Trinidad and Tobago

Published: December 2nd 2017
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23-11-17 Trinidad and Tobago were discovered in 1498 by Christopher Columbus, who claimed the islands for Spain. Three hundred years later, in 1798, the British seized the territory and immediately abolished slavery. To make up for the resulting labour shortage, the British encouraged immigration from Portugal, France, Germany, China and India, and in the early 1900s, the country invited thousands of immigrants from the Caribbean, Venezuela and Colombia. Today Trinidad is the most developed nation in the Caribbean and the island is a cultural melting pot renowned for its steel drums and calypso music. We arrived in Port of Spain early morning and started our sightseeing tour, first stop was for morning tea which consisted of excellent cocoa tea and chocolate tasting. We then drove over the mountain range to a popular beach at Maracas Bay for a picnic lunch of "Shark and Bake" and a beer, one of the best meals so far. Our bus had to take a detour on the way back to the hotel as there were protests underway blocking the main highway, apparently some gang leaders had been arrested and their supporters were throwing furniture on the highway! Late afternoon we took a sunset boat ride in the wetlands, we saw lots of snakes and birds with the highlight viewing hundreds of Scarlet Ibis flying in to roost for the night on a small island.

24-11-17 We toured the Angostura Bitters and Rum factory and were treated to a tasting session. We were then taken to a beautiful home with a view of the city below, we had no idea we were going to meet the owner, Brian Lara and he kindly took time to speak to us all and sign cricket balls for all of our group. Lunch was at the members area of the Queen Park Oval cricket ground after were given a tour of the interesting cricket museum. Dinner was at the home of the local tour operator, Gail who had invited her neighbours and we sat outside eating, drinking and dancing to a steel drum band.

25-11-17 We flew to Tobago, the little sister island of Trinidad. Located only 30km from Venezuela and 250k, to the south of Barbados. It is renowned for its white sand beaches, idyllic bays, crystal clear waters, unspoiled coral reefs, sea life, palms and tropical rainforest. The island is only 41km wide, we took a glass bottom boat out to the reef before driving around the island with lunch overlooking a beautiful beach setting. On the way back to the airport for our flight back to Trinidad we stopped at a local beach frequented by backpackers for afternoon tea, cooked in a mud oven, chooks were running around the outdoor kitchen and it was all very rustic with fabulous food and a laid back vibe.

26-11-17 Early morning we returned to the airport for our charter flight to Venezuela.

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