual shortly after sunset. Based on the lunar cycle, this amorous exhibition takes place 5 nights after a full moon and last only 15 minutes. But it’s quite the spectacle to behold.

The tiny female glow worm (odontosyllis enopla) releases a glowing egg mass that is fertilized by the male in a sparkling ballet just below the water’s surface. The mesmerizing display is soon over and the male glow worm, having completed his microscopic opus dies shortly after.

However, the beautiful wash of luminescence, the gentle rocking of the boat and the warm sea air will be a lasting memory of your sunset excursion in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Glow Worm Cruises from The Meridian Club

The Meridian Club, a secluded island resort located on Pine Cay offers sunset cruises to lover’s lane – technically the Caicos Banks – where the miles of 2 ft to 4.5 ft deep waters offer the perfect vantage for the mating ritual. To minimize disruption to this natural phenomenon, flash photography is not to be used.

For 2014, the Glow Worm Cruise Schedule is tentatively scheduled for the following dates:

  • January 21, 2014
  • February 19, 2014
  • March 21, 2014
  • April 20, 2014
  • May 19, 2014
  • June 18, 2014
  • July 17, 2014
  • November 11, 2014
  • December 11, 2014

Travel time: approximately 10 mins to Pine Cay Marina and an additional 10 minutes to the viewing spot

What to expect when you go on the Glow Worm Cruise

In pure Meridian Club tradition, first and foremost, expect to have a good time with some quirkiness thrown in (you are going to watch worms mating after all!).

Don your casual clothes including a light long sleeve tunic/shirt to keep you comfortable as the boat heads out.

Be ready to head out from the Club House 10 minutes after sunset Pine Cay Time (PCT)*. Within 20 minutes you will be at the observation spot where you will be offered hors d’oeuvres and drinks. Here you will enjoy the calm waters, warm breezes and a little bit of Barry White and The Glow Worm Song by the Mills Brother (circa 1957) – we warned you it would be a bit quirky – to get the glow worms in the right mood for their upcoming performance. A good estimate of the wait time is approximately 55 minutes after sunset.

*Daylight Savings is not observed on Pine Cay

How should you schedule your vacation to Pine Cay to see the Glow Worm mating ritual?

If you are a nature buff, or just like to be out on the water enjoying the sunset, and have never experienced this monthly ritual, you should be a part of the Glow Worm Cruise. We suggest that you schedule your stay to include at least one day on either side of the planned excursion dates shown above. For example, if you would like to see the Glow Worm display on May 19th, be sure to book your stay at The Meridian Club to include the nights of the 18th and the 20th as there may be one night of the three which turns out to be better suited to watching the Glow Worms. See the Glow Worm Cruise Schedule for upcoming years.

To book your stay at The Meridian Club during the Glow Worm mating period, please visit our Reservations page.