We’ve all seen the photos of Rihanna partying in Barbados, Caroline Flack sunning herself in Jamaica and Bey and Jay hanging out in Cuba. With it’s clear, turquoise waters and fine white sand, the Caribbean is a dream destination. But what you might not know is that it’s made up of at least 28 nations, over 7000 individual islands and it’s not just the big tourist hotspots that are picture postcard heaven.
Tobago is an undiscovered gem. The smaller island to its big sister Trinidad, Tobago is often overlooked by tourists – but it’s safe, it’s beautiful and with more and more airlines offering flights to this paradise getaway, House Of Solo gives you five reasons why you should be adding this country to your travel bucket list.
It’s rumoured that Tobago was the inspiration behind the books Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island and when you step foot on to its heavenly castaway beaches you’ll understand why. Pigeon Point, in Crown Point is arguably Tobago’s most well known and prettiest (THAT WATER!) beach so it’s well worth spending a couple of days there. Be warned, it’s the only beach on the island where you have to pay an entry fee and it does get pretty busy with tourists, but the turquoise water and fine white sands more than make up for it. Boat trips take you out to the local coral reef and a unique patch of land in the middle of the sea where visitors can stand up called the Nylon Pool. As well as Pigeon Point, other gems include Englishman’s Bay, Bacolet Bay, Store Bay and Castara. Which brings us on to our next point…
Oh Castara. Dreamy, wonderful Castara, how we love you. About an hour and a half from the airport and a world away from the tourist throng of Crown Point, Castara is a fishing village with a much more remote, ‘traveller’ feel to it. Locals and visitors mix in perfect harmony in this relatively undiscovered hideaway to enjoy beach bonfires (every Thursday), African drumming (at The Boat House every Wednesday) and beachside chilled out reggae beats. A perfect base to explore the whole island. Castara Retreats (www.castararetreats.com) offers a hilltop retreat to stay, and views across the bay to die for. A trip to Tobago without a stay in Castara is not worth taking.
Heavenly street stalls, mouthwatering fresh seafood and it’s own local delicacies make Tobago a culinary delight. Check out Store Bay for the beach shacks filled with dishes such as crab n dumpling, bake n shark and their infamous rotis. Jemma’s Treehouse in Speyside (www.facebook.com/pages/Jemmas-Tree-House-Restaurant-Speyside-Tobago) has become almost as famous as Tobago itself. Tourists and locals flock to the restaurant which serves meat and fish with provisions such as cassava pie, rice, beans and macaroni pie.
Think Tobago is a quiet, low-key Island? Think again. Every year around twenty thousand party goers fly in for the annual jazz festival, which this year saw the likes of Ne-Yo, Fantasia and Anthony Hamilton take to the stage in a two day extravaganza spread across the island. Think bright colours, Caribbean beats and a party atmosphere to dance the night away.
The oldest rainforest in the Western Hemisphere belongs to Tobago, and a walk through its heart, surrounded by rare birds and tropical wildlife really do make a trip to Tobago special. Unique Tours Tobago (www.uniquetourstobago.com) offers a fantastic guided tour showing you the best the rainforest has to offer. Make a stop off at the wonderful Argyle Waterfall on the way for a truly memorable trip.
Virgin Atlantic fly to Tobago (via St Lucia) at www.virginatlantic.com