The Tobago Museum is located in the Fort King George complex and is housed in the old Barrack Guradhouse. The museum although small is an interesting way to pass half an hour or an hour and to gain an insight into Tobago's cultural, colonial and present day history. The entrance fee of TT$10 (approx €1.15) is good value for those who want to know a little more about the history of the island and has lots of interesting artefacts from Ameridian times as well as the varied colonial history of Tobago. The museum also houses displays showing the African ties and ancestry of the Tobagonian people.
Don't expect to be blown away but it is worth a look.
Tobago is dotted with many forts left over from its' colonial and turbulent history and most of them are open to the public. However many of them have little remaining of the forts themselves. Fort King George is one of the best preserved of any of the forts on the island of Tobago.
Sitting high above the town of Scarborough, Fort King George consists of a series of fort buildings including, a Barracks, Officer's Mess and Powder Magazine.
The original fort was built by the British and consisted of 30 seperate buildings but a hurricane in 1847 destroyed many of these buildings. The fort was occupied by the French between 1781 and 1793 and they added the stone walls surrounding the fort.
The fort complex also houses the Scarborough lighthouse and is surrounded by beautiful well maintained gardens which offer great views up and down the coast and out over the town of Scarborough.
As Tobago's first and largest town, most visitors to the island will more than likely want to visit the town. Scarborough is what it is, a busy and vibrant town undeveloped for tourism but a great place to visit if you want to experience everyday Tobago life, it is an interesting place to stroll through especially the local markets selling fresh fruit, veg, electrical items and clothes.
The town is a bustling and hot especially down by the sea-front where most of the markets are located. further north around mian street you can stroll up the hilly streets where you will see plenty of simple yet charming town architecture and housing.
The town is located on the windward coast surrounded by hills from where you can get great views out over the town and port below.
Continuing on from Englishman's Bay you will come to the quiet fishing village of Parlatuvier which offers one of my favourite views on the whole island. Descending down into the village you will see the Glasgow Bar on your right. Stop off here to admire the great views out over Parlatuvier Bay and the surrounding hills. You get a great view of the the unique housing arrangements in the hilly villages of Tobago, with their stilted houses built rather precariously on the hillsides!
Parlatuvier itself is a lovely relaxed village whose economy, like most small villages on the island, is generated by the fishing industry. The bays long jetty is testament to the village's commitment to fishing. The beach doesn't have the clean fine sand found on a lot of the island's beaches but the idyllic setting makes up for it.
As you travel on past Castara and back up into the hills you will soon come to one of the most beautiful beaches on the whole island. Untouched by tourist development and forming a beautiful cresent of white sand backed by palm trees, this beach is a great place to relax and enjoy the Caribbean water and sunshine. Grest snorelling is to be had in the bay here. There is a small restaurant and craft shop here although the restaurant food didn't look particualrly appealing so we didn't sample it! Didn't detract from the beauty and privacy that Englishman's Bay provided.
As you travel north along the leeward coast you will come to the village of Castara. This sleepy village is primarily a fishing village but has recently seen a growth in its tourist industry. Fishing is still the main economic strenght of the area and down at the villages beautiful bay and beach you can see the fishermen coming in from see with their catch and is a good place to see the island's famous seine nets which the locals use to catch fish.
Apart from enjoying the relaxed local atmosphere of the village, visitors can enjoy the beautiful beach which spreads around the bay. THe area is also great for snorkelling, especially around the headland of the bay where there is a large reef.
The island of Little Tobago lies of the northern coast of Tobago and is one of the gems of the entire island. The island is a haven for bird watchers and they flock to the island to see the Red-Billed Tropicbird and hummingbirds which the island is famous for.
The bird was formerly owned by the ornithologist Sir William Ingram who brought a population of Bird of Paradise to the island from New Guinea. This is how the island became known as Bird of Paradise Island but hurricanes and hunters have resulted in the total dissapearance of these birds from the island and when the island was given back to the government on Ingram's death in 1924, the island was renamed Little Tobago.
Although the birds of Paradise are gone the island still has a huge population of birds and other wildlife as well as being a great place for a walk and hike through the island rainforest.
You can reach the island by glass bottom boat from Bateaux Bay just outside Speyside. THe tour includes stops for snorkelling at Angel Reef. We went with Frank's based at Blue Waters Inn and was very reasonable at TT$15 for the 2 and a half hour trip to the island, guided hike and snorkelling. Very informative gyide who had great knowledge on the island wildlife and plants as well as the history of the island itself.
Argyll Waterfall is the finest of Tobago's many falls and is located just before Roxborough town on Tobago's windward (Atlantic) coast. The falls can be reached after a 20 minute walk through the rainforest. You can get a tour guide to show you the way but it is an easy walk to the falls. The entrance fee of TT$40 includes the services of a guide anyway. The waterfalls are Tobago's highest at 54 metres high and tumble into three seperate pools at different heights. The bottom pool is lovely for swimming and you can climb up through the surrounding forest to the other two pools higher up although be carefull of the currents which can pull you over the edge. The waterfalls are inaccesible during the height of the rainy season when the whole area is covered by the river. The falls are really worth the trip and is a lovely relaxing place for a swim surrounded by the sounds and atmosphere of the rainforest. Try to avoid busy peak times and cruise ship tours which arrive during the high season. We went early in the morning and had the place to ourselves for the best part of an hour before another small group arrived.
Buccoo Reef covers an area of about 12 square kilometres and is one of Tobago's most beautiful reefs. However tourist interference and local carelessness has done some irreparable damage to the reef and coral and anyone who is planning to visit the reef must take some cautions. Firstly make sure you visit the reef with a reputable boat tour which DOES NOT ANCHOR ON THE REEF. Also under no circumstances can you walk on the reef itself, as to do so would damage the delicate coral. Some boat tours will offer you rubber slippers so that you can walk on the reef. This is to protect YOU and not the reef and you should decline. Also if you do enter the water to snorkel, make sure you don't step on the reef or even touch any part of it as this removes the slimy protective layer covering the reef and allows harmful bacteria in which can kill the coral. Needless to mention, you should not remove any part of the coral and refuse to buy anything at souvenir stalls made from coral.
Buccoo Reef is a beautiful natural wonder full of amazing tropical fish and coral but our enjoyment of the reef comes should not be the priority. Thousands of living things need the reef for survival as well as being a living thing itself and needs to be protected.
Located close to the Buccoo reef and about a mile from the shore is one of Tobago's most interesting swimming locations. The Nylon Pool is a metre deep natural swimming pool formed by a build up of broken down, dead coral. It is a unique experience to be able to stand waist deep in crystal clear water while being so far from the shoreline and is something not to be missed. Most of the boat tours leaving from Store Bay and Pigeon Point include a stop at the Nylon Pool. The area was apparently named by Princess Margaret in the 1950's who said the water was as clear as her nylon stockings! It is said that if a couple kiss under water at the Nylon Pool it brings good luck to the relationship.
gh the only beach in Trindad and Tobago that charges an entrance fee (TT$ 18), this beach is one of the most beautiful on offer in Tobago. The beach is one of the more busy beaches given its' natural beauty, on site facilities, great swimming and activities but is well worth a visit if you are looking for a great place to chill out and enjoy the sunshine.
The beach is one of the most visited places on the island and its' famous pier complete with hut is one of the most photographed sites in Tobago.
The beach is a typical Caribbean paraxise beach with soft white sand and clear turquoise water complete with swaying palm tress lining the water's edge.
Pigeon Point is also a great place to catch a glass bottom boat out to Buccoo Reef and the Nylon Pool as well as a place to rent jetskies.
The beach has a few small shops, a restaurant and two bars as well as changing rooms, toilets and showers.
Through the reception of the Toucan Inn, we arranged a jeep safari.
We started the trip at our hotel and first drove towards Arnos Vale.
ere we went into the forest, first to the Highland waterfall.
On our way, we stopped at various places, whenever we saw something interesting and our guide explained it. We saw iguanas, snakes and caymans.
During the same tour, we also visited the Hillsborough dam to see the caymans, had a delicious local lunch and went to an old sugarcane factory ruin.
It was a whole day trip worth every penny. (80 USD, including drinks, the lunch and pick-up and drop-off at you hotel.
Instead off visiting Buccoo reef and the Nylon pool, we wanted to see the fantastic world of sealife in a more quiet environment.
At the Toucan Inn, we arranged a boat trip on the Caribbean Sea side.
With a group of only 6 people, we started the tour in Buccoo.
Stopping at 4 fantastic snorkling sites, we enjoyed swimming with a Sting-Ray and even saw a Portuguese Man-O-War. (Very dangerous). Offcourse the reefs were impressive as well.
During the 3rd stop, we stayed in a small bay. Here we stayed for about 2 hours.
There was a barbeque on board, serving fresh fish and Tobago's famous stew chicken. (and more, like salad, etc...)The 2-man crew was outstanding as well, teaching us the Dollar wine (check Youtube) and we laughed the whole day.
All day was including drinks and food for 65 US$. (About half a day.)
On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate this as a 8.5)
One of my favorite places to visit when I go to Trinidad is Maracas beach. Not necessarily for the ocean alone. But the drive up there is scenic and once you get there try the bake and shark at one of the little food shacks. Trust me its worth the drive alone :-)
Tobago is a small island so it's definitely worth to rent a car and make a trip around the island.
In one day you'll see beautiful falls, forest reserve, nice villages, very very nice beaches and maybe you save some time to Scarborough (capital) for shopping.
Sure there'd be even more to see but one day was enough for us as we also wanted to bath in the sun.
I found this weird flower from the city of Speyside. Behind there's Little Tobago.
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