Tobago is a beautiful island with a plethora of things to do. If you only have a limited amount of time, you’ll of course have to pick and choose. One option, especially if you do not want to rent a car, is to stay near the airport. Yes, you can actually get a decent feel for Tobago’s beauty within walking distance from the airport – read on to find out how!
Arguably Tobago’s most popular beach, Store Bay is a place you should check out when visiting Trinidad’s sister island. There are several things that make this beach so popular, once of which is its accessibility: Store Bay is only a few minutes walk from the airport! People are known to walk off the plane and head straight to this beach. As they should because Store Bay has everything you could want for a relaxing day by the water.
The beach itself is quite pleasant with beautiful clear waters and a wide sandy beach front. There is also a wide variety of vendors surrounding the beach selling everything from tourist trinkets to beautiful arts and crafts. And of course, there are many stalls selling delicious Caribbean dishes; this is a great place to try Tobago’s popular dish of curried crab and dumplings! If you are coming here straight from the airport, the facilities at this beach are of good quality – there are change rooms, showers, and lockers to secure your things.
Buccoo Reef is a protected marine park near Pigeon Point and Store Bay in Tobago. I have mixed feelings about this reef. Due to the sheer number of people who have visited over the years, a lot of it has been damaged. However, there are still parts of it that are beautiful. There are fun and funny looking colourful fish swimming through cool looking coral beds. The main species, apparently, are elkhorn, star, and brain corals. You can visit Buccoo Reef via a glass-bottom boat, several of which leave daily from Store Bay and Pigeon Point. If it is a good weather day, you’ll get to snorkel. If the weather is not so great, you won’t, unfortunately. I’ve been several times, and only once did not get to snorkel.
Note: Okay, so the glass bottom boat tours are a hit and miss. Like any group tour, sometimes you’ll get a nice group of people and other times you’ll get a rambunctious crowd. The tours are about two hours long and some boats are a sailing party, playing loud soca music.
Apparently named by England’s Princess Margaret during her honeymoon in 1962, Nylon Pool is quite unique. It is essentially a shallow white sandbar in the middle of the ocean! The waters here are an amazing clear turquoise and are only about knee high. It can be a lovely relaxing experience, sitting in the warm water surrounded by dark blue ocean and palm trees in the distance. The local legend is that if you swim in the Nylon Pool, its waters have the power to rejuvenate you. Even if you don’t believe in that, Nylon Pool’s beauty is enough to make anyone smile.
Some honest truths: Unfortunately, Nylon Pool is slowly becoming victim to its popularity and to a changing environment. The pool can get a little crowded and there is now the obnoxious opportunity to sit behind a local young man on a jet ski and roar around the surrounding ocean. Also, over the years, seaweed and grasses have been slowly encroaching on the sandbar – as a child and teenager, I never saw vegetation in the area. Now, there are beds of it popping up. If you’ve never visited, I say Nylon Pool is worth checking out. However, if you’ve been before, there are other beautiful places to check out on the island of Tobago.