Spending 4 months in the Caribbean, Sami got to stay 2 months in Trinidad and Tobago. Living and working in the Caribbean was quite a new experience. The islands are located in the southern Caribbean close to Venezuela. 33° celsius at 8:00 in the morning. The capital city is Port of Spain. From long sandy beaches to rain forests and mud volcanoes, a trip to Trinidad offers a great variety of landscapes and the best chance to enjoy the “real” Caribbean way of life and most important the food. Well chicken dishes are very common and the best breakfast is called “doubles”, this is a must try! And don’t forget the Bake N Shark you get at the beach in Las Cuevas
Port of Spain – the north-west – ASA Wright nature centre – Blanchissuese – Gasparee grande – Salybia – Maracas bay – Mount St. Benedict – the north-east – the south and south-west – the south-east
Port of Spain is a busy city, as you would expect for the capital city. Having done a tour with my native roommate during my trip to Trinidad, i got to see many corners, you don’t get to see otherwise. The colonial architecture is found in many homes as you can see. But there are more simple homes.
leaving the city area, it gets green pretty fast. The weather near the equator creates a combination of rainforest, plain lands and mountains with different atmospheres. On a trip to Trinidad, take your time to travel around. You’ll need to rent a car, but please be careful. Driving there can be a bit challenging.
The ASA Wright nature centre and bird sanctuary is a must during a trip to Trinidad! I did a tour with a native wild life photographer, which actually got me to focus more on wildlife and add that to my portfolio. Below you’ll find just a few of my shots. I can say, a paradise for bird lovers, watchers and wildlife photographers, but also for anyone just enjoying nature and wildlife on a closer look. My first sighting of humming birds.
If you like beaches with a typical Caribbean background, then you’re just at the right spot. A trip to Trinidad takes you to many beaches, the most popular and closest to Port of Spain are Maracas bay and Las cuevas in the north-west of the island. You can get there sharing a taxi, which is quite cheap in Trinidad. Can be very crowded on the weekend.
A beach specialty and must try during your trip to Trinidad is the Bake N Shark, don’t worry it is traditionally called so, but includes catch of the day fish. It sure was a highlight with mango chutney and salad.
Moving on to the tip of the north-west of our trip to Trinidad, you reach Chaguaramas, where you can catch a boat to the island Gasparee grande. Beautiful homes, but more interesting for you as traveler are the gasparee caves with a large labyrinth of pools and rocky tunnels. When the weather is clear, you can look over to Venezuela.
Lovers of rain forests have to join a hike to salybia in the north-east on their trip to Trinidad. A hike through a real rain forest with all its animals, unfortunately bugs (don’t forget your insect repellent) and beautiful landscapes. Wear long pants and boots. Trinidad hosts the tiger mosquito carrier of dengue fever.
Not too far from Port of Spain there is a monastery on a hill called Mount St. Benedict. you’ll enjoy a nice view of the surrounding mountains and look down on Port of Spain. A calm and peaceful place.
Moving down south on our trip to Trinidad, you will find the Caroni Swamp national park. This is the best place for bird lovers to watch the national bird of Trinidad & Tobago: the scarlet ibis. these birds are stunning, the color looks unreal.
Staying on the road down to the south-west, you will reach San Fernando, another big city with an industrial port. You’ll have the best view from the San Fernando hill. Further south-west, you’ll find Brighton, known for the pitch lake. Yes! a lake of tar used to pave streets and it is nature’s work. There you will learn, that cashews grow on trees and actually are only a small part of the fruit. I have to admit, i knew that but this was my first time actually seeing it.
The east and south-east offer a typical Caribbean landscape of long roads with palm trees as well as endless beaches with palm tree background. Mayaro beach is a good example. When there, you can also visit the Nariva swamp and see sweet little mud volcanoes.
For food lovers among us, “doubles” was a really new experience for me on my trip to Trinidad. Europeans know what i mean; continental breakfast and so on 🙂 Well at first i was really skeptical wether to eat food made in the trunk of a car or just beside the road, but it is worth trying and i do miss it… it is VEGAN…and delicious… made of flatbread filled with a warm chickpea and curry sauce, add chutney and enjoy!
our next stop will be Tobago…