Trinidad’s lively cosmopolitan and multicultural setting brings you a melody of scrumptious food and drinks served from its many up and coming trendy restaurants and bars. Outside the city landscape, you'll discover its countless natural and historical treasures, adventurous ecotourism tours and tempting secret beach escapes. Here's a quick snapshot for you.
BUZO Osteria Italiana - $$$
Unique in its design, atmosphere and exceptional customer service, Buzo is a top choice for a night out on the town. Located in uptown Port of Spain, it occupies an old colonial stone and brick building with the most authentic Italian cuisine you'll find in Trinidad. Buzo’s modern ambience hits you as soon as you walk through the door with its contemporary interiors, stylish lounge music and romantic lighting give it a fresh yet welcoming touch. Buzo is known for its selection of mouth-watering and perfectly sized pizzas which are made with the freshest ingredients in its artisan open brick oven. Perfect for any occasion whether it be a work lunch, birthday dinner or a Friday night lime. Don’t forget to try their heavenly desserts and stylish cocktails.
Chaud - $$
Chaud is a chic and sophisticated restaurant with a lovely intimate setting known for its elegant presentation of gourmet food with a polished Caribbean flair. One of Trinidad’s most renowned chefs, Khalid Mohammed treats you to a unique culinary experience as he combines Caribbean ingredients into delicious and beautifully decorated dishes. His skillful culinary and plating techniques bring you courses that will blow your mind. The atmosphere at Chaud is welcoming, cozy and delightful. An ideal spot for a romantic date or for a group of friends or family looking for a fine dining experience.
Veni Mange - $
Veni Maage is the island’s local gem where you encounter local creole delicacies in a cozy open-air located right in the heart of the bustling capital city. The restaurant is an old wooden house that has been tastefully decorated with artwork for sale (mainly from Haiti). The staff are friendly and the owner makes sure you feel like you are at home. Veni Mange is authentic trini cuisine giving locals and travelers a taste of that real island flavor and laid-back Trinidadian vibe.
Richard's shark and bake
If you're heading to Maracas beach, you have to drop into Richard's Shark and Bake restaurant. Order the classic fried “shark and bake” and customize with an assortment of local sauces and toppings. Bizarre Foods star, Andrew Zimmerman claimed this dish is the best fish sandwich he's ever tried. If shark is not for you, there are other options to satisfy your fish sandwich cravings such as the ‘shrimp and bake’ or ‘kingfish and bake’. Richard’s tourist-friendly setting lets you enjoy your shark and bake while sipping on an ice cold local beer looking out onto the beach front. This is a true trini experience.
Hyatt - $$$
This first class international hotel is a top choice for travelers who come to relax and get one of the best hotel experiences that Trinidad has to offer. Being located along the city’s waterfront makes visiting the city center quite easy. There's a large selection of taxis and water taxis parked near the hotel that will take you to any sightseeing destination. On the 4th floor you'll find a beautiful terrace with an exquisite infinity pool overlooking the Gulf of Paria. Make sure and sip on some cocktails at the waterfront bar while admiring the picturesque sunset. Hyatt is an oasis in the bustling city with its clean and comfortable rooms, outstanding restaurants and a spectacular view.
Hilton - $$$
Hilton has some of the most breathtaking views of Port of Spain and the city’s surrounding lush landscape. The hotel has a distinct architectural design as you enter the hotel on its top floor and unusually take an elevator down to your room. You can then unwind in your recently renovated comfy room overlooking the Queens Park Savannah and Northern Mountain Range. Hilton offers a diverse range of stylish restaurants where you can indulge in international, Caribbean or local dishes with great views of the city. The hotel’s superb central location on the savannah allows travelers easy access to all of Trinidad’s key sightseeing spots, with Maracas beach only 30 mins away.
Acajou - $
To escape the hustle and bustle of the city, Acajou is the perfect place to enjoy absolutely wonderful views from your picturesque hut. The drive to Acajou in Grande Riviere is a lengthy journey but when you arrive, it 's well worth the visit. Being right next to the beach, you can spend all day either lounging in the hammock or swimming in the nearby freshwater cove or even just relaxing on the beach in the warm sun. Grande Riviere is known as the second largest leather back turtles nesting site in the world. Nesting season is from March to September where you can see the leatherback turtles lay their eggs. From May onwards, you can enjoy watching hatchlings surface from the sand to then make their way out into the Caribbean Sea. If you are interested in waking up in nature to birds singing and the sound of crashing waves, Acajou is the ideal getaway for you.
One of the best scenic drives in Trinidad takes you the island’s most popular beach located only 30 minutes away from the city of Port of Spain. This route is unbelievably beautiful. You'll cruise along the island’s highest mountain range with lush vegetation surrounding you; ever so often taking a sneak peek of the blue and tempting waters. Stop at the Maracas Lookout on the way for a quick photo shoot and sample some local snacks such as the country’s famous mango chow. At Maracas beach, you can join in with cricket or football with the locals or rent a chair and just sit back, relax and enjoy the warm Caribbean sun.
Down de Islands (DDI)
Rent a charter boat (sailing or speed boat) for a day trip down de islands and discover Trinidad’s small chain of charming islands between Trinidad and Venezuela. The main islands are Gasparee, Monos and Chacachacare which are scattered with chic beach houses and impressive boats. The top spots to lay anchor are Turtle Bay, Scotland Bay and Chac Bay. You can snorkel or fish in their deep blue waters or even explore these islands by foot. The calm waters of these bays inspire a variety of watersporting activities. If you are lucky, you may get the chance to cruise up during sunset with the bottlenose dolphins swimming alongside your boat. A popular, fun and friendly sailboat adventure can be booked with the lovely Sundara Yacht Charters.
Caroni Bird Sanctuary
You can book a sunset cruise with the Caroni Bird Sanctuary and observe the Scarlet Ibis (the island’s national bird) fly into the majestic swamplands to take shelter for the night. The knowledgeable and passionate guides take you on a journey through this natural habitat along the narrow passage ways of the swamp showing you its incredible wildlife such as snakes, crabs, anteaters etc. At the end of this ride, you'll be taken out onto an open bay to get a spectacular view of the arrival of hundreds of these beautiful red creatures. The Caroni Bird Sanctuary tour is a peaceful and educational excursion that allows you to appreciate the island’s genuine beauty.
Queens Park Savannah
The Queens Park Savannah is one of the largest roundabouts in the world and up until the 80’s it was used as the country’s national horse racing track. Now a playground for numerous sporting activities and a the stage for the island’s most popular festival - Carnival. The savannah is full of character and surrounded by some of the most charming colonial heritage buildings in the country, also known as the Magnificent Seven. As you walk along the savannah, you will also catch a glimpse of the botanical gardens, emperor valley zoo and the President’s house. At the end of the dry season, the Poui trees flower to lay the ground with magnificent bursts of yellow and pink. Buy a Coconut or snowcone from the local savannah vendors and take a stroll around the savannah admiring the greenery and historical landmarks.
Nestled high up in Trinidad’s northern mountain range, is Theo and Gloria’s enchanting home known as Yerette. This hummingbird sanctuary is a nature lover’s and photographer’s dream. The sanctuary is filled with dozens of these incredibly quick and energetic creatures. The hummingbirds buzz around the feeders which are ideally situated in trees making them ready for their close ups. Theo and Gloria are great hosts. As Theo explains all you need to know about hummingbirds, Gloria serves up a lovely lunch on the porch. The backdrop of the mountains is stunning, making the ambience of the tour relaxing where you can take your time to admire and listen to the hum of these fascinating fearless beauties.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Gabrielle Agostini is a creative travel blogger, whose tales are based on her experiences of traveling to over 46 countries while living in London, Montreal, Brisbane and Trinidad and Tobago. From whitewater rafting in Costa Rica to admiring the sacred temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia and to snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef, she has a good idea of the best travel dos and travel don’ts. She is currently based in her home country of Trinidad and Tobago, where has continued to explore and enjoy the warm weather and natural beauty of the Caribbean.
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