Thinking that one could not really claim to have been to Trinidad and Tobago without actually going across to the little brother island, a day trip to Tobago was in order. Melissa and I debated which day to make the journey, and take a day off from the cricket in doing so, and ended up picking Day 4.
We caught the 6.30am ferry across, which was painful given a large impromptu night the night before. This ferry took 2.5 hours, and got fairly rough when we were out to sea, although it did allow us some valuable nap time! The ticket seller was very reluctant to sell us our return ticket on this day, a Wednesday, when there are not as many ferry's running, and an 11pm cargo vessel being the option. We pressed, and got our tickets.
Upon arrival into the port of Scarborough, we were approached by Jerry, one of the many locals spruiking for business for the day. He talked about the type of island tour we were looking for, and of course, he could offer us just that!
He took us through a section of the main town on Tobago, including a visit to the fort to allow a view of the town and ocean, before we made our way our of town to start the lap around the island.
Having our own driver meant that we could stop and see anything that caught our eye, but also given that Jerry was a local, born and bred, and also that he is a prominent character on the island due to his work with one of the annual festivals, he seemed to know and say hi to everyone we passed all the way around!
The road wound up and around the forest mountains, with coastal views at every other turn. Full, lush forest with fruit trees, palm trees, and even evidence of landslides and water trickles from the centre, were the feature of the day.
Jerry stopped at each point of interest and explained the local way of life to us at every opportunity, including the Mystery Tombstone, and so many beautiful vantage points of a gorgeous blue ocean lapping the beach below. We also stopped at many of these beaches when we were at ocean level, to walk along the white sand, often with almost no one around.
Through village-sized towns on the map such as Plymouth, Castara, and Charlotteville, we stopped at Englishman's Bay and Bloody Bay, with Jerry pointing out the Sisters Rocks.
At L'Anse Fourmi, Jerry took us to meet his brother and a group of Rastas who were hanging about after working that morning. Chatting with the locals, many of them impressed we were in Trinidad for the cricket, we got a sense of the laidback lifestyle on Tobago.
Our lunch stop was at Jemma's Treehouse in Speyside, where levels of her restaurant were built around a huge tree, right on the beach edge. Amazing coconut grilled fish, and the local treat of butterfruit pie was delicious.
We completed the lap of the island for the rest of the afternoon, taking in the mountain views and beachside spots. It was around this time we got a sense of the rained out day at the cricket in Port of Spain, which made our decision to pick this day for our Tobago trip even better!
Upon hearing about our passage home, Jerry talked about ending out island tour by going to the airport and checking out flight options for Trinidad.
When we got to the airport, thinking we would buy a flight and then head off for a swim, we were told that the flights were all full. Jerry did some investigating, and got us standby tickets, and then at the check in desk, had us with boarding passing for the next flight. No swim, but a $23 flight home. On the flight, the sunset was gorgeous out the window over the ocean, and we heard confirmation that the cricket in Trinidad had been washed out. The guy next to me also told us about the cargo vessel return trip we had planned on – a 5 hour all night journey with a boat full of truck drivers, with no passenger spaces, just a barely covered area. We can laugh about this as a crazy near-miss, but I am not sure we would not have survived that, for a whole host of reasons!!