The island republic of Trinidad & Tobago is renowned for its annual Carnival.
Hundreds of thousands of Trinis take part in this annual celebrations and thousands of tourists flock to the island for this amazing festival.
It is definitely an experience worth checking out; however, there is more to Trinidad than feathers, beautiful women, and crazy costumes on parade.
Trinidad & Tobago consists of two islands. Trinidad is more industrial and populated while Tobago is more of your laid back traditional Caribbean Island with pristine beaches and excellent diving and snorkeling spots.
This post focuses on five places in Trinidad. Even though this island is not as known as a beach destination as its sister island, there are a couple of beaches here worth a visit.
5. Macqueripe Beach in Chaguaramas National Park
Chaguaramas National Park is only a fifteen minute drive from the capital of Port of Spain, so it is an easy convenient trip after Carnival. The best beach in this park is Macqueripe Beach. One can drive to it, but the best way to get there is to park at the golf course and then hike the approximately 2 kilometer trail to the beach.
The trail travels through a bamboo forest and jungle and then climbs up a ridge and then back down to the beach. The scenery on the ridge is stunning on both sides. On one you have the ocean and the other you have the hills and jungle. Keep an eye out for eagles, monkeys, and other interesting birds on the way to the beach. Enjoy a nice swim with picturesque views of Venezuela in the distance.
4. Pitch Lake
The largest natural deposit of asphalt in the world, Pitch Lake has been wowing adventure travelers from the time Sir Walter Raleigh discovered it in 1595. While the lake is not a stunning natural wonder, the novelty of the scope of the amount of tar in this small geographic area boggles the mind. The tar depth is 250 feet deep and there is enough tar in this region to last 400 years at current commercial extraction levels. Asphalt from this lake has been instrumental as it has been imported to over 50 countries.
3. Asa Wright Nature Center
The Asa Wright Nature Center is found in the heart of Trinidad in the rugged jungle interior. About an hour and a half drive from Port of Spain, Asa Wright is found at the end of treacherous mountain roads. The highlight of the nature center is the array of colorful birds. Trinidad is known as the land of the hummingbird with over 17 species in this tiny country. Many of them can be found here and are easily spotted at the hummingbird feeder at the nature center’s visitor center.
The trails are short and easily navigable. You can get a guide or just check them out yourself. A clear water pool can be found off the road only 8 minutes from the visitor’s center. Enjoy a cool swim underneath a waterfall and look for channel-billed toucans, trogons, and other interesting birds.
2. Caroni Swamp
Take a two hour boat tour through the mangrove channels of Caroni Swamp. Look for silky anteaters, Cook’s tree boas, lineated woodpeckers, and ospreys. The boat then emerges into bigger water and visitors get to see hundreds of beautiful scarlet ibises return to home after a day of feeding in Venezuela and elsewhere.
1. Maracas Beach
Maracas Beach is perhaps Trinidad’s most popular beach. It can be found less than an hour drive from Port of Spain along another exciting and treacherous drive. The beach is protected in a bay, but fun waves come crashing in and are perfect for boogie boarding. Make sure to try a bake and shark sandwich from Richard’s. It is a Trinidad staple.
Travel tip shared by Traveling Ted