Are you looking for a vacation with includes deserted beaches, mountains, rainforests, waterfalls, and major nightlife? Trinidad and Tobago offers that and more. These two islands comprise one island nation, each with different natural wonders. The beaches are less crowded than the average Caribbean beach and offer world-class snorkeling.
Away from nature, the capital Port of Spain has an abundance of outstanding foods and a thriving nightlife that has visitors moving their feet to the beat of the local steel drums playing sweet calypso music.
About Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago is an island country in the southeastern West Indies consisting of two primary islands – Trinidad and Tobago – and a few smaller islands. Trinidad and Tobago is at the southern end of the Caribbean island chain and is close to South America and only seven miles from Venezuela. Tobago consists of only 115 square miles. The capital of Trinidad and Tobago is Port of Spain, which is on the island of Trinidad.
Christopher Columbus turned Trinidad into a Spanish colony in 1498. The island was colonized by those in search of gold. When no gold was found, the Spaniards began to grow crops, although most of the settlers were French. When the development of cotton, sugar, cocoa, and coffee proved to be quite profitable, the French brought slaves to help with the plantation work. However, the island remained a British colony.
The slaves were officially freed in 1833, and many were replaced by East Indian migrants, who continued to work the plantations.
Tobago was first settled by a few Dutch in 1628. By 1637, the Spanish had taken over, until the British defeated them in the 19th century. Tobago and Trinidad were united in 1889 and became independent in 1962.
Neither Trinidad nor Tobago ever accepted colonization well. After the end of slavery, the freed population began to hold carnivals during Lent in imitation of prior French festivities to celebrate their emancipation. The carnival grew into the biggest celebration on the islands, with music, dances, masks, and crowned kings and queens. This is the most massive street fest in the world. People begin celebrating for weeks with parties preparing for the big event and survive on a minimal of sleep. The euphoria culminates in Port of Spain, the main site of the celebration, with bands and parades.
The official language of Trinidad And Tobago is English, which is spoken by the government and used in schools and by the media. English Creole is spoken on Trinidad and is a mixture of English and French, Spanish, and a few other dialects.
Tobagonian Creole is also based on English, with a slight twist to the English Creole and is spoken on Tobago. This is the primary, everyday language spoken in Tobago. Trinidadian Hindustani is another dialect that originated with the nation’s Eastern Indians. It is spoken by over 15,000 citizens, mostly ancestors of the original Indian settlers.
The Trinidad and Tobago dollar is the country’s currency. Like the US dollar, it is divided into 100 cents.
What Is Trinidad and Tobago Most Known For?
This island nation holds plenty of attractions that will keep visitors enthralled. Both are different in character, and a destination that includes both would embrace the best of all worlds.
Trinidad is the bold and hopping one. Here, in the island’s capital of Port of Spain, visitors will find a bustling cultural blend of Europeans, Africans, and Eastern Indians. Beautiful beaches and green mountain ranges create a landscape as diverse as its people.
Tobago is quieter and more peaceful, and its stunning beaches are a major attraction. The diving and snorkeling here are superb.
Trinidad and Tobago is a major destination to see the leatherback turtles nesting. They can lay over 60 eggs. Hundreds of visitors come to Matura, one of the primary turtle sites where the leatherbacks come and build their nests. Tours are at night, so as not to disturb the turtles. These 2,000-pound creatures move slowly through the sand in search of the perfect nesting place.
Touching and photographing these beauties is only allowed while they are laying their eggs. After giving birth, the leatherback mother will cover her babies with sand to hide them from predators. These turtles are on the endangered list, and these night tours constitute a major education forum on how to help them survive. The leatherbacks come to nest between March and August; the nightly tours last approximately six hours.
Guided Hiking Tour to Tuture Watersteps from Port of Spain
Tuture Waterfalls is one of Trinidad’s most unique waterfalls. Large limestone steps rise above and traverse the Tuture River. The steps are different heights, but the average is about 25 feet in high. With each step up, there will be a nature-made jacuzzi pool perfect for swimming.
The tour begins in Port of Spain and takes riders directly to the waterfalls. Then, they will be guided along the steps while crossing several streams. The photo opportunities here are spectacular. From pool to pool, visitors enjoy nature’s bounty of butterflies, birds, fish, and crayfish. After a change out of the drenched clothes, the tour returns to Port of Spain.
The Caroni Swamp is a wetland by the crab-filled Caroni River, Trinidad’s largest river, which can be explored with a canoe. This sanctuary is famed for the many different types of birds, including the scarlet ibis and flamingos that make their daily flight from Venezuela to Trinidad. If desired, impress friends with a trivia question as to how flamingos get their beautiful pink color – it’s their daily diet of crabs.
Best Regions to Visit In Trinidad and Tobago
The islands have an abundance of spectacular beaches for every taste.
Maracas Bay, Trinidad
Maracas Bay just outside of Port of Spain is one of Trinidad’s prime beaches. It is large enough to allow for privacy and is known for its tasty eateries. Richard’s Bake & Shark is one of the local’s favorite food vendors. The beach is not only beautiful but comfortable with umbrellas and chairs that can be rented.
Another popular beach is Las Cuevas Beach. A mere fifteen minutes from Maracas Bay, it is quieter and more secluded. The calmer waters here make it an ideal playground for children.
Pigeon Point, Tobago
Pigeon Point is the beach on Tobago. It is Instagram perfection. The white sand is surrounded by palm trees swaying in the wind bordered by azure waters – it is a poem written by nature. The waters are ideal for snorkeling and swimming, and a changing room is available. Local eateries will provide food for a picnic on the beach, and visitors can quench their thirst at the beach bar. Snorkeling and scuba equipment, loungers, and kayaks can be rented.
Las Cuevas Bay Beach
Las Cuevas Bay beach is surrounded by a picturesque rainforest and mountains, providing visitors the best of all scenic worlds. This is such a quiet and secluded beach that frequently all one hears is the sound of the oncoming waves. A food stand sells lobster and fresh fruits.
The beach is named after the many small caves that line the shores and that children love to explore.
Las Cuevas Bay has hidden nooks that are clothing-optional.
Castara Beach is in the northern area of Tobago by Castara, a serene fishing village that is a wonderful escape from the crowd. There are two beaches here for fishing, snorkeling, or swimming. Or simply watch the fishermen bring their haul to shore. Visitors can rent their own boat and do their own fishing, as well. Any catch can be prepared over a fire on the beach. Diving enthusiasts will find Heaven Bay with its coral reefs an ideal diving attraction. It also has a beach bar.
This bay is a secluded nook on Tobago and is one of the top ten beaches of the Caribbean. It is not easy to find but worth the look. The beach is tucked between the water and the lush, green rainforest. There is food for sale, as are some local crafts. This is another leatherback turtle nesting beach.
Best Resort or Hotel in Trinidad and Tobago
The Hyatt Regency Trinidad in Port of Spain provides its guest with the best of two worlds – the excitement of Port of Spain with the charm of a luxurious waterfront hotel. The rooms have either a gulf or a city view, and there are several tasty dining options onsite. Leave the hotel and explore Port of Spain’s many museums and other attractions or ask the concierge about a tour. Sit back in the lobby terrace and enjoy the nightly entertainment or order a cocktail by the infinity pool on the roof.
Best Resort or Hotel for Couples in Trinidad and Tobago
These secluded 14 villas in Tobago offer first-rate privacy and total seclusion for couples. Each villa has a verandah, private pool, sundeck, and barbeque area. The ocean view is grand and panoramic. Meals are available at the Clubhouse Bar with a tropical landscape view and or the Pavilion Restaurant with its ocean views.
The Villas are located close to Tobago’s activities, such as two championship golf courses, tennis court, boat charting for fishing, and the best scuba diving excursions on the island. These villas are ideal for honeymooners or any couple seeking a private getaway by the ocean.
Best Resort or Hotel for Families in Trinidad and Tobago
The Starfish Tobago is located by Great Courtland Bay in Tobago. Whether enjoying the beach and a cocktail at the swim-up bar, guests are treated to non-stop enjoyment, including nightly live entertainment. Wake up to a large room with your own patio and a stunning ocean view and a handy coffee maker and small refrigerator.
The resort offers sailing and snorkeling tours to parents while the kids are enjoying supervised entertainment in the kids’ club, such as creating arts and crafts and learning more about Tobago’s history.
Indulge in elegant, romantic dining with a view or casual dining of burgers and fries for the entire family.