To get you acquainted with the natural landscape of the islands, here’s a video of the northern and eastern coasts of Trinidad. This amateur clip shows off the island’s lush green rural land and lovely beaches, and it features the soothing music of local artist, Mungal Patasar.
The North and East coasts of Trinidad are popular areas for eco-related activities and are not too far from the capital city, Port of Spain.
Though not developed to its full eco-tourism potential, T&T offers quite an array of nature-related activities.
My Top Eco-Related Picks:
1. Hike to Three-Pools
Many enjoyable summers during my teenagers years were spent exploring the rural area of Blanchisseuse with my family. Located on the North Coast of Trinidad, Blanchisseuse’s forest hosts a number of hiking trails, including my favourite, Three Pools. As its name suggests, this trail involves hiking along a path that has three “pools” or basins of water, with the final leading to an enchanting waterfall, which you can swim in. The trail is known to be relatively easy and is usually an all-day affair; however, a tour guide is required to navigate the hike. While hiking through the dense forest, you also get an opportunity to view the tropical wildlife and vegetation. This economical trek (<$10US) is a great bonding experience for both family and friends.
Trinidad – Surf’s Inn Bay
In terms of relaxation, my favourite spot is of course in Blanchisseuse. Many people favour Maracas Bay, but to me it can’t compete with Surf’s Inn Bay. Sure you get tasty food and attractive scenery in Maracas Bay, but Blanchisseuse offers cleaner, clearer waters and less crowded but equally beautiful surroundings. Since Maracas is on the way to Blanchisseuse, I often stop there to pick up some food and then head straight to Surf’s Inn Bay for some peaceful leisure time (especially after a night of partying). The quaint beach is frequented by a few surfers and is somewhat secluded (except for the private beach houses). During low tide, on the right side of the beach, by the rocks, you can explore the natural rock-reef pockets filled with water that are home to many small sea-creatures like hermit crabs, sea urchins, lobsters, fish, and the like.
Tobago – Pigeon Point
Generally noted for having more picturesque beaches than Trinidad, Tobago is home to a number of sublime beaches. Located close to the south-western tip of the island is Pigeon Point, my preferred beach. Known as one of the more popular beaches on the island, this spot has a seemingly endless sprawl of white sandy shorelines and aquamarine coloured waters. Even though it’s the only beach in the country with an entry cost (~$3US), Pigeon Point has well-developed facilities, and it offers several activities for tourists and locals alike. Besides basking in the seductive sun, you can wind surf, play volley ball, snorkel (my favourite activity), build sand castles, listen to live entertainment, have your hair braided, and enjoy local cuisine, among other things.
3. Buccoo Reef Tour
Located in Tobago, Buccoo Reef is rated by infamous oceanographer Jacques Cousteau as the third most spectacular reef in the world. Tobago’s largest reef is home to an abundance of tropical marine species. Each time I’ve visited the magnificent reef, I took a fantastic glass-bottom boat tour. This tour allows you to not only view the thriving and colourful wildlife that live in the coral beds through the transparent bottom of the boat, but also to snorkel and get an up-close look at the reef. Additionally, the boat ride makes a stop at the Nylon Pool, which is known for its white coral sand and shallow light blue-green waters, where you can snorkel and swim. Normally the tour returns in the evening, giving you a chance to experience a breathtaking sunset at sea.
Popular picks from others (on my to-do list):
Check out Limin’n’Stylin’ Caribbean Style for additional eco-related activities, plus more!