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Trinidad and Tobago, the Caribbean twin island nation closest to South America, is known for its lush vegetation, vibrant cultural festivals and sumptuous cuisine. But these two islands are also known for their idyllic beaches, some of which are tucked away from the beaten path.

So, if you’re taking a trip to the islands, here’s a list of beaches that you should make a point of visiting.

Beaches in Trinidad

Las Cuevas

Out of all of the beaches on the North Coast of Trinidad, Las Cuevas stands out for its nearby caves which can offer a much needed respite from sunbathing. The name of the beach actually means “the caves” in Spanish. Snack bars, nearby showers and toilet facilities make spending the day at Las Cuevas a breeze.
Life guard services are available from 11 am to 5 pm.

Maracas Bay

Maracas Bay is arguably the most popular, or at least the most well-known, beach in Trinidad. The water can become rough and hazardous, so be sure to swim between the red flags that designate safe areas. Life guards are generally on duty there from 10 am to 6pm.

Great food and amenities are available at Maracas. When you’re there, the locals will tell you that you must try a local dish called “Bake and Shark” which is a fried shark filet sandwich that you can dress with your choice of tasty sauces.

Beaches in Tobago

Pigeon Point

Located in Crown Point, just about 10 mins away from the airport, Pigeon Point’s waters are calm and family friendly. The beach is also very close to Buccoo Reef which is one of the most readily accessible coral reefs in the Caribbean.

There are regular tours from the beach to the reef and the Nylon Pool, a shallow section of crystal clear water just beyond the reef. The pool got its name from Princess Margaret who visited the island in 1962. Its waters are said to have the powers to rejuvenate you both physically and spiritually.

Buccoo Reef tours are done in glass-bottomed boats and the tour guides are just as colourful as their sea vessels. You can book your trip right on the beach and sign up for jet-ski rides as well.

If you’re just interested in having a relaxing day, Pigeon Point is a great choice once you’re willing to pay the US $3 entrance fee. It’s worth it, though. Due the shape and size of the beach, you can still enjoy your fair share of privacy and tranquility even when it’s crowded.

The beach bar at Pigeon Point, Renmar’s, is fully stocked with a wide range of alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages to quench your thirst after a long day of fun in the sun. Try the fish and chips there, it’s delicious.

Englishman’s Bay

Located on the west coast of Tobago, Englishman’s Bay is secluded from the main road by a mile or so of lush vegetation. The deep clear water makes it good for swimming and snorkeling. But, be careful. The steep sea shelf makes the transition from shallow to deep water potentially dangerous.

People go to Englishman’s Bay to relax on a beautiful beach that seems hidden from the outside world. There’s a restaurant on the beach offering tasty local dishes. The craft vendors there give you chance to pick up some souvenirs for friends and family back home.

Mt Irvine

The beaches at Mt Irvine, located on the Southwest/Leeward coast, have excellent facilities and some of the best snorkeling opportunities on the island. The Mt Irvine Beach Hotel is open to the public and offers refreshments- via their restaurant- as well as changing room and toilet facilities. And Mt Irvine Bay is well known for its watersports and snorkeling with coral and reef fish in abundance. Snorkelling gear can be rented onsite.

Trinidad and Tobago offers a fun getaway experience for people who love great food, culture, vibrant nightlife as well as lazy days lounging in the sun. Book your trip today.

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How to Make the Most of Fresh Herbs

Herbs grow lush and abundant almost everywhere. Left to their own devices they will happily run rampant up to the garden fence and beyond. Yet they are allocated the stingiest applications in cooking – a sprig of parsley on the potatoes, a little chopped mint in the peas or a few leaves of basil on the spaghetti. Herbs grow in abundance because they are meant to be used that way. While the usual culinary wisdom is to timidly add them to cooked dishes, the best way to enjoy their fresh flavors and health-giving properties is raw, using them as abundantly as they grow.

Everyday herbs like parsley, chives, mint, cilantro and basil, herbs you know and hopefully love, make stunning salads. Hold the bunches of herbs by the stems and chop the leaves roughly. Toss the chopped leaves into a bowl and mix them all together. The fragrance will be glorious – this not a garnish, it’s the real thing. You can eat it just as it is, or toss a dressing over it and add other salad ingredients. Prepare for a taste shock – this anything but bland lettuce and tomatoes.

For a bigger salad that is more of a meal, add some Lebanese cucumber, cherry tomatoes, snow peas and radish. Cubes of avocado will add a creamy finish so you won’t even need a dressing. Serve it with ceviche, fish ‘cooked’ by sprinkling it with freshly squeezed lime juice.

Another way to serve herb salad is with lobster, mayo and fresh crusty bread rolls. This makes a great summer lunch for a friendly get-together and the fresh herbs add punch to the basic lobster roll. The gentler aromatic herbs like Italian parsley and chives will not overpower the lobster. But don’t just stop at familiar herbs. Explore the many varieties of basil like dark opal and Thai, and the vast range of mints – pineapple, chocolate, apple, lemon and spicy ginger mint. Lemon balm and lemon verbena are not just for tea, these herbs will add sweetness and delicate flavor to your salads.

Green smoothies can also take on a fresh burst of flavor with handfuls of herbs tossed in the blender. A blend of mint, watermelon and a squeeze of lime blitzed with ice cubes will cool you down on the hottest day. Make your favourite herb tea and cool it in the fridge for iced tea or freeze it in ice pop moulds for a refreshing and healthy treat.

The more you use fresh herbs, the more you experiment by mixing them with your favorite fruits and vegetables, the more new taste sensations you will enjoy!


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